Saturday, 6 May 2017

Alice in Wonderland- Week 2

Yesterday we returned to Roborough Studios for our second fun week of Alice and her adventures in Wonderland. This week we were focusing on movement and character; how can we move to signify a character on stage that is not human? How can this be done not only on your own, but working in a team? There was also a whole heap of puppetry that went on, it was very exciting!

Once we had finished our usual bout of warm ups the Chameleons were asked to move around the room to the soundscape of a jungle, underpinned with some harmonic music. The exercise they did started off with us asking them to become different animals. Some small things such as a cat or a rabbit and some large like an elephant. The group were then asked to work together in pairs and eventually a large group to create larger and more complicated creatures; such as a spider, a horse and an octopus.

The real challenge came last when they were asked to create a working, moving dragon. The dragon needed to be able to accomplish several actions, such as eat, sleep and fly (and also fight off villagers, as per group request). Working together the cast managed to bring to life a dragon using only their bodies. Arms for wings and a tail and synchronised walking, along with a fearsome roar to complete the picture.

It then came time for Alice to meet the group. Alice, or 'Little Alice' is our guest performer, a small puppet who will start in the Chameleons performance during the points where Alice shrinks down and becomes small. The group was also introduced to our prototype Caterpillar puppet; a three person machine with one person acting as the head and the other two using the body.

In groups the Chameleons had to bring these puppets to life and have them walk around the room. Everyone was very creative and came up with some lovely ideas for how this could be done. Everyone had a turn with both the puppets and we are very excited to see how the group manages to cope with more puppets as rehearsals progress.

Finally we brought out some small sections of script for the cast to engage with. There were two groups, each with a different scene. One scene featured Alice's important first meeting with the White Rabbit and the second featured her conversation with the Caterpillar. The task was simple, to bring these scenes to life and then show them back to the group. Everyone worked hard with their scripts and produced some very lovely work.

Overall it was a lovely, if busy, second week for our Alice project. The Chameleons once again rise to whatever challenge we give them and it was brilliant to see what work they created. Until next week, see you then!

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