Stephen writes: How to layout your poem for the Technical Script.

14 Feb

When we put on shows for Mouthy Poets we are usually provided with a technician who has never been to a Friday session. Whilst members of the group may be familiar with how the show is coming together, what it is about, who plans to do what; the technician will be largely unversed in the set-up of the show. They may know what we need (e.g. a smoke machine) but they don’t necessarily know when and where it is needed. As they will be sat in the tech booth on the night pushing the buttons as the show goes on, it is vital they have as clear a picture as possible of what we want and what they need to do. With this in mind, we create the technical script.

The technical script should map out each poem in its entirety as clearly as possible: staging, lighting, dialogue, etc. Obviously, if your performance entails very little movement or technicality then the script will not be too complex, but it is still important to get the little that you do have in there. As you are e-mailing your final drafts to publishing@mouthypoets.com tomorrow we also ask that you send your poem – formated into a script – to production@mouthypoets.com, too.

Please write your script in Times New Roman and include YOUR NAME AND POEM TITLE IN UPPER CASE BOLD SIZE 14YOUR TECHNICAL NOTES IN RED UPPER CASE SIZE 12YOUR STAGING NOTES IN ITALIC SIZE 12, and your script in standard size 12. If you are unsure of the definitive staging you will use, please leave line breaks at relevant places so that these can be written on by hand once the script is printed.

As an example, here is the scripted version of mine and Cleo’s performance of ‘Ducks’ from Say Sum Thin 7:

BLUE WASH AND LEAF-EFFECT LIGHTING. GUITAR PLAYS THROUGH D.I.

MALE DUCK ENTERS STAGE LEFT AND WADDLES TO CENTRE STAGE.

MALE: I’m a duck
swimming in the water.
I’m a duck,
I like lakes not seas.

All my friends try to tell me
“fly south for the winter”
But I don’t care, cuz I’m alright
with the lake I’ve got here.

I’m a duck,
my friends say I’m stubborn,
but I’m just a happy little mallard
where I am in Nottingham.

MALE DUCK DANCES AS FEMALE DUCK ENTERS STAGE RIGHT AND PRANCES TOWARDS HIM

FEMALE: I’m a duck;
I fly south for the winter,
So fly with me if you want to keep warm!

Fly south with me;
fly south for the winter!
I think this year we’re headed
to the Mississippi river.

MIRROR BALL CREATES STARLIGHT EFFECT

FEMALE: It’s actually,
pretty fun and wicked –
We soar over coastlines and mountains
and navigate with help from the stars!

FEMALE WIGGLES PLAYFULLY

MALE: You’re a duck…

FEMALE: I’m a duck!

MALE: …and you’re pretty fit.
So I might…

BOTH: Fly south for a bit!

DUCKS DANCE OFF STAGE LEFT
LIGHTS FADE AND GUITAR ENDS.

Please e-mail your scripted poem to Afrah at production@mouthypoets.com by tomorrow (Sunday, 15th February) ATTACHED TO THE E-MAIL AS A SEPARATE DOCUMENT.

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