Tuesday, July 6, 2010

DAY 20

Friday! This morning we were lucky enough to have Voice class with Greg on the Argyros Stage, one of the two main stages at SCR. It was so cool to be in such a renowned space, and our group was especially lucky to have this class first thing in the morning to relax and get our voices warmed up before the rest of the day. Greg had some of us go out into the house to listen to others say lines from their monologues to see how the acoustics in the house sound and vice versa. Then we did our full Fitzmaurice warm-up of stretching, tremor-ing, and breathing while saying text. At the end of class we tried our pieces again, and it was amazing how much fuller and more supported everyone sounded.

Secondly we had Audition class with Joanne on the Nicholas stage. Today was a mock-audition, and we went through the class each pretending as if it was the annual SCR generals: Walk in the room, slate, say your piece, say thank you, and walk out. We also timed each person; an ideal audition (and the usual requirement) is somewhere between one to three minutes. I felt pretty good about my piece, which is a Pooty monologue (great character name, huh?) from Reckless by Craig Lucas. My next task is to find a good contrasting piece. Joanne suggested I look at plays by Theresa Rebeck, who I'd never heard of (sometimes I feel like an ignorant fool when confronted with all the plays and writers I've never heard of) but apparently writes great edgy and funny female roles.

In the afternoon we had a combined Advanced Technique class with Hal. We worked with the idea of Tempos for the first time. This technique works with the concept that each character has an inner and outer tempo, and the atmosphere they interact in has its own tempo. A character's inner tempo is the rate at which a character thinks, feels, visualizes, etc, and can be categorized as very fast, fast, normal, slow, or very slow. A character's outer tempo is the rate at which a character moves, speaks, handles objects, etc, and can be fast, normal, or slow. The tempo of the atmosphere, or its pulse or heartbeat, can be very fast, fast, normal, or slow. We all got to take turns making up characters with any combination of tempos. I chose a sharp old lady (inner tempo: quick, outer tempo: slow) and a bouncy little girl (inner tempo: slow, outer tempo: very fast). For those of us who didn't get to do a scene playing with Atmosphere on Wednesday, we got to go this afternoon. I played a scene in which my husband was leaving me, and I was trying to get him to stay. The first atmosphere was despair and the second, anger. Playing despair, I made myself cry again.

It's the small victories in life.

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