At the conclusion of this course, the student should be able to:
1. Independently analyze a musical score and a libretto (when applicable) from
a character's point of view and conduct research in preparation for a role
within a work of opera or related form.
2. Locate the work within its historical and cultural context and the impact of that
context on the character being portrayed.
3. Create and sustain the physical, vocal, and behavioral components of a
character within the style of the work.
4. Develop the singing voice appropriate to the requirements of the role, applying
techniques of tonal quality, stylistic interpretation, diction, and phrasing, while
expanding agility and range.
5. Revise, experiment with, and enhance acting and vocal choices as instructed
by the Director and Vocal Director during the rehearsal process.
6. Prioritize and fulfill performance responsibilities, while striving to maintain other
academic, employment, and personal responsibilities.
7. Work cooperatively and effectively as an ensemble member within a high-
stress environment to produce a collaborative work of art.
8. Contribute to one or more production support areas, recognizing each
area's relationship to the performer's work and the production as a whole.
9. Adhere to proper theatre protocol and apply correct theatre terminology
during the production process.
10. Incorporate the musical elements of singing, movement, and dancing (when
applicable) with the character's dramatic throughline so that the portrayal is
cohesive and seamless.
11. Adapt to the stimulation and input of live audiences while maintaining
focus and concentration.
12. Reproduce a successful characterization in multiple performances
presented over a period of time.
Depending on the nature and production style of the particular opera or related work
to be performed, the following topics will be studied:
I. Historical Context of the Score, Libretto, Plot and Character
II. Theatre Professionalism, Communication, and Procedures
A. Theatre etiquette and protocol
B. Basic theatre terminology
C. Location of facilities and resources
D. Theatrical hierarchy and communication
E. Production framework
2. Types of rehearsals
F. Managing time, health, and personal responsibilities
G. General safety and emergency procedures
H. Interacting with others as a cast member
1. Respectful interpersonal communications
b. Institutional and legal responsibilities
2. Support resources and grievance procedures
3. Appropriate behavior at production-related events
4. Use of social media as a cast member
5. Responsibilities as a show's representative
III. Staging and Blocking
A. Blocking procedures
B. Sight lines and upstaging
C. Rehearsal costumes and props
D. Working with props
E. Working with the floorplan
IV. Reading and Analyzing a Score (and Libretto, when applicable)
1. Identifying rhythm and pitch
2. Form and structure of musical elements
c. Ensemble numbers (of different sizes)
3. Relationship of word to music
B. Character Demands
1. Vocalism and diction
a. Working with other languages (when applicable)
b. Working with accents/dialects (when applicable)
