What will you discover? 2015-2016 Season Play Guide JUNIE B. IN JINGLE BELLS BATMAN SMELLS On stage: February 24 – March 4 10:00am and 11:45am Our Mission to Schools, Teachers and Students The mission of Lexington Children’s Theatre’s Education Department is to provide students of all ages with the means to actively explore the beauty, diversity, complexity and challenges of the world around them through the dramatic process. We strive for young people to develop their own creative voice, their imagination and their understanding of drama and its role in society. Program Review Information Not only does our programming align with KCC Standards, but this Play Guide as a whole is aligned with the KY Arts and Humanities Program Review under the following demonstrators: Demonstrator 2: a,c,d Demonstrator 3: a,b,d Demonstrator 4: d 418 West Short Street Lexington, KY 40507 859.254.4546 FAX.254.9512 Dear Educator, Lexington Children’s Theatre is proud to be producing our 77th season of plays for young people and their families. As an organization that values the arts and education, we have created this Play Guide for teachers to utilize in conjunction with seeing a play at LCT. Our Play Guides are designed to be a valuable tool in two ways: helping you prepare your students for the enriching performance given by LCT’s performers, as well as serving as an educational tool for extending the production experience back into your classroom. We designed each activity to assist in achieving the Kentucky Core Content (KCC) and to integrate the arts with your core curricular subjects. Teachers are important voices at LCT. We rely heavily on your input. If you have comments or suggestions about our Play Guides, show selections or any of our programming, your thoughts are greatly appreciated. Please respond to the Teacher Response form following a performance. We are thrilled that you rely on LCT to provide your students a quality theatrical experience, and we hope this resource aids you in extending our production into your classroom. LCT’s Education Department Play Synopsis The Fa family Ancestors take us back to ancient China on Mulan’s big day to meet the village Matchmaker. But a nervous Mulan wrecks her betrothal ceremony, dishonoring the family and making herself feel terrible. Fa Zhou is unexpectedly called to the army by Chi Fu, the Emperor’s councilor, having no son to join for him. Against her aging father’s command, Mulan steals Fa Zhou’s helmet and sword, dresses as a boy, and runs away from home to go in her father’s place. The Ancestors have no choice but to send the misfit dragon Mushu to stop Mulan, who will be killed if she is discovered. As Shan-Yu and the Huns prepare to attack China, Mushu helps Mulan act like a soldier. Mulan reinvents herself as “Ping” and joins the men, Yao, Ling, and Qian-Po, to endure Captain Shang’s grueling training. The Chinese Soldiers march to defend a mountain village from Shan-Yu, but arrive too late. While the soldiers greive, the Huns attack. Mulan triggers an avalanche, which covers the Huns and saves the Soldiers from destruction. Shang honors Ping, only to discover Mulan beneath the helmet. Mulan is disgraced, but allowed to live. Suddenly, Shan-Yu and the Huns emerge from the avalanche and race toward the Imperial City. Mulan tries to warn Shang. At the Emperor’s Palace, the Chinese people celebrate the defeat of the Huns. While Shang ignores Mulan, Shan-Yu surprises and kidnaps the Emperor. Mulan convinces Shang and the Army to dress as women to distract Shan-Yu while Mushu signals the army. The Guys save the Emperor, Mulan defeats Shan-Yu, and the Huns retreat. The Emperor honors Mulan’s bravery, to everyone’s surprise and delight. Back at home, Fa Zhou welcomes his beloved, and honorable, daughter. The Ancestors invite Mushu into the Fa family Temple as a full-fledged Guardian. Your Role in the Play You may wish to have a discussion with your class about your upcoming LCT experience and their role as audience members. Remind your students that theatre can only exist with an audience. Your students’ energy and response directly affects the actors onstage. The quality of the performance depends as much on the audience as it does on each of the theatre professionals behind the scenes and onstage. Young audiences should know that watching live theatre is not like watching more familiar forms of entertainment; they cannot pause or rewind us like a DVD, there are no commercials for bathroom breaks, nor can they turn up the volume to hear us if someone else is talking. Your students are encouraged to listen and watch the play intently, so that they may laugh and cheer for their favorite characters when it is appropriate. At the end of the play, applause is an opportunity for your students to thank the actors, while the actors are thanking you for the role they played as an audience. Before the Play STORY SOCIETY? ANECDOTE ASSOCIATION? Oral storytelling remains a rich tradition in China; professional storytellers became common figures in