I received the trailer below for a production of Tuna Fish Eulogy and I think it’s great. It’s basically a commercial for the show, but also gives a clear indication of the style of the production, how the play is being interpreted, and provides a bit of a tease for what an audience can expect.
A trailer is an excellent exercise to see if your class fully understands a text. Can they condense a text into a commercial form – letting the audience know what’s to come, providing a tease but not giving away the whole story? Can they highlight the themes visually? Can they determine a style for the work? A trailer also allows students to explore a different medium with a text- they are transforming the text, moving beyond simple comprehension.
Exercise: In groups, take a text and create a commercial for it. Groups are responsible for the writing, acting in, and filming of their commercial. The commercial must be 30 seconds in length and explore the following elements:
- highlight the main theme of the text visually.
- Provide a set up for the story, but not give it all away.
- Provide a tease so that an audience would want to see more