"I’m not what I was 10 years ago, or 10 minutes ago. I am all of that and then some. I can't live inside yesterday's pain, but I cannot live without it. THERE'S A MADNESS IN ME AND THAT MADNESS SETS ME FREE.!!!"
George C. Wolfe (Director and playwright)
Actors... welcome to ARTIST/CIVILIAN. This space is a sanctuary for artists. This space is open and is non-judgmental. The artists sanctuary is a space where we... come as we are, we purge, we testify, we give offering, we praise, we submit, we admit, we confess and maybe obsess - for the art. Our job description - our responsibility, is to affect and change the world with our art in a great capacity.
An actor is supposed to tell the characters story to the best of their ability. And that is falling in love with the character, proving your love to the character, giving the character everything it needs to feel loved and honored. In this space, this sanctuary... THIS IS OUR FREEDOM!!!
"The main factor in any form of creativeness is the life of a human spirit, that of the actor and his part, their joint feelings and subconscious creation." ~ Constantine Stanislavsky
Artist/Civilian is a basic idea dealing with the duality in all of us. And this duality is what I call - the artist and the civilian. The civilian is what we present to the world. It is what we want the world to believe about us. The artist is simply the truth. And when do you get to tell the truth? To your family, friends, coworkers, significant others.
ARTIST/CIVILIAN is my technique that I created based on Constantine Stanislavsky, Sanford Meisner, Lee Strasberg and Stella Adler and a little Freud. I am well aware of this huge undertaking and I'm ready for it.
The ARTIST/CIVILIAN technique begins with simply... breathing. Breathe in the artist and breathe out the civilian. Take nice deep diaphragmatic breath‘s… In through your nose and out through your mouth. Allow air and sound to release each time. And allow whatever that sound is, to be released because you are in a free space, an open space, an artist space. The non-judgmental little boy space, little girl space, or little they space. ARTIST/CIVILIAN speaks to self judgment. The civilian can block, control, monitor, disassociate, disconnect, compartmentalize and most of all… judge. We all have a common duality, which is the 'conscious' and the 'unconscious'. Sigmund Freud says there are three components. The 'ego', 'id' and 'super ego'. Which basically is the mind, body, and spirit. When we acknowledge our 'stuff' without civilian judgement, the accessibility for the artist becomes much simpler.
“You can’t learn to act unless you’re criticized. If you tie the criticism to your childhood insecurities you’ll have a terrible time. Instead, you must take criticism objectively pertaining it only to the work being done.“ ~Sanford Meisner
My ARTIST/CIVILIAN technique speaks to directly to the actor, in which the mind, body and spirit is required in its totality. This (pointing to your diaphragm, core, spirit, essence, your 'stuff'), is your instrument. As a singer needs to know the range, a dancer needs to know their physical capability, a painter or sculpture needs to know their canvas or tools - we actors need to know how (pointing to your diaphragm, core, spirit, essence, your 'stuff') this works. How do I access it, readily? How do I gage too much or too little? How do I know if this is good or not-authenticity?
“Life beats you down and crushes the soul, and art reminds you that you have one.” ~Stella Adler
Art is neither good nor bad, right nor wrong - but true. We are acknowledging our truth without apology. We will not say words or set a scene or monologue to an exact rhythm, tempo or energy. We will create a life so rich, that the words can't help but to live - off the page. Anyone can say words, but an artist must create a life for the words to live. We must be definitive in the storytelling. We have to honor the characters story by utilizing our instrument to the best of its ability.
Using ARTIST/CIVILIAN, we can name and store in our memory bank a wealth and feast of accessible emotions, mobility, agility and actors acrobatics. And we will also and/or possibly discover that the CIVILIAN'S nightmare is the ARTIST'S buffet. BREATHE IN THE ARTIST AND BREATHE OUT THE CIVILIAN.
“The civilian is trying to hide what the artist must reveal.” ~JemalMcNeil