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The Deconstruction w/Piero Procaccini – session 1 . . .

    Session 1:

Intro to the Deconstruction (Overview of structure and introduction to active listening/watching using thematic, commentary and tangential categories)

Notes from Piero are in CAPS.

History – Del Close invention, first group was the “Victim’s Family”, then it turned into the “Family.” Miles (STROTH) was an original member of the “Family” and is whom Piero learned this form from.
To Piero the Deconstruction is the ultimate game. Definition of a game is the idea that a group of people will communicate with an agreed upon set of rules. (NOT SURE IF THIS IS THE DEFINITION OF A GAME BUT IT IS OFTEN WHAT WE DO WHEN WE PLAY GAMES) In Deconstruction the game rules is the agreement to communicate through the type of scene work that they do. (RIGHT, WE ARE COMMUNICATING THE THEMES OF THE PIECE THROUGH OUR SCENEWORK.)

Jobs are broken up into on-stage job and off-stage job. On-stage job is to be in the scene and not to analyze. Off-stage job is to analyze and to actively listen. This is your time to think.

Active listening – watching, logging, and analyzing. Best way to do this is to physically portray active listening (leaning forward, eyes open, ears perked, or any way that one can best put oneself into that mind-frame physically.)
You can log information into two sub-sections:
– video camera (remember exact information – specifics and accurate information)
– categorical (this is dependent on the form, e.g., in a Harold you log information by character or in Close Quarters you log information by details.)

In the Deconstruction you log information in three categories:

Thematic information – What is the theme of this scene? What is this scene/piece about? Theme is based on the first source scene and should be summed up by an abstract (universal) phrase. One person’s theme does not have to be the same as another.

Commentative information – May be least apparent, this is the behavior that is critical to the theme of the piece. What pieces of information supplied in the scene/piece made you come to that theme?

Tangential information – This is not critical to the theme or commentary realized prior but is information/moments that stand out or are of note. It is everything else (i.e. details, specifics, info that stood out).

Exercises –

warm-up doing one-line, two-line, and three-line scenes with the idea that we’re supplying information.

Two-person scenes where off-stage participants look for theme, commentary, and tangential information.
First set was one theme, one commentary, and one tangential piece of information.
Second set was one theme, one commentary, and two tangential pieces of information.
Third set was one theme, two commentary, and three tangential pieces of information.

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About improvunderdogs

A fan of improv and using it in a variety of ways. This blog is part of our quest to make improv more valued in the community.

One response »

  1. Martha Hoffheimer, mother of Margot Hambleton

    Hello, Piero! Will this message come to you? Do you remember your first time seeing The Nutcracker? ‘Tis the season and Margot and I will go again. This time with her family and Althea is the age you and “Marmu” were when we saw it together. I remember your dancing to your favorite part in the Nutcracker, the Chinese dancers. My very best to you and please to your Mom also! The four of us had many good times, two moms with you little ones! I’d love to see you, big one! Do you perform outside of the Chicago area? I am in Amherst, MA, Margot too.

    Reply

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