U12 Task 2 Research

Task 2

After the final content and casting had been finalized I started to research about what I was included in and how I could understand other characters that have influenced me. I started with the fundamental research about the pieces themselves.

First piece – ‘Angels and Demons’ Melissa Otero.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VmI8IiuAelU

I listened to the tone of her voice and what struck me was the emotions that came through the piece. I then looked up the lyrics of this song so I can understand the meaning of the song and picture what is happening when she is singing this song.

http://www.metrolyrics.com/angels-and-demons-lyrics-melissa-otero.html

I woke up this morning
Thinking what to wear
Don’t know if I should be me
I’m a little scared

The truth hides deep inside
What am I to say?
The past is left behind
And I don’t want to explain

I don’t think you can see me
Believe when I say
One day I am restless
At night I’m awake

You never believe me
So it’s hard to explain
My soul has been captured
I hide in my pain

Cos I’m no angel
I have two faces
I put one on for you
Put one on for me
These angels and demons won’t set me free

What do you expect of me
To know who I am?
These scars run deep inside
They don’t have an end

You know I have secrets
Yet you seem to deny
You know you can’t change me
Won’t put up a fight

Maybe when I’m ready
I’ll say how I feel
Heaven cannot find me
I don’t know what’s real

We find our own pleasure
Keeping to ourselves
My mind is a maze
Heaven and hell

Cos I’m no angel
I have two faces
I put one on for you
Put one on for me
These angels and demons won’t set me free

Are you surprised
Of all my lies
I confuse myself
And I don’t care to deny

That I’m no angel
I have two faces
I put one on for you
Put one on for me
These angels and demons won’t set me free

Once annotating the lyrics and identifying the meanings personally I decided that I was going to start learning it. So I thought about finding an instrumental online to make sure that it was a possibility to sing the song without a live band. I searched on YouTube and found a link that was a resemblance of the original song and it sounds as if I were singing on a stage. I enjoy singing this song and I am planning to perform it to the Year 2 Musical Theatre students to ask them what they thought about it and how I could improve.

Overall, when annotating the lyrics my thoughts were as follows:

  • Insecurities
  • Wearing a mask to cover up her true self
  • She’s so hurt that she blocks people out of her life
  • People think she’s okay but she really isn’t
  • Devil has taken away her soul
  • Can’t work out her own identity
  • Time consuming, telling her life story is something she doesn’t want to comprehend
  • Lost, so low that emotions don’t matter to her
  • Building up the dynamics in certain places in the music so show raw emotion and how she feels at that moment in the song.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q89p-6_EMPU

I tried to find an acoustic version for this song because I presume that the emotions would feel raw and the audience would be able to comprehend what I am singing and understand it rather than just saying ‘oh, she has a nice voice’ and not really listen. Considering that Faye and Zoe will be dancing in the background of this song I will have more distraction that I would have if I was to sing the song on my own without the dancing. However, for a dance perspective I think that they would find it difficult the emotion of abuse and how hurt they are with one another if the music doesn’t build in a way that they can show off their high jumps and techniques in difficult ways.

Another way that I thought about performing this piece was playing either piano or guitar for the song, however I thought about it a little more and I realised that I wouldn’t be able to play the piano unless it is already on the stage because it would look terrible if the audience had to wait in more than 5 seconds of darkness for us to put the piano onstage. The pieces that are in front of me includes the introduction from Saint Jimmy (the owner of the bar), I want to be seduced (Tom and Sian), Charlie’s Angels (Faye, Vicky and Zoe), I want to be evil (Chloe), Interaction between the waitresses and Jimmy, Posh (Tom, Scott, Harry and Josh), Shopping and F**cking (Sian and Hannah), Focus shift on Daytona and James, Relationship chat between Faye and Sophia which then leads into my song and the dance between Zoe and Faye.

I looked at the images that Alex had shared with the group on Facebook about the layout of our production which includes steel deck and so it would be difficult to even put a piano on the stage for one or more pieces because it wouldn’t fit. However, if there were many occasions in the production then we could discuss with Alex about maybe removing one of the steel decks to be able to have a piano on stage. If this is possible then I would love to play piano with the song to show as many skills as I can. As I am already going to be playing guitar later on in Act two I didn’t feel that it would be necessary to play with that instrument again. Considering the piano option isn’t possible then I will sing with the instrumental that I found on YouTube.

