Warning: This is all very Actor-Talkie, and I don’t know if it’ll make sense to anyone but me.  But it’s MY blog! Maniacal laughter.

In the past, I’ve sometimes felt like a bit of a freakazoid actor, often being the one guy doing elaborate stretching routines an hour before a performance, sometimes before a rehearsal.  I was thankful to go to grad school a few years into my professional career for the opportunity to be surrounding by other freakazoids, and have my freakazoid ways encouraged.  Stretchy actors warming up their instruments, blah blah blah.  Some actors walk in off the street with coffee and the crossword puzzle, jump on stage and seem to be effortless brilliant.  Unfortunately, that ain’t me.

And unfortunately, with my recent commuting between Chicago and Milwaukee, and the cramming of my schedule with the beginning of Cymbeline rehearsals, I haven’t been able to maintain my ususal discipline of physical upkeep–yoga, movement, trips to the gym.  (Even though I work at a gym when I’m in Chicago.)  Plus, a lot of time in the car means a lot of feeling stiff and sore on top of my usual uptight nature.  So I haven’t been challenging my body, getting stretched out deeply, and this is not good for my acting.  If I don’t extend and activate my deeper musculature, then I’m not breathing air into those muscles, then I’m not bringing thought into those muscles, then my thought is not connected to my body, and when I speak what are supposed to be truthful and deeply-rooted words to me (my character), they are disconnected from me, and I can only project them from a place that’s outside of my body, from a shielding layer that’s between my body and my words.  That disconnecty project-o-layer might be called my mind, and it can be a very clever and tricky beast that can fool some people into a sense that they’re seeing something kinda realistic, but not the people who are really paying attention.  Not the audience.

Just some thoughts as I get back on track after my mini-crisis and back into decent physical discipline.  The glorious benefits of the rehearsal process.  I’ve been out of rehearsal since Monday in Chicago and on workshops, so I’m psyched for Saturday, when I’ll be switching roles from Cloten’s Lord to Roman Soldier, which promises a lot of Standing and Listening.  For which I’ll be freakishly physically preparing.


2 Responses to “freakazoid.”

  1. March 3, 2008 at 4:52 am

    Insightful post, Matt. I often remind my students how acting is so physical and not to dissimilar from athletics in terms of the conditioning and connection with mind and spirit, as it were.

  2. 2 sumnatime
    March 5, 2008 at 3:59 pm

    breathe, breathe… Cant you still hear Phyliss saying that?

    You make me want to exercise… shame on you.

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