UNDERGRADUATE PROGRAM

Turning Passion to Purpose

“All the world's a stage, and all the men and women merely players,” Shakespeare famously said. Today, that part is getting more and more important. As time runs in dizzy circles, performing arts have acquired a meaning like never before. The rapidly evolving global economy demands a dynamic and creative workforce. The arts and its related businesses are responsible for billions in cultural exports for India. In fact, arts and performance are a country’s heritage and its greatest currency. The world needs people who think with the creative side of their brains. It enhances symbiotic thinking capabilities, not always thinking in the same paradigm, learning how to kick-start a new idea, or how to get a job done better, less expensively. Only then are we prepared to play our parts better in this theatre of dreams called the world.

FLAME University’s theatre program has very specific objectives, all of which are toward making FLAME a university of excellence in the teaching and promotion of theatre, through an interdisciplinary approach. We do this in an environment of trust and faith in order to encourage and nurture individual artistic expression. We aim to encourage innovation and opportunities that challenge the existing norms of teaching theatre in India.

We strive to encourage and facilitate innovation and learning in theatre. We aim to do this by providing education, disseminating knowledge and promoting appreciation, through a unique pedagogy and interaction with the arts of other countries and collaborations with arts institutions the world over. Education in theatre is one of the most creative ways we have to hone the students’ enthusiasm for life and spark their creativity and imaginations.

Grounded in the philosophy of liberal education, inter-disciplinary and applied learning, FLAME University offers a minor in theatre at the undergraduate level. Through the process of experiential learning, students are enabled to develop sufficient level of understanding in their area(s) of interest in artistic practices. Besides classroom work, our students are benefited from opportunities to attend workshops, seminars, festivals and residencies. Focusing on practice as well as theory in theatre, our students are provided space and resources to hone individual artistic skills and develop critical thinking.

Program Aims

  • To offer education in theatre within a liberal education setting.
  • To provide academic training and practical experience for students who wish to explore their interests in theatre.
  • To afford the opportunity for students to develop a significant level of competency in theatre.
  • To create conducive environment for process-oriented practice work and research within specific socio-cultural context in India.
  • To engage in process orientated explorations through multi-disciplinary forms in which all of the arts and humanities, knowledge and life skills intersect.
  • To provide a broad based curriculum, exceptional professional and liberal education opportunities in fine & performing arts, which enables students in developing collaborative, creative and critical thinking.
  • To integrate theory and practice in order to exceed existing boundaries of expression.
  • To offer applied exploration and observation toward new forms of artistic and scholarly excellence.
  • To offer culturally enriching opportunities to all students and members of the FLAME and regional communities.

THEATRE AND PERFORMING STUDIES MINOR COURSES

12 MINOR COURSES

1. Voice Culture 5. World Drama 9. Acting Solo: Creation and Performance
2. A Basic Course in Acting 6. Writing a Play 10. Devising a Performance
3. Basics in Scene Work 7. Acting: Text and Performance 11. Folk Traditions and Indian Theatre
4. Indian Theatre 8. Introduction to Directorial Practices 12. Contemporary Theatre in India

Voice Culture

Voice Culture deals with the techniques of right voice production in a theatre work. Voice quality is the result of a combined action of basic function of the vocal organs (vocal tract configuration) and developed components by scientific and systematic training and practice. It becomes even more important for performing artists, especially actors, to hone their skills in voice production. This course will introduce students to the science behind voice production, anatomy of human body, and the techniques and exercises that would help students to understand the different qualities of the voices and help them to identify their own voice to be used in a theatre work.

A Basic Course in Acting

Description: A beginning level course in the fundamentals of acting would enable students to understand a working vocabulary and acquire the basic skills in the acting for theatre. Through exercises, compositions, and improvisations; the student actors would understand and demonstrate vocal flexibility, breathing, scene work, character analysis and the basic approaches to interpret text through actions and movements on the stage. (Prerequisite None)

Basics in Scene Work

This course would help the students to understand the basics of Stage work through textual analysis, improvisations and theatre exercises. The students would work on understanding scale deduction, plan, elevation, and cross section and projection drawings. The course would focus on the technical aspect of scenic design and create a series of scenes to be presented as a course work.

