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Instructor Class Description

Time Schedule:

Joseph L Lavy
B CUSP 197
Bothell Campus

Studio Arts: Dance, Theater, Music, and InterArts Performance

Develops skills in a variety of studio arts in order to enhance student ability as a performer, arts creator, educator, or in applied areas of creativity. Offered: AWSp.

Class description

This course will introduce student actors to the fundamental principles of performance, including spontaneity/precision, invention, mutuality, and presence. The class will engage in rigorous physical, vocal and imaginative exercises aimed at engaging the actor’s body and mind in a complex and unified way. The students will develop individual and ensemble acting scores through work with the basic elements of the Method of Physical Action as developed by Stanislavski and expounded by later artists, such as Michael Chekhov and Jerzy Grotowski.

Student learning goals

The ability to develop a performance score according to internal & external actions and behaviors (Method of Physical Action);

Understand Given Circumstances, the "Magic If," and the 5 Classifications of Scenic Behavior;

Compose and analyse an action according to the elements of the Structure of a Scenic Action;

Develop a foundation for exploring relationships with time, weight, space, objects and people;

Confront the challenge of unifying the body, imagination and intellect into a repeatable creative act.

Know 7 questions to ask in developing a performance.

General method of instruction

Lab Work: Exercises and activities dedicated to awakening and dis-inhibiting the performer’s physical and vocal expressiveness, while investigating pragmatic elements of the actor’s craft: attention, imagination, composition/improvisation, partnership, repetition.

Studio Work: Etudes and projects aimed at stimulating the actor’s internal processes and channeling them through the body by means of the Method of Physical Action into an Acting Score.

Colloquium: Open discussions in responses to readings, class work, or other appropriate topics.

Recommended preparation

Class assignments and grading

Assignments will include: In-class exercises and activities, Development of the Somatic Composition, Out-of-class preparation of etudes and projects, 1 short mid-term paper

Lab Work 35%, Studio Work 35%, Colloquium 20%, and Written assignments 10%.

This course is a practicum, therefore participation is mandatory. Each day’s work will be considered for grading purposes. You are not expected to achieve a standardized result, however you will be expected to arrive prepared, ready to work and to challenge your limitations. Your attitude, curiosity, comprehension and collaboration are integral to your success in the class. The classroom experience is irreplaceable.

Final grades will be assigned according to overall progress in the class based on preparation for and participation in classroom activities, the thoughtfulness and thoroughness of the written assignment, contribution to and execution of any role in the ensemble action structure:


The information above is intended to be helpful in choosing courses. Because the instructor may further develop his/her plans for this course, its characteristics are subject to change without notice. In most cases, the official course syllabus will be distributed on the first day of class.
Last Update by Joseph L Lavy
Date: 12/12/2007