Dates: 28 February to 2 March 2014
Venue: Ashprington Village Hall
Over the past few days I have been working with my good friend Jack, preparing a new web site for Nearly Real Theatre – it’s not ready yet, but will be soon – as part of that process we were looking round the internet to see what other people are doing – and here’s the thing! …
Most of the solo we found is not autobiographical solo – there are obviously other solo festivals, but only a few of us are specifically doing autobiographical solo – auto-ethnographic theatre to give it it’s academic name – we, here in Totnes, Tanya Taylor Rubenstein in Santa Fe, Tracey Erin Smith at SoulO in Toronto, Josh Kornbluth (www.joshkornbluth.com) in California (he’s narrowed it even further to autobiographical performances about his relationship with his father!!) ..
Autobiographical solo theatre as a transformational process is an extra-ordinary experience and opportunity … by evacuating our own familiar story and fully allowing ourselves to step into our characters, to embody them and give them life on stage …we get to be observers of our history from a different vantage point … and this is where the magic resides … this is place of new possibilities and new futures … here’s a story:
When I was rehearsing with Mark Drummond, my director, I was having trouble finding my way into the character of my great grandfather – I spoke about him to Mark for a moment, as a way of finding a route in and also as a way of overcoming my anxiety at not being able to create him on stage – Mark said – just perform … so I did, I gave the speech I had written .. it was OK but inauthentic it was me, Mo, not Morris my great grandpa, speaking … and then Mark instructed me to become him … I never even knew him, I said … it doesn’t matter says Mark … your body will know him and will know what to say … and in that moment something quite extraordinary happened …. I knew him …
As I changed location and position in the room … and I shifted my posture … standing more upright and straight … and I began to speak in a Romanian accent … suddenly I had a whole body experience of knowing my great grandfather … who he was … what he was like … what he valued and stood for … how he spoke … moved … carried himself … I saw the world for a split second through his eyes … and I knew absolutely that his blood moves in my blood … and before I even began to speak his monologue I said across the generations, across the invisible world … “I stand for what you stood for then Dada, and I stand for that today ..”
I don’t know if you have ever seen the film A Field of Dreams, the scene when the young Archie Graham steps off the baseball field into a different time and becomes the old Doc Graham – but my experience was like that … a reality that crossed time and space … I was my great grandpa and I knew my great grandpa … and they were one …
So if you want to experience the power and magic of solo and transformation come join us on the winter school and begin to work on your own show now .. there are a few places left
Call me now for details on 07838 196628.
Looking forward to being with you.