One Night Grandstand Workshop Plan

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Every workshop should include some practical exercises and some homework to do over the week, which should not be hard to do as it will mostly involve watching or listening to football Every workshop could have a different guest presenter from the world of theatre, stand up comedy, rap, journalism, writing and of course commentating.

Workshop 1. Introduction to commentating.

What is commentating? What does a commentator really do?

  • Makes a game more exciting.
  • Puts feelings in to words.
  • Adds emotional intensity.
  • Stops people from getting bored when nothing is happening.
  • Gives information to the audience.
  • Gives a summary/synopsis of what is happening.

Good commentating v bad commentating.

exercise: Listening to some commentary and deciding if and why it is good or bad.

Spontaneous reaction to events.

  • Talk about spontaneity. Is it real or effected?

Entertaining oratory.

  • A wider look at the art of oratory, political speeches, sermons, stand up etc.

2. Spoken performance skills. Looking at commentating as performance.

Addressing performing, speaking skills.

  • How to be relaxed on the mic.

exercise: freeing the vocal chords- shouting together, saying stupid words

  • How to be yourself.

exercise: saying words at speed- competition who can talk the fastest

  • Developing your microphone persona.

exercise: in pairs describing events to a blindfolded person

3, Wordplay

  • Word variation.
  • writing down different words for kick, pass, shot, miss, goal, play etc.
  • Listening to radio commentary, identifying use of synonyms.

Exercise: thinking of more interesting ways of saying things.

Excerpts of commentary from around the world. How do they differ? Can UK commentators learn from them?

  • Preparation. A look at the commentator's team sheet- how to condense the important info onto 1 page.
  • Thinking about "set pieces"- gags, anecdotes, facts you could anticipate before the match.

4. Journalism

  • Embracing controversy. legal implications. impartiality etc.
  • How do you remember names of players? Brief at look mnemonics
  • The hierarchy of information ie what information takes priority
# Where on the pitch is the ball?
# Which team is in possession of the ball?
# Which player is in control of the ball?
# How much time has been played?
# What is the score?
# Sum up key action.
# Interesting or relevant statistics.
# entertainment
  • Filtering information quickly

exercise: focussing on the commentary- commentate on football with someone saying distracting things in your ear.

5. Commentating

  • The difference between television and radio commentary.
  • Knowing when to talk and when to keep quiet.
  • Developing a rapport with co-commentators and players.
  • How to interview challenging subjects.

Commentating exercises

  • Commentating on some television football with the teams and information on front of you.
  • Commentating on everyday events as if they were really important.

6. Commentating projects

exercise: self directed commentary project

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