The Actor’s Art
This is a class about the actor’s art. The velocities of appearance. As in the speed of light. About the terms of engagement with the public. About the difference between being and the deliberateness of action and performance. About the triangulations between your intention, your body, a surrender to public scrutiny, and how that transforms you into a living work of art.
It’s about discipline, control, and the cyclical release of that control and coming back to it in different rhythms and astonishing yourself in that discovery. It’s about saying to the audience, relentlessly, “Now, I do this. – To show you this”. A communion of reciprocity with the public’s perception and experience. A measure taken at every moment with them and with yourself. To show them what the essential meaning of the art can be.
This is not the “craft”. (A word also attributed to witchcraft and casting spells, or building a table or chair). It is the art of acting. To become that work of art, so the public can imagine the actions of their daily lives in that same depth of experience and surrender.
It’s about a practice that carries over into your life as an artist. So you can become an actor, not just a player or a character in the narration of the play of your historic life. But to transcend that. To become the art of living. And to transmit that possibility to the public with recognition and love as the primary intention.
The work requires getting to know your body. How it feels. How it moves. How it thinks. And to begin to take an experiential measure between the Apollonian and Dionysian dichotomies of a life fully lived. And to master that discourse in yourself, in your unique experience. Sometimes separating those elements as in a cycle of action –– preparation:execution:recovery –– or else combining those elements in various velocities, withholdings, releases, in visible legible relationships as your intention of address to the other requires.
It is for you. And for them. The objective is to reveal the art. The art of acting. This is the real narrative of the “play.”
The playwright should write for actor artists; not craftsmen or “characters” only.
The play is about consciousness and its living value revealed. Not about the psychological motivations of fake characters. We are not characters. We are living human conscious beings which contain each within ourselves a uniqueness and commonality that is never fully embraced by fiction.
The aim of the play is to show the public that they are more than their life “characters.” Not to galvanize the prison of that limitation or imitation of life. But to free them from the finalizing concept of character; to put it in perspective, as a partial reality, a limitation, a means to an end, and not the whole of being.
The actor as an artist can show them that and experience that for themselves as well. They can inspire the public assembly to reconsider their role in life. Not merely to dream for a time that they can feel to be a different character. –– But to transcend character itself to reveal a deeper truth. Life as an art. To tear the veil. That is what the actor artist can do.
July 19, 2016
New York City