A positive thought post!

Well Woyzeckers,

I think our blog is looking pretty tip-top! Everyone has been adding some really good stuff…and its looking rather swish aswell!

Tech rehearsal: Wednesday 2nd – 6pm ( I shall bring my camera! =) Remember to bring all props and costume bits. Im going to try and find a stuffed animal cat of some sort tomorrow. I shall also get some chalk!!! Aha! I hopefully will have managed to borrow 3 masks, if not…I shall purchase them instead!

Anything else we need to get?

Amie =)

Research – Woyzeck: Diagnosis of his illness.


Schizophrenia is a long-term mental health condition that causes a range of different psychological symptoms. These include:

  • hallucinations – hearing or seeing things that do not exist
  • delusions – unusual beliefs that are not based on reality and often contradict the evidence
  • muddled thoughts based on the hallucinations or delusions
  • changes in behaviour

Doctors describe schizophrenia as a psychotic illness. This means that sometimes a person may not be able to distinguish their own thoughts and ideas from reality.

The exact cause of schizophrenia is unknown. However, most experts believe that the condition is caused by a combination of genetic and environmental factors.

How common is schizophrenia?

Schizophrenia is one of the most common serious mental health conditions. The 2000 National Survey of Psychiatric Morbidity in the UK found that 5 in 1000 people experienced a psychotic disorder (including schizophrenia and manic depression). Men and women are equally affected by the condition.

In men, schizophrenia usually begins between the ages of 15 and 30. In women, schizophrenia usually occurs later, beginning between the ages of 25 and 30.

Misconceptions about schizophrenia

Schizophrenia is often poorly understood and many people have misconceptions about it. Two of the most common misconceptions about schizophrenia are:

  • People with schizophrenia have a split or dual personality.
  • People with schizophrenia are violent.

Split personality

It is commonly thought that people with schizophrenia have a split personality, acting perfectly normally one minute and irrationally or bizarrely the next. However, this is not true. Although the term schizophrenia is a Greek word that means ‘split mind’, the term was first used long before the condition was properly understood.

It would be more accurate to say that people with schizophrenia have a mind that can experience episodes of dysfunction and disorder.

Violent crime

Most studies confirm that there is a link between violence and schizophrenia. However, the media tend to exaggerate this, with acts of violence committed by people with schizophrenia getting a great deal of high-profile media coverage. This gives the impression that such acts happen frequently when they are in fact very rare.

The reality is that violent crime is more likely to be linked to alcohol or other substance misuse than to schizophrenia. A person with schizophrenia is far more likely to be the victim of violent crime than the instigator.

Website: http://www.nhs.uk/Conditions/Schizophrenia/Pages/Introduction.aspx#commentCountLink (Acessed on 28/02/11)


Theatre Review: Woyzeck – Georg Buchner

Woyzeck Review
by Tim Berendse
Deutsches Theater, Berlin

As Georg Büchner lay on his deathbed on the 19th February 1837 in his Zurich exile at only 23 years old, he left an unfinished, unread play that would one day be called ‘Woyzeck’.
This new adaptation at the Deutsches Theater, Berlin is by Robert Wilson, the famous Texan director, with music by the great Tom Waits taken from his 2002 album ‘Blood Money’.
The set consisted of an arena-like construction with high curved sides so it resembled half of a stadium, a path in the middle led to a flat acting space downstage. The set was used very effectively, with actors running at full speed around this half-stadium construction as if they were racing around a Velodrome. It was also used as a rooftop setting as actors clambered up the sides from behind it. The backstage area was bare and completely open to the audience, so the musicians could be seen behind the set.
The characters were very representational in their costumes and in their actions, for example, the extravagant drum major threw gold coloured confetti everywhere he went and the Field Marshal was very slow and deliberate in everything he did while Woyzeck himself was very nervous and rash in his actions.
Tom Waits’ music was fantastic and really worked in intertwining with the play’s themes of love, death, wealth and insanity. This was accompanied by terrific acting by all of the main characters, however, some of the minor characters were very weak, this may have been due to the fact that their characters were not very clearly defined and had no depth. Some parts of the plot were also not very clear, but this may just be because my understanding of German is not perfect.
The humour was played very well and was a very sharp juxtaposition to the tragedy at the end of the play, where Woyzeck stabs the mother of his child to death because he suspects she is having an affair with the drum major, and as a result of his dwindling mental health. Because this play was never finished, directors through the years have re-written the play to their liking, for example, Robert Wilson chose to leave out Woyzeck’s suicide at the end of the play. This omission coupled with the many songs and dances softened the real brutality of the play. This is the real fault I found in this production, it was tragic, but not tragic enough.
Otherwise it was a fantastic play, and I hope that Tom Waits does more music for theatre in the future.


