The Dilemma Project

Created by Claire Broome

The Dilemma Project is based on a situation that requires a decision: push a button and get a great reward, but there’s also a great consequence. Don’t push the button and there’s no reward.

This unit will lead to a group performance including characters, costumes, set, acting theory, acting tools, and a student written script. The final script will be about ten pages in length which means roughly ten minutes of stage time.

The overview lays out the structure of the unit, including pre-unit prep, time management, and assessment.
1: The Magic If Exercise
This lesson introduces the project and begins character development exercises, including Stanislavski's Magic If.
2: In Character and Group Set-Up
In this lesson, using the character they created in the previous lesson, students will show up to class “in character” and repeat the Magic If exercise, and choose their dilemma.
3: Improv to Location
In this lesson, students will explore location options for their play and choose one.
4: Character Relationships and Dynamics
In this lesson, students will explore character relationships before they start writing their scripts by answering 20 questions. They will also think about character specific vocabulary.
5: Plot Outline
Before students start writing their script, they will develop a plot outline using the points of plot development. They will review the conventions of script writing and the criteria for the project.
6: Script Writing and Revision
Using a specific method of timed sessions and movement breaks, groups will write the first draft of their plays. They will then revise, change, and edit the draft using the same method.
7: Script Sharing and Feedback
In this lesson, students will share their scripts and provide feedback to each other. Groups will write down their feedback and make a next steps list for revision.
8: Script Revisions and Script Analysis in Rehearsal
In this lesson, we will explore ways to have the class rehearse while making changes to their scripts.
9: Rehearsal and Previews
In this lesson, students will complete a line test, rehearse with specific goals, and present a preview performance.
10: Revision Rehearsals
In this lesson, we will discuss revision rehearsals, which are such an important part of the creative process. This is an opportunity for students to develop their critical thinking and apply this to their performance.
11: Final Performance and Reflection
In this lesson, groups will perform and reflect on their performance.
12: BONUS Video: How to Execute the Dilemma Project (PLC)
A conversation with Claire Broome, on how to execute the Dilemma Project in your classroom.

Standards Addressed

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