Let Stuff Happen

I look very forward to our acting space class each week; the space Brian and our class have created is one that is comfortable, relaxed, a place to try new things..where it is ok to fail. This week we began to look at Chekov, specifically being assigned scenes from The Three Sisters to work on with a partner or trio. Because I feel so comfortable in this class, I opted to look at Andrij. On my most recent read of this play he really stood out to me as the most interesting character, and I look forward to the chance to explore him, a character I wouldn't regularly get to play.

We spent most of the time working on an improvisation of the ideas of the scene, putting it into our own words. Unlike when we did this with the Shakespeare scene, which was very much outward, the Chekov text is very inward, and as much about what isn't being shown as what is being shown. Our scene is with Andrij and Ferapont, where Andrij is confessing his misgivings to himself, with Ferapont there as an unhearing sounding board. What we really found with our first couple improvisations is just how much the two of them aren't talking at all - it is two monologues on stage at the same time. For Andrij, jumping through the thoughts inwardly is the key. We then watched each group's improvisation - Brian's main focus was to ensure we weren't "Acting", not letting business get in the way of understanding the thoughts and emotional centre of these characters. It was remarkable what occurs when we do this; when we really think as the character and as he said..stuff begins to happen between these two people.

We are going to continue work on these off-book at the next class.