Module Identifier DR30220  
Academic Year 2006/2007  
Co-ordinator Mr Richard A D Cheshire  
Semester Semester 2 (Taught over 2 semesters)  
Other staff Dr Alison Forsyth, Dr Patricia A Rhodes  
Pre-Requisite Core for Single Honours students.  
Course delivery Lecture   16 x 1 hour Lectures  
  Seminars / Tutorials   3 x 1.5 hour Seminars During the London Trip  
Assessment TypeAssessment Length/DetailsProportion
Semester Exam2 Hours  50%
Semester Assessment 2 x 1000 word Reviews (20%). 1 x 2500 word Essay (30%)  50%

Learning outcomes

Typically, upon completion of this module the student should be able:

- To identify the production choices made in selected performances.
- To reflect analytically and critically on the efficacy and significance of these production choices.
- To demonstrate a detailed knowledge of two of the texts studied and a deeper understanding of the problems, possibilities and challenges of interpreting these texts for contemporary performance.
- To produce critical reviews and analyses directed to particular target audiences.

Brief description

The module will examine a number of both professional and in-house productions in order to consider critically the way in which the different elements of a production come together to create the theatrical experience. These elements, which include the contribution of the directors, scenographers and performers, will be considered in isolation and in relation to each other, in so far as they contribute effectively to the realization of the text in the consciousness of the given audience. The module will look at aspects of the performance history and the critical evaluation of particular texts, and will also provide opportunities to discuss production choices and working methods with both directors and members of production teams.


The aims of the module are:



This module is for Single honours students only.

The lectures and seminars will focus on the texts chosen for performance. Several of these will be third-year productions of texts and others will be performances scheduled to be seen on the theatre visits arranged for this module. Integrated into this module is a 3 day theatre visit to London and opportuntiies to see selected productions at Aberystwyth Arts Centre.

Students should bear in mind their own responsibility for acquiring experience of the relevant text and bringing it to bear on their analysis of separate production events. It is also the responsibility of students to ensure that they attend the productions studied on the course. The lectures and discussions arranged with theatre practitioners are designed to be generally helpful and informative, but they should not distract attention from the proper focus of the module which is firmly on the personal experience and analysis acquired and developed by the individual student.
Students should be aware that they are expected to bear most of the cost of the London trip (£175). There may be an opportunity to pay for this in more than one installment.

Production Schedule

The department will arrange tickets for all Stratford productions, but students are reminded that it is their own responsibility to ensure that they attend all other productions. Acquaintance with textual material is essential but is no substitute for attending productions. Students are also encouraged to read the relevant reviews of productions where these are available.

Module Skills

Research skills Students will demonstrate the results of individual research in the form of essays, examinations and contribution in lectures and seminars.  
Communication Students will demonstrate oral communication skills in seminar sessions and gain experience in selecting and analysing material for written assessments.  
Improving own Learning and Performance Students will receive feedback on written assignments.  
Information Technology IT and information handling skills will be demonstrated through students┬┐ individual web based and library research and through word processed essay presentation.  
Personal Development and Career planning Students will have the opportunity to explore specific areas which reflect and strengthen their individual career needs.  
Subject Specific Skills Students are encouraged to develop the use of a critical and analytical awareness and to expand their vocabulary in written and oral response to issues concerning theatrical texts in performance for modern audience.  

Reading Lists

** Essential Reading
Irving Wardle (1992) Theatre Criticism (Routledge)
Kaiser Morn to Midnight (copy available in the Department Office)
Oscar Wilde The Importance of Being Earnest (Oxford World Classics)
Shakespeare Macbeth, The Tempest (Cambridge edition), The Winter's Tale, (Arden edition)
Sheridan (1998) The School for Scandal, Nick Hern
Vanbrugh The Relapse (OXford World Classics)
The Reader fro DR39610 Production Environment (available from the Department Office)
** Recommended Text
David Scott Kastan (Ed.) (1999) Blackwell Companion to Shakespeare
Peter Brook (1990) The Empty Space Penguin
Richard Hornby (1995) Script into Performance Applause Books
Stanley Wells and Sarah Stanton (eds.) Cambridge Companion to Shakespeare on the stage
W. B. Worthen Shakespeare and the Force of Modern Performance CUP


This module is at CQFW Level 6