DTA | Teaching Musical Theatre in the Drama Classroom
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Teaching Musical Theatre in the Drama Classroom

Created by Colin Oliver

Colin Oliver leads this introduction to teaching Musical Theatre in the Drama Classroom.

In this course, you will learn how to build musical theatre into your dramatic courses of study. “Why might you want to do that? Singing is scary! You want me to teach my students how to do it? I don’t even know how to do it.” This course approaches musical theatre preparation performance much as we would approach preparing a monologue in drama. If you use script analysis in monologue preparation in your class, you can teach musical theatre.

By the end of this course, you’ll have a great, full-body physical warm-up, a student-driven research assignment, character development exercises, a little bit of musical theory, and a performance assignment complete with assessment.

So, join us for teaching Musical Theatre in the Drama Classroom. It’s as easy as Do-Re-Mi!

7 Modules
1 hours, 51 minutes
4 Credit Hours

Course Outline

Module 0: Introduction 5:21 FREE PREVIEW
This module introduces the instructor, the course and materials, and outlines the modules to be covered throughout.
Module 1: Full Body Vocal Warm-Up 19:24 FREE PREVIEW
This module teaches how to do a proper full body vocal warm-up.
Module 2: Research and Character Creation 12:49
Students will begin to develop performance technique for musical theatre via character creation.
Module 3: Character Work and Textual Analysis 15:04
This module builds on the work in Module 02, by identifying appropriate physicality to convey character and emotion, developing an interpretation statement, and applying script analysis techniques.
Module 4A: Music Theory Part 1 28:08
Basic music theory: how to identify notes on a staff, common time signatures, and notes on a keyboard or piano.
Module 4B: Music Theory Part 2 8:17
Music theory: symbols used for common note and rest types, and their values.
Module 5: Musical Theatre Performances 22:26
Rehearsal processes and evaluation techniques for musical performances in the drama classroom.

Standards Addressed

National Core Arts Standards

Select, analyze, and interpret artistic work for presentation - Grade 6

TH:Pr4.1.6.b - Experiment with various physical choices to communicate character in a drama/theatre work.

Select, analyze, and interpret artistic work for presentation - Grade 7

TH:Pr4.1.7.b - Use various character objectives in a drama/theatre work.

Select, analyze, and interpret artistic work for presentation - Grade 8

TH:Pr4.1.8.b - Use various character objectives and tactics in a drama/theatre work to overcome an obstacle.

Develop and refine artistic techniques and work for presentation - Grade 6

TH:Pr5.1.6.a - Recognize how acting exercises and techniques can be applied to a drama/theatre work.

Develop and refine artistic techniques and work for presentation - Grade 8

TH:Pr5.1.8.a - Use a variety of acting techniques to increase skills in a rehearsal or drama/theatre performance.

Develop and refine artistic techniques and work for presentation - Grade HS Proficient

TH:Pr5.1.HSI.a - Practice various acting techniques to expand skills in a rehearsal or drama/theatre performance.

Develop and refine artistic techniques and work for presentation - Grade HS Accomplished

TH:Pr5.1.HSII.a - Refine a range of acting skills to build a believable and sustainable drama/theatre performance.

Refine new work through play, drama processes and theatre experiences using critical analysis and experimentation - Grade 6

TH:Cr3.1.6.b - Identify effective physical and vocal traits of characters in an improvised or scripted drama/theatre work.

Convey meaning through the presentation of artistic work - Grade 7

TH:Pr6.1.7.a - Participate in rehearsals for a drama/theatre work that will be shared with an audience.

Refine new work through play, drama processes and theatre experiences using critical analysis and experimentation - Grade 8

TH:Cr3.1.8.b - Refine effective physical, vocal, and physiological traits of characters in an improvised or scripted drama/ theatre work.

Convey meaning through the presentation of artistic work - Grade 8

TH:Pr6.1.8.a - Perform a rehearsed drama/theatre work for an audience.

Refine new work through play, drama processes and theatre experiences using critical analysis and experimentation - Grade HS Proficient

TH:Cr3.1.HSI.b - Explore physical, vocal and physiological choices to develop a performance that is believable, authentic, and relevant to a drama/theatre work.

Refine new work through play, drama processes and theatre experiences using critical analysis and experimentation - Grade HS Accomplished

TH:Cr3.1.HSII.b - Use research and script analysis to revise physical, vocal, and physiological choices impacting the believability and relevance of a drama/ theatre work.

