Module Information

Module Identifier
Module Title
Acting Dramatic Texts
Academic Year
Semester 1
Successful completion of Part 1
Other Staff

Course Delivery

Delivery Type Delivery length / details
Practical 1 x 3 hour Pre-Exam Session
Lecture 10 x 3 hour Lecture/Practicals


Assessment Type Assessment length / details Proportion
Semester Exam 14 Hours   Group Practical Examination  60%
Semester Assessment Reflective Analysis (equivalent to 2500 words)  40%
Supplementary Assessment Reflective Analysis (equivalent to 2500 words)  40%
Supplementary Exam 0.5 Hours   Individual Practical Examination and Essay  60%

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this module students should be able to:

Employ a range of conceptual and rehearsal procedures and modes of exposition appropriate to the presentation of characters from differing theatrical styles;

Manage personal workloads, meet deadlines and negotiate and pursue goals with others;

Work effectively within small groups on selected scenes within the timescale and guidelines set;

Critically reflect upon, analyse and discuss the theatrical processes from a range of theoretical perspectives.

Brief description

During the weekly workshops for this module, students will be introduced to contemporary acting exercises and techniques, which are commonly used in the creation of characters from classical and contemporary texts. In particular, students will be asked to consider the challenges and difficulties of performing characters selected from Shakespearean and other non-naturalisitc plays. The choice of texts will be determined by the Course Tutor and may differ from group to group

Students will examine a wide-range of rehearsal approaches used by contemporary theatre practitioners, including Katie Mitchell, Adrian Noble, Max Stafford Clark, Cicely Berry, John Barton, Kristin Linklater, Barbara Houseman, Mike Alfreds, Anne Bogart and Peter Hall. Students will also be required to select and apply key acting exercises advocated by Stanislavski and test their usefulness and validity when working on both classical and contemporary play texts.


Indicative content for this module might include:

  • Stanislavsky's Influence on Contemporary Performance: Actor-Training and Rehearsal Practices
  • Key text: Bella Merlin (2007), The Complete Stanislavsky Toolkit Benedetti, Jean (2009) An Actor's Work on a Role
  • Finding the Sub-Text
  • Key text: Houseman, Barbara (2008) Tackling Text and Subtext
  • Contemporary Approaches to Performing Shakespeare: Marrying the two Traditions of Contemporary and Classical Acting
  • Key texts: Hall Peter (2003) Shakespeare's Advice to the Players, Daavies, Oliver Ford (2007) Performing Shakespeare
  • 'Actioning the Text'
  • Key texts: Stafford Clarke, Max (1997) Letters to George Caldarone, Marina (2004) Actions: The Actor's Thesaurus - Nick Hern Books
  • Performing Archetypes and Stereotypes: Acting in English Restoration Comedies
  • Key texts: Barton, Robert (2010) Style for Actors: Moving Beyond Realism Alfreds, Mike (2008) Different Every Night - Nick Hern Books
  • Using improvisation
  • Mitchell, Katie (2008) The Director's Craft: A Handbook for the Theatre - Routledge
  • The Actor's Voice
  • Key texts: Carey, David & Carey, Rebecca Clark (2008) Vocal Arts Workbook and DVD: A Practical Course for Achieving Clarity and Expression with your Voice A&C Black/Methuen Linklater, Kristin (2006) Freeing the Natural Voice - Nick Hern Books Davies, D. Garfield & Jahm, Antony F (2004) Care of the Professional Voice - Routledge

Module Skills

Skills Type Skills details
Application of Number Neither developed nor assessed
Communication The development and use of communion skills are intrinsic to the student's experience in Departmental modules of this kind
Improving own Learning and Performance Students are expected to respond to formative feedback during workshops and are required to reflect critically as part of their learning process
Information Technology Information handling is not formally assessed, but students are encouraged to use technology where appropriate
Personal Development and Career planning The module encourages the development of skills which are directly applicable to careers within the theatre/performance industries
Problem solving When working on their practical project, students will be expected to negotiate and pursue goals with others and to solve problems as they arise
Research skills A range of research skills is necessary for students to complete the assessment methods and learning outcomes for the module
Subject Specific Skills See QAA Dance, Drama and Performance Subject Venchmark Statement (Version 2007) The following subject specific skills are developed and partly assessed: 1 Engaging in performance and production, based on an acquisition and understanding of appropriate performance and production vocabularies, skills, structures and working methods 2 Contributing to the production of performance 3 Creating original work using the skills and crafts of performance making 4 Using performance techniques associated with particular cultural forms and/or practitioners 5 Developing physical skills and applying them effectively to communicate with an audience 6 Engaging in research, whether independent, group or performance-based 7 Making records of performance, using skills in notation and/or documentation 8 Working within a group to make performance
Team work The acquisition and development of Team/Group skills are fundamental to the student experience of this module and are formally assessed


This module is at CQFW Level 5