Answers 4 Actors

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Movies and Theater in Los Angeles, California

I saw Clint Eastwood’s film, the Changeling, and was touched by the performances of the actors and story. Angelina Jolie, once again, takes on a difficult role. And once again she handles it with strength and a truth to the character that I truly respect. Seeing this film reminds me again how such a short time ago, women were dismissed, their words and their worth.

A couple weeks ago, I first went to see a dear friend and wonderful actress, Ann Ryerson, in some new plays. I applaud groups who are writing and developing their work. Although I didn’t like all the pieces I appreciate the process that writers must go through to find the “gold” and you do need to get it on its feet at some point with actors and an audience to find out what’s really working or not! So for the Fierce Backbone Preview Night I prefer to share what I liked. Of the 8 pieces I think the strongest pieces were, Hooks, The Course We Set and Cleo’s Girls. The actors in all the pieces were strong and I look forward to seeing more work from this group.

Last Monday night, I had the pleasure of attending the performance of Most Happy Fella by Frank Loesser with the Musical Theatre Guild’s Broadway in Concert Series. I have always loved this musical. The score is so exciting. As usual with this group the singers were strong and soared with the minimal amount of type they get to rehearse. There is one more performance Nov 23 out in Thousand Oaks. Go out and see this group. You will recognize some of the songs I’m sure!

And finally this last week I went to a screening of Slumdog Millionaire. LOVED IT. The description I had been given didn’t tell me about the seriousness of the story. I don’t want to share too much information about the story. I would just like to recommend that you see it. Actors were wonderful and seeing India in this story really touched me.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Actors are People Too.

I have coached actors professionally for over 20 years. I am shocked still after all these years how people treated actors. Yes of course there are difficult actors but there are also difficult waiters, businessmen, clerks, politicians, CEOS (lots of them) and yet actors are put up to ridicule. I realize they have chosen to attempt this difficult career but there is no reason to treat them with such disrespect.
Actors are people too. They have their own fears, their own opinions and their own limitations JUST LIKE YOU. So their job is to create a real person, JUST LIKE YOU. And sometimes you don't like what you see because if you looked at yourself, you wouldn't look like what you see.

I so respect the actors I work with. That doesn't mean that I am not tough on them. Yes I am. But I never ask them to do something that I wouldn't ask of myself. Can you say the same thing?

Actors are willing to search their souls. Most people can't even tell the truth once a day let alone in front of loads up gum-chewing, cigarette smoking gaffers.

I challenge anyone to get in front of a camera, lights and 40 people who chew, roll their eyes and are bored and you have to show emotions you wouldn't show in front of anyone you loved let alone 40 people you don't even know.

So stop it! You don't understand how they do it, fine. Just don't put someone down because you can't do what they do. We respect what you do, why not do the same for everyone else.