Dear Directors & Choreographers:
You forget that the new ones don’t get this information. Many performers come to an audition, get cast, and never actually take a class. NEVER.
So, it becomes your job to outline the importance of specific rehearsal behavior. Here is a recap, what you should tell all your new actors (and your seasoned ones could use the reminder):
Come to rehearsal ready to give more than you get.
Spend more energy then your fellow actors. This will make you alive and give you the largeness on stage called “stage presence.”
The constant giving, without limit, is the unique characteristic of a fine actor. If someone else gives more than you, top them. This is the secret to exciting theatre work.
Your job is to be imaginative FIRST, and technical SECOND.
Return to your research work constantly.
Always arrive before the call in order to be mentally, physically, and spiritually ready.
To be prepared is to be physically alert, energized and free of tension. (For instance, you are tense due to some problems in your life, or due to some conflict with someone in rehearsal. If you enter into that rehearsal with tension, you defeat your own cause and give power to the problem or people).
Bring physical objects that can stand for any hand props you may use, such as a piece of wood for a candle or a knife, a pencil for a flower, etc.…. so that your body will physically learn and the imagination can be stimulated by the sense of touch light, etc. (Although it would be better to bring in the real thing if at all possible).
Come committed each time to seeing a new aspect of your fellow actors. See in them more than they see in themselves.
Always go over in detail the previous rehearsal and incorporate all that work into the rehearsal. This requires work alone after rehearsal.
Wear clothes that help you create your character (length of dress, shoes, hats, overcoats, etc.). DO NOT wear anything anything distracting.
The word props comes from the word “properties” and referred to the “properties of the company”. Props should always be carefully placed in a safe place after rehearsal so that you can find them. They are traditionally considered sacred to the work.
Seek notes. Learn to love them.
Appreciate praise but never fully trust it.
To be an actor is to be a daredevil. You may be afraid but don’t let it stop you. In spite of uncertainty, not knowing and fear, act boldly, without hesitation and with full use of energy and joy.