bazaars and marketplaces. Work together with your class to tell a story together! Have students sit in a circle and begin telling a story together one at a time. Each student should get to say two or three sentences worth of action before moving on to the next student. Challenge students to listen to each other and create an understandable story with a clear beginning, middle, and end and consistent characters. KCC: WR-EP-1.1.2; WR-EP-2.3.2 EXPLORING STATUS You will need: a deck of cards, and an open space In Mulan, Jr, characters are expected to follow traditional family roles to ensure honor for their family. Explore status with this simple exercise! Have each student draw a card from a deck of playing cards (you can also make your own from index cards or post-it notes). Without looking at their card, each student places it on their forehead so the number faces out. Establish that 2 is the lowest status card and ace is the highest. Have the class walk around the room and non-verbally interact with each other based on the cards they see on their classmates’ heads. If they think they have a higher card than someone else, this might change how they interact with that person. After a few minutes of this, have the class attempt to line up (without speaking) in numerical order. Then reveal the cards and see how accurate their line is. Afterwards, reflect with your class: What kind of clues did you get from others to help you figure out your card? How did it feel to be treated that way based on your card? KCC: PL-06-1.1.1 ODE TO MULAN The poem, Ode to Mulan (http://www.yellowbridge.com/onlinelit/mulan.php) is one of the original sources for the legend of Fa Mulan. After reading this poem to your students, discuss the events of the poem and make a list of the important plot points. In groups of 3-5, have students create frozen pictures of one of the important plot points in the poem. KCC: RD-EP-2.0.2; RD-EP-2.0.5 Troublesome Tangrams COPY PAGE Tangrams originated in Imperial China sometime between the 7th and 10th centuries. These puzzles became a popular past time. Following along the bold lines, cut along the black lines to create the shapes or “tans” that are used to create larger, more intricate puzzles. When positioning the shapes to make new pictures, make sure the pieces are touching, but never overlapping. Using the patterns to the right, create an image of a Warrior, like Mulan, and a Dragon, like Mushu. Then, create a tangram image of your own! KCC: AH-EP-4.4.2; AH-06-2.4.1 Welcome to Ancient China! “You’ll bring Honor to us all” Traditional Chinese symbol for “honor” Why so much talk about honor? Honor is great respect. Respect for your elders, respect for your family, and respect for tradition. This mentality has a lot to do with Confucianism. Confucianism is a philosophical system focusing on ethical and virtuous leading and living. By praying to your ancestors you acknowledge and honor who they were and the things they did when they were alive. People in Mulan’s time would pray to their ancestors in hope that they would pass their prayers on to the heavens. Everyone had a place in society and in their family. It was honorable to fulfill the duties of the place you were born into. Parents, people of Authority, and men were deemed higher in lines of honor than women. What risks does Mulan take based on the world she is living in? Confused about Confucius? Confucius was a philosopher and teacher born 551 BC . His teaching encouraged an ethical approach to leading and living one’s life. He stressed the importance of respect for family and elders and encouraged self discipline and love for one another with a focus on character and virtue. Although the story of Mulan takes place 200 years after the death of Confucius, people living in the latter period of the Han Dynasty followed his teachings, known as Confucianism. “Wherever you go, go with all your heart” Sound like one of our characters? “You need both together” Confucius Many people are familiar with the yin and yang symbol. This symbol is fundamental in chinese philosophy dating back to the third century. This icon symbolizes balance. Yin and Yang show how opposites attract and compliment one another. As you will see in our story the characters must find balance in their personalities and tactics in achieving their goals. Yin represents darkness, femininity, and negativity. Yang represents brightness, masculinity, and positivity. These forces interact and are not entirely one or the other, like day becomes night and night becomes day. The symbol represents a fluidity of ideas, and how ideas change and adapt to the needs of a situation. As you watch the play, look for how the characters in Mulan learn to use the idea of Yin and Yang. What starts out as their dominant trait and what causes the shift? Yin and Yang symbol Extend the Experience FAN! DRAGON! SWORD! Instead of “rock, paper, scissors,” this is “fan, dragon, sword.” Have the class come up with a full-body action that can be made with the words fan, dragon, and