Oral Interpretation Chapter 1
Defined • The art of communicating a literary or oral selection in its intellectual, emotional, aesthetic entirety to an audience to arouse a meaningful response • “Interpretation is the process of studying and performing text.” (Yordon, Roles in Interpretation, 2002). • Oral interpretation is the analysis and the performance of text (literature) which requires three necessary components: text, performer and audience. • Text includes the traditional concept of literature such as prose, poetry, drama, as well as nontraditional concepts of literature such as letters, diaries, autobiography, interviews, oral history, personal narrative and conversation.
Similarities and differences exist between oral interpretation and public speaking. Oral Interpretation Public Speaking • standing before an audience to share ideas/feelings and addressing the audience directly. • the interpreter is bound by the words of the text • uses another person’s words that may or may not reflect the interpreter’s true feelings and attitudes; and suggests other characters. • standing before an audience to share ideas/feelings and addressing the audience directly. • will use original work • the speaker typically will use an extemporaneous delivery from an outline & the speaker’s attitude and feelings; and will remain her/himself.
A beginning & a end Interpretation Performance • Communication • Audience • Ethically responsible • Anxiety • Analysis of content • Analysis of structure • No characters • Communication • Audience • Ethically responsible • Anxiety • Analysis of content • Analysis of structure • Characters
Differences Interpretation Acting • a. Is suggestive – theatre is in your own mind • b. Uses all literary texts, not just one median • c. Does not have to be memorized • d. No accessories – you are the prop • e. Play multiple roles • f. Not directed – come up with your own concepts • a. Creates a world using literal effects • b. Uses one medium – drama • c. Is memorized • d. Uses accessories (costumes, lighting, make-up, a stage, sound, etc.) • e. One person plays one role • f. Is directed
Values of Interpretation • 1. Intellectual – mental stimulation • a. Expand knowledge of good literature • b. Expand knowledge of cultures • 2. Emotional – the feelings that are communicated; to arouse a response • a. Increases self-confidence • b. Entertainment • 3. Aesthetic – choices you make that help the audience understand your take on the literature
Three Touchstones • Universality • Appeals to the human experience/ common experiences • Individuality • The right approach to the piece through word choice, images, and organization • Suggestion • Implied meanings, signals, the unknown
Example • JUST to live under green leaves and see themJust to lie under low stars and watch them wane,Just to sleep by a kind heart and know it lovingAgain–Just to wake on a sunny day and the wind blowing,Just to walk on a bare road in the bright rain,–These, O God, and the night, and the moon showingAgain–Again By Marjorie Lowry Christie Pickthall
Five common types of oral interpretation performances • 1. Prose – any published worthwhile literature except poetry or drama. Examples include selections from short stories, novels, autobiographies, diaries, etc. • 2. Poetry – any published worthwhile literature written in poetic form. • 3. Dramatic Interpretation – any published worthwhile literature in which characters engage in dialogue throughout. Examples include plays, screenplays, books, etc. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qpNiSaW4rpw Poetry
5 types, cont’d • 4. Humorous Interpretation – any published worthwhile literature in which characters engage in dialogue throughout. Examples include plays, screenplays, books, etc. • 5. Dramatic Duo Interpretation - any published worthwhile literature involving the portrayal of two or more characters presented by two individuals in which an offstage focus must be maintained. Examples include plays, screenplays, books, etc. • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OQapgp1--78 Humor & Duo
Narrative oral interpretation Snow White We are never getting back together • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oV7NLt-aJEY • 4:32 • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q_wFXC2fpbc • 1:45
OI Examples • This is Sam Mussmann's Programmed Oral Interpretation (POI), an interpretive event that takes selections from at least two of drama, poetry, and prose, and combines them into a program, creating an argument. • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oZ23Z4_z4Kc&playnext=1&list=PL8BF349CBBC6A51FB • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8CyvO2GYs_w • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_ieleINuV-g&feature=related • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y-dorjJOOeY&feature=related