Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)


Theatre Arts


This thesis explores the challenges I encountered while directing Adam Bock’s play Swimming in the Shallows. Specifically, this thesis addresses staging issues that stem from the problematic conventions required by Bock’s specific instructions regarding any mounting of the play. In particular, Bock suggests an abandonment of some traditional conventions in the fundamentals of directing, particularly the creation of three- dimensional picturization for the use of stage depth. In Bock’s staging notes, he proposes that contrary to fundamental principles: The action should be pressed flat. Like a screen. The actors’ physical work should be vertical and horizontal rather than three-dimensionally horizontal. (6) Bock’s suggestion infers a reconsideration of traditional staging principles. This thesis examines the challenges and pitfalls of Bock’s recommendations towards a realized production. Through an analysis of the text, research and execution of the production, this study assesses the possibilities of whether this particular production could successfully be accomplished through resisting traditional staging principles. Chapter one of this study concentrates on text analysis in the process of answering why the elements of the play lend support to Bocks’ injunctions in his staging notes. Chapter two evaluates the finished product determined by the rationale of traditional stage directing texts.

Included in

Psychology Commons