Twelfth Night

My practical work in the year 2002 was a piece of scripted work based on Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night. To contribute to the play I played the part of the captain. I was a performer and had to act on stage. I only appeared once, in Act 1 Scene 2. I had to comfort Viola. The captain is very old, noble and clever.

This is the complete opposite to me, which makes it even harder. Even though it was only a small portion of the play when I appeared, and may seem easy it defiantly wasn’t.I feel the hardest part of acting as the captain was changing my character. His words he used, actions and expression, were all nothing like what I would normally make use of. When we had rehearsals for the play I wanted a good part. When I found out I was too play an old man I tried very hard to put on the voice of an old man. As this was set in the period of the early 16th century, I knew it had to be a posh sounding voice. This put a bit of stress on my voice, but I knew I would get used to it.

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To help me with my involvement I used many resources. These included looking for books in the library at school as well as in town. I also used various search engines on the Internet to search for sites for information. I watched 2 variations of Twelfth Night to see how other people acted it out. The most useful material I looked at was defiantly other versions of the play, as I can see their actions and movement and try to base mine upon them.The movement of my character had to be very energetic, yet slow and pondering. I had to seem like I was slightly hunched in appearance to portray the age of The Captain. In the final rehearsals, we all had to work on our pace of everything we did, because the play was overrunning.

But in our next rehearsal we did very much better and sped the play up a lot. The costume made me get into my character much more because I did feel slightly restricted. We all looked very different and this made me feel much more comfortable.My own performance I felt was very good, and in the last few weeks of the production I really felt involved in my character and knew how I should play him.

Other character such as Viola and Orsino helped me and gave me some tips along the way and they were very worthwhile.The acting that we did was based in the 16th Century, in Illyria and it was hard to change to that time zone. It is very different to our everyday lives. The costume for example was not of that you would see now days.

The words that we used were different to the ones we use now as well.Another play that we are studying; Blood Brothers is set in the 20th Centaury In Liverpool. The language is also quite hard to understand in this as the actors had an accent. However the words they use are more of what we use everyday including a lot of slang and swear words. This made Blood Brothers a much easier play to understand and act in too.

In Twelfth Night, in Illyria, the people are mostly from an upper class. These are people that do not have to work if they do not want to and have had a good upbringing. On the other hand in Blood Brothers, in Liverpool, the people are of a working class mainly.

This means that most of them have jobs in order to pay bills etc. You can tell this, as in Twelfth Night, the inhabitants are posh, and use good language. No slang or swear words are used. Conversely in Blood Brothers, slang is used on a regular basis as well as swear words. This becomes understandable, as it is obvious that virtually all upper class people wouldn’t use slang.We tried to base our work on Stanlavaski. We did this because it’s naturalistic. I hope that we lived up to his standards, and I think we just did do that.

In conclusion I would have to say that I leaned a lot. This included changing my personality to match my character. My actions were quite hard to get to grips with, as I had to time a lot of things correctly.

I learned how to improvise a lot better. Of the stage I feel I did good as well. I helped arrange a rehearsal and organize the group when I feel we, as a group was not performing to our ability.