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Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Being hard on yourselves

Folks,

I've enjoyed reading your observations of your scene work. Some thoughts with regard to these:

Some of you have done a great job being objective about your work. Evaluating what see in a dispassionate manner is so crucial to our growth. Some of you are very hard on yourselves, and that makes the learning process more painful than it needs to be. I encourage you to take a step back and simply do the work rather than worrying about what others will think. I know that it can be hard to watch yourselves for the first time. Get used to it! This is how you learn, and many times, you are able to see things on video that you might not otherwise believe when they are pointed out to you.

Your classmates are not "co-directors," and I want to be clear that offering direction is not what I am requesting during our rehearsal discussions. That's my job! Your job is to articulate what you see, not attempt to direct each other. Use the class as an opportunity to learn how others' struggles might inform your own work, and to offer feedback. That's it. 

Be kind to each other and to yourselves. All of you have grown during the past few months, and of that you should be proud.

Another recurring theme in your observations is that of intention. In each of your scenes, your job is to move/speak/gesture with intention. If you are always in character, certain of what you are saying (especially if it is in Italian or German), then you are at the starting place for being able to do so. If you are at all unclear about what you're saying, why or to whom you're saying it, and what other people are saying, there is no way you can move with intention. When in doubt, always go back to the text.

As mentioned some time ago, everyone needs to be in class the entire time from now on, no exceptions. Due to illness, class trips, and lack of preparation, there are times we have had to deviate from the schedule. Not being there not only hurts you, it hurts anyone else in your scene. I've given all of you many hours of freedom while I work on other scenes for the past two months: some of you have used it to your advantage, and some have not. Be in the room, not in the building.

We will do final costume preparation tomorrow, as Rae's mom will be present. She has graciously offered to alter the few items that need adjusting. If your costume needs any attention, get it from my office before rehearsal and bring it down to the hall so that you may come and go from rehearsal quickly and efficiently. Everyone needs to help with props: be here early.

WEAR YOUR COSTUME SHOES. Bring them each time. This is part of your grade, no excuses. If you have more than one option, bring them and show me.

Tomorrow, we will work the last scenes we have not yet covered, and revisit the few rough ones to see what needs to be cut. Tuesday's schedule will be determined by tomorrow's work: regardless, everyone needs to be present. Wednesday will be a dress rehearsal, and will take as long as necessary. The day of the performance, we will likely not sing much (if at all), but may simply walk through the scene changes.

Let's do this!


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