16th November 2018
Writing: Matthew Human (Year 11)
Editing: Aaron Arora (Year 8)
Euphoric. Despairing. Relieved. Entertained. These are just some of the words that described both my and 30 other GCSE Drama students’ emotions throughout our devised performances.
The process, which commenced at the end of last year’s summer term, started with our teacher giving us a stimulus, which after a few months would eventually blossom into an original 15 to 20 minute performance. The length depended on the number of people in each group. My group’s stimulus was the poem Come On, Come Back, by Stevie Smith, depicting an emotional tale of the dreadful effects of war on a young girl named Vaudevue. After analysing it, our group had to derive our own secondary stimuli for our group to kickstart the initial ideas of our performance.
Over many hours of independently developing the aims and objectives of our performance, researching stimuli, and improvising and writing scenes, we systematically constructed the performance which would make up over a quarter of our Drama GCSE. My own group’s performance, called Volatility, was about an autistic boy named Sebastian, whom I played. The performance explored the effects of autism on families across the world by focusing on his older brother, Jake, who enters the world of crime as a consequence of his tough family life. Playing Sebastian involved stepping not only into another character, but a completely different mind set, and was a challenge I relished.
To say I enjoyed every minute of the process would be dishonest, since, at times, we struggled a lot to develop an engaging plot. Despite this, the end performance to our classmates and members of Years 10 and 11 was a successful one and a thoroughly enjoyable experience also.
To conclude the first unit of our Drama GCSE, we must now write a 2000 word portfolio on the devising process.