Director

Q&A with RSC head of voice Kate Godfrey

BY TIM BANO via www.thestage.co.uk With a remit covering vocal techniques, teaching dialects and interpreting text, Kate Godfrey coaches the Royal Shakespeare Company’s actors to make the most challenging lines comprehensible on stage. She tells Tim Bano why striving for clarity rather than sounding posh is the key to making yourself understood A few years into his career as a lawyer, the ancient Roman orator Cicero, the man who practically invented many of the techniques of modern rhetoric, decided he needed a voice coach. There’s an extraordinary continuity that two millennia later, ahead of the West End opening of Imperium, the Royal Shakespeare Company’s adaptation of Robert Harris’ Cicero trilogy, Kate Godfrey is working with the cast on some of the same techniques Apollonius Molon us...

How to Become a TV Director

BY BENJAMIN LINDSAY via www.backstage.com Making it onto the small screen as an actor is one thing, but doing it as a director is another thing entirely. With this Backstage Guide, we give you the tips and tricks you need to build the experience, reel, and relationships that will one day lead to you sitting in the director’s chair while helming television’s next big thing.  What is the responsibility of the director? At the end of the day, a director’s responsibility is to organize, facilitate, and capture the desired footage that will ultimately make up a film or television program. While their day-to-day responsibilities may differ based on the medium in which they’re working, they are always one of the top above-the-liners and authority figures on set, and more often than not, they have...

Phylicia Rashad on Directing

BY DIEP TRAN via www.americantheatre.org Phylicia Rashad, best known as an actor (including a Tony-winning turn in A Raisin in the Sun), is bulking up her directing résumé. She’s next helming Stephen Adly Guirgis’s Our Lady of 121st Street at New York City’s Signature Theatre (May 1-June 10) and Jen Silverman’s The Roommate at the Steppenwolf Theatre Company in Chicago (June 21-Aug. 6). You haven’t worked with Guirgis or Silverman before. Why did you choose these plays? That’s attractive to me—something I haven’t done, a playwright that I haven’t worked with. I just really love the work, and it just makes me happy to do it. And then when I get over being tired, I’m happy again. They’re very good plays. If I didn’t think they were good plays, trust me, I would just say, “No, thank you,” and...

An Antidote to Digital Dehumanization? Live Theater

An award-winning playwright argues that the in-the-moment interplay between actors and audience can help us cope with an increasingly virtual world. BY AYAD AKHTAR via www.nytimes.com I recently learned that a group of neuroscientists have discovered that watching live theater can synchronize the heartbeats of an audience. One of the researchers put it this way: “Experiencing the live theater performance was extraordinary enough to overcome group differences and produce a common physiological experience.” The living presence of the audience is what strikes me as so singular about the theater, why I love working in the theater so much and why I believe in the particular importance of our beloved form right now. But first, let me say: I am not hopeful about where we are as a nation — as a sp...

One Week Left to Register for 2018 StrawHat Auditions

Only 1 week left to register for the 2018 StrawHat Auditions! APPLICATION DEADLINE : February 1, 2018 at NOON. Audition Dates: March 16-18, 2018 Audition Location: Pace University – New York City Registration: Complete the online form and submit your non-refundable annual registration fee (also known as your subscription), then mail your hard-copy application and supporting materials (see INSTRUCTIONS). Apply for a Song & Monologue, Monologue Only, or Dancer Who Sings audition (see AUDITION TYPES). Every submission received by the deadline date is given consideration for an appointment (see CRITERIA). Auditions: All three days of auditions are open to Musical Theatre and non-singing performers. Friday appointments are reserved for those who are available for immediate year-round ...

Oscar Nominations 2018: The Complete List

via www.variety.com Oscar nominations for the 90th annual awards were announced on Tuesday morning from the Samuel Goldwyn Theater in Beverly Hills, Calif. Academy President John Bailey was joined by Tiffany Haddish and Andy Serkis to reveal the nominees in 24 categories. Guillermo del Toro’s “The Shape of Water” continued its awards show streak, leading the pack with 13 nominations. “Dunkirk” followed behind with eight nods and Martin McDonagh’s “Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri”with seven. All three films earned best picture nominations. The rest of the category was rounded out by “Call Me By Your Name,” “Darkest Hour,” “Get Out,” “Phantom Thread,” “Lady Bird,” and “The Post.” The Academy Awards — hosted by Jimmy Kimmel for the second time — will air live on ABC on March 4. Here...

