Friday, March 26, 2010


Today we successfully blocked scene V. The kids are working hard to learn their lines . The crew is busily constructing the set, working on costumes, and hunting up props for the show. The kids are doing their part by creating "lobby art" -- posters and billboards, and decorating the set. With Spring Break at hand we want to remind our cast to keep working on those lines because we go OFF BOOK when we get back.

Parents, the kids have been encourages to watch clips, video's or adaptations of The Tempest with your help.

Crew, keep in touch over the break!

Everyone have a GREAT Spring Break and we'll see you soon!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Wednesday of Week Three

Here are a few pictures from today's practice where the main goal was to block Scene IV:

The kids continued to get some practice time on the stage while further mastering the use of props--

Those that only have a few lines have really impressed us with their mastery in movement. Today they practiced "scary chasing". They did a great job too!--Nicole looks pretty frightened!

There was a lot of excitement in the costume "department" where a few of the goddesses got to be fitted for their dresses today. The dresses are still in the rough stage and our designer promises that the girls will look like lovely goddesses when she's done, not like teenagers going to prom :) .

Our Caliban had everyone laughing as she demonstrated her "schlepping" ability--

Overall, it was another great and productive day!

Just a reminder for students to keep working on memorizing lines and to remember to bring their scripts to practice.
Thanks for your continued support! I know I speak for the entire group when I say thank you for letting us work with your children. They are truly an amazing group of individuals!

Tuesday -- Week Three

We are working on stage this week!

Today we began with snacks and a rousing game of Red Rover, Red Rover, which had the gym shaking with laughter. Then we moved into groups and began working on lines. Each team is working hard to be off book by the end of the week and we know the kids will work hard to have their lines memorized when they come back from Spring break.

Next we moved onstage and continued blocking. We worked on Act IV which includes most of the cast. It's big challenge but the kids attacked it with determination and lots of energy. By the end of the day it was looking great.

Tomorrow we're blocking act V and with any luck we'll be ready for our first run through by Thursday!

Cast: We need EVERYONE to show up and to bring your SCRIPTS!

Crew: The goal is to get the kids off book as soon as possible! Also please remember to email a list of any props you may need to Phil ASAP

Keep up the good work everyone!

Monday, March 22, 2010

Monday of Week 3

The gym was especially loud today--a good sign! As the kids have become increasingly more comfortable with their lines they've been able to deliver them with more volume, more feeling, and more movement.

Today (after warm ups and snack) we started to block specific scenes. The groups rotated around the gym so that everyone got a turn to practice on the stage. There was even some dancing, pretend sword fighting, and costumes worked in.

In the final 15 minutes, a few groups got to do a "show and tell" performance. It's amazing how much they continue to improve. We can't wait to see what a few more weeks will do!

We ask that kids continue to work on memorizing lines, remembering to slow down a bit in their reading and allow their voices to project. Help remind them that volume comes from their middle section and isn't the same as yelling :).

The performance schedule is now up on the sidebar. Parents/family are welcome to attend one or all of the shows, including those performed at Whitney and Whitier. ALSO-- We will be doing some set construction and painting this Saturday. If you have a few spare minutes or hours, we'd love and appreciate any help we can get from parents! We'll have specific times and locations up in the next day or two.

All the best!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Wednesday of Week 2

Another fun and busy day at the Shake it Up program!

We started off with our warm ups.... Then paused for a snack....
The nymphs and goddesses were especially interested in what was going on in the costume department....

We changed up the way we'd been playing our "Bunny Killer" game--resulting in a lot more deaths (and chances to practice dramatic facial expression and body movement)...

Then it was time to divide up into groups and practice lines. The BSU mentor to Lowell student ratio is about 3-1, so you can be assured the kids are getting all the individual attention they'll need to get a good understanding of their part...

Those with only a few lines practiced their movement. Here are some mariners demonstrating what rowing a boat and then crashing in it would look like....

To wrap up the day, each group put on a mini-performance of what they'd learned that day...

The audience agreed that all our actors are making real progress!...

***The kids have been challenged today to START MEMORIZING THEIR LINES!*** The sooner they start, the better chance they'll have of having them down by our first performance. See you all tomorrow!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Tuesday of Week 2

As one group stayed in the gymnasium and worked with Darby to emulate a storm, the rest of our readers returned to the library and worked through their specific parts and enjoyed a very interactive reading.

The specific groups that work with each actor, Group Alonso, etc., have made their picks and now the children are hard-pressed to focus toward the future, toward the performance. There is a simultaneous wave of excitement and trepidation.

