Week 4 – Democracy in Action!

It’s crrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrunch time!

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All the groups finished their taster sessions of musicals and it was time for them to vote for the one they would like to perform at the Gala next year!

Here’s a few of the Saturday Seniors after their last Singing session on The Wedding Singer – good to see they were making an informed choice after having worked through a song in depth!

The choices were:

Saturday Juniors:

Bugsy Malone

Seussical

Saturday Seniors:

The Wedding Singer

Singin’ in the Rain

Sunday Juniors:

Into the Woods Jnr

Annie

Sunday Seniors: 

Hair

Bring It On

It was all very hush hush, with members marking their ballot papers anonymously and they won’t get to find out until they come back next week what the results are!

Can we take the suspense!?

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Week 3 – Four new musicals

Hello!

So this week we had four new musicals to explore…

SATURDAY JUNIORS

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The Saturday Juniors left Bugsy Malone behind and started to look at something very different indeed – SEUSSICAL!  This is a musical based on the famous Dr Seuss characters, including the Cat in the Hat, Horton the Elephant, The Grinch and many, many others.

They had a go at learning this beautiful song, Solla Sollew.

Here they are taking part in an acting through song exercise with Lynieve, that involves really looking hard for something they’ve lost (and trying not to lose their harmony parts at the same time!)…

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SATURDAY SENIORS

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The Seniors started to look at THE WEDDING SINGER musical, which was also very different to what they had been doing before!

They started to learn It’s Your Wedding Day from the show,

which is much more rock based so Lynieve got them to try rocking out to the music physically – I won’t embarrass them by posting photos but needless to say they looked a bit like this…

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In acting they carried on with it and started to look at some of the scenes, which are very funny, so it’s definitely looking like we’ll have at least one comedy from the Seniors at this year’s gala!

SUNDAY JUNIORS

These guys had a BIG challenge on their hands this week as they started to look at INTO THE WOODS JNR.

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Sondheim, being Sondheim, the songs are quite tricky, but these guys, always up for a challenge, really got stuck into to try to learn Ever After…

In Dance, they did loads of fantastic Werewolf work (just in time for Halloween) and in Acting they did some fantastic improvisations around fairy tales.

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They also looked how to make a character or situation really believable by how other characters react to them…  here is a clip of an exercised called ‘Clint Eastwood’ which works on the principal that we don’t believe that Clint Eastwood is the tough guy because he does anything in particular, but because everyone else around him behaves as though he is! 

SUNDAY SENIORS

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The Seniors had an afternoon exploring some songs and choreography from BRING IT ON the musical, which is based on the film about rival cheer leading teams… particularly looking at how to give and take each other’s weight because in the Broadway show, the choreography looks like THIS!

Week 2 – Slapstick, projection and Hairography!

Things are moving pretty fast on the Weekend Programme!  We have already done our two taster sessions on the first of our Gala Musical choices!

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At Pimlico Academy, the Juniors have been working on Bugsy Malone and the Seniors, Singin’ in the Rain, both of which have insanely catchy songs in them!  Here at DreamArts HQ, a certain corner of the office has been humming ‘Good Morning‘ and ‘Fat Sam’s Grand Slam‘ for a fortnight now!

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The Juniors this week had a really fun session in Acting. They were exploring slapstick comedy, so that they could try out some different comic gang fight different scenarios or ‘lazzi’ (as they are known in the classical Italian comedy form Commedia dell’arte).

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They also looked at the comedy ‘Rule of 3’ and in no time, they were identifying the technicalities of what makes something funny… by being REALLY funny!!

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The old banana instead of a gun trick came in handy, and made for some really funny/awkward moments for the rival gang members of Fat Sam and Dandy Dan.

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On Sunday we have a different flavour – Annie for the Juniors and Hair for the Seniors

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While the Seniors got into some serious discussions about the bigger questions in life concerning freedom, the law and being a young person, the Juniors got going on the classic Annie song, ‘Tomorrow’…

However, they didn’t just learn the song, they also had to think about projection and acting through the song… here they try to sing the song, but have also devised some gestures to express an emotion/feeling they were given by Lynieve, our brilliant Singing Tutor as an experiment…. can you guess what it is?

Summer Round Up – Seniors

The Summer term seems such a long time ago, but we thought you might be interested in seeing what everyone got up to.

The Saturday and Sunday Seniors came together this Summer to take part in a very special project. Programme Manager (and Theatre Director), Maddy worked with radio specialist, Max Graef to help them write, perform and record their very own radio play – The Party of the Season

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We took some time to discuss and share our opinions on what life is like as a young person in London and then came up with some characters through improvisations.  We then used the characters to do a shared story creation exercise to develop their individual narratives.

It took a bit of time to get to grips with radio acting…

Let alone, filming the making of video!

Then, with a bit of discussion, negotiation, editing and a little bit of magic, we managed to make a timeline which fitted all the stories together…. but we’ll let the actual plan speak for itself shall we?

Click here for our Soundcloud!

https://soundcloud.com/dreamarts-1/party-of-the-season-final

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Summer round up – Juniors

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We had two special projects this Summer term for our Junior Weekend members:

The Saturday Juniors performed selections from the Wizard of Oz and then a Happy/ Roar mash-up at SouthWest Fest in the parade and on stage.

We braved the rain..

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And wowed the crowd with our costumes…. we even won prizes! 3rd in Best Group Costume and Best Individual Costume for Gary the Cowardly Lion!

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Meanwhile on the other side of town…

The Sunday Juniors got involved in a very interesting project with artist, Patrick Staff at The Showroom Gallery…

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Where they took part in sessions exploring movement and everyday objects with Patrick and a choreographer… it was very different from other things they’ve done and they really enjoyed learning some new things!

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Here’s what some of the members said:

  • ‘Really nice to try something new with the same DreamArts group.  I love drawing!’
  • ‘I like the warm up activities as they were different’
  • ‘We did lots of puppet stuff and relationships; it was a good session as we had to write.’
  • ‘Fun. You used props in different ways. You had to write instructions on how use your props.  It was challenging.’

Maddy

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Aaaand…

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The new year at Dreamarts has begun and the Weekend Programme got off to a banging start!

We welcome not only lots of new members, but also some new staff this term.  We have Keisha, who is our new Project Assistant and has been a friend of Dreamarts since she took part in one of our Special Projects a few years ago. Charlie, who is a trained dancer, is our new Youth Support Worker on Sundays. Alejandro is our new Sunday Acting Tutor and he is currently working on his Phd at Central School of Speech and Drama. Finally we have Anna, who was also involved in DreamArts as a young person and is currently on our Youth Arts Leadership Training Scheme, joining us as a volunteer on Sundays in Acting.

The Saturday members got stuck in with their first of two musical ‘tasters’: the Juniors looking at Bugsy Malone and the Seniors getting into Singin’ in the Rain – both of which proved big hits with our young performers. On Sunday, at our amazing new venue, the City of Westminster College, the juniors got familiar with Annie and the Seniors began to explore the 60’s musical, Hair.

It was absolutely great to see everyone again after the Summer and to meet so many new members, especially those who had come along as a result of one of my assembly visits during September. Feeling really excited about the term to come!

Whoop!

Maddy

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