Here are my notes for posterity on the class that we took this weekend. Basically Piero fit into a two-day period a complete workshop series he normally does in 8 weeks. Suffice to say, these notes are extensive and broken into class period. I tried to put them all into this blog post, but it looked ridiculously daunting. As a side note, I was fortunate to have Piero also review my notes after I had transcribed them, so here you have my original notes with corrections and elaboration by the man himself (Piero’s notes are in CAPS.)
I went through and made a few comments in your notes – they are in all caps just to indicate where they are. Please let me know if anything is unclear or needs further explanation. Most important, though, I’d say, is for you to jot down any realizations that you had or lessons you came away with from the class – these are the things that will serve you best moving forward.
The Deconstruction with Piero Procaccini
With a solid background in the Deconstruction, performers are equipped with a working paradigm to
more easily navigate through their scène work.
Format of The Deconstruction long-form (35-50 mins in length):
1. Source Scene – one scene (6-8 mins. long)
This scene is grounded and its purpose is to provide a lot of information
2. Thematic Scenes – two to three scenes (2-3 mins. each)
These scenes are not premise-based and its purpose TO HELP SOLIDIFY THE THEMES OF THE PIECE (THIS IS ACCOMPLISHED BY –> is to play it line by line, to agree and add information.)
3. Source Scene – return to source scene from point that you left off (2-3 mins. long)
This scene’s purpose is to play on the theme that is observed from thematic scenes. (YEP, RESPOND TO THE THEMATIC SCENES AND ALSO TO ACT AS A MARKER BETWEEN THE THEMATIC SCENES AND THE COMMENTARY SCENES)
4. Commentary Scenes – five to six scenes (1 min. each)
These scenes are premise based, they’re used to exhibit behaviors in non-traditional scene set-ups (place and circumstance). There is an initiator and a responder in each scene. Just yes (don’t add, only heighten).
(COMMENTARY SCENES ARE MEANT TO COMMENT ON THE THEME OF THE PIECE BY TAKING THE BEHAVIOR CRITICAL TO THE THEME AND PLACING IT WHERE IT DOES NOT BELONG. INITIATOR HAS THE PREMISE. FOR THE RESPONDER, JUST “YES”, DON’T “AND” UNTIL YOU UNDERSTAND THE PREMISE, AFTER THAT HEIGHTEN THE GAME AND GET OUT OF THERE.)
5. Source Scene – return to source scene from last point (1 min. long)
This scene is meant to serve a specific form function, it allows the rest of the performers to get ready for the run. Source scene will also build on commentary observed, but not meant to add new information. (ACTUALLY, THIS IS THE LAST PLACE THAT YOU COULD POTENTIALLY ADD NEW INFORMATION – NO NEW INFO IN THE RUN. DURING THIS RETURN TO THE SOURCE SCENE, SOURCE SCENE PLAYERS CAN RESPOND TO THE COMMENTARY SCENES AND OFFSTAGE PLAYERS CHECK IN ABOUT THE FACT THAT THEY ARE ABOUT TO RUN. IT ALSO SERVES AS A BENCHMARK BETWEEN THE COMMENTARY AND THE RUN.)
6. Run (Running) – As many scenes you can fit into a 6-8 minute period.
(scenes shouldn’t last longer than 30 secs.)
These are meant to use up the extra information (ANY INFORMATION AT ALL FROM THE ENTIRE PIECE – IF YOU THOUGHT OF IT/REMEMBER IT FROM THE PIECE, USE IT HERE)we obtained from the original source scene. It starts with a short scene and picks up momentum throughout. It is the final sprint to the finish line.
7. Source Scene – return to source (brief revisit – tech cue)
This scene is meant to serve a specific functions also, it is the button to the end and the cue that this is the end of the show, i.e, the tech cue. (YES, IT’S ONE LAST CHANCE FOR US TO REVISIT THE SOURCE SCENE. IT TIES THE PIECE UP AND GIVES IT A SENSE OF CLOSURE.)