Fall 2002. First week of classes -- I come home depressed; so many topics are not covered on my pages -- where are "actor's addresses" (motivation must be next to it), contrast-conflict and more basics? I talk about it in class, because I can't get further without introducing it....
I do not want to use the structure from the Method directory, but what is the new one? Biomechanics = Acting II.
Method pages should be limited to three, like BM pages?
* Managing time in class; to teach them not to waste time outside of class, to teach them to rehearse on their own. How to make sure that most of the work is done outside of the classtime. Class is for presentation, demostration, feedback.
Let us pour a libation / to the muses, daughters / Of Memory, and to Leto's / Son, their Lord Apollo. -- Terpandros
Apollo and his twin Artemis were the children of Zeus and Leto. He was raised by Themis,* who fed him on nectar and ambrosia, and provided him with bow and arrows made by Hephaestus. On leaving Delos he made for Mount Parnassus where the giant serpent, Python, lived.
Python, the enemy of Leto, when severely wounded by the arrows from Apollo's bow, fled to the oracle of Mother Earth at Delphi. Apollo followed him into the shrine and dared to kill him beside the sacred chasm.
Mother Earth reported this outrage to Zeus. Zeus ordered Apollo to undergo purification and instituted the Pythian Games in honor of Python, over which Apollo would penitentially preside.
After his purification on Crete, Apollo coaxed Pan, the disreputable goat-legged god, to reveal the art of prophecy. Then he seized the Delphic Oracle, the Pythoness, and forced her to his own service. The sanctuary of Apollo at Delphi became the most famous in Greece.
Apollo bettered Pan in a musical contest, becoming the acknowledged god of Music; he has since played a seven-string lyre while the other Olympians banquet.
He was eternally youthful and was originally distinguished by his amorous adventures (not all were successful), his quick temper, his pride, and his harsh violent reactions (he flayed alive a musical competitor). But after Apollo had killed the Cyclopes and was punished by Zeus by having to tend sheep for a year, he learned his lesson. Thereafter he counseled moderation and self knowledge.
Know Yourself and Nothing to Excess were emblazoned on his temple at Delphi. He even brought the muses down from their home on Mt. Helicon to Delphi, tamed their wild frenzy, and taught them formal and decorous dances.
Apollo became a Panhellenic god, second only to Zeus. He embodies the Greek spirit; because almost everything which distinguishes the Greek outlook on life from that of other peoples around them--sensitivity in art, poetry, music, youthful good health, r espect for law, and love of orderliness and moderation--all these civilizing concepts are symbolized by Apollo. Even today the term Apollonian means harmonious, measured, ordered, and balanced in character. images
Dionysos is the son of Zeus, chief of the Olympians, and Semele, a woman of Thebes, according to the most used geneology. Dionysos is the god of wine and madness, vegetation, and the theatre, and was the focus of various mystery cults.
The traditional comedy / tragedy masks, used now as a universal symbol for drama, also represent the two sides of Dionysus, as well as the two effects of wine: joyous, Bacchic revelry, and a dark, sorrowful harvest.
[how long will take to introduce the two and other visual Greek categories? In themes, script analysis directory or 200x Files?]
Spring 2004: I better stick to the scenes and monologues I already used in class; I have to develop the notes and commentaries to them.
I do not want to touch the subjects you can find in any acting textbook. I try to write only on topics I myself couldn't find but I need to introduce them in my acting classes. NTL, sometimes I have to be repetitive (couching); there are the basic tools you must get into your blood from the start. There is no way around it!
The directory must be turned into a STORY -- missing narrative? When I can do it?
I don't know why it takes so long to fix this directory; the little pages (like list) take a lot of time. I didn't think about service pages at all, but where else can I list the online monologues and scenes?
Maybe I should keep my notes for myself for the book as well. Even to have "The Diary of the Acting Professor" with my reflections on classes (in each chapter/scene). I already have many characters and voices; perhaps my own cries outside of class could explain better my aims, my expectations, my directions....
[ another lost page ]
Fall 2003 -- new textbook; I have to get back to this directory.
