Hello, this Erin Lovelace, an associate member of Wishbone Theatre Collective! For the past 5 weeks I have been taking a scene study class with Profiles Theatre's Artistic Director Darrell Cox. What an adventure it has been! It’s funny how fast one can forget the fundamentals of his or her craft, but can pick them back up in the classroom.
My goal in taking this course was to make acting fun again and to relieve some of the stress it has been creating. The class consists of ten students; each paired with another student in the class and given a scene from a play. Gruesome Playground by Rajiv Joseph is the play that my scene partner, Julian, and I were given. We are required to rehearse six hours outside of class and then participate in a four-hour class on Tuesdays. The process has been eye opening! Here I am a girl with little confidence in her acting abilities as of late, acting in front of other professionals and a very vocal and important Artistic Director.
Since being in Chicago, acting has become a bit of a frustration for me, as I am never quite satisfied with my performance. Darrell’s direction mostly reflects that of Sanford Meisner. Some of Meisner’s beliefs are as follows: “Less’s more," “The truth of ourselves is the root of our acting,” and “You can’t fake emotion.” Darrell’s lessons are not about getting to the moment or acting for the audience. Instead he wants us act for what we have on stage with us: fellow actors, the script, and ourselves. It seems simple enough to do, but always easier said than done.
So why would I try so hard to be an actor if it wasn’t fun and if it didn’t mean something to me? Why is it always about what other people think or say? It's like Dr. Seuss once wrote, “Be who you are and say how you feel because those who mind don’t matter and those who matter don’t mind.”
So, I was chosen by the illustrious friends of Wishbone, Hobo Junction, to direct a short play in Hobo Robo 4! This year's theme is Hobos in Hollywood, so each piece is geared toward the entertainment industry. The scripts range from a inappropriate relationship between Optimus Prime & Michael Bay to a southern bell trying to produce her first screen play. Neither of these are mine though. My piece, Lifetime Achievement Award, is written by the New York based duo Philip Kaplan and Stephanie Walter It's about a veteran entertainment icon receiving a Lifetime Achievement Award for his time and talent spent in the industry. Albino Schwartz (the veteran), being an ancient, decrepit, and senile old man, gives life to this pice by making inappropriate remarks throughout his acceptance speech. I'm really excited about directing this piece. Its edgy, funny, and classic; and with Wishbone actor, Aaron Weiner (Returning from Madness and Incendiary), and Wishbone Intern, Rush Marler, on board to play the MC Bart and Albino respectively, I'm sure that the piece will be a hit! Being that this festival of short plays is a competition, I'm gonna pull out all the stops to guarantee there will be some knee-slapping going on! So, make sure to attend this festival and VOTE FOR ME. Here are the deets:
To celebrate the life of a dear friend and acting partner, JR Strzelec, Second City will be hosting a memorial in his honor on Monday March 12that 2pm. JR was a kind and funny person who was able to make a lot of people laugh doing comedy in Chicago, so now Chicago is giving back. We will be doing scenes and improv from his past shows and be able to thank JR for the time that he gave us. If you were lucky enough to know JR, then please join us and celebrate the life of our favorite Jedi Knight!