This book contains plays and projects intended for learners (both young and old) seeking material which lies between a sketch and a formal play. The plays are short, the plots are unitary, the casts often large. There are endless opportunities for input by way of improvisation. There is a natural connection between the texted plays and the improvised projects.
The Pharaoh seems to be dying and so there is a quick competition to design his future tomb. Several ideas are submitted – not all practical. “Visitors”
Aliens from outer space are trying to understand the behaviour of earthmen but misunderstand virtually everything. Even the uses of football.
A couple are ready for a big night out – with tickets for a favourite opera. But their child behaves strangely when the baby sitters arrive.
The latest “transplant” patient is visited by his relatives in hospital. His new head watches on.
The youth football team is going through a rough patch. Their manager comes up with a unique idea which the team has to respond to.
“This is Your Life”
The contributors are assembled for a rehearsal of “This is Your Life” and taken through their routine. But the subject proves to be elusive.
When there is a fatal road accident the police call several witnesses. But all is not what it seems.
The broadcasters are training future sports reporters.
“Inca the Thinker”
A young Inca returns from his travels, over the Andes. His boss is sceptical of the claims he makes and the news he brings.
A new-style museum is about to open. The staff meet to explain their involvement but a “guest” from the old school is sceptical. Soon a real crisis hits the project.
“Cloak Darrow Farm”
A group of partisans are in the final stages of planning their major work – to capture an enemy of the state, alive.
“Out of the Cube”
A teenage terrorist is brought to the prison. Several visitors see her but she has to pay the ultimate price.
Short Plays & Longer Projects.
Would you get your learners to act out a play? Improvise? Your answer is crucial to the way you perceive “Short Plays and Longer Projects” and the scope of the book is broader than EFL – it includes amateur theatre and state-school students. The twelve short plays include the intriguing “Baby sitter”, where a child behaves strangely when the baby sitters arrive, and the somewhat controversial “Out of the cube”, which focuses on a teenage terrorist.
The projects are looser and more flexible. They have elements of drama and could involve high levels of improvisation. Some of the activities, such as “Sculptures” involving an instructor A, who teaches apprentice B to “sculpt” inanimate object C into various shapes, have their origins in drama and may be well-known to some teachers. This approach appeals more to teachers keen on integrating drama into their classes. The introduction is short and the book has around 130 pages. Intriguing, and may prove interesting to some EFL teachers.