For my characterisation in this piece I think that I she should have schizophrenia and that is the reason behind why she is behaving as though she has two masks. I made a PowerPoint talking about what Schizophrenia is and particular facts that I think people should know and understand.

I research some characters that have Schizophrenia but I couldn’t relate to any of those characters so I have had to make up my own reasons and suggestions. Overall, I have decided that here I will have been in a position where I have been abused and taken advantage of. This will then give me an insight as to why I am behaving like this. Schizophrenia is what I suffer with throughout my life and I want to somehow find a way to show this to the audience through singing this song. The last line of the song says “These angels and demons won’t set me free”. This therefore gives my character somewhere to go. Considering she will ‘always’ have this condition, my next piece involves the song ‘Bring on the men’ which is about prostitutes. My first idea about how these scenes could link in a way that she has lost everything because of her mental illness that she has ungratefully been given by a guy who has abused her. This then would give her no choice but to gain money by having sex with other men. This could be a way that she deals with her insecurities because she is constantly told that she is ‘beautiful’ by the men who have paid her to have sex with them. I needed to research a little into what prostitutes have to go through and it was really tough and hard to read. So upsetting, no wonder why people become depressed. I looked into the series called ‘Humans’ written by Sam Vincent and Jonathan Brackley at a section in the series where a women named ‘Niska’ and she is put into a prostitute brothel to keep ‘safe’ from those who are searching for her.

Second piece – ‘Bring on the men’ Jekyll and Hyde

Jekyll and Hyde is a horror – drama musical based on the book ‘The strange case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.’ Written by Robert Louis Stevenson. Leslie Bricusse and Frank Wildhorn wrote the musical and I personally think it is really clever. I listened to the song with the lyrics and then watched the Broadway version on YouTube.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V6QHiekfd3A – Lyrics Version

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v5aB_8TpnBM – Broadway Version

I printed out the sheet music from Emma as she is in charge of this piece that is going in our production. I am really excited about this piece because it’s a character that I have never portrayed before and it will be a challenge that I am up for.

Listening to the ending of the piece there is a F# that is belted and is loud which is something that I don’t really see any of the other girls in the group being able to hit so I think I’ll volunteer to sing the note and beat it with B my singing teacher and ask her to help me reach the note confidently.

The main character in the song is called ‘Lucy’ and she is a dark horse. She is the star of the Red Rat Brothels burlesque show. This is a place where prostitutes meet and put on a show for traditionally the men who paid to have sex with them.

I had decided that my character will be like the character ‘Joe’ from the musical ‘Our House’. I want to let the audience see into her life and the impact the decisions that these choices would be. The musical ‘Our House’ was a hit from when it opened due to the music by madness. However, having had the chance to perform in this musical I identified how clever it was with the split personalities and how everyone around Joe would be affected with a certain decision that he makes.

Thirdly I perform a dance to ‘Hellfire’ which is sung by Scott. Throughout the production he is falling in love with me however I keep turning him down. Why? I had many different ideas about this relationship between us including those I have put in bullet points.

  • That I have learnt from my mistakes of opening up to men and their situations and have decided to stay away from the ‘posh boys’ because I don’t want to hurt them with my being. As I feel so terrible about myself, I don’t want this to afflict another person that I learn to love.
  • That Scott is in fact the man who abused me. He hurt me but cannot fall out of love. He hurt me and learnt about other women in the world and decided that he hurt a young and beautiful hearted young lady that she doesn’t even see herself.
  • Maybe this isn’t the same character and I am just performing in front of him to portray his emotions.

I decided to go with the idea that Scott is in fact the man who once abused me. Throughout the song ‘Hellfire’ the name of his lover is mentioned and I feel that if I am not connected to that then the emotions will hold back and the meanings behind it will not be persistent.

Actually, maybe Scott should be a guy who I have pushed away because he loved me for who he thought I was but because I have so many secrets I cannot tell him who I truly am and I constantly wear a mask.

