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Archive for the ‘Theatre’ Category

Brolga Dance

Newly hitched we hit

pop-hot spots in Sydney.

Occasion marked: Us.

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Tickets to ‘The Lion King’

in old Capitol Theatre

took us back to Africa.

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Sticky Date at Doyles

added more weight

to our love waistlines…

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We watched the river,

Opera House teeming,

Coat-hanger tourists.

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Sky-high Telecom chats

revolving restaurant

views topped off trip

 TowerSue3Blog

before Aqua chatting,

large-finned silver

swimmers mesmerize.

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Guinness for St Paddy

raised to Shamrock Green.

Chinese gardens walk,

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Brolga dance to hotel

suite, (less public for

private celebrations).

Frances Macaulay Forde © 2011

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#FrancesMacaulayForde  #DoylesRestaurant  #SydneyHarbourBridge  #SydneyAqarium  #SydneyOperaHouse  #Sydney:ChineseGardens  #TelecomTower  #RevolvingRestaurant

Links:  Telecom Tower Restaurant    Doyles Restaurant   Chinese Gardens of Friendship    Harbour Bridge    Sydney Aquarium   Sydney Opera House

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Members of Northern Youth Theatre getting into character…  

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#FrancesMacaulayForde  #NorthernYouthTheatre  #NYTsAtPlay  #AliceInWonderland  #TheSwimmingPoolPeople  #JoondalupFestival  #LittleFeetFestival   #BookCharacters

 

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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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I love how sometimes a poem ends up taking you to all sorts of places you don’t expect.

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‘Dance’ by Jessica McCallum at His Majesty’s Theatre, 2009. #jessicamcallumartist

My poem “My Life as a Sari” has appeared alongside beautiful artworks.

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POETRY POSTCARD available from Jessica McCallum

An excerpt published on a postcard.

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#IndigoJournal

And published in the INDIGO JOURNAL of West Australian Writing, Vol 3 published by INDIGO books and received lovely comments.

Fremantle Press have recently become on-line partners with the original publishers of the journals and have always been tremendous supporters of those who write in Western Australia, quietly promoting and encouraging new, emerging and established writers by putting their money where their mouth is.

As a result of my inclusion in the journal, Fremantle Press also interviewed  me about my writing and particularly, this poem.

 

My Life as a Sari

 

Securely tuck your fears under elastic

at the centre of your waist with your left hand,

and with your right, hold the remaining

metres of spun silk – your future, facing inside.

 

Measure the drop of the fall

and it’s finely stitched edge

for correct positioning against heels.

 

Wrap yourself in the gossamer fold,

swirling the diaphanous film behind

but stay level and wedge the top border

into your petticoat.

 

Like a bride preparing herself,

you are now ready to pleat.

 

At a distance from the last fixing,

hand-measure the delicate veil,

embroidered with details

important to who you are

toward the middle of your body.

 

Some may need five pleats, some six.

Less is more. Another judgement held on show

– a statement of size, however graciously it moves.

 

Securely fix the perfumed fanning

and grasp what is left, bring it back around

to wrap warmly and return to the front.

 

These days, you can choose to gather all loose

ends onto your left shoulder, secured with a jewel.

But many prefer to throw the remainder

over, remembering to hold an arm half bent,

letting the end float freely – the beaded

edge skimming the inside of your wrist.

 

 Frances Macaulay Forde © 2009

#francesmacaulayforde

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Backstage. 

Dank, dusty, sweat-smells in the soft blue light. Rope, sandbags, tape-marks glow.  Scene-stay, props on the table in regimental order marked for Act 1,2,3.

Black on white sign yells ‘Silence for Performance’.

Soft sneakers pressed gently one in front of each other.  Movements slow – considered care.

Audience clapping. Material and audience murmur as Curtains Close Act 1.

Audrey rushes off-stage, clattering – chattering LOUDLY to her waiting beau, declaring her excitement at first performance.

Stage Manager lifts two fingers to mouth for silence – ignored.

Quick! Frustrated grab in the once-again dim light. His hand wraps around the wooden grip of a ‘Silence’ sign banged impatiently against a thigh as he follows.

Hushed stumble down to the dressing rooms, annoyed – door locked – can’t knock – too loud.

Scratch a little – reign in – wait with rebuke ready.  Click, unlocked door creaks open. Force the sign through the crack and whisper. “Quiet”.

He races back upstairs with heart pumping – ‘Damn!’ missed the bloody Curtain Open for Act 2.

All through Act 2 Audrey blithely entertains, celebrating her debut in the change rooms with popping champagne and muffled giggles.

Curtains Close Act 2.

‘Places Please’ bell for Act 3.

Clunk. Clunk. Clunk. 1,2,3 steps stage left.

Curtains Open Act 3.

Heavy heels approach uncaring, echo through dimly lit wooden stairs and empty stage.

Audrey bumps out.

Giggle – stumble – giggle. ‘Hic – Oh sorry Love – Hic…’

Frustration bites hard and a mouth thunders. “QUIET!”

A deathly scream and silence at last, as Curtains Close Act 3.

 

#francesmacaulayforde

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