Actors Wear Black

September 10, 2008 at 9:11 am 2 comments

Actors wear black.  That’s just an observation.  They also stand around in groups talking at the same time, not to each other and to no one in particular. To the air really, as they practice their monologues, hanging out by the bookstore or on the steps up into IAF, preparing to face the theatre faculty, auditioning for their place in the theatre department for the year.

Dancers wear black, too.  So would I if I had to bear the scrutiny of those 6 dance teachers staring at me with their  arms crossed, assessing, judging.  Was that a raised eyebrow of surprised happiness? Disapproval? Skepticism? Certainly judgment.  Certainly intimidating.

Back to judgment.  It’s really all about judgment.  An audition that is.  What do these young artists have?  What do they need?  How can we use it?  How can we stretch it?  How does this combination of talents fit together best, in order to produce a Beethoven Symphony, a series of plays that Howard won’t let me announce yet, or a balanced dance concert that won’t require every dancer to rehearse until 9:30 every day?

A string quartet requires 2 violins, 1 viola and a cello.  But there are only 4 violas and 13 violinists.  5 cellists.  That means 4 string quartets leaves 5 violinists and one cello with nothing to do.  A piano trio puts a pianist to work and  requires a cello and violin.  Now we’re down to 4 violins in the cold.  So buy a teaching piece that has been written for those 4 violins and be done with it.  Maybe in a normal school, but not here.  We only play concert music.  When do four violins play together in the standard concert repertoire?  Never.   So rethink.  Maybe a couple of quartets, a couple of trios, Bartok wrote some violin duos that are always useful…

By tomorrow this time, these decisions will be made.  Of course they’ll be tweaked and refined, quartet members will be certain they should play Brahms and not Haydn, dancers will be confident they’ve been placed in the wrong class, and actors will be know they’ve been miscast.  They’d be wrong.  You grow by doing what makes you uncomfortable, by doing what you thought you couldn’t, by facing your fear, and proving wrong those who’ve said you can’t or shouldn’t.

It’s what we do here every day.  I may stick my head into an Algebra class this fall…
Now THERE’S some discomfort…

Entry filed under: daily happenings. Tags: , , , .

Welcome to Art In 3D What a weekend.

2 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Craig  |  September 15, 2008 at 7:02 am

    Lurking around waiting for another installment…. : )

  • 2. A-M  |  September 15, 2008 at 9:48 am

    I love it!


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September 2008


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