Sunday, January 27, 2013

I took the tube back out of town

Hello everyone!

So I just finished my second week of classes here in London. I have now had every class more then once and am starting to feel more in the grove of things. Our Shakespeare Acting class hasn't started yet which is annoying because that was why I came to the program and getting to do it was my main draw. But, I digress.

So Monday was the usual full day of active and all-day classes. Apparently Mondays are our only days that are like this. We started out the morning with Sue's movement class which was both fun and exhausting. We spent far too much time trying to figure out push ups (or press ups as they are called here) and ended up embarrassing ourselves with our complete lack of arm strength. After that we had Voice in which we warmed up and read the poems we had brought into class. In Stage Combat that day, we learned how to do various types of strangles and I found that these are much easier for me to do then punches albeit the psychological block in my mind of how horrible strangulation is as a way to die. In Period Dance, I finally managed to find a corset that fits me and does what it is supposed to. We then learned another 16th century dance and then called it a day.

On Tuesday, I started my morning again at eleven am with acting. Kathy then asked us the question "Who Are You?" Because this was an acting class and not a job interview I answered the question as truthfully as possible which others did not seem to partake in. We then were given our scenes from the play Mixed Doubles. It turns out, I got a monologue. So that is what I get to work on all term. Not really what I wanted. Then after a break, we had our Space Place and Text class in which we talked about Twelfth Night. Then the day was over.

Wednesday started out bright and early with a tour of the British Library. This tour was one of the most absurd things I have ever been on. Our tour guide started the tour with talking in the lobby about the architect and why Prince Charles hates the building for forty-five minutes before ever going anywhere. We then went and looked at a model of the building and he talked about that and robberies from the library for another twenty minutes. Then we meandered over to a room where he discussed getting library cards which is not even a viable option for us. Behind him playing on a TV was a video about the proper way to take a book off of a shelf. One technique included going behind the book and pushing it out. Then there was a section about how to properly open a book that was so specific it was things like "flexible side-stitched book". One of the kids from CUA, Christen also noticed this video and it has since become our joke. Our tour then brought us up a staircase next to the King's Tower which includes all kinds of books. But still, we were not looking at the books. One girl, Summer added her own thought into the mix with the deadpan "Even the school kids are looking at the damn books." We then looked at the King's Tower for about five minutes and wandered on to look at the world's largest Atlas. At this point, it was already 11:30 am and half of our group had to leave at noon to get back to class. Our tour guide was adamant about showing us a film about the conveyer belts when Ellen had to step in and ask if we could just go look at the treasures of the Library. Our tour guide kept pressing the video and eventually gave up and took us to see the treasures which are things such as the Magna Carta and the First Folio. We there ditched the tour guide, saw the sights, and left for class. In our Dialects class, we continued to read poems and had a heated discussion about guns and gun control. It's interesting being in England because guns are not allowed in the country and our discussion was helped by seeing two sides of the debate. That night, we went to go see Merrily We Roll Along at the Meiner Chocolate Factory. It was a great show but unfortunately we have all had the title song stuck in our head since Wednesday.

On Thursday, we had no classes because we all needed to have a session with our Alexander teachers and a meeting with Ellen to discuss how we were doing. My first meeting was not until four thirty pm and I had all day to do work and nothing. In my meeting with Ellen, we discussed how I found things and had a little mini voice lesson to help me not press my voice too far into my deepest register. In my first ever Alexander Technique session, Dee helped me learn to sit up straight properly and try to stand properly as well. I'm looking forward to having these sessions throughout the term.

Friday we had an exceptionally early start so that we could see the Rose Theatre. Except that we got lost on our way there and everyone was confused as to where to go. When then found it and we given a lecture inside the building. The space is incredible. The remnants of this theatre were discovered under an office building and have since been preserved under water. There are red lights denoting where the boundaries of the theatre are. We were then lucky enough to be allowed to doing speeches inside. I did my Joan of Arc speech from Henry VI Part 1 which was originally done at the Rose Theatre 400 years ago. It was incredible! I could practically feel the actor saying it 400 years ago behind me in the darkness. We then moved onwards and saw where the original location of the Globe was. There are some lucky people who get to live right where it was. My life's goal is to buy one of those apartments. Then our group had to go back for Acting in which we answered questions about ourselves and then connected it to our characters. That night, I decided to stay in because I was exhusted from waking up very early with little to no sleep and ended up learning harmonies to "Papa Don't Preach" and doing rounds with Summer and Laura.

Saturday was also an early morning because Laura, Andrew and I decided to go see Mark Rylance's Richard III. We got there at about ten thirty am and managed to get 32 pound tickets in the nosebleed of nosebleed section. The show was still incredible and I am so happy that I went to see it. That night, we all tried out this club called Tiger Tiger that was a huge bust. We ended up at a 24-hour Tesco and bought food befitting a drunk person.

Today we had to go to the London zoo for our acting class. It was a great time except for the fact that it was very cold. Then we returned to our house and have been doing work the rest of the day.

And that's my week!

I hope you enjoyed it!


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