This fun and mystical theatre warm-up game will challenge your group’s focus, listening skills, and teamwork.
1. Bring your ensemble together to form a close-knit circle. Remember, the power of silence is stronger when you’re close to one another.
2. Nominate one person to be the “Silent Wizard.” This wise individual will wield the power to create and maintain the Circle of Silence.
3. The Silent Wizard must clap their hands once, casting the spell that brings forth the Circle of Silence. As soon as the clap is heard, everyone must fall silent.
4. The objective is for the entire group to remain absolutely silent for a set amount of time. To help achieve this, everyone should maintain eye contact, breathe together, and stay present in the moment.
5. During the Circle of Silence, the Silent Wizard can clap their hands at any time. This clap serves as a reset, reminding players to refocus and regain their concentration.
6. If any player makes a sound or breaks focus, the Silent Wizard must cast the silence spell again with a clap. The game continues until the group manages to stay silent for the predetermined duration.
To elevate the Circle of Silence to a more advanced level, consider incorporating the following modifications:
- Add movement: While maintaining silence, have players slowly and deliberately move around the circle or change positions. This added complexity requires players to stay focused and connected even during transitions.
- The Eyes of Silence: Instead of maintaining eye contact with one person, have players shift their gaze from one ensemble member to another, creating a dynamic network of silent connections.
- Silent Wizard’s test: The Silent Wizard can now perform subtle, unexpected actions to tempt or provoke players into breaking their silence or losing focus. Examples include funny faces, slow-motion dancing, or miming.
- Pass the silence: The role of the Silent Wizard can be passed from one person to another. To pass the role, the current Silent Wizard must make eye contact with another player and perform a subtle gesture (such as a nod or wink). Once the new Silent Wizard is in control, they can choose to clap and reset the silence if needed.
- Object of silence: Introduce a small, soft object (like a beanbag) that must be passed around the circle without making a sound. Players need to stay focused and be extra attentive to avoid dropping the object or making noise.
- Time pressure: Set an ambitious time goal for your ensemble to achieve the Circle of Silence. This will encourage players to be more disciplined and efficient in their attempts to remain silent and focused.
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Beat by Beat Press is the world’s fastest growing publisher of new children’s musicals and teaching drama resources, founded by a team of award-winning playwrights in New York City. Since 2011 Beat by Beat musicals have received over 6,200 productions in 75 countries around the globe.