Refine new work through play, drama processes and theatre experiences using critical analysis and experimentation - Grade HS Advanced

TH:Cr3.1.HSIII.b - Synthesize ideas from research, script analysis, and context to create a performance that is believable, authentic, and relevant in a drama/theatre work.

Relate artistic ideas and works with societal, cultural, and historical context to deepen understanding - Grade HS Advanced

TH:Cn11.2.HSIII.a - Justify the creative choices made in a devised or scripted drama/theatre work, based on a critical interpretation of specific data from theatre research.

Common Core

California VAPA Standards (2019)

6.TH:Pr4 Select, analyze, and interpret artistic work for presentation.

6.TH:Pr4.b - Experiment with various physical choices to communicate character in a drama/theatre work.

7.TH:Pr4 Select, analyze, and interpret artistic work for presentation.

7.TH:Pr4.b - Use various character objectives in a drama/theatre work.

8.TH:Pr4 Select, analyze, and interpret artistic work for presentation.

8.TH:Pr4.b - Use various character objectives and tactics in a drama/theatre work to overcome an obstacle.

6.TH:Pr5 Develop and refine artistic techniques and work for presentation.

6.TH:Pr5.a - Recognize how acting exercises and techniques can be applied to a drama/theatre work.

8.TH:Pr5 Develop and refine artistic techniques and work for presentation.

8.TH:Pr5.a - Use a variety of acting techniques to increase skills in a rehearsal or drama/theatre performance.

Prof.TH:Pr5 Develop and refine artistic techniques and work for presentation.

Prof.TH:Pr5.a - Practice various acting techniques to expand skills in a rehearsal or drama/theatre performance.

Acc.TH:Pr5 Develop and refine artistic techniques and work for presentation.

Acc.TH:Pr5.a - Refine a range of acting skills to build a believable and sustainable drama/theatre performance.

7.TH:Pr6 Convey meaning through the presentation of artistic work.

67TH:Pr6 - Create through improvisation a drama/theatre work that will be shared with an audience.

8.TH:Pr6 Convey meaning through the presentation of artistic work.

8.TH:Pr6 - Perform a rehearsed, scripted scene from a drama/theatre work for an audience.

Adv.TH:Cn11.2 Relate artistic ideas and works with societal, cultural, and historical context to deepen understanding.

Adv.TH:Cn11.2.a - Justify the creative choices made in a devised or scripted drama/theatre work, based on a critical interpretation of specific data from research.

Florida Sunshine State Standards

Georgia Performance Standards 2017 - Theatre Arts

North Carolina Essential Standards

Tennessee Theatre Curriculum Standards

Tennessee Theatre standards (2018) standards were built using the framework of the NCAS which is built on four key domains: Creating, Performing/Presenting/Producing, Connecting, and Responding. Within each of these domains are foundations and standards to support the development of curriculum, programs, and learning.
(source: Tennessee Department of Education, Tennessee Academic Standards for Fine Arts, Summer 2018)

Please refer to National Core Arts Standards to determine the standard that best suits your needs.

Texas Essential Knowledge and Skills for Theatre Arts

MS 117.211 LI - Creative Expression: performance

C.2.A - demonstrate safe use of the voice and body.

MS 117.211 LI - Critical evaluation and response

C.5.A - identify and apply audience etiquette at all performances.

HS 117.315 LI - Critical evaluation and response

C.5.C - offer and receive constructive criticism of peer performances.

HS 117.316 LII - Critical evaluation and response

C.5.C - offer and receive constructive criticism of peer performances.

Alberta, Canada

Theatre Studies Level III - Advanced (The script)

8 - demonstrate understanding of directions used in a script

British Columbia (2018)

GRADE 9 - DRAMA - Reasoning and reflecting

Receive, offer, and apply constructive feedback

GRADE 9 - DRAMA - Connecting and expanding

Demonstrate respect for themselves, others, and the audience

GRADE 10 - DRAMA - Connect and expand

Demonstrate respect for self, others, and the audience

GRADE 11 - DRAMA - Reason and reflect

Demonstrate awareness of self, others, and audience

GRADE 11 - DRAMA - Connect and expand

Demonstrate awareness of self, others, and audience

GRADE 12 - DRAMA - Connect and expand

Demonstrate respect for self, others, and audience

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