But, continuing from week one there is something infectious about the interaction between the students from both schools (Lowell and Boise State), a bridge that connects both generations to a world created by William Shakespeare--the gap is quickly closing and it becomes more and more obvious why Shakespeare is said to be, "not of an age, but for all time."

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Day Four

Day Four:

Today was the last day of the first week. And what a week it's been! We've all had a blast. Today we continued to work on our acting and reading skills. We started the day with a few "shake it out" games that let the kids wiggle and shake out some of their energy. We also played another game of "Bunny Killer" so the kids could continue working on their improvisation and facial expressions. Finally after our game we broke up in groups and began working on reading lines, singing and dancing. The kids worked hard today, learning new words like "prithee," and "thou." The kids really got into the story and did a great job reading Prospero, Miranda, Ariel and Caliban... so they were extra excited when we announced that we would be casting over the weekend. So cast and crew, next week the real work begins :) We'll be learning lines, working on blocking and talking a lot about sets, props and costumes! See everyone on Monday!

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Day Three

Getting into the Groove

It 's day three and everyone is really getting into the groove. The Shake-it up crew (aka Team Shake) has been really impressed by the Lowell kids' energy, talent, and listening skills. Good job guys!

We started the day by getting the Lowell kids playing a game of rhythm monster, which helped us all to warm up by wiggling out fingers, waving our arms and moving like sprites and fairies. Next we played a game of the "Bunny Killer" - which allowed the kids to practice watching each others' facial expressions and respond to them by improvising their own "death." This let them do some acting and encouraged them to think about movement and action. The kids proved to be quite the actors, their death scenes were quite moving :) Our next activity was moving them into groups so they could work on reading lines and learning a few dance moves. We also talked a little bit about casting and got some input from the kids about the kinds of parts they're interested in and the kinds of behind-the-scenes work they might want to try their hand at. Once again the kids rose to the challenge and we're all really excited about working with such a talented bunch of musicians, dancers, singers, and artists. We ended the day with a Q&A session regarding the story of The Tempest. The kids did a great job remembering the who's who of the story. Everyone worked hard and had a good time!

Crew: Please remember to meet in the teacher lounge tomorrow. And keep in mind that we'll have the camera on hand tomorrow
Thanks everyone!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Day Two

This morning several folks from ENGL 345 volunteered to help record The Tempest so that in a few weeks we can give all the Lowell Shakespeareans a CD recording of the script. Thanks everyone who helped out!

For Day Two at Lowell, we transitioned from a quick roll-call into a reiteration of the name game, where Tiara named off everyone flawlessly (way to go Tiara - impressive!). Tiara led us through a reenactment of the play itself, inviting us to improvise the roles ad lib. This allowed us to acquire the story in a personal way and to connect with it through roleplay.

Then Chris les us through an activity focused on posture and spatial awareness before we moved through a series of "character stations" with the various character-team leaders and a "movement station" with Darby. There was some really fantastically monstrous and spritely movement and we started to see a wide array of characters emerging from all our aspiring actors.

We are continuing to get to know each other, to learn the story of The Tempest and to figure out what kinds of roles and participation will best suit everyone as we work together to move Shakespeare from the page to the stage.

Wish you were involved?

I would too--if I wasn't.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Our First Day

Our First Day!

Today the cast and crew of the Shake It Up After School production of The Tempest met for the first time in the gym of Lowell Elementary school. It was quite an adventure. We started off with the name game... which challenged both our creativity and our memory. The Lowell kids stepped up to the challenge and came up with some kooky crazy combinations. Next we learned the story of The Tempest by acting it out. We made a big storm, wrecked a ship into an island, met a magician, his daughter, a monster, a sprite and a host of other characters. Then we played a rhythm game that got us all tapping, clapping, and stomping... we made marvelous sweet music. Finally we ended the day with a exercise in volume.. and the kids blew us away. Tomorrow we'll continue working on getting to know each other and becoming more familiar with the story of The Tempest.

Reminders for the Crew: We're recording the script in the LA Building RM 208 at 9am
We're still missing a photos of few teams (Prospero, Ariel) so if we don't have your picture make sure we get it on Wednesday!

Friday, March 5, 2010

The Crew

The Crew ( some of us - photos will be updated as we take them)

Producer: Matt Hansen

Team Alonso et al.: Vern, Chauntain, Rochelle, Justin,

Director: Tiara Thompson

Assistant Director: Sandra Loera

Education Consultant: Valerie Baugh-Schlossberg

Utility Team: Casey, Bernice, Ashlie, Jason

The tech team : Eric, Diana. Kaysi, Doug

Team Caliban: Grady, Todd

Team Miranda and Ferdinand: Natalie, and Ambur