After completing the beginning classes, it’s time for intermediate classes. Whether it was the TV or theater puppetry workshops, I’ve always enjoyed the intermediate ones the most and I expect this to be no exception. What I like in general about intermediate classes:
1) The group work aspect:
When you are not the only performer on stage / screen, you get to play off of one another in a scene. Many interesting things happen when multiple people work together, each bringing his or her unique style and input.
2) Smaller class size:
Since not everyone that signed up for beginning class will sign up for the intermediate class, the intermediate class tend to be smaller. More individual attention!
3) You are always up:
This is the result of both 1 and 2. Since you are always doing group work instead of taking turns doing solo performances, and also because the class is smaller, it’s likely you are always doing a scene, whether you are the main character or a supporting character. Either way, you are constantly doing something instead of seated down watching the others.
4) You already have the beginning class materials down / out of the way (to some degree):
And you get to polish things some more and introduce more nuances.
5) You’ve had the same classmates for weeks already:
Most likely, you are a lot more comfortable with your classmates by this point. I think performances tend to be better when the performers are comfortable playing against one another.
In Week 1, we did a little review of the homework (yes, we have homework) from the beginning class. Basically, we were doing the short choreography together as a group instead of taking turns doing it individually. Then we went over some space work. The tricky part is that you need to be aware of the other puppeteers around you and not bump into them, and that sometimes how fast the puppet travels is based on how fast the puppeteers travel (even though technically the puppet’s legs aren’t as long and steps not as big, this works in group choreography).
In Week 2, we started on the group choreography for a song. The song has several characters in it and they are randomly assigned to us by drawing names out of a hat. So we all did the song together. Each character will have his/her turn as the star and do that one section while the other characters react to it, and finally they join together and dance synchronized steps. We were coming up with some of the choreography as we went. I was pretty impressed with what we ended up with in just three hours. Sure, we could use more polish, but I thought it was quite good for three hours. And you are just going to have to take my words for it.
We will continue to work on this in Week 3. Looking forward to it!