Behind the scenes at Orlando Shakespeare Theater

Mid-Year Review: Classes, Rehearsals, & the Holidays

There’s a ton of stuff going on for me at Orlando Shakes and it’s only about to get more intense! I’m still working on A Tuna Christmasprepping for rehearsals of Romeo and Juliet and Cymbeline, which starts next week!! As well as curriculum planning for our upcoming Winter Session of children’s classes, and taking part in the various acting/business classes they offer us interns here at the theatre.

Rus Blackwell

I took two very illuminating and thrilling classes this week. One was an Acting for the Camera class with Rus Blackwell. Rus has worked a lot in film and theatre, all over the country, and I really appreciated the wealth of knowledge he gave us and the spirit of fun with which he conveyed it. We got to film a monologue, and then make adjustments to it more appropriate to film as opposed to the stage. It’s a very delicate process, and one that I’ve struggled with in the past. I did a number of student films at Ohio University, one even managed to make it’s way to a few film festivals, but camera work and the lifestyle that comes with it has always been a challenge for me. I love films, and I love theatre, and I hope that in the future I can make myself the kind of actor that can exist in both worlds.

Anne Hering

The other class was with Jim Helsinger and Anne Hering on an acting technique called Dropping In. The technique was developed specifically at Shakespeare and Company by Tina Packer, and is used to make oneself more open and vulnerable to the often daunting and lofty world of Shakespearean plays. Two actors face each other, and have two “facilitators” sitting near them. They feed words from the scene into your ear, as well as possible situations that might trigger emotion from your own life, in order to better inform the emotional life of the character. This might seem a bit esoteric, and I hope I’m making it understandable. It’s a dream of mine to one day be truly articulate enough in my craft to confidently teach someone about this process of opening oneself, and that’s a skill that I am so grateful to be able to develop with the Youth Classes. Regardless, the Dropping In exercise took me to an extremely vulnerable and truthful place, simple and complicated all at once.

On a lighter note, Tuna actor Michael Baldwin threw a little shindig at the gorgeous actor housing Orlando Shakes provides. Here are some pics:

Tuna Party

Megan Pickrell and Amanda Leakey

Tuna Party

Ryan Czerwonko and Michael Baldwin

Tuna Party

Michael Baldwin

I’m still in shock that I only have to wear a t-shirt on most days. I love Florida.
Happy Holidays!

Ryan

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