Thursday, June 7, 2012

The Almighty Salome

Last evening, I officially joined an acting class led by a well-known, sultry-voiced thespian, Salome Jens. Any veteran of LA or of the stage will recognize the name. 

Wednesday nights are a scene study class in which either two actors perform a scene or one actor performs a monologue.  Actors are encouraged to focus on being in the moment, connecting in a real and spontaneous way with text and other actors, and to essentially exercise their technique in front of an audience of peers. This may not sound unusual, but the flip side is that the scene is not to be "performed" but merely to be rehearsed - so that if an actor is suddenly outside of herself and the moment, she will not bull through under the pressure of expected performance, but will instead work publicly and vulnerably, showing the personal evolution, the push-pull, and the various levels of struggle.

I greatly look forward to applying this technique and becoming comfortable "working through" moments in front of an audience, peers or no. Whether on-stage or on-camera, there is always an audience or a crew. There are people watching, judging, engaging, scoffing, expecting and so on. We must, as actors, be so familiar with this dynamic that we can both welcome it and ignore it. Obviously, in theatre, actors must develop a necessary method of doublethink where we are truly living in the moment, but are also aware of the energy and response of the audience so that we might alter our performance accordingly. 

Saturdays - sense memory work.  Also, assigned reading includes Lee Strasberg's The Dream of Passion (an excellent method book and an easy read). Now, I must find some fresh scenes and monologues - off to Samuel French!


  1. I have a couple of friends in that class - Rachel B. and Tom N. They love her.

    1. Ooooo - thanks for the heads up cause now I can single them out via Ms. D!