Friday, October 17, 2008

Size, Extension, Volume

In Acting class, we've been working scenes and monologues in exaggerated "19th century" and "R&N" ("realism & naturalism") styles, to find size and extension as well as truth.  My "R&N" work has been getting positive notes, but I'm struggling with size and extension.  Sustaining large, fluid gestures does not come easily to me, and vocally, I'm either bouncing between low and high pitch without modulating in the middle or I'm monotone.  The voice coach tells me that my pitch range in speaking is greater than what most American's use, but I'm flattening out on stage, particularly when I pick up the volume.  At the moment, I seem to be more film than stage ready (I did not get notes about being monotone or bouncing between chest and head voice while working at Oklahoma Shakes, so these are issues that do seem exaggerated by the context of working in the studio, under the microscope.)

We audition for Texas Shakes in two weeks.   I've been working on an audition pair--Leonato and Malvolio--that seems right for the season, but I'm not comfortable enough with either. Malvolio is particularly tough.  So, I'm leaning to a pair that is comfortable for me, and provides good contrast in several ways:  Shylock and Petruchio.  The trouble is that this pair is not quite right for the roles I'm looking to fill at Texas Shakes:  Capulet, Fr. Lawrence, Tartuffe, Boyet.  I like the way the pair shows me, though.  My individuality comes through.

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