Finding Truth On Stage - Acting and Directing A Zoom Class with DAOR Instructor Rod McFadden Eight 90-minute sessions Wednesdays, March 24-May 12 $50
The great actors have one thing in common - they don’t act. Instead, they “live truthfully” on stage. And really great directors don’t direct - but instead they help their actors discover and move closer to truthfulness.” This is how Rod McFadden describes the underlying principle of his new zoom class, “Finding Truth On Stage”
To register, please send check for $50 to: Roanne Butier, 2516 Ptarmigan Dr, Apt #2 (Entry 15), Walnut Creek, CA 94595.
Make out check to: 'Drama Association of Rossmoor' and write 'McFadden' in the memo line. Indicate preference for actor or director.
Acting Our Lives: Performance Memoir A Zoom Class with DAOR Instructor Bobbi Ausubel 8 Tuesdays, 11 a.m.-1 p.m. Begins April 20 Cost: $80 To register, contact Bobbi Ausubel: 650-743-4212 firstname.lastname@example.org
Participants do not need drama or writing experience. Newcomers are always welcome to join with fresh ideas and will find support. Rossmoorians rich lives have been long and varied, therefore forgotten and remembered events pop up in opening weeks’ exercises as we share life memories with each other. Participants then write a story from life experience. Ideas and stories are shared with the group. then edited to become dramatic monologues or scenes. One gets support to learn to re-write for drama rather than literature. Finally, participants get coaching to act their scenes, including one private session with the teacher/director.
An optional performance will be presented at a well-attended showcase, when allowed, and is usually recorded for Chanel 28.
The class is taught by the experienced acting coach, Bobbi Ausubel, who has had many years’ experience in theater as a director and playwright.
Come have fun!
Theater History: Plays of August Wilson A Zoom Class with DAOR Instructor Don Kaplan 8 Thursdays, 1:30 - 3:30 Begins January 14 Cost: $50 plus $7 materials fee
Don Kaplan's next Theater History Class will begin with the timely and significant plays of August Wilson. Plays will be read and discussed with the material furnished by the instructor.
Please note there is limited enrollment for this class.
TIPS FOR ACTORS USING ZOOM, FACETIME, ETC.
Screen acting requires some different skills than stage acting. Decide if your goal is to maintain your stage acting skills or improve your screen acting skills. If you Google “Michael Caine on Acting” you will get a good sense of the differences.
Here are some things members of the Artistic Committee found trying to do a short play using ZOOM. (Thank you to Ed Kimak, Gail Wetherbee and Kevin O'Byrne.)
Your results and your partner's are highly dependent on your Zoom software, camera and microphone, lighting and the room that you are in. Your sound and picture may be great, but your partner's not so much. So don't get frustrated if all that scuttles your chances for an Oscar.
Don't act alone and critique the recording! That's the equivalent of doing your scene lines in front of the bathroom mirror. That's not helpful since you can begin to 'play to yourself,' i.e. "that gesture/facial expression looks terrific, so I'll use it." That locks you into things that you think "look great" totally disregarding the fact that you must always be reacting to your scene partner. That reaction will always be different (sometimes microscopically so) depending on your partner. Locking yourself into a 'favorite look' will give you a prefabricated performance.
It is much more difficult to engage with a screen than with a live actor so keep you eye on your scene partner not your image on the screen. However this partly depends on the location of your camera since one can wind up looking down at one's scene partner and not at the camera. Try both ways.
Do I play to the image of my scene partner that I see or to the camera that will capture it? (Even a small shift in eyes is apparent.) If you're doing this simply for your own amusement, then it really doesn't matter. But if you're doing it with a viewing audience in mind, your reading will have more immediacy and be more dramatic if you play exclusively to the camera. Try it and see.
Cue pickup is more difficult since it depends on minimal sound or video ‘latency’ among the actors (i.e. delay) which is tricky using Zoom. You might try using a headset.
With such visual immediacy provided by Zoom:
Script reading and page turning become more distracting (more than for Naked Stage productions). Memorization is much better but that presents its own difficulties.
Seeing one’s own image in real time can make actors too self-conscious of how they ‘look.
Try different locations in your home or outdoors until you find one that highlights you and not the background. Check for bright spots and adjust.
You can record any ZOOM meeting, so record your acting sessions and see what needs improvement.
Are you looking into the camera?
Can you see your expressions?
If you only see the top of your head because you are reading you need to change where the script is located.
Is the cue pick-up quick enough?
Is enough of your body visible to convey what you are playing?
To enroll when DAOR classes restart: Place check payable to DAOR in DAOR mailbox in Gateway. Include your name, phone/email, and class title. Please mark envelope with class title.
All events take place at Hillside Performing Arts Studio (PAS) (Las Trampas), unless otherwise noted.
Comedy Class – Let’s Have A Laugh (2) POSTPONED Instructor: Jean Wilcox
Last year’s “Let’s Have a Laugh” was most successful, with full class and very good script. The only problem was there was only ONE man, so this time let’s have more men and a more diverse offering. A maximum of 12 students will enable us to enjoy various skits such as God dealing with a balky Adam and Eve, an over-zealous security guard, a middle class lady addresses a group of theater lovers, and several short scenes of couples in restaurants.
“The knowledge that every day there is something more to learn, something higher to reach for, something new to make for others, makes each day infinitely precious” -- Uta Hagen