By Kenn Adams
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Extra resources for How to Improvise a Full-Length Play: The Art of Spontaneous Theater
What would he say if he knew that his old Aunt Agatha was being romanced, right here in the cabin, by a boy his own age? Player 4: Twenty-nine, and I’m still a boy? Player 3: Jonathan, sweetie, I’m fifty-three. Player 4: Well, I hope I don’t remind you too much of your nephew. I’d hate for you to be thinking about him instead of me. Player 3: Oh, no. He’s really nothing like you. He’s wonderful, of course, but . . Oh, you know. He’s kind of plain looking, and never had much luck with the ladies.
Since The Foundation is about 25 percent of the entire play, this Foundation should take about a minute and a half. At just about that point, one of the players claims the position of character #1 by standing on a chair, the chair of significance! Character #1 points dramatically at another player, who now becomes character #2. And finally, character #1 delivers a line of dialogue that serves as a clear and unmistakable First Significant Event. There are several points to the exercise. The first is to develop a feeling for when The Foundation has completed its job.
Because of that . . Climax Until, finally . . End And ever since then . . qxd 8/7/07 12:58 PM Page 28 Let’s analyze our first example in order to demonstrate how each offer fulfills its core function: OFFER FROM STORY STRUCTURAL MAP SPINE Beginning Once upon a time there was a frog named Freida. Every day, she ate a fly. FUNCTION The Foundation is built, and the routine is established. First Significant Event But one day, she ate a grasshopper. The routine is broken, and The Foundation is destroyed.
How to Improvise a Full-Length Play: The Art of Spontaneous Theater by Kenn Adams