This thesis explores theatrical intimacy choreography and coordination during current significant social shifts. Covid restrictions, keen awareness of "correctness", and a desire to "do better" have allowed protective practices like theatrical intimacy to become not only generally accepted but expected in rehearsal spaces. Using techniques such as consent-based spaces, actor disclosures, and common language acquired through training with Chelsea Pace and Laura Rikard, the founders of Theatrical Intimacy Education (TIE), I explore choreographing close relationship moments through high school productions of Jane Eyre and Footloose presented in 2021-22 at Lake Highland Preparatory in Orlando and with older BFA/MFA student actors in Indecent, Welcome to the Moon, and First Date at the University of Central Florida (UCF). Within these different spaces, questions arose that guided my investigations and process. When is the practice an appropriate tool for establishing personal boundaries and preferences? Moving across the age groups, how does or how should the process change? How can prescribed techniques be modified to assist student actors in storytelling when the technique appears to fall short? How can the practice of theatrical intimacy be adapted to the social distancing and masking requirements caused by Covid? And finally, how does one maneuver within the boundaries established by those creating new standards and popular practices such as "Theatrical Intimacy"? During my process, I rely on training sessions with TIE and on Chelsea Pace's Staging Sex. To assist in storytelling and establish actor process, I adapt methods from Actioning and How to Do It by Nick Moseley. As I reflect upon the spaces we create and the work we do in them, I investigate various publications that include the thoughts of Elise Ahenkorah, Holly Derr, Beth Strano, Keith Morant, Michael Roth, and Nina Power. In searching how we might live in those spaces peaceably and productively, I explore adrienne maree brown's We Will Not Cancel Us, And Other Dreams of Transformative Justice."
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Master of Arts (M.A.)
College of Arts and Humanities
School of Performing Arts
Length of Campus-only Access
Masters Thesis (Open Access)
Smith-Cortelyou, Elizabeth, "Theatrical Intimacy: Navigating a New Normal" (2023). Electronic Theses and Dissertations, 2020-. 1666.