All in all, I am undecided and will ask the opinion of the tutors and Scott to see what they think would link better.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-NP-RsRGzVo

http://www.disneyclips.com/lyrics/lyrics125.html

Lyrics from “The Hunchback of Notre-Dame”
Composed by Alan Menken and Stephen Schwartz

Beata Maria
You know I am a righteous man
Of my virtue I am justly proud

Beata Maria
You know I’m so much purer than
The common, vulgar, weak, licentious crowd
Then tell me, Maria
Why I see her dancing there
Why her smoldering eyes still scorch my soul

I feel her, I see her
The sun caught in her raven hair
Is blazing in me out of all control

Like fire
Hellfire
This fire in my skin
This burning desire
Is turning me to sin

It’s not my fault
I’m not to blame
It is the gypsy girl
The witch who sent this flame

It’s not my fault
If in God’s plan
He made the devil so much
Stronger than a man

Protect me, Maria
Don’t let this siren cast her spell
Don’t let her fire sear my flesh and bone
Destroy Esmeralda
And let her taste the fires of Hell
Or else let her be mine and mine alone

Hellfire
Dark fire
Now gypsy, it’s your turn
Choose me or
Your pyre
Be mine or you will burn

God have mercy on her
God have mercy on me
But she will be mine
Or she will burn!

Straight after this dance piece I am back on stage with Sophia and Tom accompanying us to sing ‘Poisoned Apple’ by Philippa Hanna. It’s a beautiful song about how you can’t share your heart until your own heart is full and complete. I decided that the scene before that I dance to as Scott sings will be a distant memory about what my life was like and I have met a young women who has asked me for some advice and I am telling her to be patient and not to make the same mistake as I have done in my life and to learn from my mistakes. Throughout the song I will tell Sophia’s character about how I hid behind a mask my whole life and I have finally realised that I needn’t to do so and I have grown in faith and become a better person through the hurt and pain that I went through in my life.

I absolutely love this song. I admire Philippa Hanna because she is a Christian singer/songwriter and I have loved her music and morals since I was in year 9. Her voice is stunning and she has come so far in her life. Thanking the Lord everyday for the life she lives. I read the lyrics and we split the verses between ourselves and decided on which parts we should sing and discussed why.

http://www.elyrics.net/read/p/philippa-hanna-lyrics/apples-lyrics.html

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WHrqK-0VEVU

With a poisoned apple I was fooled
I took a bite then fell into a sleep
That lasted years
Bitten and discarded
I was bruised and undesired on the floor
From skin to core

Oh, oh, oh, oh,
When you’re waiting for the kiss of life
Oh, oh, oh, oh,
Every lover takes another bite

When you can’t see the wood for the trees
You’ll fall in love with any stranger that you meet
They may seem strong but who knows what’s underneath
Just ‘cos someone shows you kindness when you’re weak
Don’t share your heart
‘Til it’s complete

Like a golden apple, flesh restored
My heart was healed when I knocked at his door
I’m bruised no more
There’s no case of gold and diamonds
I’m awake no longer lying in a dream
My heart is healed

Oh, oh, oh, oh,
When you’re waiting for the kiss of life
Oh, oh, oh, oh,
Every lover takes another bite

Deception can be pleasing to the eye
A hungry heart will swallow any lie
When you’re waiting for the kiss of life
Every lover takes another bite
This piece of music allows me to show both my belt voice and my head voice in a way that I can switch mid way through the phrase and it sounds really nice.

