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Archive for the ‘Plays’ Category

This morning,  IGameMom’s  blog, “Read Aloud with Children”   reminded me of when I started a youth theatre group in the early nineties – and why.

Although I’d been a founding member of another community theatre group for a few years, directing and turning my hand to wherever was needed, my daughter was a natural on stage and when given parts, did them so well adult actors resented her abilities and complained.  She wanted a ‘voice’, even if it meant acting and saying someone else’ words – she wanted the chance to stand up and be heard.

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Recognizing a similar need in other teenagers, I started Northern Youth Theatre in 1992 to give them and particularly my 15 year old daughter, more chances to get involved with production on whatever level – and what fun we had!

After introducing ourselves in a welcome circle, sitting on the floor (all on the same level), the next task was reading scripts aloud.  I was stunned by how many members told me reading aloud was no longer required in schools!

After four solid years of performance and presentation, this is their ‘Swan Song’, a play called ‘The Rat Race’ with members between the ages of 12 – 18 years old taking all the roles and making the performance happen in 1996.  They came up with idea after our brainstorming sessions, 3 members Scott, Jess and Travis wrote the script.  All members were involved in the production, acted, directed and even filmed the three sold-out performances. As Artistic Director I was extremely proud of their efforts worthy – and as one adult audience member said; “Why don’t you enter this in the local awards?  It would win – it’s that good!”

I’ve always believed reading aloud is an invaluable tool all children should learn until it becomes second nature.  The skill to stand in front of others and confidently communicate clearly will take them far.

wilfred

I think I’ve mentioned before, how many years ago I was commissioned to adapt Mem Fox‘s book ‘Wilfred Gordon McDonald Partridge’  for performance in Joondalup Library.

The little ones loved getting into character and using the simple props I had brought along… perfecting using a walking stick, pretending to be old and grumpy etc.  I loved their invention and whole-hearted immersion into a story they already knew and loved so they could ‘live’ it – present it their own way.

It again, was all about giving them a voice and a platform to stand on.  To allow children to hold their head up high with shoulders back, to clearly and confidently say what they want to say.

 

#FrancesMacaulayForde   #NorthernYouthTheatre  #BLOG:IGameMom  #ReadingAloud  #PLAY:TheRatRace   #MemFox  #WilfredGordonMcDonaldPartridge  #Books  #ChildrensStories   #Reading  #Plays  #Theatre  #Youth  #YouTheatre  #Teenagers  #Directors  #Producers  #Actors

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

http://game4learning.com/2013/05/05/read-aloud-with-children/#comments

 

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In the dark old days, the storyteller always had the best place by the campfire. Those days may be gone, but the power of story remains. It’s time we acknowledged that, and brought our authors out of the cold.

Joanne Harris  from her excellent article:  This fairy story has lost its happy ending.

I’ve just finished watching  ‘The Swan Princess’  on the Drive In on-line page.  Although it credits the story writers and the screenplay writer, it doesn’t mentioned the original  Other Swan Stories it may well have been inspired by.   Now I want to know which of those stories the beautiful ballet ‘Swan Lake’ was based on.

How many people do you think, have enjoyed these story in all their many presentations.  And how many do you think know who wrote the originals, who was the first to put pen to paper?

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A story I wrote for my own children in the late 80’s was awarded the FAWWA Furphy in 1994 as “The Best Children’s Book Manuscript”.

To my total surprise, my story was nominated without my knowledge by my fellow writers group members at the Fellowship of Australian Writers here in Western Australia .

Since then,I’ve adapted the story to a pantomime and it’s been performed at Emerald Park by members of the Northern Youth Theatre then again at the 1995 Joondalup Festival.

I’m currently updating the story and adapting it to a script.  I know it’s a good story and I want it to live many lives.

Just returned from watching my 6 year old niece dance – it would also make a good ballet.

I’ve never actually sent it out for publication though.  I wonder why?

 

#FrancesMacaulayForde   #TheSwanPrincess  #SwanLake  #TheSwimmingPoolPeople  #NorthernYouthTheatre  #FAWWA

 

 

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To quote WritingWA from Facebook yesterday:

“Hooray! There’s a Hippopotamus on our Roof Having a Birthday Party” by Hazel Edwards.

Classroom playscripts encourage literacy especially if linked to a fun picture book. ‘Hooray! There’s a Hippopotamus on our Roof Having a Birthday Party’  paperback out soon (from Hazel Edwards) but classroom performance script based on hardback available for free download.   http://www.hazeledwards.com/files//classroom_playscripts_from_picture_books/pb_hazel_edwards_classroom_playscript__birthday_hippo.pdf

wilfred

“Wilfred Gordon McDonal Partridge” by Mem Fox

I know this.  I was commission in 1998 to adapt a well known book by Mem Fox to a playscript, so children visiting Joondalup Library could act out and enjoy the story more. The characters in “WILFRED GORDON MCDONALD PARTRIDGE” provided lots of opportunities for young minds to express themselves and enjoy putting themselves into the story.   And they did – with gusto!

So I know, the play script so generously provided here by Hazel, will be a huge hit – just as her book will be.

 

#francesmacaulayforde  #WritingWA  #HazelEdwards  #MemFox  #JoondalupLibrary

 

 

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Stephen Page

Author: The Salty River Bleeds, The Timbre of Sand, Still Dandelions, A Ranch Bordering the Salty River. Alum: Palomar College, Columbia University, Bennington College. Follow on twitter @SmpageSteve on Instagram @smpagemoria on Facebook @steven.page.1481

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