Indian Theatre

This is an introductory course offering a brief historical survey of performance and theatre traditions in India. It would provide a composite coverage of the socio-political contexts that have influenced development of classical Sanskrit drama, the living forms of traditional performance practices like Tamasha and Kathakali, early colonial, post- colonial and contemporary political and artistic theatre in India. Because the course is designed for students in various disciplines; it assumes no significant prior theoretical knowledge of performance theory. Instead, the course hopes to enable students to approach theatre in India and its different aspects from diverse and analytical perspectives.

World Drama

This course introduces students to the literary study of a selection of plays and performing traditions from world enables students to discover the excitement of drama in a global context.  A selection of plays from several different regions of the world are read and/or watched with an emphasis on understanding associations between drama and society, ideas, and traditions of a culture. Students will encounter a variety of cultural contexts and performing traditions as they observe how playwrights portray local histories and lifestyles, in settings from many parts of the world.

Writing a Play

The course explores the process and possibilities of play-writing. Students would be trained to analyse a selection of plays including work by Shakespeare, Ibsen, Tendulkar, Alekar, and Chekhov, among others. However, the major part of course involves students in exercises designed to help them put principles of playwriting into creative practice of writing. By the end of the course work, students would have tried their hands on a monologue, a short play, and/or a one-act play.

Acting: Text and Performance

This is an advance-level workshop based course for the students who have completed the Acting I course. The course would focus primarily on Method Acting. Students would work on a given text with an emphasis on understanding subtext and to create a scene work at the end of the course.

Introduction to Directorial Practices

Description: This course is designed to build on knowledge and skills gained through introductory work in theater in order to enable a student to develop the foundations of good directing technique. Also, goal is to prepare you for further study and work as a director in both production and classroom settings. The course teacher would enable students to take an overview of the analytical and creative processes that inform the director's work. Close examination of texts, concepts, and directorial choices in staged performances, opera, films, and video will be undertaken through the course work.

Acting Solo: Creation and Performance

This course would focus on opening and developing an actor’s resources in the solo performance. It would help the student-actors to use their self-experience as the first step towards their expression on Stage. The students would work on physical awareness, imagination, transformation, observation, concentration, partner contact and rhythm to develop acting skills. The course would emphasize on developing solo performance narratives and the stage presentations through theatre exercises and improvisations.

Devising a Performance

The course aims at enabling the students to create original work, which is not based on a pre-written play or script, but on research material collected by the students themselves, focusing on themes and ideas that are of their interest. The students will engage in a number of theatre making processes, improvisation techniques, while encouraging collaborations between various art forms. The module will also include working on systems such as Viewpoints, to create performance pieces and to work with found material and perform in found spaces.

Folk Traditions and Indian Theatre

In this course, students will analyse the role that folk performance traditions have played in construction of modern Indian theatre. The course investigates theoretical and historical debates that stand at the centre of incorporation of folk performance traditions in modern Indian drama evolved in the post-independence period. Students will study how playwrights and directors had begun to incorporate folk conventions and ideas into their productions and how it was feeding back into the creative process, providing new resources for self-expressions. Plays will be read, discussed and analysed in order to understand reflections of folk performance traditions into the major writing styles, techniques, and conventions that characterise modern theatre practices.

Contemporary Theatre in India

The course offers a brief introduction to contemporary performing traditions in India that has been emerging in India since the early 21st century. It would provide a composite coverage of the socio-political and cultural contexts that have influenced development of creation and appreciation of contemporary theatre in India. The focus of the course will be twofold. On the one hand, it will study new performance practices in terms of fresh content, new styles and vocabularies in the context of concerned directors/performance groups. On the other hand, the module will study context of the performing practices by analyzing the culture where new performances have been emerging and are being appreciated by the society. In this, students will be enabled to address larger concerns thrown within the contemporary practices of performances in terms of cultural references, political scenarios, and economic changes along with dissemination of performance practices.