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Hello, and welcome to drama.

I'm Mr. Bateson, the teacher for this unit, "The journey", a verbatim theatre project.

And I've called this unit "The journey" because each lesson is themed around a journey or travelling or going somewhere.

This lesson is called "In their own words" and we're going to be using interviews to create monologue.

In the first lesson we talked about what verbatim theatre was.

If you haven't done that lesson don't worry because we'll go over it here.

I hope you're looking forward to it.

If you're ready, let's see what you'll need for the session.

You're going to need something to write with so a pen or pencil, and you're going to need something to write on, so some paper or a notebook.

You'll need some space to do some acting.

And later on, you're going to need to find a volunteer.

This should be somebody that you know quite well, someone in your family or a very close friend.

We'll come to that later though anyway.

Because this is a practical lesson and you'll be moving around, we need to keep safe.

So this lesson should take place inside and make sure there is enough space for you to work, including above, so look out for any light fittings.

You might want to take shoes and socks off and act in bare feet, either way make sure the floor is not slippy.

Wear some comfortable clothing so you can move around.

You can pause the video now, if you need to get anything for this lesson.

In this lesson, we'll recap what we've learned previously.

So we'll make sure you know what we mean by verbatim theatre before we start.

Next, I'll introduce you to the key terminology from today, which is monologue, we're going to be creating one.

I'll show you some examples of some verbatim theatre that were made from interviews to give you an idea of what we mean and you'll get a chance to perform them too.

Next, we'll go and conduct our own interviews.

I'll teach you how to do that properly before you take the interview and the words and the answers and make them into your own performance at the end.

There's also an exit quiz which you can do to check all this learning afterwards.

Let's check what we mean by verbatim theatre then.

I'll read the statement and you decide whether you think the statement is true or false by pointing at the screen.

Verbatim theatre is drama made from real people's words about real events or certain subjects, usually from interviews.

Is that true or false? Point at the answer that you think is correct now.

It's true.

If you look in the dictionary, verbatim means in exactly the same words.

So when we make verbatim theatre, we take the same words that a real person has spoken, we put them into a drama.

Today, we're going to be using interviews to find those real words.

Lots of plays in the verbatim style use interviews too.

In another lesson we use found text which is different to an interview.

So what do we mean by that? Again, point to the screen to the answer that you think is correct.

Found text is words from other plays used to make new plays.

What do you think? It's false.

So found texts are real words too, but they're found in newspaper articles or in official reports.

I suppose you could use words from a verbatim play to make another play but not from a fictional play or a story that's made up.

Remember, verbatim means in exactly the same words.

Let's go over the key words.

Verbatim theatre is drama made from real people's words about real life events or a certain subject usually from interviews.

In a moment I'm going to show you some really famous verbatim theatre plays that were made from interviews.

You are going to make some interviews today and then you're going to use them to create a monologue.

And a monologue is a solo speech from one character or actor usually to reveal inner thoughts or feelings and sometimes directly to the audience.

That's what you'll be doing today.

You'll be talking by yourself directly to the audience.

The next thing I'd like to do is show you some examples of some verbatim theatre plays that were made from interviews.

I'm going to show you two examples and I'm going to ask you to choose one of them to perform later to.

So while we're looking at them, also be thinking about which ones you might like to perform.

"Blackout" by Davey Anderson is a really great example of a verbatim theatre play.

Now this play tells a story of a young offender who wakes up and finds himself in a prison cell.

And it was made by interviewing a young offender.

What better way to make a play about someone who's experienced going to prison than to speak to them directly? Well what Davey Anderson did was he interviewed someone and he took those answers and he edited them down into a script.

He didn't just write down everything that the young person told him.

He took out the most interesting bits.

I'm going to read out the monologue here and I'd like to you to pick out some bits that you think are the most interesting.

What stands out to you here? "Imagine you wake up, you open your eyes and you're like that.

Where am I? Small room, bright lights, white walls, a metal door.

Oh my God! Imagine you wake up and you're in a jail cell.

You go up to the door, you bang your fists screaming, shouting, what am I doing here?" I really enjoyed performing that.

I think there's just something exciting about performing something that you know someone has really said.

I kind of almost felt like I was in a prison cell myself.

I wonder what bits stood out to you, the bits that you found most interesting.

I think the bits that stood out to me were the details.

The small room, the bright lights and the white walls.

It really helps to paint a picture.

And I liked the questions too.

Where am I? What am I doing in here? Kind of helps to get across that feeling of confusion that the person must be feeling to wake up in a cell there.

And this is what you'll do when you conduct your interview.

You'll have to go through the answers and find the most interesting bits.

"Risk", by John Retallack is another example of a verbatim theatre play that was made from interviews.

This time, the writers interviewed lots of different people and not just about one specific thing.

Instead, they asked them to tell them about a time they took a risk.