My team leaders (Stanislavsky, Meyerhold, Apollo, Dionysos) -- who and when take stage? (Scenes)
If we believe the Marxist formula: thesis + anti-thesis = synthesis, we must focus on bridging Stanislavsky and Meyerhold (Stan. late ideas about "Method of Physical Action" and M. -- "smart body" + Gurjgiev's energy and etc.)
Research in Theatre Theory directory?
Sense Memory --> Short Memory --> Long Term (natural process)
I will do with Acting Directory what I do with the Method Acting (using The Three Sisters production and text as a showcase for the Part 5), but here I would stay with The Importance of Being Earnest. Go to the SHOWS directory and read Oscard Wilde. Read the coments and analysis (and the discussion at WWWilde Forum. I will be using monologues and scenes in class!
Everything in arts is personal. In acting it's obvuious. Mask? Your face is the mask for your character. Paradox? But who knows your true face? Not even you. Maybe you are the last to see your real face. I can't see myself but see your face... Many faces of self. Not to act = fear of living. Much stronger than fear of death. We fear life -- and the only way out is to act it out!
You exist only in what you do. (Federico Fellini)
Of course, actors should know it, Method, but my aim is the directors, who MUST know it in order to work with actors.
Check out both BM and Method directories to see where do we go!
After ACTING directory -- Biomechanics, and then -- Method. Acting One, Two, Three = Fundamentals, Intermediate, Advanced.
Take notes in class (use your journal, keep it with you all the time). If you don't understand some terminology, go to Glossary. Also, each topic on this syllabus is connected with the appropriate page, but the pages are designed for all levels of acting and directing. If you miss the class, you won't know how much you should know and you will read it all. Don't miss classes.
If you have a legitimate reason for not being in class, you call in, leave a message or email me.
The Master-File with monologues and scenes is in the Library on reserve (select the pages, copy them and put back).
If you don't show up for rehersals with your partners, they drop you -- they get the grade, you don't.
For Homework and Jounal keeping instructions go to the THR221 and Journals pages.
If you want to see a sample of the test on Acting Theory, please, go to Forms & Samples page.
HOW TO WORK with Yourself
You can print out the entire site and use it as a textbook, or mark the selections you need and print them only. Follow the links in each class and read the pages related to the topics. If you need more information, use the outside links on my pages, or search the Net. The text for monologues and scenes are not posted, but in the library on reserve. You can use the monologues and scenes I have on my site, theyíre copyright free (thatís why I can post them). Donít waste your time on search for a perfect-for-you monologue/scene. Go with the instinct, do the cold reading in class; you can change your mind later, when youíll get the feedback from the class. Donít memorize the lines, not till you went through some analysis, dramatic breakdown and develop your idea about the character and movement (floor plan). Donít go through useless read-through in class; we are here to work on your piece, even for cold reading you should have some ideas about the role. Throw them at us, try and test your design!
If you canít make your mind, Iíll select the text for you. We want to have a good performance, not a great literature presented. (Usually they are together, but if a monologue is above your head, go for something you understand and feel for).
Do you have somebody at home or dorm to perform for? Torture them -- tape-recorder is good, but humans are better. Use them to feed you lines, this way youíll get rid of the papers in your hands sooner.
No-no Things: Nobody needs to know that you forgot your line. We donít care for words, we are into acting. Donít stop. Donít appologize, donít curse yourself outloud. Do it later at home.
No-no: Donít get into this ďtalent stuffĒ -- am I talented, I am no good, bad, do I have a potential, I suck, stink and etc. The class is not an academy award, youíre here to get as much as you can out of yourself. Let the others judge you.
Do it: If you donít like somebodyís performance in class, speak up your mind. You donít have to butcher your classmates; imagine yourself doing their material -- how would you have done it? Thatís a constructive criticism for you! Besides, if you donít speak in class, you do disservice to all, including yourself. You donít learn how to articulate your ideas.
Now, go to YOUR CLASS PAGE Summer Acting 1998 to see who is in class, assignments, how you're doing and etc.
On your first day in class all of you have "A"s! Try to keep up good grades!
I am not an actor. Neither a good playwright or a director. Why bother writing about acting? Simply because I did theatre all my life and teach it for over twenty years? Because I think about it? I do not have a good excuse for my notes on acting. Because I want to get out of my actors as much as possible? Because I believe that all could and should act? Because I want to teach acting better? Too many questions...