* Warm-up: ZOMBIE! * Everyone walks around the room. * Someone is specified a ZOMBIE! * The ZOMBIE! picks a target at begins shambling towards them. * Do this as loudly and ZOMBIE!-like as possible. * If the ZOMBIE! is coming at you.... * Shout someone else's name. * Then that 'someone else' becomes the ZOMBIE! * Conducted story: * Tell the story in third person. * Follow & respect the voice/style that emerges in the story. * If there is no apparent voice or style, try to find it in the material you've heard so far. * First perform the exercise conducted, then *unconducted*. * i.e., conduct yourselves. * Then, do it self-conducted *without standing still*. * Move around the space. * Provide physical support/embodiment for offers. * Provide sound effects. * Perform abstract flocking where appropriate. * Follow the energy. * When somebody endows something, *everybody onstage* should hop in on developing it. * Similar to yesterday's scene painting. * Try to introduce dynamics: loud/soft, fast/slow, etc. * Jump on patterns INSTANTLY. * Never feel *bound* to doing narrative. * Always respond to the last thing said or done. * Your allegiance is to *that last offer*. * Don't worry about reincorporating/following a story. * Harold Openings: * Perform the same "unconducted story". * Then, follow it with three scenes. * Keep those opening scenes disparate/separated. * Don't moth-buzz around one topic. * ... or you'll end up unable to support the rest of the show. * Always be ready to go deeper/more emotional/more thematic with the suggestion. * This is especially useful for a dumb/'funny' suggestion. * They'll never suggest "facing your inevitable mortality". * They *will* suggest "dildo". * Again, try to follow/develop/heighten *only* the last offer. * If you feel stuck in the opening... * Just make the current thing *bigger*. * Committing like that will eventually turn that into something else. * Do this *instead* of dropping the current action and doing something else. * It's one of those "the only way out is through" situations. * You can explore/embiggen the *tiniest* choices. * Harolds! * Openings generate material. * i.e. themes, "rules", ideas, promises to the audience. * A "rule" might be: "In *this* Harold..." * "... a confident-enough person can make people pass out." * "... all the edits are accompanied by a 'whoosh' sound." * ... etc. * Some classicists argue that the opener includes three physical transformations of the ongoing action. * Then, 1st beats. * Three scenes without any interruptions from walk-ons or tag-outs. * Usually they're "small", 2-person scenes. * These are scenes that breathe, developing rich, full characters. * Related note: try, try, try not to edit a 1st-beat scene too early. * We *need* these worlds to develop. * They need details. * They need emotions. * They need weight. * ... or we can't build on them. * Ideally, when the lights come down on a first-beat scene, you should be thinking, "Dammit! We had SO MUCH MORE we could have done!" * 1st Group Game: * This is a palate-cleanser to follow the slow, rich scenes. * It's quick, high-energy, and abstract. * Instead of two people, the audience gets to see the whole cast. * Note: the group game must involve *everybody*. * It can actually be a group scene. * Usually it's something more abstract -- but it doesn't have to be. * This doesn't add information. * We still glean all our information from the opening. * Some classicists argue that the first group game includes only one physical transformation of the ongoing action. * 2nd beats * Each 2nd-beat scene expands on the world of its corresponding 1st-beat scene. * Tag-outs are okay, but only use them if necessary. * But don't speed up too much yet. * The trend: we get faster/more gamey as things go on. * We don't have to keep both (or any) characters from the 1st-beat scene. * But we *do* have to keep that *world*. * An advanced technique: * Don't even explore the world of the 1st beat, but explore its theme. * Instead of a breakup, we see a firing that *feels* like a breakup. * 2nd Group Game. * Some classicists argue that the second group game includes only one physical transformation of the ongoing action. * 3rd Beats: * This is where we start 'running'. * Edits are faster. * Things start folding together. * i.e. if you find inter-story connections organically, that's cool. * ... but don't force it. * You don't *need* inter-story connections. * Just don't resist them if they happen. * Note that finding inter-story connections in the 1st or 2nd beats is *not* cool. * It's limiting. * It gives you less 'separation' to draw on later on. * We draw on *everything* that's happened before. * In a textbook Harold, we get three more scenes. * But it's perfectly okay if we don't. * At this point, just *go*, even if you don't *know*. * Sure, on some level, this is always true. * But here especially, *speed* seems more important than having something awesome to set up. * Ideally, we end in an organic game/action that draws in everything we've seen. * In practice, it's more like the lighting person sees that you hit a good button, and: blackout! * Notes for me: * If you find yourself really digging into the *emotion* of a scene, make sure you don't give short shrift to enriching the *details* of the scene's world. * * General notes: * A big thing to notice with TJ & Dave is how relentlessly & thoroughly they listen to each other. * A simple context/where-are-we? hint can change the nature of the entire event. * "Why is this so improtant to you?" is always a useful question to have in mind about your character. * "All characters are selfish, on some level." * Always be ready to give yourself that gift, if necessary. * Especially if you tend to be a generous player. * Listen for laughs -- that's often the audience telling you about a funny thing that could become an entertaining game. * It's never your personal responsibility to "move things along". * Instead, it's the *ensemble's* responsibility to stay active and invested enough in whatever happens that the show sustains its momentum.
Mood: contemplative · Music: none