The final piece that I am in is the finale with everyone joining in. We are singing ‘Rebel’ by Alyssa Bonagura. It’s a beautiful song to sum up how people feel throughout their lives and figuring out whether or not they are good or evil. People’s actions don’t always define who they are.

http://www.alyssabonagura.com/

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1PF58eS0uVo

Everybody pulling me in all kinda directions
Trying to tell me what and say
How to think and feel
Truth is that every soul’s continually searching
We think we know but we got no idea

I’m a saint I’m a sinner I’m the sky I’m the dirt
I’m a human tryna figure out this place we call Earth
I’m a leader I’m a rebel with an unknown plan
I’m a believer tryna figure out who I am

Then I see you and I got nothing to hide
You’re the only who knows what’s hurting inside
Coz you love me more than any perfect disguise
You never judge me and you never ask why

I’m a saint I’m a sinner I’m the sky I’m the dirt
I’m a human tryna figure out this place we call Earth
I’m a leader I’m a rebel with an unknown plan
I’m a believer tryna figure out who I am

Who I am
I’m a human
Baby we’re all human

I’m a saint I’m a sinner I’m the sky I’m the dirt
I’m a human tryna figure out this place we call Earth
I’m a leader I’m a rebel with an unknown plan
I’m a believer tryna figure out who I am

I’m a saint I’m a sinner I’m the sky I’m the dirt
I’m a human tryna figure out this place we call Earth
I’m a leader I’m a rebel with an unknown plan
I’m a believer tryna figure out who I am

I’m a believer tryna figure out who I am

Who I am
I’m a human
Baby we’re all human

As for my character at the end of the production I am finally finding myself and I have become a saint that has come out of the darkness. I was never a sinner, but I was affected by those who called themselves sinners. I think that I become a Christian at the end of the show as I am starting to encourage others and change their lives; Sophia’s character for example shows this.

Extra research:

Cabaret. 

*What is a Cabaret? 

https://www.timeout.com/london/cabaret/a-beginners-guide-to-cabaret

  • Time out Article about cabaret performances

http://study.com/academy/lesson/cabaret-definition-style-themes-music.html

  • This article says that the definition of a cabaret is ‘the style of cabaret that includes a collection of short acts that include music, pieces from theatre, songs and dances.
  • This article is really intrieging and I feel that all the information that I have received from this I will be able to understand a lot more that I originally thought I would.
  • The style emerged from France in the 19th century. Although the word ‘Cabaret’ means performance. It originally meant ‘restaurant with alcohol alongside a meal’.
  • The first cabaret to open in France was called ‘La Chat Noir’

http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=Cabaret

  • The urban dictionary states that it is entertainment in a club/bar of a sleazy kind.

*What is the difference between a variety show and a cabaret?

https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/variety%20show

  • Merriam Webster believes that a variety show is ‘a theatrical entertainment of successive separate performances’.
  • If Merriam Webster here is in fact correct then the difference between a cabaret and variety show is in fact a cabaret has structure compared to the variety show. They both share the same type of acts within the piece however the way they are presented is a little different. For cabarets you are allowed alcoholic drinks and food alongside the performances.
  • Variety show has a wider range of entertainment in comparison to a variety show. Whereas, for a cabaret the performers are dressed up in a way that will benefit the audience. For the variety show side of performance I personally think that it where you would perform for your own personal achievements whereas on the other hand the cabaret you are performing for the audience’s sake.

http://thecabaretclub.co.uk/performers/

*Important information about cabaret clubs that will help me alongside my character research that could impact my decisions. 

http://stageagent.com/shows/musical/323/cabaret

  • Above is a synopsis of the musical ‘Cabaret’ there are a whole group of different performers and the way they strut around the place or have their own personal mannerisms is something I will have to study to create my own character.

Character research

Who am I?

Originally I thought I would have two characters and change between them throughout the show. My two names that I decided upon at the beginning of the process was ‘Fern’ and ’Scarlet’. Fern would be the girl that would know a lot about the darkness of the world and feel insecure about herself and therefore withdraw from people around her and is an introvert. For example, I researched a little about Ilse from the musical ’Spring Awakening’. She had been abused and people didn’t seem to like her and her presence was only noticed by ‘Mortiz’ which gave me the incline that she was a ghost figure. So I decided that Fern would be the ‘dead girl walking’ who would help people out throughout their lives and give out valuable advice for each of people she met.

