Evaluating Live Theatre: Session 7/7

Putting it all together

This term we have been exploring a production of Macbeth in order to write a Live Theatre Evaluation in the style of a GCSE Drama, Section C exam response.

Last session we examined what makes a successful evaluation, and today you are going to write your own!

As always, you will need a word document or a piece of paper to complete the work. You can submit a word document online or upload a photograph of your finished handwritten work.

Part 1: Preparation

Remember – the Section C Live Theatre Evaluation question is worth 32 marks. 12 marks are for the way you describe the physical and vocal skills of the actor and 20 marks are for the way you analyse and evaluate their performance.

This is the question I would like you to answer today.

Describe how one or more actors used their vocal and physical skills in a particular scene or section to show their character’s emotions

Analyse and evaluate how successful they were in communicating their character’s emotions to the audience. 

You could make reference to: 

• vocal skills, for example pitch, pace and tone of voice 

• physical skills, for example body language and facial expression 

• a scene or section and/or the production as a whole.

[32 marks]

Wait……..Before you start writing, make sure you do the ground work.

Step 1: Choose which character(s) you are going to focus your answer on – Macbeth or Lady Macbeth are the characters we have spent time exploring in this project.

Step 2: Select two contrasting moments from the play featuring your chosen character(s).

Step 3: Download the GCSE Drama Word Bank – you should aim to use an extensive range of drama terms in each paragraph to access top bank marks.

Step 4: Re-read the example answer from last week – remind yourself of how this student weaves description, analysis and evaluation into every paragraph. Look at the level of detail and depth of analysis. This student managed to write this essay in just 40 minutes in exam conditions.

Step 5: Find all your previous work from this project and get it out in front of you to refer to where appropriate. You should be able to directly copy some of the analysis that you have done in previous lessons into your final evaluation.

Part 2: Writing your essay

You are finally ready to start writing. Follow this structure for success!

Introduction

Include key information about the play, playwright, director and style of the production with a brief one-sentence summary of the plot.

State which actor you are going to focus your answer on.

Moment 1: Choose a moment that shows an interesting aspect of your chosen actor’s performance

Describe a key moment from one section of the performance and focus on how the physical and vocal skills of the actor show the emotions of the character.

Explain what effect the performance had on the audience and what you think the actor and director are trying to communicate.

At the end of the paragraph, evaluate how successful the actor was in achieving their aims.

You might find this document helpful in structuring each paragraph. Follow the coloured blocks……

Moment 2: Choose another moment which shows a contrasting aspect of your chosen actor’s performance

Use the coloured blocks again.

Describe a second key moment from later in the play and analyse the actor’s physical and vocal skills.

You should contrast this moment with the first key moment.

Explain how the chosen actor displays a different set of emotions of the character. Explain the effect of these skills on the audience and try to explore what you think the actor and director are trying to communicate.

At the end of the paragraph, evaluate how successful the actor was in achieving their aims.

Another actor: Optional

Add a paragraph about another actor who appears in the same scene(s) as your chosen actor. Follow the coloured blocks again to explore their performance.

Conclusion: Optional

A one sentence summary of whether the actor(s) had successfully showed their emotions will be enough.

And you’ve finished! Thank you for all of your hard work throughout this project. I look forward to reading your finished essays.

The play is here if you need to watch your chosen scenes again: