Focused on actors reaching their full potential.

Meisner Foundation class goals

One of the most important things an actor can learn in Meisner Foundation is the ability to unite body, mind and action. When you successfully perform the foundation exercises, what you feel, think, and say become one thing. If you watch yourself in your daily life, you might sometimes catch yourself feeling one thing, thinking another and saying a third. The result…

Acting Class Danger #3

Danger #3: Judgement. Judgement in terms of placing a label on someone. Judgement in terms of taking some middle class values (or upper or lower, or whatever our story is) and labelling someone depending on how they fit in relation to our personal view of the world. If you label, or “pigeonhole” someone you are no longer working with a human being,…

Acting Class Danger #2

Danger #2: Niceness. In an impromptu discussion last night, we talked about how necessary, and how difficult it is, to break through our “Canadian code of conduct”, our Canadian culture of niceness. How we need to break through this culture of niceness to access some stronger, deeper emotions. Those stronger, deeper emotions that we know exist in all of us, but that we don’t…

Acting Class Danger #1

DANGER #1: Confidence… Don’t be confident. You will gain confidence going through the process of training, but, it will be a truly deeper confidence; who you are, exactly as you are, moment to moment. If you have anxiety, for example, and block it out with a layer of confidence, eventually you are going to have all sorts of neurosis popping…

Expanding into a role

An actor always works to ‘expand’ into a role rather than ‘shrink’ into a role. It’s a terrible feeling when you ‘shrink’ into a role. This is something that was never explained to me when I was an actor in training, but looking back over my work, I can see when I’ve had the experience of expansion, and when I’ve…

The Ultimate Actor

The ultimate actor, to me, is a boundaryless actor. A boundaryless actor who is in control. As actors, we train to express our authentic self in all moments, in all situations. Even when the stakes are high, when you know 1000’s of people are watching you – you can express your self fully and authentically. That, to me, is the fundamental basis of training in acting.

Hollywood vs Acting

Last week, I spoke to someone who is writing a book on the movie “Revenge of the Nerds”. The book depicts Revenge of the Nerds as a kind of turning point when Nerds went mainstream. In the process of this popularizing of “nerdom”, a nerds lifestyle was sort of co-opted. He used the example of nerd glasses being a style, sometimes worn when people don’t even need glasses. The whole culture has become almost a caricature of itself.

Class Moment

Nathaniel very ably demonstrated contacting his rage in class last night. He not only garnered a spontaneous round of applause from the class, he successfully drew the attention of the Vancouver Police Department.

Lifting the veil

In training as an actor we break ourselves of all sorts of habits, or patterns of living, which don’t benefit us in acting. A big part of the initial training in our classes is about opening up to a “bigger you”; using your full intelligence, experiencing what you really think, what you really feel, not a dumbed down version of yourself.