Letters from the Pandemic 9: Resolution

Letters from the Pandemic 9: Resolution
by Bob Crockett


A pandemic cannot stop an active GLS mind.

I am an avid reader, theatre goer, and amateur musician. So I decided to use this time to write my own play. Later, as I brought in some old song ideas, it morphed into a musical.

They say you should write about things you know. I dug up my notes from the London Theatre Intensive course that I took in 2003 as a GLS — Graduate Liberal Studies at SFU — student, and a second time in 2008 as an alumnus. We stayed in a university dormitory in London for two weeks taking in theatre and all things cultural.

I used my London GLS  experience as a pandemic project based on  what happens when a group of interesting strangers meet in a workshop. I changed the GLS students into aspiring actors auditioning for a new play: a romantic, an underachiever, a dreamer, a free spirit, and a young single parent.

While competing for the few openings, they must prove their ability to work together. The director of the new play puts them through a series of exercises reflecting his/her views on understanding storytelling through the eyes of the audience. The actors cover drama (versus action), archetypes, improvisation, and the value of surprise endings.

In the process the audience learns more about each actor and the major issues they face back home. Hence, there is a double meaning to the play’s objective and name “Resolution.”

As a final trick, the audience uses their I-phones to vote for who stays and who goes home.

In keeping with the times, almost all roles can be either male or female with minor changes to the script. Also, Resolution is Covid-friendly by accident. There is little physical movement and the roles can be reduced or combined from six down to three actors. (A solo performance is not impossible but highly ambitious).

In my pandemic isolation I learned how to craft a play, create drama, add subplots, and compose six songs. It’s proof that the real learning is not in the watching but in the doing.

Bob Crockett


Bob Crockett

After 25 years in Marketing, Bob Crockett’s GLS degree enabled him to switch into teaching at Kwantlen Polytechnic University School of Business. He is currently the president of the New Westminster Arts Council and an amateur jazz musician.


The Ormsby Review. More Books. More Reviews. More Often.

Publisher and Editor: Richard Mackie

The Ormsby Review is a journal service for in-depth coverage of B.C. books and authors. The Advisory Board consists of Jean Barman, Robin Fisher, Cole Harris, Wade Davis, Hugh Johnston, Patricia Roy, David Stouck, and Graeme Wynn. Scholarly Patron: SFU Graduate Liberal Studies. Honorary Patron: Yosef Wosk. Provincial Government Patron since September 2018: Creative BC

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