master character development class


DARE TO ACT!

My goal is to connect your life to your craft so that every “role” means something to you – that you have “personal stakes in the scene”. The class will advance your character development, your ability to give yourself permission and how to allow imagination to lead you through given circumstances and point of view. 

Character Development

I will direct you into yourself to find and then allow the parts of the character that have always existed consciously and unconsciously within you. I will also guide you to external expressions of the character through elevating your mind body connection with an increased sensitivity a greater range of behavior, gesture and action is possible. 

The masters class will continue to explore character development expanding the scope of exercises and techniques that we can use to marry personal experience, emotions and psychologies into that of the character and story. We will also begin to focus on adapting personal gestures, behaviors and physicality into those that enhance and express the unique life of the character. 

One powerful exercise we will do heightens our awareness to automated responses, whether it is fear and shock or pleasure and desire. We create a certain circumstance to elicit a reaction, recognize our automated response and then explore what it would be to respond differently under such circumstances. Then we dig to see if we have other responses that we repress or simply over look. We then translate them into the “body of the character”. It has a similar effect to putting on the clothes or costume of a character but from within.

We will be focusing on original work with the goal being to take one or multiple piece through to some sort of production. Working with this goal will enable us to present your work and receive the ultimate lesson - an audience’s response. We will work in class and hopefully with the playwrights to hone and rework the material into its strongest possible telling of the story.

I’m excited to dig into this year with this goal in mind. It will bring a destination to all the work you put in and enable us to share this approach to see what effects and what needs further growth. 

I’m currently reviewing original plays and actors interested in being apart of this class. If you are interested yourself or know of someone who is please have them contact me directly so that I can consider you in the casting of these works.

There are a few ways you may work in the class. You can work on the development of a character in a play with the intention of producing the play and there for a longer commitment with a slightly greater responsibility to your fellow actors and theater. Or you can work in the same way but without the intention of going into production with the purpose being the exploration and growth through learning this process. Or you can use it to do scene work and explore opening and expressing new areas of your emotional history that may be hard to connect with or repressed.

  1. scene work for character development where you would like to stretch your range and craft
  2. commit as a cast to a full production. (long term commitment)

c.      commit to a full play but not for full production (just for the character development work, staged reading or maybe to do at a later date.

       d.      workshop new material from playwrights we are considering work from

 

MOTH Theatre Company. Moth will become more of a cohesive, structured company over the course of this year and for those of you who would like to play a role beyond acting, writing, directing can step forward and lend their other talents too. We are doing this to reach our goal of being the top company premiering new works (Period.)

 

With that, if you have a play or know a writer with an amazing play that hasn’t been work shopped or produced we will be soliciting pieces for review. I will have Moth’s Literary Manager connect with everyone.


Our "Method”

Is a group of techniques actors use to create in themselves the thoughts and feelings of their characters, so as to develop lifelike performances. Actors create characters by drawing on their own emotions and memories, aided by a set of exercises and practices including sense memory and affective memory. 
 

We have all heard the stories of such actors as Marlon Brando, Mickey Rourke and Daniel Day Lewis who stay in character on set or at least coming in and out of scenes. Or take on the life of these characters for months at a time on or off of set.

Why?

Think about acting class, you prepare, you discuss with your scene partner what is in the scene and what is out of the scene. Who these people are, what their lives are like and probably what their back-stories might be. You get to class you relax, watch others like yourself set the stage, dress and then … act! Then you take notes from the teacher and talk with others in the class of what you thought, how you felt etc. etc.
Then you go home and still might be carrying some of the scene but it begins to drift and then you wake up and it’s back to life and the character is seemingly left until the next rehearsal.

WHAT IF you were to let the character live off of stage and learn the intricacies and unconscious life they have if you continue to allow them to breathe?
 
So instead of waiting for the scene to begin in class and then end in class what if you were to become your characters? Allow the character and his or her style, behaviors, speech, dress and choices live outside of those five minutes you give them in class. How much more informed would your portrayal of this person become? How much more unconscious would your choices become? And how much more real would the realities of that life and the stakes this life be?

I’m looking for a small group of actors who are dedicated to their craft and really want to grow (move outside your comfort zone). Actors who, for eight weeks, are willing to immerse and commit themselves to becoming and living the life of their character. It will not be easy. And it will be scary, at times, but I promise your adeptness and confidence, as an actor will take a leap.