critical mass

July 21, 2010 at 11:33 am | Posted in creative process, creativity, Ensemble, Physical Theatre, Psychophysical Training, Theatre | 1 Comment
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Today the ensemble assembles (minus one who is completing a show elsewhere and will be with us soon).

Last night, I thought about what to do in the studio for the first couple of days – what to do in detail rather than broadly…

nothing. not a single thought.

I have brought together all these people and cannot think of  a single thing to suggest that we do…..

Pause. Breathe.

I know the aesthetic we are aiming towards – embodied, jagged, raw, vocally rich, physically extended. Often my work generates embodied performance where the ‘physical skill’ is hidden. The energy flows and the work looks effortless, notwithstanding the fact that it’s actually complex and demanding. However for this piece, I know we need to foreground some ideas of physical struggle and physical extremity. The piece is about a man attempting to remain whole, a man who tries to hold the entire universe together by force of his aggressive will. A man who fails, and shatters. He is a man who is fragmented, with numerous ‘extremes’ held together in what we call ‘his character…’ He is a man who is created by the entire ensemble, most of whom are women.

If I know the aesthetic and I know the heart of the script, then I have starting points. I will build them, technically, into the physical, vocal and mental forging of this particular ensemble. Build from what I know towards what is waiting to be discovered.

And – as I endlessly encourage performers to do – I need to pursue my personal pleasure and delight in the work.

The ensemble, without exception, comprises excellent performers. When I do not know where to go, they will.

Above all, there is a creative exploration to undertake. It is right that I do not know much now.

The rest is just anxiety.

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1 Comment »

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  1. Very Interesting!
    Thank You!


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