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May 17, 2012

Evaluation of the performance.

Overall we thought that the performance went well despite a serious lack of audience.  The videos all worked when they should have and overall everything ran smoothly.  There are however several things that we could have improved on considerably.  There were many ideas that we disscussed in terms of what technology we could possibly use to broadcast this to a wider audience and if we had not been a group technophobes we could have really gone to town on this.  We wanted to try and broadcast our cheesey gameshow on a live feed possibly via youtube but none of the group really knew how to go about this which was a shame.  Also we pre recorded the parts with Kelly out completing her tasks instead of doing it completely live and projecting it straight from camera to screen.  When we were unable to do the live thing so we decided to give the audience two options as to what Kelly would do and then play whichever one the audience voted for.  This would have worked if we could have found a way to make the video work like a dvd menu, once the audience voted the tech staff would select the relevent video and play it.  Unfortunately we had no idea how to make this happen, the only way it would of happened was if we had made them into separate videos and played them as such.  The only problem would have been the fact that the video feeds would have stopped completely and the audience will of seen what was on the laptop screen – the whole process of clicking on icons etc and this would of completely destroyed the show as would not of flowed at all and would also of destroyed any illusion that we had managed to create.  We had a huge variety of ideas that we ran by the tech staff and due to a lack of available technology we were unable to actually pull these ideas off – which was slightly annoying.

The feedback we recieved was beneficial and constructive.  We decided to perform in the theatre for a number of reasons but the lack of audience meant that there was no atmosphere and as a result the show felt very flat and dead.  If we were to do it again we would perform it in a smaller space which help us achieve the idea that this was in fact a low budget seedy gameshow.  In terms of what might do in the future we have a few ideas.  The day after the performance we wanted to take the Wheel of Control out and about on the streets of Lincoln.  The idea was for us to buy a variety of jelly sweets, some normal haribo, some fizzy bottles and finally something REALLY sour such as those Toxic Waste things that kids seem to love, and split them into two buckets.  The green bucket would have all the nice sweets in it and the red one would have a mixture of nice and sour sweets.  If the person spins and the wheel lands on green then they take a nice sweet, if it lands on red then they take the risk of getting a sour one.  If lands on yellow they get to chose which bucket to take sweet from.  Unfortunately true to form the great British weather let us down and it rained, so the Wheel of Control had to stay at home!  We would quite like to film the show in a small studio and making it into a youtube video.  What would be really nice is to have it filmed live and broadcast straight onto the internet and get people to either vote using mobile phones or vote by a facebook or twitter link.  With this in mind we have plenty of possibilities as to what we could do with the piece in the future.

Rachel, Kelly and Emily Q

Filed by Rachel Elisabeth White at May 17th, 2012 under Evaluating the performance
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May 18, 2012

Finding a space to stage the piece.

Our original idea was to perform in the lpac auditorium, mostly because the opening scene is about the theatre. However, this actually became more of a problem due to our relatively small audience. After the performance and feedback, we agreed that the piece probably would have been more suited to a smaller, more intimate space. It was suggested that performing in a small space, tackily overdecorated and full of glitter would have helped exaggerate the idea of a seedy, underhand game show. We all agreed that this was a good idea and that the performance would have benefited from being tested out in other spaces.

This lead to a discussion and brainstorming of ideas of how we could take this further. As Rachel mentioned previously, one of the ideas we had was to take the wheel out into Lincoln city centre and try to get strangers to play a few minigames. (Sadly we could not control the weather.) Another idea was to create another version of the show, filmed in someone’s living room, as though literally taking over the contestants’ home and life. We felt that the piece would benefit from being more intrusive, and by taking the show into the contestants comfort zone it would be more manipulating and powerful as a result.

There are so many possibilities for how the original idea of Wheel of Control could be developed and experimented with, as we agreed that there will always be a percentage of people who are willing to take a chance and see what might happen.

Filed by Emily Quinn at May 18th, 2012 under Evaluating the performance
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The desperate life of Kelly

My character Kelly is a hardworking member of society that the audience is able to sympathise with. Unfortunately I am disappointed by what life has given me in return for all my efforts: no job, no money and soon I will be homeless. Firstly my character reflects on how the situation I am in doesn’t seem fair this is displayed through the initial interview. However, thanks to the encouragement from Trixie and Lucy, it appears that my disappointment soon turns to anger, and the desire to seek revenge from those who have made my life a misery. My anger, although justified is aimed mainly at Trixie for presenting a show that clearly doesn’t deliver on its promises. As the show goes on the audience will either find themselves supporting my character and my actions or feel sorry for me. Ultimately what I do cannot be justified, and the audience is left questioning whether I am a victim of an unfair system, or an easily corruptible criminal.

Filed by Kelly Bond at May 18th, 2012 under Creating the performance
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The live rehearsal process

After filming the pre-recorded sections of the show, we were then able to rehearse the live sections of the performance. Starting with the scene where Kelly steals from the shop, Emily S rehearsed reading the corresponding lines to what Kelly was saying in the video. At first this didn’t run smoothly; there was far too much of a pause between Emily’s and Kelly’s parts of the conversation. We reworked the script in places to make it flow more easily, and soon created the illusion of a conversation between the stage and the video.