Website: http://timberendse.blog.co.uk/2010/09/09/theatre-review-woyzeck-by-georg-buechner-9347862/ (Acessed on 28/02/11)

The role of the dramaturg…

The role of the Dramaturg?

What actually is a Dramaturg? The dramaturg has many different jobs or roles, the role within the company is usually dependant on the nature of the organisation. A production within an organisation involves a network of people working together.

The dramaturg is sometimes used as the productions mediator, otherwise described as the ‘go-between’ or the communicator between the members within the organisation/company. The dramaturgy will often liaise between:

  • The production and the public
  • Artistic director and producer
  • Actor and director

…to unsure the smooth running of the production and to make sure all members of the company are on the same wave-length with regards to the final vision for the production.

“You have to be the integrator and the communicator and you have to mediate between all these parties” (Henrik Adler 2005, p.20 cited in Turner and Behrndt 2008, p.161)

As well as taking on the role as the ‘spokesperson’ of the team, the dramaturg may also have other varying roles with regards to the framing of the production. Their time may be concerned with finding ways of articulating and shaping the decision making within the rehearsal space. This job in particular may sound quite similar to the work of the director, especially when considering the rehearsal process, however when the the role of the dramaturg is viewed as a more a collaborator, the dramaturg and the director work in close collaboration anyway. It is known that occasionally some directors find this daunting and their presence viewed as threatening, but for other directors the dramaturgs input is welcome.

The dramaturg is involved with many others key areas when building a production. They contribute to the understanding of the motives and style or the production, they provide support, feedback and are also sometimes in charge of the research and facilitation of the piece. Some dramaturgs provide a great amount of input into the general decision making, development and architecture of the work. In some cases a strong element of the artistic investment is personal to the dramaturgs work.

A big question that is said to be a bit of a mystery when considering the dramaturgs work…What specifically is personally their own work? When you take the nature of their work and their role into account, in some cases its hard to pin-point exactly which ideas/input does the dramaturg actually claim. Due to this, in some cases the dramaturgs input can almost go unrecognised as it is very difficult to claim ownership upon any single element of the performance as being distinctly their own.

Anne Bogart, director of New York based SITI states

“I think with dramaturgs there is usually this really bizarre question of ownership or something, a director has ownership of staging, a actor has ownership of the acting…well, in the best case, usually in a new play the role of the dramaturg is not to have ownership. But if you look at American Silents, there is a huge amount of ownership and its called ownership of archival materials and of structural ideas. (Coleman and Wolff 1998, p. 27: ctied in Turner and Behrndt 2008, p. 164)

This statement, as one example, suggests that perhaps dramaturgs do get the recognition they deserve, but credited under a different name.


  • Turner, Cathy and Synne K, Behrndt (2008) dramaturgy and performance, Hampshire: Palgrave Macmillan.

Written by Amie.

Rehearsals W/C 21/02/11

With the extra rehearsals outside of our scheduled Dramaturgy sessions we have come along leaps and bounds. We have been able to meet alot more regularly enabling us to really crack on with the rehearsal process.

This week we have started to work with bits of props and costume, this has been especially important for our opening scene (Shaving scene) This was a great chance for Braden and Martyn to pratice working with the props and experiment with the timing of the scene.

Everyone has now learned there lines!…perhaps a few slips/reminders here and there but a good effort all the same. This has made a real difference to the rehearsals and we can now all forget about flicking through/ holding the script and really start to focus on the details of the play such as blocking and characterisation. We can also start to concentrate on the meaning of the lines and the context of each scene and how this might reflect on our overall interpretation/vision of the play. It is also important for us to consider (from an audiences perspective) how easy it is to follow and understand the performance, when taking into account the disjointed nature of the script.

We have had very beneficial week with regards to rehearsals and sessions with the whole Dramaturgy group. We had the chance to present some of our work and it was great opportunity to receive some feedback from an outsiders point of view. Looking foward to our Sunday evening rehearsal (hopefully an empty LPAC!) giving us the chance to use the space without any distractions…I guess thats promenade theatre for you.

Onwards and upwards for the Woyzeck team!