They got lots of different answers.

And again, the writers took the best bits and made them into different speeches.

In the play "Risk", there are speeches from lots of different characters.

This speech is from a character called Michelle.

She's talking about how she took a risk when she stood up to some bullies at her school.

Again, I'll have a read through.

I'd like you to pick out some of the best lines.

Some of the lines that you think are really really interesting.

'Cause that's what you're all going to have to do later when you've done your own interviews.

You'll have to go back through them and you're going to have to pick out the most interesting bits.

So this is practise for that.

Ready? "When I was 13, my family moved house.

I went from a school with only twenty five in a class to a large school in Glasgow.

Oh my God, what a shock.

I was perfect choice for a big bully campaign, by the not so posh and even if I do say so myself not so beautiful girls.

They say jealousy is what makes them bully.

Well after about six months of torment, of hair being singed on the bus, pushed against the wall in the corridor, living in utter fear of everyone, I'd had enough.

I took a risk.

It's great that, isn't it? I wonder what you picked out as some of the most interesting bits.

I think something that stood out to me was some of the information actually.

I mean straight away we know that this person is 13 when they moved house.

We know that they moved to Glasgow.

We know that they went from a small class to a bigger school.

Some of the other things that I liked were the kind of personal kind of informal bits of speech as well.

So when she says that the girls were not so posh and not so beautiful.

So both those plays began life as a series of interview questions and answers.

Then the writers took the responses and made them into those grey scripts.

You're going to be having a go at conducting some interviews and making them into scripts later on.

But don't forget, it's also the actor's job to bring these words to life.

So I'd like you to practise by performing one of those two extracts that we've looked at.

Either the extract from "Blackout" or the extract from "Risk".

You can rewind the video and pause it on the script you want or you'll be able to find the scripts in the worksheet section.

Either way, I really want you to focus on your performance skills.

So your facial expression, your vocal expression and your actions and gestures and movements.

Are you going to be sat down? Imagine you wake up.

Or stood up.

I went from a school with only 25 in a class to a large school in Glasgow.

Are you going to be very close to the camera or really far away? Bright lights, white walls, metal door.

What are you going to be doing with your hands? What are you going to be doing with your facial expressions? I'd had enough.

I took a risk.

Pause the video now, find the script you want to perform and have a go at bringing it to life.

When you finished, you can click resume, we'll move on to the next part of the lesson.

So how did you get on? And I wonder whether you chose to perform the extract from "Blackout." And if you did, how did you manage to show the confusion or the fear of that character that found themselves waking up in a jail cell? Or whether you performed the extract from "Risk"? And if you did, how did you manage to show the change in that character's attitude.

From being quite apprehensive at the start to being a little bit more confident at the end? I wonder how you used your facial expressions.

What actions and gestures you included, how did you use your vocal expression? Did you use the space in different ways a bit like I demonstrated? I hope i didn't make you jump too much when I came really close to the camera before.

Either way there's something really exciting about performing words that we know are real.

That came from a real person, somewhere, sometime in an interview.

What's even more exciting is when we conduct the interview ourselves.

And that's what we're going to do for the next part of the lesson.

We're going to be thinking about the questions that we asked somebody in order to get good enough answers to make an interesting script.

So how do we come up with good questions? We want to avoid one word answers, don't we? We want people to give us information, tell us details.

We want people to feel comfortable telling us their thoughts and feelings.

So you're going to have to plan your questions well.

And you're going to have to come up with more than one or two.

If we were to just ask somebody, tell us about the time you were in prison and they said it was rubbish, then we'd be a bit stuck.

We'd have to make sure we have some other questions to follow up with.

Why was it rubbish? How did you feel? What could you see? What could you hear? What were you worried about? I wonder what kind of questions the writers asked in the interviews to make the two plays we've just looked at? What kind of questions might have they asked Michelle about the time she took a risk? Let's have a look at some potential questions.

They might have said, "Tell us about a time when you were in a new or strange place?" They might've said, "Can you remember your first day at that school?" They might have had to dig a little bit deeper though.

They might have had to say, "How old were you? Where were you? What was the best bit? Do you regret anything?" All of these questions could be used, couldn't they, to create a good piece of verbatim theatre script.

There are some rules though.

I'd like to take you through them now.

Because we're dealing with real people, and these are real stories, they're quite personal, we have to be really careful when we're making verbatim theatre from interviews.

First thing we need to do is choose our topic carefully.

So we don't want to talk about anything too distressing today.

Next thing you need to do is plan your questions.

Make sure we're not asking anything too personal, make sure we're not being too general either.

Am I going to find someone to interview who we know well? I'd like that to be someone in your family or a friend.

Check permission with them that they are happy to be interviewed and they are happy for you to use their words to make a piece of drama.

That is really important.

Once somebody has said something in an interview, they can't unsay it.

