April 1, 2016, by Words on Words
The Experience of Writing and Directing Ambergate Reservoir
This blog post was written by second-year English student, Emma White.
In the autumn term, we were encouraged as second-year creative writers to embrace our potential to be contemporary. I found myself writing performance scripts without feeling restricted by traditional methods; instead, I was building on them. My characters had individual desires which controlled the plot sequences. Once this foundational idea was established, I could create whatever situation I wanted to.
Ambergate Reservoir was so fun to write that I kept adding to it after finishing the module. I saw fringe plays at the Nottingham New Theatre, and realised how open the student theatre is to experimenting with a variety of performance types. I proposed my play, and found advice from other student writers to be vital.
My producer liked my contemporary style, and we decided to use unconventional staging: theatre in the round. The auditions were really exciting; we saw so many interpretations of my script. The rehearsals were even more fun, as the play started to become a comedy. As it involves audience participation, rehearsals with actual audience members were extremely rewarding. I was open to adapting the script during this process, which allowed other members of my creative team to voice their ideas. Consequently, the performance itself was an amalgamation of several interpretations of my script, which improved it.
The play had a great response, with 10/10 from Impact Magazine. You can read the article which gives details of the plot here.
Being able to direct Ambergate Reservoir meant that I could use skills from both creative writing and drama modules. My understanding of how to interpret a text improved significantly, and I now enjoy my course significantly more.
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