Performing outdoors can be a lot of fun — Shakespeare in the park, anyone? But as with any theatrical undertaking, there are some things to consider before getting started with rehearsals. The following exercise gives students the opportunity to act as “location scouts” and discover the technical pros and cons of doing theatre outside in nature.
If you wish, you can start the lesson with a brief discussion of historical outdoor theatre.
Brainstorm with your students some pros and cons to working outdoors. Some technical considerations may include:
If you are in person, take your class outside and look at the space around your school. If your students are studying via distance learning, have them walk around their neighbourhood. Have students find a location that could potentially work as an outdoor performance space. If possible, have them take a photo of the location with their phone.
Using the technical considerations discussed above, have students analyze the potential location. What are the pluses and minuses? What kind of show might work well for this location? Feel free to use the handout download for students to refer to when doing their analysis, including any additional thoughts from the brainstorm.
Have students type up their notes (maximum length: 1 page) and submit them to the teacher along with their photo. As well, have them respond to the following exit slip question: What do you think is the most important technical concern when considering an outdoor performance? Why?