Thursday, April 17, 2008

back to school

I've finally come to realize one of the things that I find so frustrating about this rehearsal process for "TMS" Our director is working us through the material at a very calm and careful rate, but it seems more suited to an acting class or a directing project. She will occasionally talk about the pressures over tech weekend and opening night, but with just about a week until we open (scary!), we have not yet run the show all the way through. With each pass on the show, we get a little deeper and deeper into the world of our characters, but we still haven't been able to string all those moments together into a show. I think that approach makes it feel like a scene study class instead of a production.

In addition, our director has a particular way of working, in which she will stop the actors when a moment doesn't feel "real" or plays rather falsely. While it calls our attention very quickly and effectively to all those moments that feel "false" while we're performing, it's also one hell of a confidence trap. Her habit of asking "Where did that come from?" after such moments also gives me the idea that there are "right" and "wrong" ways to play certain lines. And by commenting on it immediately after the moment, it prevents the exploration of unusual impulses and the discoveries that might result from them. It's often a frustratingly "exact" way to work, as if there is actually pressure on us to be "correct" with our choices. We hit tech work on Sunday, at which point we should start running the show. I'll feel better when we do.

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