sword. Once the actions are agreed upon, have students find a partner to face-off with. Remind them that: Sword beats Dragon Fan beats Sword Dragon beats Fan This activity is done tournament style. To start dueling their partner, the groups say “Fan, Dragon, Sword, Fire!” Once a pair has faced off, the loser then begins to follow the winner around while chanting their name. If a winner from the first bracket loses in a later bracket, they (and their entourage) join the entourage of the winner. This continues until there are two finalists and the rest of the class is chanting one of their names. KCC: AH-04-1.3.2, AH-04-1.3.3 MULAN IMAGES: FROM THE MOVIE OR THE PLAY? There are many differences between Mulan Jr. the play and the Disney movie. Divide students into groups of 4-6 and recreate a moments from the play and the movie. Each group will come up with two frozen images: one image from a moment in the play, and one image from a moment in the movie. The goal is for the audience to understand what moment in the movie and play the performers are recreating and to discuss why these moments might have been changed to accommodate a stage performance. If students haven’t seen the movie, here are some ideas of differences to get started with: MOVIE: The Chinese Army discovers Mulan is a woman from a doctor who heals her wounds. PLAY: Mulan’s hair tumbles out of her helmet. MOVIE: Shang hands Mulan a sword. PLAY: Shang hands Mulan a broken fan. MOVIE: Mulan starts the avalanche by firing a rocket. PLAY: Mulan starts the avalanche by yelling loudly. Students should feel free to use whatever moments THEY remember that are different as well. KCC: AH-04-1.3.2, AH-04-3.3.1 FORCES OF NATURE In this play, the director chose to use the actors to show the elements of nature. Divide students into groups of five and give them each a different natural disaster to act out. Some options for natural disasters include: earthquake, tsunami, hurricane, tornado, flash flood, blizzard, drought, etc. First, have students create a frozen image of their disaster; then they will activate their frozen image only using their bodies for up to 30 seconds. Finally, have students add sound to their activated image. After each group presents all three forms of the natural disaster, have the class guess what the disaster is and how they knew what it was! KCC: AH-EP-3.3.1, AH-04-4.3.2 Your Chinese Zodiac Animal COPY PAGE This chart contains the different zodiac animals that are within the Chinese New Year. Identify which animal you are based on the year you were born, then draw that animal in the empty box doing something that you like to do. For instance, if you were born the year of the rooster, and you like to play soccer, you may draw a rooster scoring a goal! Feel free to add as many personal details as you would like; does this animal wear the same clothes you wear? Are other animals needed to perform this activity? KCC: SS-06-2.1.1, SS-07-2.1.1, AH-04-3.4.1 Suggested Reading Fa Mulan: The Story of a Woman Warrior by Robert D. San Souci and Jean & Mou-Sein Tseng Fa Mulan studies the art of war, and becomes skilled with the sword and fights in battle. Fearing the discovery of her true gender, Mulan is anxious about the consequences for her family. Lon Po Po: A Red-Riding Hood Story from China by Ed Young Three little girls spare no mercy to Lon Po Po, the granny wolf, in this version of Little Red Riding Hood where they tempt her up a tree and over a limb, to her death. The Talking Eggs by Robert D. San Souci (Author), Jerry Pinkney (Illustrator) In this adaptation of a Creole folktale, kind, young Blanche befriends a hideous old “aunty” on a path near her home and is rewarded with magic eggs. Beautiful Warrior: The Legend of the Nun’s Kung Fu by Emily Arnold Mccully The story of two legendary female kung fu masters who may have lived in the last part of the 17th century. Yeh-Shen: A Cinderella Story from China by Ai-Ling Louie This Chinese Cinderella evokes the mythic past in ancient times. LCT Teaches in your School! Let LCT’s professional artists bring their extensive experience into your classroom. An LCT residency program is designed to offer young people the opportunity to learn in a dynamic, fun and challenging way. LCT tailors a residency to the needs of your students, curriculum and budget. We offer residencies that range from a single visit to a month-long intensive program. • Performance Workshops - Two-week intensive unit culminating in a performance. LCT provides all scripts, costumes, props and scenery. • Empathy in Action - This residency is a week-long residency with a focus on anti-bullying and tolerance. • Playwriting - Students will work to develop their creative writing skills through an interactive writing program. • Science and Art - Students can explore a variety of scientific concepts using drama. Experience the wonders of nature, animals, bugs, weather, plants, recycling, or the rainforest through the use of roleplay, movement and pantomime. Call 254-4546 x233 or x226 TODAY!