After everyone gets in the room together for the first time, this starts:
Actor: You're telling me to do something outside of the way I initially envisioned the character.
Director: Well if we did everything the way you initially envisioned the character, we wouldn't do rehearsals and we could open tomorrow.
Actor: I'm closer to the character than you are, you don't understand.
Director: I'm looking at the whole play. YOU don't understand.
Actor: I don't want to.
Director: Just try it once.
With young students, I can just say "Yeah get over that and just do what I'm telling you." With older actors, I can usually say the same thing - but some of them will NOT be pushed. The more they will NOT be pushed, the more "diva" they come off in the rehearsal room. Divas are divas only because they are so attached to their insecurities that they're not only insecure, they're terrified of being anything else.
In general, people usually lash out or get stubborn only when they're scared.
And everyone is insecure somehow.
Some times it's because they're so talented, they haven't had a director challenge them. If they really don't want to be challenged by anyone but themselves, then they should probably get out of collaborative projects.
The two actors in my next play, Zoo Story, are far from divas. Insecure about minor things, sure, but that's what getting on stage in front of people does to you. Both my actors work from the inside out - breaking things down into tiny little pieces, talking about it, making all their character choices small and detailed, then putting it all together and smoothing out the edges later. It's been my job to frequently tell them what's not reading.
"That's exactly what I was doing," they tell me after a direction.
"I couldn't tell" is some times the best direction ever. "It's a great choice, I just need to see it."
I've been so fortunate to have actors that focus this hard on the little things - those things I miss while looking at the big picture. There's a world of choices they're making that I've just taken forThey're comfortable inside the minds of the people they are playing - they get to look around and analyze. I just get to watch what happens when they meet.
We're currently in the middle of the rehearsal process. We're finally putting our scripts down and looking at each other. The actors get to play now instead of work through things intellectually. It's a really exciting time, because although both my actors are wildly intellectual (rather reserved) people, play time is still play time. The arc of the relationship is coming through. MAGIC IS HAPPENING.
Pictures to come.
a one-act play by Edward Albee
1637 West Wisconsin Ave - room 028, Milwaukee, WI 53233
Tickets are 6 dollars a piece and performances will be held Wednesday, April 9 at 7:30 p.m.,
Thursday, April 10 at 5:30 p.m.,
Friday, April 11 and
Saturday April 12 at 4 p.m. and 7:30 p.m., and
Sunday, April 13 at 1:30 p.m.
Tickets go on sale March 17th and can be purchased at http://www.marquette.edu/boxoffice
*You do not need to be a Marquette University student to attend*