Sunday, October 12, 2008


No it’s not a catalogue number. That’s the program of which I am so gleefully a part. Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama - Master of Arts Classical and Contemporary Text. The program is structured in cycles.

First up, we are two weeks in voice and movement classes and text workshops. Our movement teacher, Mark, studied at Jacques Lecoq School in Paris so naturally we are getting some Lecoq training. Our last class focused on the human walk. Did you know there are seven major points in a step? As you emphasize certain points you start to develop a character. Good stuff. I had heard of Lecoq but this is my first venture into his technique.

Our voice teachers, and by voice I mean speaking voice, come from the Roy Hart/Nadine George approach. Relaxation is a big part of class. I so love relaxation! Recent exercises include supporting a deep, rich (sometimes scary) sound using all the resonators and speaking some really gory Greek text. Truly gruesome. And then we went for supper.

This past week our mornings consisted of text workshops. Really they were introductions to the playwrights we will be working with this year. We met with David Harrower, Douglas Maxwell and Linda McLean. These are three celebrated Scottish playwrights who are going to be working with us to develop three new plays. That’s write! They are scripting just for us! How cool! We are going to be developing new works with three truly amazing talents!

So what else is on the agenda you ask? Well, we have another week in this cycle and then the following week we move on to ensemble work. We are going to create an ensemble piece using Christopher Logue’s War Music derived from Homer’s Iliad. Then we move right into scene work from Chekhov’s Three Sisters and selected scenes from previously published works of the authors mentioned above. All the while we are working on individual research projects. So that will take us up to the Holidays and when we come back, it’s down to London to study Shakespeare at The Globe for a month. I know. It is so very cool. Jealous?

So that’s the plan my friends. In the meantime, I’m adjusting. There is much to read and research. I have not spent a lot of time out on the town but from what I can tell the choices for R&R in the evenings are pretty much this pub, that pub or the pub over there. So, I think I’m good in my room reading all these scripts. I did come for the studying after all.

But do not fear there will be plenty of adventures for your amusement! Ok, I’m off to War…Music. Wish me happy reading. Seriously, wish me happy reading because all the Scottish plays I have read so far have been really dark and depressing. Maybe it’s the weather.

More to come…

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