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Eurydice Lesson Plan/Unit Plan Components

Standard(s): Unit/Topic/Theme(s): Essential Question:

B.AE.1.1 Understand the major technical Eurydice/Theatre Design/Intro to EQ: How can I make a design
elements, such as sound, lights, set, and costume, scenic, lighting and sound choice?
costumes, and their interrelationships.
B.A.1.2 Analyze informal or formal theatre
productions in terms of the emotions or
thoughts they evoke, characters, settings,
and events.
Student Learning Targets: I can (verb plus specific content; skills; understandings; concepts)
Include means of assessment for each learning target (assessmentsrubrics, exemplars, observation, student-self
assessments; products; activities)
I can consider the intentions of the playwright.
o Assessed through reflection upon the stage directions and scenic descriptions in the script
I can talk about the design choices of a formal production.
o Assessed through discussion about the various design elements in relation to the production
I can make my own design choices.
o Assessed through drawings and collages of various theatrical items.
o Assessed through sound production
Lesson Activities: (i.e.: introduction, ways to activate prior knowledge, content, and specifics of the days lesson)
Be sure to include higher level thinking questions HOTS.
o Good Morning
Proceed to the front of the room, raise your hands, and greet the class. The students should
o Eurydice Reminder
Remind students that we ready Eurydice last week and watched it at Catawba on Friday.
Activating prior knowledge
o Collaboration, Intro to design
Theater is an art form that requires the cooperation and talents of a lot of people. While
the audience sees only the actors on stage, there are many other experts that are behind the
scenes collaborating to make the show a great success.
o Stage Directions:
EURYDICE stretches the imagination to the furthest limits. The set, lights, costumes, and
sounds are dependent only on what the designers and director can create. The challenge in
this: how far can you really go? The play is filled with stage directions that are open for
interpretation and are flexible when designing these various scenic elements.
At the very beginning of the play, Ruhl gives this description of the set: The set contains
a raining elevator, a water pump, some rusty exposed pipes, an abstracted River of
Forgetfulness, an old-fashioned glow-in-the-dark globe. The underworld should resemble
the world of Alice in Wonderland more than it resembles Hades. While Ruhl gives us
specific items, she also gives a broad idea of what she would like the set to look like.
Intro to scenic
o Discussion and Activity:
Water is a main theme of the play and appears literally onstage in the raining elevator. In
Greek Mythology, the entrance to the underworld was surrounded by a series of five
rivers. Each river had a name and specific purpose: Styx (the river of Hate) Akheron (the
river of pain), Pyriphlegethon (the river of fire) Kokytos (the river of wailing), and Lethe
(the river of forgetfulness). In the play, both Lord of the Underworld and the Stones refer
to the dead characters as having been dipped in a river which makes the dead characters
forget their lives. In the play the river is unnamed, but Eurydices father advises her to
hold her breath the next time she is dipped so she doesnt forget.
What do you think the Underworld looks like? How might you use lights to convey the
location? Would you want them to be dark and eerie or light and hopeful? Draw some
pictures or create a small model of what youd like the set and lights to look like and share
them with your classmates. Discuss the above questions and compare and contrast what
youve created.
Intro to Sound Design
o Discussion and activity:
At the end of the play, Orpheus goes to the Underworld to get Eurydice back. Ruhl gives
us these stage directions: Orpheus stands at the gates of hell. He opens his mouth. He
looks like hes singing, but hes silent. Music surrounds him. The melody Orpheus
hummed in the first scene, repeated over and over again. He keeps singing. The stones
weep. They look at the tears, bewildered. Orpheus created a song so beautiful that the
Lord of the Underworld allows him to have Eurydice back.
What makes a song beautiful? If you were creating the song Orpheus sings, what would
you want it to sound like? Think about what songs you know. Create a song or find a song
that Orpheus could sing to get Eurydice back. Have the class listen to what youve created
or found and discuss the choices that were made.
Intro to Costume Design
o Discussion and Activity:
When we first enter the Underworld we are introduced to three stonesa little stone, a big
stone, and a loud stone. These characters serve as the chorus. The chorus dates back to
Ancient Greece and serves as a narrator to provide the audience with a group to relate to
and also to provide information about what is happening in the world of the play. Ruhl
says this about the stones: The stones should be played as though they are nasty children
at a birthday party. In fact, they might be played by children. This is the only information
we get about them.
ACTIVITY: Knowing that there are three stones who serve as a chorus, what do they look
like to you? Would you dress them as stones, use Ruhls suggestion of kids at a birthday
party, or do something completely different? Use your imagination to create costumes for
each of the stones. Draw them and share these drawings with your class. Discuss your
ideas and drawings.
Closure: (involves students; revisit essential question) Materials and Resources:
Compare the design choices that you made with the design choices Construction paper, colored
made in Catawbas production. pencils, watercolors, oil pastels,
o Carousel learning activity for compare contrast. musical instruments, magazines,
Costumes lights and gels.
Scenery Vocabulary to be Taught:
Lighting (include, with definitions, in
Literacy Integration: Lesson Activities section)
Reading: Stage Directions REVIEW Stage Directions,
Writing: Ending Reflection design choices, beauty,
Speaking/Listening: Instruction and discussion aesthetics
Media/Technology: Lighting and Sound technology
Other Content Areas: Art and design: Sketching, painting, collages
Skills for Success:
List Differentiation Strategies: X Creativity
Students with difficulties may produce a collage of their ideas, rather X Collaboration
than drawing them. X Problem-solving
Students who excel may produce a lighting concept using pastels on X Critical thinking
black paper. Explain
Students must interpret and make
artistic design choices for
lighting, costumes, scenic, and
designs. They will have to
provide samples of their work
and review how to work with
other theatre practicioners.