As for Scarlet; I wanted her to be the opposite to Fern. I wanted her to be confident and the performer in the club. She is like the devilish and seductive character and loves to be the centre of attention. The first character that came to mind when I was thinking about this type of person I thought of ‘Jessica Rabbit’ which is a fictional character in a Disney film.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ty4xkdBbnOk

  • I thought this was really interesting. I liked watching and hearing about the people involved with the process of the film and how they came up with such an original and complex idea.
  • Underneath is a song that Jessica Rabbit is known for and I feel that it sums up my character really well.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JaeAlG-G968

The lyrics for the song ‘why don’t you do right?’ Are as follows:

“Why Don’t You Do Right (Get Me Some Money Too)”

You had plenty money, 1922

You let other women make a fool of you

Why don’t you do right, like some other men do

Get out of here and get me some money too

You’re sittin’ down and wonderin’ what it’s all about

You ain’t got no money, they will put you out

Why don’t you do right, like some other men do?

Get out of here and get me some money too

If you had prepared twenty years ago

You wouldn’t be a-wanderin’ now from door to door

Why don’t you do right, like some other men do?

Get out of here and get me some money too

I fell for your jivin’ and I took you in

Now all you got to offer me’s a drink of gin

Why don’t you do right, like some other men do

Get out of here and get me some money too

Why don’t you do right, like some other men do

Like some other men do

http://www.azlyrics.com/lyrics/peggylee/whydontyoudorightgetmesomemoneytoo.html

http://disney.wikia.com/wiki/Jessica_Rabbit

What’s my name?

Knowing there is no need to have two separate characters within the show I decided that I would stick with the name Fern and yet share personalities both from Jessica Rabbit and Isle. I am balancing out the personalities so I have a believable character and I will be able to develop her.

What am I doing  in the club?

I have been struggling to think of a reason why my character would be in the club since the beginning of the rehearsal and research process. However, I have finally come up with the idea that the reason why I will be at the club is quite obvious; I am one of the performers. I am singing ‘Angels and Demons’ which is the first act that I am singing; the second act that I am included with is ‘Bring on the men’ which is another act for the men in the cabaret club. Thirdly I am performing the first half of the ‘hellfire’ dance to the audience who have paid to watch and the audience in the club with me. Poisoned apple isn’t an act however it is a key song which provides the insight to my characters personality and helps move along the storyline, especially for Sophia at this particular time. Lastly we are all performing ’Rebel’ Alyssa Bonagura which is the finale for the show. Overall, this is the reason for my being in the club. I am mostly a performer but when I am my character I am really important to the plot. Without my song that warns Sophia she may get out of control and their would be drama in the club and it could raise a lot of other emotions from the other people that are around us in the club.

Further research: –

Cabaret.

*What is a Cabaret?
https://www.timeout.com/london/cabaret/a-beginners-guide-to-cabaret
– Time out Article about cabaret performances
http://study.com/academy/lesson/cabaret-definition-style-themes-music.html
– This article says that the definition of a cabaret is ‘the style of cabaret that includes a collection of short acts that include music, pieces from theatre, songs and dances.
– This article is really intrieging and I feel that all the information that I have received from this I will be able to understand a lot more that I originally thought I would.
– The style emerged from France in the 19th century. Although the word ‘Cabaret’ means performance. It originally meant ‘restaurant with alcohol alongside a meal’.
– The first cabaret to open in France was called ‘La Chat Noir’
http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=Cabaret
– The urban dictionary states that it is entertainment in a club/bar of a sleazy kind.
*What is the difference between a variety show and a cabaret?
https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/variety%20show
– Merriam Webster believes that a variety show is ‘a theatrical entertainment of successive separate performances’.
– If Merriam Webster here is in fact correct then the difference between a cabaret and variety show is in fact a cabaret has structure compared to the variety show. They both share the same type of acts within the piece however the way they are presented is a little different. For cabarets you are allowed alcoholic drinks and food alongside the performances.
– Variety show has a wider range of entertainment in comparison to a variety show. Whereas, for a cabaret the performers are dressed up in a way that will benefit the audience. For the variety show side of performance I personally think that it where you would perform for your own personal achievements whereas on the other hand the cabaret you are performing for the audience’s sake.
http://thecabaretclub.co.uk/performers/
*Important information about cabaret clubs that will help me alongside my character research that could impact my decisions.
http://stageagent.com/shows/musical/323/cabaret
– Above is a synopsis of the musical ‘Cabaret’ there are a whole group of different performers and the way they strut around the place or have their own personal mannerisms is something I will have to study to create my own character.

