Period Styles and Movement

Course Details

Course Number: THEA 4223  Section Number: 101

Fall 2012

Location: Fain Fine Arts Center

Classroom Number: Theatre

Days & Times:

TR 9:30-10:50 AM

Course Attachments


MSU Faculty Member
John Dement   
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Course Objectives

The student will:

  • develop a more neutral body through the use of mask training.
  • analyze his/her posture and alignment, and develop a strategy to minimize habitual tension and develop physical/mental flexibility and variety onstage.
  • investigate the style of each period through research and improvisation to create stylized characters for each period.
  • develop and implement a survival/success plan for each period of style investigated during the course.
  • understand and implement “The Ten Keys” to analyzing style for each of the period scenes covered in the course.
  • understand and demonstrate Mask Technique, and a variety of period bows, curtsies, and other postures.
  • understand and demonstrate a firm grasp of Shakespearean language, text analysis, and imagery.

Course Expectations

Each student must come to class fully prepared and ready to participate. You will be graded daily on your preparedness for class, as well as willingness to participate in a positive and stimulating manner. Students will demonstrate this through participation in exercises, presentation of homework (of any kind), and articulate discussion that pertains to the course work.

Dress Code
You will be assigned appropriate clothing for each stylistic period we study. You are expected to be fully dressed in the appropriate costume pieces at the beginning of class each day. When we are not working in costume, please wear something that is comfortable, allows you to move around, and that will not make you feel exposed. You may be asked to remove shoes if safety becomes an issue. Inappropriate clothing is not an excuse not to work. Remember participation is part of your grade.

Each student is expected to keep a detailed journal of his or her work for the class. The journals will be collected twice during the semester and graded. There should be a MINIMUM of one entry for each week of class at the time of collection. An entry is to be of at least one page in length (150 words). The journal is not a diary, but should reflect on class-work and as a character study for your scenes and monologues. What is listed is the minimum requirement and will not constitute an “A” grade. Journal entries can range in topics: character analysis, research, response to reading, response to class exercises, personalization, etc. Students are encouraged to write journal entries in addition to the minimum requirement of two per week.

Students will be expected to create a character study in his/her journal as outlined in the text. This will include a typed paper for each of the three periods covered during the course.

There will be quizzes given during the semester to test students on their reading and grasp of material.

There will be two written exams during the semester: a mid-term and a non-comprehensive final.

In-Class Performances
There are five performances during the semester that will be evaluated. These will be fully rehearsed and prepared. For some, you will work alone or with a partner. Each will explore the major areas of study from the text.

Rehearsal outside of class will be required to fully develop the skills required for class. This is HOMEWORK!! I recommend spending at LEAST 4-6 hours a week outside of class, in a rehearsal room, working the week’s assignments. This may require you to schedule and reserve rehearsal rooms.  It is your responsibility to work out a schedule with your scene partner that is mutually conducive. Be respectful of your classmates schedule, their time is just as valuable as yours. Your scheduling problems are never a valid excuse for coming to class unprepared. If there is a problem with a fellow classmate’s unwillingness to rehearse that cannot be resolved by the two of you, alert me ASAP. Each partner will be graded separately. However, if you are not rehearsing it will affect the grade of both students.

Late Work
Assignments will always be due at the beginning of class. Any assignment not turned in at the beginning of class will be considered late. Late work will not normally be accepted. The instructor reserves the right accept late work at his discretion, but will penalize students 15 points per day on any late assignments.

Grading Standards

Grades are achieved by the accumulation of points during the course of the semester. Each assignment awards a certain number of points. The points for each assignment are then added together and the resulting sum is compared to the grade scale below. Since the total number of points will not be known until the end of the semester, the student can estimate how they are doing by dividing their accumulated points by the total points available to that point in the semester. The resulting percentage is an indicator or success or failure. The instructor reserves the right to adjust or cancel assignments as the course progresses.

