Things I Know to be True: development of pace and rhythm

Things I Know to be True: development of pace and rhythm

Exploring Pacing and Rhythm in ‘Things I Know to be True’

Dramatic Techniques and Storyline Structure

  • “Things I Know to be True” uses a non-linear storyline and a variety of dramatic techniques which greatly affects the pace and rhythm of the play.
  • The performance of multiple roles by single actors can create sudden changes in pace and rhythm, often reflecting changes in the character’s attitude or situation.

Pace Fluctuation Reflecting Emotional Journey

  • The pace of the play fluctuates throughout to display the dynamic and shifting nature of the family relationships. This variation in pace is used to reflect the peaks and troughs of their emotional journey.
  • Pause is utilised effectively to give emphasis to certain dialogue or create moments of tension. Understanding where and why these pauses are used is crucial to performing the play.

Variety in Rhythm Through Scenes and Sequences

  • Variety in rhythm is notable when comparing confrontational scenes, which are often rapid and intense, with scenes of reflection or peace, which are slower and more subdued.
  • Use of physical theatre devices like tableaux and slow motion sequences break the rhythm and introduce visually captivating moments, whilst also slowing the pace.
  • The shift between reality and memory sequences affects the pace and rhythm, where transitions take the form of dream sequences, slowing down the rhythm and creating a smooth and soft pace.

Character Interaction and Dialogue Pace

  • Dialogue pace differs between characters and can highlight relationships. Quicker exchanges signal familiarity or conflict, while slower ones might indicate unease or distance.
  • The use of monologues in the play often slows the pace, allowing for characters’ emotions and thoughts to be fully expressed and understood.

Impact of Plot Development and Transitions

  • The plot development greatly influences the rhythm and pace of the play - as secrets are unveiled and conflicts arise, the pace quickens. In contrast, moments of resolution or revelation tend to slow the pace.
  • The choreographed movements and transitions also underscore pace and rhythm. Accurate execution enhances the flow of the narrative and emotional intensity.

Role of Stagecraft

  • Stagecraft plays an integral role in controlling the pace and rhythm. Use of lighting, sound and set transitions can either speed up or slow down the sequence of scenes.