Recycling Bin for Fun Ideas
Use Junk and Recycled Stuff for
a Fun, Unique Show
You can make your job as director easier by
enlisting the help of the kids in your cast. A great way to do
this is to have the kids design and provide their own costumes.
Not only does this lift the burden from you, it gets the children to
invest in their own character and will certainly make their
performance more fun and meaningful.
Consider this Recycled Materials Theme:
Have the kids use found items, things they might find in the recycled
bin (such as cereal boxes, coke bottles, milk cartons) and cut them
to create hats, vests, jewelry etc. Use a mop for a wig, toilet
paper rolls for horns or curls. Add old plastic toys or
colorful hardware. If you dont have enough
junk around the house take a trip to the local thrift
store and scour the shelves for colorful stuff like hats, gloves,
scarves etc. Add Halloween costume touches like wax-candy
teeth. Gulfshore Playhouse in Naples (FL) did a whole production of
ArtReachs Alice in Wonderland
using junk and found objects. Heres a picture of Alice in
her own special Wonderland of Junk:
Adding a twist to your production design gets
everyones creative juices flowing and makes the whole
experience more fun and personal for the kids.
Play in a Unique Place and Time
Spark Creativity by Giving Your
School Play a Theme
A great way to mix it up and get everyones
creativity sparked is to set the play in a time or place that is not
traditional for the story. Wesleyan Middle School in Norcross
(GA) put a Western twist on The
Legend of Sleepy Hollow by setting the play in the Gay Nineties,
Texas. Here Brom Bones is a tough lassoin cowboy and,
instead of the traditional tri-corner hat, Ichabod dons a silk topper:
Why not ask the kids what time and place they
would like to use for their special production? Brainstorm with
them about how to bring their ideas to life. What if the play
was set in outer space, France, in the underwater ocean? Then
assign the creation of each performers costume and props to
them. They may need some help along the way but once they get the
gist of the theme they will run with it! Youll be
surprised how much work they are willing to do and how it will
enhance their performance!
Just think how proud they will be to wear the
costume they created themselves! Your audience will love seeing
how the theme plays out throughout the performance.
Involve every kid in a
The Open Staging concept of ArtReachs
School Plays brings everyone together. Without steps or
obstacles, every child is on equal footing. Why hide a
wheelchair? Make it part of the acting childs costume and
decorate it with pride! And dont forget to block the
movement of the character in the wheelchair just the way you would
any other. Why cant King Grumbleknees (in Cinderella)
whirl on stage with angry aplomb? Let him twirl and circle the
stage to show his characters emotion.
A great play to include special needs
kids! Don't exclude wheelchairs, they will work just fine!
Christmas Wizard of Oz
Eagle Family Performers, a
collaborative effort between the
Special Services department and
the Apollo Chorus, Owensboro, KY
"Some of our most
disabled students are having the most fun! We are only in early
stages of rehearsal but it brings tears to my eyes to see the joy the
kids are experiencing with this play."
Andrea Salapka, Swift School,
Roswell, GA (Director, The
Emperors New Clothes)
You could even go a step further and integrate
kids in wheelchairs with those who dont really need them.
One idea would be to have all the Mermaids in Peter
Pan perform in wheelchairs. Choreograph a water ballet with
simple but fluid movements the performers do in unison.
Just imagine -- a disabled child who may not feel included in other
activities will feel right at home in your production!
Wheelchairs are good things that help us get
around. There is no reason to hide them. Put them right
there on stage without apology and watch how including everybody
makes for a joyous and meaningful performance!
Directing Tips: <
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