100 points.....Participation
100 points.....Written Work (journal & critique)
100 points.....Quizzes
200 points.....Exams (midterm & final)
100 points.....Exercise 1
100 points.....Greek Messenger Speech
100 points.....Sonnet
100 points.....Shakespeare Scene
100 points.....Restoration
1000 Total Points

Grading Scale

A.....900 or more points
F.....599 or less


Final Exam12/11/2012  8:00 to 10:00 AM

Submission Format PolicyNote: You may not submit a paper for a grade in this class that already has been (or will be) submitted for a grade in another course, unless you obtain the explicit written permission of me and the other instructor involved in advance.

Plagiarism Policy Plagiarism is the use of someone else's thoughts, words, ideas, or lines of argument in your own work without appropriate documentation (a parenthetical citation at the end and a listing in "Works Cited")-whether you use that material in a quote, paraphrase, or summary. It is a theft of intellectual property and will not be tolerated, whether intentional or not.

Student Honor Creed

As an MSU Student, I pledge not to lie, cheat, steal, or help anyone else do so."

As students at MSU, we recognize that any great society must be composed of empowered, responsible citizens. We also recognize universities play an important role in helping mold these responsible citizens. We believe students themselves play an important part in developing responsible citizenship by maintaining a community where integrity and honorable character are the norm, not the exception. Thus, We, the Students of Midwestern State University, resolve to uphold the honor of the University by affirming our commitment to complete academic honesty. We resolve not only to be honest but also to hold our peers accountable for complete honesty in all university matters. We consider it dishonest to ask for, give, or receive help in examinations or quizzes, to use any unauthorized material in examinations, or to present, as one's own, work or ideas which are not entirely one's own. We recognize that any instructor has the right to expect that all student work is honest, original work. We accept and acknowledge that responsibility for lying, cheating, stealing, plagiarism, and other forms of academic dishonesty fundamentally rests within each individual student. We expect of ourselves academic integrity, personal professionalism, and ethical character. We appreciate steps taken by University officials to protect the honor of the University against any who would disgrace the MSU student body by violating the spirit of this creed. Written and adopted by the 2002-2003 MSU Student Senate.

Students with Disabilities The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is a federal anti-discrimination statute that provides comprehensive civil rights protection for persons with disabilities. Among other things, this legislation requires that all students with disabilities be guaranteed a learning environment that provides for reasonable accommodation of their disabilities. If you believe you have a disability requiring an accommodation, please contact the Disability Support Services in Room 168 of the Clark Student Center, 397-4140.

Safe Zones Statement The professor considers this classroom to be a place where you will be treated with respect as a human being - regardless of gender, race, ethnicity, national origin, religious affiliation, sexual orientation, political beliefs, age, or ability. Additionally, diversity of thought is appreciated and encouraged, provided you can agree to disagree. It is the professor's expectation that ALL students consider the classroom a safe environment.

Contacting your Instructor All instructors in the Department have voicemail in their offices and MWSU e-mail addresses. Make sure you add your instructor's phone number and e-mail address to both email and cell phone lists of contacts.

Attendance Requirements

Attendance is MANDATORY!! I do understand life, however, so everyone is allowed one “mental health” day each semester. Use it well. We have a substantial amount of material to cover and a limited amount of time. Each day we will be covering or presenting NEW material, and very often it is material that will require the assistance of a partner. You will receive a ten-point grade deduction off of your final grade for your second absence. Each subsequent unexcused absence will deduct twenty points from your final average. The only exceptions to this policy are school sponsored events or documented extreme cases (like the zombie apocalypse.)

Role will be taken at the beginning of each class. Each student is allowed ONE tardy (not to exceed 5 min) with no deduction during the semester. After the first tardy, if a student is not present at the time role is taken they are marked absent.

Writing Proficiency Requirement All students seeking a Bachelor's degree from Midwestern State University must satisfy a writing proficiency requirement once they've 1) passed English 1113 and English 1123 and 2) earned 60 hours. You may meet this requirement by passing either the Writing Proficiency Exam or English 2113. Please keep in mind that, once you've earned over 90 hours, you lose the opportunity to take the $25 exam and have no option but to enroll in the three-credit hour course. If you have any questions about the exam, visit the Writing Proficiency Office website at, or call 397-4131.