Paving the Way: Five Directors Share Their Wisdom

BY FABIANA CABRAL via www.americantheatre.org Longtime director Susan H. Schulman recently told me a revealing anecdote about her parents. “They went to see the first show I directed Off-Broadway, all the way down in the Bowery,” Schulman recalled. “They were very excited to come, and they schlepped down to watch this little show. And at the intermission, my father said: ‘It’s wonderful, we love it, we love it! Now, tell me honey—what did you do?’” The paradox of the theatre director is that your work is evident everywhere, and also nowhere. In that sense, the field has not changed much. Theatre directing is still not for the faint of heart: It involves a passion and aptitude for visual and textual storytelling. It requires knowledge of every element of a production, from acting to technic...

REGISTER NOW for the Best Practices: Inclusive and Accessible Theatre Symposium

It’s not too late to register for the Best Practices: Inclusive and Accessible Theatre Symposium! HOSTED BY: The American Alliance for Theatre & Education WHEN: February 2 – 4, 2018 WHERE: The Kentucky Center, 501 W Main St, Louisville, KY 40202 Join theatre educators, artists and scholars from near and far for this exciting gathering in downtown Louisville, KY. Hosted by the Kentucky Center for the Arts, one of the nation’s most accessible performing arts complexes, this weekend intensive will offer keynote speakers, hands-on workshops, and a sensory-friendly performance including a pre-show touch tour. Come explore one of the country’s most arts-rich communities, and leave with practical tools you can use at home: in your classroom, and your theatre! Keynote: Storyteller, Playw...

2018 Lincoln Center Theatre Directors Lab Application NOW OPEN

WHAT: 2018 Lincoln Center Theatre Directors Lab WHEN: August 6-25, 2018 WHERE: Lincoln Center Theatre (New York City) APPLICATION DEADLINE: March 12, 2018 VIEW APPLICATION & MORE INFORMATION HERE The 2018 Directors Lab Focus The Dream Lab: A Chance to do what you have not yet tried. Look at your professional life in the theater – outside of what you’re doing to make a living. We’ll be asking in the application what you’ve done so far. In the 2018 Lab we’re interested in making it possible for you to try something you haven’t yet done, with the support, expertise and encouragement of others who might know something about what you dream of trying to do. You in turn, may offer your experience and artistry to others. About the LCT Directors Lab The LCT Directors Lab is a developmental prog...

How to Take the Elusive Note ‘Throw it Away’

BY: MARCI LIROFF via www.backstage.com In a scene from director Mike White’s newest film, “Brad’s Status,” actor Jenna Fischer was asked to taste spaghetti sauce her husband (Ben Stiller) had just made. The actor found herself going through all sorts of machinations to find the intention of the scene. She realized, as she told an audience during a panel discussion following an L.A. film screening, that the enthusiasm and fun environment on set was all she needed to tap into to simply “love the …sauce.” I’ve given countless actors the direction “Just throw it away” in an effort to have them keep it simple and stop overthinking. I asked actor Joe Pantoliano (“Sense8,” “The Sopranos”) to share his thoughts with me on this topic: “ ‘Throw it away’ is a code-word action indicating less, q...

The World Really Is a Stage, Scripts and All, to an Actor With Autism

BY: LAURA COLLINS-HUGHES via www.nytimes.com SYRACUSE — Early Thursday morning at the cafe across the street from Syracuse Stage, an actor named Mickey Rowe ducked in from the drizzly chill just as a barista unlocked the door. Starring as Christopher Boone in Simon Stephens’s “The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time,” he had a matinee to perform in a couple of hours, and an interview to give first. On Broadway, where the play was a Tony Award-winning hit, it ran eight times a week, with two actors alternating the demanding role of Christopher, a 15-year-old with autism who sets out to solve a mystery. In Syracuse, Mr. Rowe — thought to be the first openly autistic actor to play the role — does all nine shows a week. For him, such arduous work is a point of pride: evidence that an...

A Look into the Role of an Intimacy Director

What is an Intimacy Director? Writer Eli Keel of Leo Weekly explores the subject of onstage intimacy, the specific role of an intimacy director, and the process of their work.  Keel spoke in his article to  Alicia Rodis, a member of Intimacy Directors International about the “four pillars” of intimacy direction: Consent: Get the performers’ permission. Communication: Talk throughout the process aboutwhat is/isn’t working. Choreography: Don’t add anything extra. Context: Don’t change something in another scene without communicating about adjusting the choreography and seeking consent to do so. You can read the entire article here: How a kiss is not a kiss, and punches are pulled in acting What are your thoughts about intimacy direction? Should more theatres integrate this ...