1. GENERAL HEADING: Voice and Body Exercises

2. TITLE OF EXERCISE: "A Good Defense"

3. GOALS: Increased physicality and commitment to text.

4. NUMBER OF STUDENTS: Performed in groups of fours, made up of two pairs each of which has a pre-memorized scene prepared. Several groups can work simultaneously.


6. CLASS TIME NEEDED: Ten to fifteen minutes.

7. STEP-BY-STEP DESCRIPTION: Actors find a large open space in which to work. One pair (Pair A) will be working actively on their scene, the other facilitating the exercise. The two actors of Pair A spread themselves apart the width of the performing space, ideally about 20 to 30 feet. They face each other across the expanse. They will be speaking their lines to each other and advancing toward their partner. While they are doing so, the actors from Pair B will be facing the actors from Pair A, and palms-to-shoulders will physically resist the advance of the Pair A actors. Pair A will try to reach their partners while speaking, Pair B tries to keep them apart. One the lines from the scene have been run once, Pair A and B switch.

8. POINTS FOR OBSERVATION, DISCUSSION: This is an extremely physical exercise. Actors will tire quickly, so only one repetition of each scene can be run. Experience suggests that this exercise can contribute to the way that the emotional, physical, and intellectual work can all take place at once.

9. SOURCE/REFERENCE: Audrey Stanley