The most heavily scripted section of the piece was the opening scene with the banker. We were able to rehearse this smoothly, in contrast to other sections of the piece which relied more on improvisation. Despite not wanting to work completely within the confines of a script, we found that rehearsing this section thoroughly gave structure to the performance, which soon turns to disaster.

As it was difficult to meet more than once a week, due to our timetables and travelling, Emily  and I more often rehearsed the live parts of the show together without the rest of the group. Luckily most of the action on stage involved our characters presenting the minigames and reacting to the videos of Kelly. Although we had scripted a rough outline of the dialogue we would have alongside the videos, we found that it felt more natural to improvise most of what we were saying, emulating presenters of many game shows who must think on their feet and react as though nothing is scripted. (Luckily enough for us, the show was an intentional disaster and somewhat covered the fact that we were hardly professional…)

The action on stage was split between both characters, making sure the pressures of the live show were not put solely on one person. Emily’s character introduced the show, and was in charge of communicating with Kelly and the cameraman, whilst my character took control of the minigames and spinning the wheel.

During the final video clip, as the game show declines into something out of control, Emily  and I barely scripted what we would say. Instead, the action on stage declined into semi-controlled chaos as we panicked and tried to stop Kelly, then got gradually worse as she arrives on stage and destroys the set. As this scene was mostly improvised, it was different during every rehearsal. Predictably, this was most successful during the actual performance, as we no longer had to merely pretend to destroy the set, and Emily  was sadly parted (irreversibly) with her wig.

The amount of scripting and rehearsal throughout the entire piece reflects it’s structure. Starting with the smooth, well rehearsed opening, the performance gradually became more chaotic, less scripted and more unpredictable. As there was barely any script for the closing few minutes, and rehearsals were held back by the limits of having only one chance to destroy the set, this meant that the end of the performance was almost as much of a surprise to us as to the audience.

Filed by Emily Quinn at May 18th, 2012 under Evaluating the performance
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Obstacles during the recorded process

During the recording process there were a variety of elements which we needed to overcome such as,

Filed by Kelly Bond at May 18th, 2012 under Creating the performance
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The recorded process

The recorded rehearsal process consisted of dividing the live selection of the performance and the pre-recorded as two separate rehearsal processes. This allowed us to explore the multimedia aspects this work had to offer and play around with a variety of both vision and sound.

The rehearsal process which was explored first was the recorded element. This was decided due to the fact that the recorded element is a large part of the performance and once this was complete the live element of the production could be incorporated around the recorded element to produce the final outcome.

 

The first part of the recording process was the interview for the game show. The intention behind this was to describe the purpose of the game show whilst introducing my character and explaining my past to illustrate the intention behind the first part of the performance. It was also designed to get the attention of the audience and encourage them to be on the side of my character, which will later hopefully influence their choice when it came to them forming their vote in regards to what path my character should peruse.

 

Secondly, we recorded the steeling from the shop scene. This scene was the longest to film and rehearse as we had made many alterations and even changed the location of the shop used. Firstly, we had decided to film this scene in the university shop after many takes we decided that it did not work as we would have liked. This was mainly due to the amount of people entering the shop and hindering the filming process. Again the process was hindered as there were only two of us which did the filming myself and Emily Q which proven difficult to both film and act as essentially we needed to have a extra person who could have been the presenter for it to have worked a little more smooth. However, after much deliberation and filming we decided to change location to a local shop which worked a lot better. Not only did it give the scene a more authentic and realistic look, the new location allowed us to continue with the filming on to the next scene which saw me talking to the camera giving my reaction to what just happened and waiting my next task.

We filmed this scene with two alternative outcomes which we was going to allow the audience to choose which we played, unfortunately we did not continue with this idea as we had decided to ensure we got the result we wanted and only played the scene of the robbery.

 

The next scene we filmed was my character robbing the bag. This scene was again filmed with two outcomes and again we had played only the one. The scene we played was the version which the audience had voted me to steel the bag. The second scene was where I had ignored the studio audiences vote and taken the situation into my own hands and I had stolen the bag regardless of the outcome.

 

Lastly, the scene we filmed was the robbing the house scene. This again was changed a variety of times from the way in which I actually break into the house and the outcome of the violent encounter which happens at the end. The biggest change we made was the violet outcome as we toyed with the idea my character would beat up the home owner then flee. However, after playing with this idea is was made apparent that the accidental encounter worked better as it was less messy and created the effect we wanted. The effect which we were trying to create throughout that whole scene was that my character had lost control and that I was not a bad person it was situations in my life which resulted in my making the choices I had made. However, participation in the game show had driven me to believe that I deserved all the things I had taken and that I justified all the bad things I had done by blaming other people and the society in which I live in.

Filed by Kelly Bond at May 18th, 2012 under Creating the performance
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