So be really clear about what's going to happen with the answers they give you.

I would try and record the interview if you can, maybe on a mobile phone or an iPad so that you've got the words exactly.

You can also then check permission again after the interview.

Make sure the person's happy, that what they've said is true and make sure that they're still happy for you to use their words to make a piece of drama.

If you're in any doubt about using somebody's words, leave it out.

This is meant to be a fun activity so let's try and keep things light.

So some of the topics that you could interview somebody about are in front of you now.

I wonder which ones interest you the most.

It'd be great to ask your best friend how to be a friend maybe, wouldn't it? It could be interesting to hear about what people regret.

Maybe they've made some mistakes in their life.

Michelle in this story spoke about her first day at school, didn't she? What we're going to focus on is a memorable journey or place.

That's why this unit's called "The journey".

So, remember the first thing we're going to do, we've chosen our topic carefully.

This will give somebody to talk about something they remember in detail but hopefully it's not going to make anybody feel too uncomfortable.

The next thing we're going to do is create some questions for our interview.

So I'm going to be looking for around five to 10 questions.

Now remember, these needs to be good questions that are going to help us write a script.

Here's some example questions that you might ask in your interview about a memorable journey.

Some of these questions help us to get some information.

How old are you? Where were you? Some of them allow us to get into a little bit more detail.

So what happened? What could you see? Some of these questions are a bit more challenging, aren't they? Can you describe this in adjectives or even a simile? That will help us script the even better.

You can also ask about feelings too or if anybody else was involved, if there are any other characters.

Okay, that's enough examples from me.

I'm going to ask you to get your pen and paper and plan five to 10 interview questions around this topic, a memorable journey or a favourite place.

You can pause the video now, write down your questions, when you've done that click resume and we'll move on to the interview part.

So have you got your five to 10 questions ready to go and ask someone? I hope so.

This is the best bit.

So go and find somebody to interview and remember before you even start asking the questions, explain what you're doing.

Explain that you'll use the answers to make a piece of drama.

Make sure the person you're asking is okay with that.

After the interview, check with the person you've interviewed they're happy still with everything that you've talked about.

Then, what I'm going to ask you to do is to edit those answers into a script, 10 line monologue.

Remember that key word, monologue? That's where one person, an actor or a character speaks usually directly to the audience revealing their feelings and thoughts.

So you're going to perform kind of like the person you've interviewed telling their story of this memorable journey.

It's going to take a little bit of time to do the interview and to edit your answers into a script.

So don't rush, you can pause the video.

Remember, these are the three things that you want in your script.

Some information, some details, some thoughts and feelings.

I'll give you some time to do that.

When you've finished click resume and we'll think about bringing these stories to life on stage as actors.


So you've planned your questions.

You've done your interview.

You've made sure everybody's happy.

And then you've edited all those answers into 10 lines that you are going to perform as a monologue.

Remember, don't just read out the answers.

That's not an interesting piece of theatre.

Just because the story is good and you enjoyed listening to it in the interview, doesn't mean it's finished.

As an actor, you still need to bring it to life.

So I want to see facial expression, vocal expression, actions and gestures, and do move around.

Think of different ways you can use your space.

I'll give you a little example.

I spoke to one of my friends, a good friend who went walking in the mountains once and I asked him about his experience in an interview.

I then edited it into a 10 line monologue, which I'm going to perform for you now.

It's snowing.

My fingers and toes are numb.

I've got a headache.

My feet hurt and we've been walking for eight days.

Prayer flags are galloping loudly, I can barely hear myself think.

I'm about ready to give up.

And then there it is.

Blue kind of pink, snow topped.

This is what we've been waiting for.

This why we're here.

All of a sudden it goes silent.

It was worth it.


So that was my example.

Could you see me using my face? Did you hear the different ways I used my voice? I tried to include actions and gestures.

And I made sure I didn't stay in one spot all the time.

Pause the video now, and bring your verbatim piece of drama to life.

When you're finished, click resume and we'll move into the last part of the lesson.

So you've just created a piece of verbatim theatre from an interview and you've performed it as a monologue.

I hope it sparks your interest in this style of theatre.

And maybe you're thinking about what other people you could interview and what other topics you could talk about.

What would make a really interesting piece of verbatim theatre Anyway, well done for today.

you've worked really hard exploring how we can make verbatim theatre from an interview and you've performed your own monologue too.

We looked at some examples of some famous verbatim plays that themselves were made from interviews.

And you might even come across those plays if you were to be studying drama at GCSE or A-level.

Great work, keep it up.

I'd be really keen to see some of your performances from today.

So if you'd like to share your work with us, and don't forget, make sure the person you interviewed is happy for that too.

Then you can go to Twitter and you can share with us your verbatim theatre monologues.

If not, that's no problem.

And I'll see you in another drama lesson, another time.