Tony Page

Drama Course

1. Building A Character

Now it's time to sit in the Character Hotseat and become a bank robber.

Answer my questions quick as you can. First thing that comes into your head.

What made you want to rob the bank? There must've been a reason;

a turning point. How do you feel when the day finally comes?

When you push through that door, gun in your coat? Is everyone

looking at you? Are you shaking when you choose the hostages?

How much experience do you have with that gun?

Has the staff triggered the alarm? You don't even know where the alarms are?

Come on. You've got to be better prepared than that! This is not some movie we're

talking about. This is REAL LIFE here. Someone could die because of you.

What's that? You want a partner? Too difficult all by yourself? Actually that's good. No, I mean it. Proves you got into character today. Is this the first time you felt what it's like to become someone else? Great work! Take a rest...

Next student, please. OK. Who do you want to be?

2. Performance Space

We create an enclave. Step into it

and the everyday evaporates.

An emptiness longing to be filled.

Draw a circle anywhere

and the precinct comes alive.

Within its orbit, the simplest

act becomes ceremony.

Crowds recognize it instantly ─

parks or shopping malls.

All are mesmerized

by memories of the campfire,

the eons of story and ritual.

Time and again, we've seen it:

every instant transformed

to theatre within this sanctuary,

which we carve out of nothing.

Nothing but the audience's need for release.

Tony Page, Melbourne poet, whose third book, Gateway to the Sphinx (Five Islands) appeared in 2004. For 20 years, he worked in Thailand and Malaysia; but now lives in Australia. Has also written for the stage, with Who Killed Caravaggio? completed in 2009. Recently published in Eureka Street, The Australian Poetry Journal and The Canberra Times. Now finalizing a fourth collection of poetry.
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