Hey everybody! What's Up?
Here once again we sit (King John for any Shakespeare buffs out there, no, then I'm alone) for my weekly update.
On Monday, we had the usual exercise 9 to 5 day. We started that morning with movement in which we had to carry people on our backs and have people stand on our backs while kneeling. Sounds intense but it really was quite alright. All about counter balancing and figuring out weight balances. Then we moved on to our voice class in which we worked on nasal sounds versus open sounds. Then we had period dance in which we reviewed the Almain and then learned more of the Quadrille. This was the day in which my corset decided that it actually was going to cause me major pain and the Quadrille was a mess because of directions being lost in translation. Then we ended the day with stage combat in which we did more sword work. We were already exhausted from Period dance so this was really quite a challenge to get through at the end of the day. We went back to our dorm that night and passed out from exhaustion.
Tuesday started with Acting at 11 am. In this class, we learned that we have to write an autobiography for our character that we are working on and then we did a visualization of our character and then the blasted animal work again. In the analysis, Kathy told me that my visualization was one of the best in the class but that my animal was not right and I needed to try something else. So I was back to square one with that. Then we had a break and then had Space Place and Text in which we were talking about The Duchess of Malfi. We ended up having a rousing discussion about communicating in the texting and Facebook age which really had nothing to do with the play we were talking about. The day ended with me rehearsing for my audition tutorial and returning home for another night of work and sleep.
Wednesday started with our Physical Theatre class in which we worked on the eight stages of tension which is actually an extremely helpful technique to help build a character. We then applied it to an improv about a first driving lesson which I found funny because I could definitely pick out number five, the stage manager, as the stage I was in during MY first driving lesson. Then we moved onto our Shakespeare class in which we had to tell, in full detail, the first act of Measure For Measure and then we assigned an Act to present for the next class. We then moved on to our sonnets and worked on finding the vowels, consonants and the iambic pentameter to the poem. Then I had a break until my audtion tutorial in which I went to exchange my American money that I still had chilling out in my dorm. Then I had my audition tutorial which was super successful. I was nervous before because I wasn't too off book and had never done any Restoration work before in my life. Ros helped me understand the way the women moved and stayed on book for me throughout the speech. It turned out so successful because I just decided to have fun with the speech and go over the top with it. Ros kept laughing at things I did and it made me feel really great. She then asked what I would like to work on next and when I said doing George Bernard Shaw, she praised me up and down and said how smart I was. She then told me to look at Major Barbara and find a monologue from there. After this, Laura and I went to the STA office to book our trips for Spring Break. We are now all offically booked for Paris for three days and have decided to go to Berlin for a few days. I am so excited, I finally get to go to Germany which has been a dream of mine since about seventh grade. That night, we went to a fringe theatre called Theatre 503 to see a play called Desolate Heaven. It was not a good play. The plots never were wrapped up and it ended with one girl murdering the other. It was a play about the Irish so I should have known right away that someone would die. Then when we got back to our dorm after this horrendous play, me and Andrew (my partner for the Shakespeare project) had to work on Act 5 which is, of course, the most confusing because it wraps up every plot point and brings out every character. We finished working on it and then the night was over.
Thursday morning, Andrew and I had to present our disastrous summery of Act 5. Leo liked some bits of it and felt that there were other parts that needed work, which was all very true. Then we acted out Act 1 in all of it's details as a Western. This was actually quite fun except it's so hard to remember every little detail about a play I had just read. Then we had a break and our Dialects class. We talked about the terrible play for a bit of the class and then worked on RP for the rest of the time. I love this class because Simon doesn't care that we may be terrible at doing RP and just helps out so we improve. Later that day, I had my Alexander Session in which I learned where my hip bones actually are and the proper way to sit and stand in the Alexander way. It was very nice and relaxing and I enjoyed it. Then my day was over and back home I went.
Friday morning, we had another SPT walk, this time at Covent Garden. I was excited about the walk because the last one was very enjoyable. This one was educational but not anywhere near as fun because we spent the whole time walking around and standing in one spot in the cold listening to a lecture by Christopher. Then I had to make my way back to school for Acting. This was a thoroughly frustrating class. We started out with the animal work and this time, I was a squirrel. Kathy then asked me in the analysis if I thought that the animal work was helping me because my visualization was so good. I told her that I was not finding the animal work helpful because I couldn't find just one animal that encapsulated my character (well, yes I actually could but Kathy didn't like it so I have to change) and she tried to point me in the right direction, while confusing and frustrating me more. Then we worked on the Le Bahn tempos which also confused me and then we had to find one for ourselves and a song that went along. The only song I could think of was the song for the Marines and I only knew one line of the song, which annoyed Kathy. Then we were given individual assignments that fit our characters. Mine is that I have to go view a trial at the Old Bailey. Then the week was over and I got to relax and enjoy my comfortable bed that night after Laura and I did a little shopping on the High Street.
On Saturday, I woke up with a little time to spend relaxing and then had to run to King's Cross to meet up with one of my high school friends, Max, who was coming into London from Scotland. He was bringing along a friend from his program and another girl who was studying at Oxford and we had a great day traipsing around Leicester Square. After I picked them up at King's Cross, we went to the National Gallery and looked at the paintings for a little while. I absolutely adore that museum, it is amazing. We then had dinner at Spaghetti House which I had been wanting to try and it turned out quite good. The we wandered over to the Cafe Nero by Covent Garden and then made our way to a pub right next to the Opera House called The Chandos. It was very nice and I got to hear all about how Scotland is trying to become an independent country because Max and Ally are interning at the Scottish Parliament. We then returned home at a reasonable time and they spent the night at my dorm.
This morning, Sunday, we woke up around 11 am and got breakfast at my favorite French cafe in Kensington. Natalie then took the bus back to Oxford and I escorted Max and Ally to their hotel near King's Cross and then we were going to go to the British Museum. It was super windy and rainy and cold as we were doing this and once we found the hotel, I decided it was my time to bow out and make my way home since I was dying from the cold. I got back to Kensington as it was getting dark and got some dinner and managed to thaw out in my room. I did some work and have spent the night rehearsing monologues and trying to find a picture for acting.
And that has been my week. Hope the next one goes well.