NATIONAL ARTS COUNCIL
Public Arts Programme
Programme ID: PAP054064
Two in One: Show + Workshop - ANIMAL FARM for Lower Secondary School Students
- SYNOPSIS -
‘All animals are equal. But some animals are more equal than others.’
Animal Farm, written by George Orwell, is first and foremost a fairy story, a fable with a moral at the end. It features animals that can talk and act like humans, and even interact with other humans. It portrays the lives of animals who escape from man’s rule only to be ruled eventually by their own kind.
The story begins when Old Major gives a rousing speech about the their right to freedom. Soon after, through sheer luck, the animals take over Manor Farm and begin a new life, free from the power of Man. The pigs, who are the smarter animals, lead the way when they change the name of the farm to Animal Farm – a small step in the Rebellion. Next, to show that all the animals are equal, seven commandments are created and followed. But as time goes by, the pigs become greedy and hungry for power to rule the farm. Slowly, they begin to take advantage of the others through lies, threats, betrayals and bullying. The seven commandments are also modified to suit the new leaders and in the end, old dreams and plans are forgotten.
Animal Farm will be a 30-minute performance in our very own ACT 3 Theatre which will be transformed into the world of a farm. Using just 3 actors, we will tell the story through a combination of music, soundscapes, song, movement and storytelling. With simple costumes and props, our actors will stay true to the story with its themes of bullying, deceit, and misuse of power and knowledge.
After the performance, the students will participate in a 60-minute Drama workshop which will provide opportunities for them to identify, understand and talk about the themes from the story. They will also learn to work in smaller groups to explore the intentions, feelings, motivations and thoughts of the different characters through the use of Drama tools and strategies.
By watching the show and then participating in the workshop right after, the students will be able to contextualise the story and be better prepared to discuss, identify and explore the many themes, problems and solutions. During the workshop, our Drama Teachers will engage the students and offer them moments to participate, learn and share. This journey from watching to discussing to participating will also help them to internalise their thoughts and feelings on the specific themes.
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