Friday, 24 June 2011

My Disaster

I was dreading the day I dried up in any form of performance. It happens to everyone, and with such a busy schedule, I had a feeling it would be this term. In three of my classes we have an end of term performance of some sort, one of these pieces as mentioned in an earlier blog was a duologue from Shakespeare's Henry VI, Part 3.

I had rehearsed this piece for the dress rehearsal. As we took to the performance area I was relatively confident as I opened with the line "Good day my lord, why at your book so hard?". The scene started to unravel with some great moments. I think every time I have performed this piece I have discovered something new about the characters. Shakespeare uses a lot if imagery and if you can relate to that, I find it really helps.

Now on to Nick, I can't remember what I said about him last time. He is my scene partner, what can I say? This guy lives and breathes Shakespeare. He gets right into the language, and the character. He was familiar with this scene prior to going into this which gave him a head start over me, it also meant I have learned a lot from him. He is very much the underdog of the class, in the sense that he does not shout and scream, rather he has a touch of genius and comes up with things then brings them to life like no other. It is only in working closely with him that I have realised how much more he has in his acting toolbox than I first thought. He is superb, and if he wants to make it in acting, I honestly think he could.

Now back to my disaster. As I hit my monologue, something came over me. I can't really explain it - my focus was lost, I didn't even feel as though I was in the room anymore. Even with the prompts - nothing was there. I know they say a bad dress rehearsal is a good sign... but I am so pissed off like you wouldn't believe. I walked out of the room for a good 15 minutes to mull over the diabolical performance, and although it happens to everyone sooner or later, it just feels awful when it happens to you. I guess I have a week to get it right, but I won't lie, my confidence has taken a huge blow. I was the worst in the class on Thursday, hell even the guy who is usually rock bottom was better than me - and that is saying something!

I must admit, I was hoping this encounter with Shakespeare would inspire me, but I am yet to be convinced. Even seeing Kevin Spacey in Richard III (the play that follows the one I am performing) just two days before hand failed to reach me. Don't get me wrong. you can't fault the acting. I was just not inspired by it. Its long, the plot is unconvincing and a tad predictable at best. I have yet to work out why people see Shakespeare as one of the best play writes of all time. Though this said I did enjoy seeing David Tenant and Catherine Tate in a modernised version of Much Ado About Nothing... much lighter and energetic, but still not the best piece of theatre I have seen.

1 comment:

  1. I've been there too and it sucks. I've dried in a proper theatrical play, and had to ad-lib to the other actor: "Remember when did we do? That really cool thing" Thankfully my co-star was on the ball and we recovered without anyone noticing!

    Tis true though, sometimes the focus can go and you're lost. At my National Youth Theatre audition my monologue was going fine right until near the end, when suddenly the line just wasn't coming. I rescued it by trying not to panic, staying in character, and pausing long enough for me to very gradually get my bearings back, remember the line and then I completed the monologue. The auditioner had no idea I'd forgotten my lines...and what's more, I still passed the audition. Don't let it get you down - it happens to us all, and gives us good experience so we can avoid it happening next time.

    (this is Billy from the Impro course, by the way. Yo :D)