2. Character details
a. Given circumstances
b. Physical characteristics from the score/libretto
c. Vocal characteristics from the score/libretto
d. Behavior traits from the score/libretto
e. Objectives and tactics
V. Vocal Techniques - Singing
A. Vocal requirements of the role
B. Tonal quality appropriate to style
C. Breathing and phrasing
D. Vocal agility and range
E. Projection and articulation
1. Working without a microphone
2. Working with a microphone
1. Singing with other vocalists
2. Singing a solo role with an ensemble
3. Singing as part of an ensemble
VI. Physical Techniques
B. Movement and timing
C. Stylization (period movement, etc.)
D. Supporting and maintaining the singing voice in motion
E. Movement restrictions (if not using a microphone)
F. Telling the story
VII. Vocal Techniques - Speaking Dialogue (when applicable)
D. Stylization (verse, rhyme, etc.)
E. Pronunciation and dialect/accent
VIII. Incorporation of Production Elements Specific to Opera/Related Forms
A. Transition from working with a rehearsal pianist to working with
B. Following a conductor
C. Transition from working in a rehearsal hall to working in the actual
1. Adjustment to the acoustic experience
2. Movement adaptations
IX. Incorporation of Other Production Elements
B. Dialogue (when applicable)
C. Movement to music (non-dance)
D. Working with multiple directors (vocal, choreographer,
E. Sustaining dramatic throughline
X. Special Skills and Techniques
A. Stage combat, circus skills, etc.
B. Specialized acting techniques
C. Specialized rehearsal techniques
D. Specialized staging techniques
XI. Working with Technical/Design Elements and Staff
A. Orchestra/Band and Conductor
H. Stage management
I. Technical rehearsal procedures
J. Dress rehearsal procedures
XII. Performance Techniques
A. Maintaining consistency and focus
B. Handling nerves and working calmly under stress
C. Handling audience responses
D. Handling the unexpected
E. Personal and group warm-ups
XIII. Basic Makeup Application
A. Purchasing a kit (skin tone, type, etc.)
B. Related supplies
C. Skin preparation and makeup removal techniques
D. Self-application versus working with a makeup artist
XIV. Production Support Techniques - May include one or more of the following:
A. Basic scenic, properties, and costume construction techniques
B. Publicity distribution and/or display techniques
D. Special events and/or public relations
XV. Performance Procedures and Protocol
A. Arrival and departure procedures
1. Stage door
2. Signing in and signing out
3. Storing personal objects
B. Greenroom guidelines
1. Food and drink when in costume
2. Using monitors
3. Use of cell phones and other devices
C. Backstage behavior
2. Staying out of view
3. Quick changes
4. Prop tables
5. Keeping wings clear
6. Preparing for entrances
D. Dressing Room
1. Respecting privacy
2. Working with dressers
This is a variable unit course, with unit value based on the number of hours
of instruction the student will receive, due to the demands of their assigned
role and scope of the production.
The number of units is assigned by the instructor based on the following criteria
and communicated to the student at the point of enrollment following casting:
I. Demands of the role
A. Required number of rehearsal hours, based on role
B. Additional workload, based on complexity of the role
II. Scope of the production
A. Required number of technical rehearsals and dress rehearsals
required of the student, based on production elements (e.g. a one-act
opera might have1-2 technical rehearsals and 1 dress rehearsal, whereas
a mainstage production will have 5-6 technical rehearsals and 3-4 dress
B. Required number of performances (e.g. a one-act opera might have
2-4 performances, whereas a mainstage production will have 9-14
All students successfully completing the course will be able to attain the outcomes
and objectives, and all topics are covered for all students, regardless of assigned
number of units.
2 units: 105 hours of rehearsal, production hours, and performance
3 units: 157.5 hours of rehearsal, production hours, and performance
4 units: 210 hours of rehearsal, production hours, and performance
5 units: 262.5 hours of rehearsal, production hours, and performance
This is a variable unit course. All applicable assignments will be completed by
each student, regardless of the number of units they will receive upon
1. Prepare rehearsal material in a timely manner as required by the
a. Independently complete score analysis, script analysis (when
applicable) and character analysis; complete research work,
revising as needed during the rehearsal process.
b. Record, review, and retain blocking.
c. Accurately memorize music, lyrics, lines and cues by the
d. Memorize and safely review special skills required by the
production: dialects/accents, stage combat, circus skills,
dance, movement, puppetry, mask, mime, etc.
2. Attend all scheduled rehearsals for which the actor is called.
Communicate potential schedule conflicts prior to final casting.
Conflicts communicated after casting may be turned down by the
director or may result in removal from the production.
3. Adhere to the standards of professionalism:
a. Arrive promptly and prepared for all rehearsals,
costume/makeup calls, and performances.
b. Maintain an amiable, respectful, and supportive attitude when
interacting with other members of the production company -
fellow actors, director, stage manager, technicians, and designers.
c. Respectfully follow the director's and vocal director's instructions
in the preparation of the role and maintain that direction in
d. Perform assigned role in a conscientious and dedicated manner.
e. Do not alter physical appearance in any manner without
f. Strive to maintain good personal health and safety practices
throughout the rehearsal and performance process.
g. Follow the terms of the Actor's Contract and course syllabus for
h. Participate in all aspects of the rehearsal and performance process,
4. Respond dependably to time commitments outside of rehearsals:
a. Costume fittings
b. Photo shoots
c. Makeup conferences
5. Provide personal stage makeup supplies (makeup kit) as per the
requirements of the actor's role determined by the makeup designer.
6. Production Support Hours: Contribute to the production process by
completing 10-12 Production Support Hours in one or more of the
a. in the scene shop
b. in the costume shop
c. by participating in lighting hang and focus (requires training)
d. ushering for other Theatre Arts productions
e. assisting with rehearsal set-up/cleanup
f. helping with publicity (distributing posters and flyers, helping
with lobby display, appearing at promotion events, etc.)
While it is preferred that the majority of hours be spent on the production in
which the actor is cast, hours may be obtained by completing these tasks for
other SRJC productions in the same semester (deadline determined by the
7. Performance(s): Reproduce a successful characterization in two or more
public performances, per the performance schedule of the production.