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2010/1 Module Catalogue
 Module Code: MUTM004 Module Title: REHERSAL PROJECT
Module Provider: Guildford School of Acting Short Name: MUTM004
Level: M Module Co-ordinator: FENDER T Ms (GSA)
Number of credits: 30 Number of ECTS credits: 15
Module Availability

Spring and Autumn Terms

Assessment Pattern

Unit(s) of Assessment

Weighting Towards Module Mark (%)

Continuous feedback on rehearsal process




Term 1: Performing the Ensemble
Process: 50%
Performance 50%


Term 2: Developing the Integrated Character
Process: 40%
Performance 60%


Qualifying Condition(s)

A weighted aggregate mark of 50% is required to pass the module
Module Overview

The Rehearsed Performance Project Module begins in Term One by focussing on material that encourages supports and develops disciplined ensemble practice.  Term 2 focuses on material that demands more advanced character development techniques and technical challenges.   The module is delivered in two parts:

Term 1: Performing the Ensemble
The module will engage with the specific disciplines of genre and style and will contain strong choreographic and musically challenging elements.  It will facilitate the development of a structured and effective rehearsal technique, underpinned by both practice-based and academic research.

Term 2: Developing the Character
Students will further develop their ability to identify, evaluate and process character information and objectives by focussing on text drawn from musical theatre repertoire. Whereas the first term concentrated on ensemble work, creating a coherent ‘environment’ to a narrative, the second term will allow the students to create and explore individual character roles. Acting, vocal and physical skills will be integrated and applied in the rehearsal and performance of selected excerpts, with particular attention paid to the transition from the spoken word to the sung lyric. Consideration will be given to the practical challenge of achieving a playing style appropriate to musical theatre that does not compromise dramatic credibility. Students will also be expected to develop their sense of stagecraft and rehearsal discipline. Assessment will be based on performance of the assigned scenes and individual contribution to process.

Module Aims
• To apply advanced singing, dancing and acting techniques to a rehearsed performance project, underpinned by textual analysis and contextual research
• To enable the necessary integration of appropriate vocal and physical skills to create a vibrant and articulate performance within a musical theatre context.
• To provide strategic and methodological rehearsal and performance experience within a range of differing musical theatre texts
• To inculcate a sophisticated understanding of the disciplines and rigours implied by committed ensemble practice
Learning Outcomes
• The ability to analyse a performance text, both spoken and sung, to make creative and relevant choices and to communicate these effectively to an audience
• The ability to demonstrate the practical application of theory through performance
• The application of integrated techniques in the creation of a believable, original and appropriate character, whether individual or as member of an ensemble
• The ability to adapt physical and vocal techniques in accordance with period, context, style and genre.
• The ability to demonstrate a professional level of ensemble practice
Module Content
The Rehearsal Project Module begins with improvisations, individual and group exercises as well as intensive work on both text and musical score. 
In Term 1, the rehearsal process will involve the utilisation of techniques acquired in Modules 1 and 2 and contextual research produced in Practice Research (Module 3) that will encourage the student to engage imaginatively with the text with regard to creating a credible environment and/or choral background against which the narrative can take place. Students will consider the implications and opportunities of characters that are defined by action, text and musical language. The chosen material selected will reflect the demographic of the particular student cohort, and will present challenges of contrasting style or genre where possible; the material will in any event be drawn from seminal works in the musical theatre canon, particularly selected to provide a rich dramatic context for study.
Students will test out their preparation strategies in order to meet the challenges of appropriate performance energy and emotional availability.  Students will learn strategies to maximise the creative potential in working with others and will be inducted into the rigours of creative ensemble practice. 
In the second term students will work on one or more particular roles from musical theatre pieces, thus increasing their exposure and subsequent understanding of the differing demands of style and genre, and permitting a closer, more individual monitoring of their technical skills. Selected pieces may be American (Broadway) or British in origin and may include writers and composers such as Rodgers and Hammerstein, Stephen Sondheim, Noel Coward, Kurt Weill and Leonard Bernstein.  This enables the integration of the more complex vocal and physical techniques then being addressed in Modules 1 and 2 and is supported by the contextual research and analysis procedures set up in Module 3.
Methods of Teaching/Learning
Rehearsal workshops
Group and Individual research sessions
Group and Individual structured improvisations
Group and Individual tutorials
Selected Texts/Journals
Block, Geoffrey, Enchanted Evenings: The Broadway Musical from Show Boat to Sondheim (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2004)
Engel, L. The American Musical Theatre (New York: Macmillian & Co, 1995)
Everett William A. &  Paul R. Laird, eds. The Cambridge Companion To The Musical. (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2002)
Ferencz George J. ed. The Broadway Sound: The Autobiography and Selected Essays of Robert Russell Bennett. (University of Rochester Press: 2002)
Frankel Aaron Writing The Broadway Musical (Drama Book Publishers, 1988)
Ganzl, Kurt The Encyclopedia of Musical Theatre (New York: Schirmer Books, 2001)
Goodhart, Sandor, ed., Reading Stephen Sondheim: A Collection of Critical Essays (New York: Garland Publishing 2000)
Gordon, Joanne. Art Isn’t Easy - The Theater Of Stephen Sondheim (Da Capo Press, 1992)
Horowitz, Mark Eden. Sondheim On Music: Minor Details and Major Decisions (Scarecrow Press, 2003)
Long Robert Emmet, Broadway, The Golden Years:  Jerome Robbins And The Great Choreographer-Directors 1940 To The Present. (Continuum International Publishing Group, 2003)
Malone, J. Steppin’ on the Blues: The Visible Rhythm of African American Dance (Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1996)
Mandebaum, K. The Musicals of Michael Bennett (New York: St Martins Press, 1977)
Miller Scott, From Assassins to West Side Story: The Director’s Guide to Musical Theatre (Portsmouth, NH: Heineman, 1996)
---, Rebels With Applause: Broadway’s Groundbreaking Musicals. (Greenwood Press, 2001)
Steyn, M. Broadway Babies Say Goodnight. London: Routledge, 1999
Winer, Deborah Grace, On The Sunny Side Of The Street: The Life and Lyrics of Dorothy Fields. (Schirmer Books, 2000)
Zandau, C. Sondheim & Co (New York: Harper & Row, 1995)
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