Character research

Who am I?
Originally I thought I would have two characters and change between them throughout the show. My two names that I decided upon at the beginning of the process was ‘Fern’ and ’Scarlet’. Fern would be the girl that would know a lot about the darkness of the world and feel insecure about herself and therefore withdraw from people around her and is an introvert. For example, I researched a little about Ilse from the musical ’Spring Awakening’. She had been abused and people didn’t seem to like her and her presence was only noticed by ‘Mortiz’ which gave me the incline that she was a ghost figure. So I decided that Fern would be the ‘dead girl walking’ who would help people out throughout their lives and give out valuable advice for each of people she met.
As for Scarlet; I wanted her to be the opposite to Fern. I wanted her to be confident and the performer in the club. She is like the devilish and seductive character and loves to be the centre of attention. The first character that came to mind when I was thinking about this type of person I thought of ‘Jessica Rabbit’ which is a fictional character in a Disney film.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ty4xkdBbnOk
– I thought this was really interesting. I liked watching and hearing about the people involved with the process of the film and how they came up with such an original and complex idea.
– Underneath is a song that Jessica Rabbit is known for and I feel that it sums up my character really well.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JaeAlG-G968
The lyrics for the song ‘why don’t you do right?’ Are as follows:
“Why Don’t You Do Right (Get Me Some Money Too)”

You had plenty money, 1922
You let other women make a fool of you
Why don’t you do right, like some other men do
Get out of here and get me some money too

You’re sittin’ down and wonderin’ what it’s all about
You ain’t got no money, they will put you out
Why don’t you do right, like some other men do?
Get out of here and get me some money too

If you had prepared twenty years ago
You wouldn’t be a-wanderin’ now from door to door
Why don’t you do right, like some other men do?
Get out of here and get me some money too

I fell for your jivin’ and I took you in
Now all you got to offer me’s a drink of gin
Why don’t you do right, like some other men do
Get out of here and get me some money too

Why don’t you do right, like some other men do
Like some other men do

http://www.azlyrics.com/lyrics/peggylee/whydontyoudorightgetmesomemoneytoo.html
http://disney.wikia.com/wiki/Jessica_Rabbit
What’s my name?
Knowing there is no need to have two separate characters within the show I decided that I would stick with the name Fern and yet share personalities both from Jessica Rabbit and Isle. I am balancing out the personalities so I have a believable character and I will be able to develop her.
What am I doing  in the club?
I have been struggling to think of a reason why my character would be in the club since the beginning of the rehearsal and research process. However, I have finally come up with the idea that the reason why I will be at the club is quite obvious; I am one of the performers. I am singing ‘Angels and Demons’ which is the first act that I am singing; the second act that I am included with is ‘Bring on the men’ which is another act for the men in the cabaret club. Thirdly I am performing the first half of the ‘hellfire’ dance to the audience who have paid to watch and the audience in the club with me. Poisoned apple isn’t an act however it is a key song which provides the insight to my characters personality and helps move along the storyline, especially for Sophia at this particular time. Lastly we are all performing ’Rebel’ Alyssa Bonagura which is the finale for the show. Overall, this is the reason for my being in the club. I am mostly a performer but when I am my character I am really important to the plot. Without my song that warns Sophia she may get out of control and their would be drama in the club and it could raise a lot of other emotions from the other people that are around us in the club.

2 thoughts on “U12 Task 2 Research”

  1. Jess, make sure you don’t get behind on this Task.
    Although the brief indicates that you should start from the point at which content and casting have been decided, other than what is included in section 4 of your proposal, I cannot find the evidence of the research you carried out for your proposal and your ideas. I would recommend that you therefore include that on this page (Saints and Sinners generic research, ideas research for you to select 3 from, specific 3 ideas research, cabaret style of theatre research).
    Then you can pick up Task 2 from the brief. Don’t forget to add the details to a bibliography too.

    Like

  2. evidence for research (2.1, 2.2) and problem solving (3.2) – some duplication of evidence towards the end of this page

    Like

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