Exploration directing and producing
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Exploration: Directing and producing. Drama I – Unit 2. What is a Director?. Oversees the entire process of staging a production STAGING: coordinating everything that actually happens on stage. What does the director do?. ROLES: Read and re-read script Interpret it’s meaning

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Exploration: Directing and producing

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Exploration: Directing and producing

Drama I – Unit 2

What is a Director?

  • Oversees the entire process of staging a production

  • STAGING: coordinating everything that actually happens on stage

What does the director do?

  • ROLES:

    • Read and re-read script

    • Interpret it’s meaning

    • Form a vision of how the production should look

    • Decide how the action should unfold

    • Conduct auditions, choose cast, divide the play into rehearsals, schedule the rehearsals

    • Blocking

    • Character relationships/emotions

    • Evaluate as you rehearse

    • Consult with all designers and techinicians

What skills does a director need?


    • Must be able to see end result

    • Must inspire, motivate, and focus actors, and crew

    • Strong visual sense

    • Certain personality traits

    • Be able to handle movement

    • Knowledge of technical theater and acting

    • Be able to analyze a play and present an interpretation

Who are part of the director’s staff?

  • STAFF:

    • Assistant Director – helps keep the rehearsal process organized and running smoothly, a variety of other tasks

    • Stage Manager – director’s technical liason backstage during rehearsals and performance

    • Prompter – feeds lines to actors when they forget them

History of the Director

  • 1500 – 1600s

    • No director (like we have today), an actor-manager fulfilled all responsibilities

    • Many plays, few different looks – all productions basically looked the same

  • 1800s

    • Emphasis on realism and advancements in technology

    • Production more elaborate– too much for an actor-manager

    • George II, Duke of Saxe-Meiningen (1826-1914) considered the 1st modern director

      • Formed a small court theater

      • Innovative: use of platforms, presenting crowds as small groups

What is a Producer?

  • Handles the business end of the production

What does a producer do?

  • EVERYONE works for the producer

  • Secure rights to the play

  • Raise money

  • Hire actors and staff

  • Arrange for theater

  • Supervise publicity and ticket sales

What skills does a producer have?

  • Financial management

  • Marketing savvy

  • Assess artistic merit and commercial potential of a play

Who is part of the producer’s staff?

  • Business Manager – responsible for fundraising, publicity, programs, ticket sales, paying bills

  • Artistic Director – handles the hiring of the director, cast, and designers

The Production Team

  • Design Team

    • Design and coordinate the production’s set, props, lighting, sound, costumes, and makeup


The Production Concept

  • Production Concept – how the play should look and feel

  • How does it happen?

    • 1st discuss the script and production concept

    • 2nd discuss marketing and budget

    • Designers begin formulating ideas to meet budget and concept

    • Once decisions about set design are made, rehearsals can begin

    • Other decisions – makeup, sound, costumes, etc. are made throughout the rehearsal process


  • Think about a film that you know and analyze the production concept it reflects. What kinds of images come to mind when you think about the production? What forms and colors predominate? What prevailing mood does the production convey? When you have analyzed different elements that contribute to the overall production concept, then summarize them.

What is theatre defined by?

  • 3 things…

    • A story to tell  script

    • Someone to tell it  actors

    • Someone to listen  audience

Types of Stages

  • Proscenium Stage

    • A picture frame

    • Audience sits on one side to watch action

  • Thrust Stage

    • Combination of arena stage and proscenium stage

    • Audience sits on two or three sides

  • Arena stage

    • Audience sits all around the stage

Stage Areas

  • Right

  • Left

  • Upstage

    • Area away from the audience

  • Downstage

    • Area towards the audience

Theatre Space Layout and Terms

  • Lobby – where the audience gathers before and after performances and during breaks

    • Box office – buy tickets

  • House – where the audience sits

    • Orchestra – seats nearest the stage

    • Orchestra pit – area for musicians

    • Balcony – projecting upper floors

    • Mezzanine – lower balcony

    • Light and sound booth – where technicians control light or sound

Stage House

  • Stage – where actors perform

  • Fly space – above the stage where lights and scenery are suspended

  • Proscenium arch – picture frame

  • Scenery – onstage decoration

  • Curtains – 3 kinds

  • Apron – acting area that extends beyond the proscenium arch

  • Back wall – separates the stage from backstage


  • All areas other than the acting space

    • Wings – they are immediately outside the scenery, unseen by the audience

    • Stage manager’s booth – the place the stage manager calls the show

    • Prop table – where all items carried onstage are kept

    • Dressing rooms – where actors get ready

    • Makeup room – room for makeup and hair

    • Green room – a lounge area in which actors may wait before they go onstage

    • Stage door – a private entrance for actors

  • Scene shop – where scenery is built

  • Costume shop- where costumes are made, maintained, and stored

  • Prop shop- where props are made and stored

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