Saturday, September 30, 2006
Friday, September 29, 2006
The Death of "Death of a Salesman"
"Passion-to-Form": An Acting Point of View
Youth is necessarily profligate.
Young actors should learn to say something (a lot) first; only then edit. A young actor should not be overly concerned with the precise aesthetic packaging of their expressed emotional truth. They should not excessively constrain themselves within narrow bounds of movement, voice, body, staging, etc. Over-disciplining an acting instrument too early in a career will dampen--if not kill--the power of passion. Watch young boxers--even those who eventually achieve greatness; they inevitably flail and waste energy in the early stages (bouts). They swing wildly and move excessively. Their good trainers/managers expect this; and most importantly, they avoid overly inhibiting the passion to fight in their young charges. In fact they seek a boxer's passion above all. Only later, as the young boxers gain experience with pressure-packed (passion-filled) situations, only then do managers/trainers demand and expect severe form: the techniques of how to 'slip punches, shorten the distance of their punches thrown, gracefully maneuver their bodies around a ring, etc.
So, actors (and their teachers/trainers): actors should first be encouraged to drill inner wells of emotion, let their passion be tapped into first, let the emotional oil gush, perhaps even to the point of blackening the landscape...and then...and only then...cap that energy source and have them pump it out in precisely desired quantities.
Monday, September 04, 2006
A Nice Comment From a Peer
A Nice Letter From A Former, Former, Former Student
"I made it to The Young and the Restless! Yes, my dream of acting on a soap opera came true last year. I had a small part but I loved it and am looking forward to more. I was nervous at first but I found myself remembering things you had said [Italics mine]. I worked very hard on my character before arriving at the studio and it paid off. Even though it had been years since my last acting scene, I found the life experiences I had since seemed to enhance my creativity and so much of what you had said finally clicked for me. For example, I remember you saying that once you are in the scene, you put your character bio aside [Italics mine]. I was a bit confused about that but realized on YNR that yes, my scene will be different depending on the choices I have made for my character...like does she love or hate her sister, is the family happy about her new baby and so forth. And I don't have to be thinking about all that during my scene as I am that character at that time and know her so well [Italics mine]...."
Glad to have been of help!... and after all these years!!!!
Friday, September 01, 2006
Self and Character
(1) Understanding the character in yourself;
(2) Accepting the character in yourself;
(3) Enjoying the character in yourself;
(4) Sharing the character in yourself.
A Note from Jake Billingsley
"Thanks, Jake. And congratulations."
Apologies For My Disappearance
For those of you who might been following my blog and might have missed me and my notes since July 20th, I apologize...but I was gone in 'actor-land' myself: I am preparing to do a play in Los Angeles in October...and have been swamped with the casting sessions and learning lines. The play is "Death of a Salesman". I am playing Willy Loman and he does nothing but talk throughout the play! Feel sorry for me, or envy me...or both. The play opens October 21st at the Oddysey Theater in West LA, and runs Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights, and Sunday matinee running until December 3rd.
During rehearsal and performanceI intend to continue to write blog-notes...but if I disappear again...you will know where I have gone.
Thanks for staying with me.