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Michael Chekhov's 'Theater of the Future' -- what does it have to do with you?

Active Receiving workshop

Hugo Moss - 15 July 2012

WHO WAS THERE

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Convener: Hugo Moss

Participants: Stacey, Suzanne, Rena, Kim, Christopher, Mara, John, Jane, Ellie, Karine, Uli, Wendy, Ediana, Liz
(this list compiled from memory - have I forgotten anyone? please tell me!)
Listening: Linda
Photographing/floating: Thaís Loureiro

Finding a place to start in the space.

A round of Staccato / Legato just to find the space around us.

We are going to be working with objects/things around us, however we are not going to be working with incorporation today, but finding a world which exists in our experience between concentration and imagination/association/incorporation/playing as actors.

Each one takes an object from his/her bag and gives it to another participant. Place the object in front of you and look at it, see it = describe it to yourself (in your mind). Find the movement towards the object which takes place when we turn our concentration on something. Being “with” the object.

Now close your eyes and continue to describe the object to yourself, just carry on but now your eyes are closed. Perhaps there is a question: have I missed something? what might that be?
Open your eyes and continue to work, “simply” describing the object to yourself in your mind.
Now break your eye contact and continue to work, continue to “be with” the object. Stand and look out, sense how the object is with you, whether it has a place with in you. And walk. Walk about the space, sustaining this being with the object.



Now find another object and repeat above.

Talk/sharing - some people found they were having an emotional connection to object, e.g. possession, or difficulty leaving it behind.
Can we just keep it very “simple”? Just be with an object in a room. “Be with” it in this way.

Repeat the exercise with an object which is not in this room. Suggestion: pick a neutral object, something familiar to you but without great personal significance. And just repeat this exercise of describing, sensing the movement towards the object, and being with the object as you move about the space, looking out from this place, seeing the room, seeing others, exchanging glances.

We talked about the emphasis M.Chekhov lays on concentration in this way, since it gives us a living connnection with the world around us = Active Receiving, which an artist must have. If we cannot awaken this within us all the time, then perhaps there can be no Theatre of the Future - ? An artistic way of seeing and being in the world.

Now with this new sense, take a short walk around outside, come back and share.



Final talk/exchange and a walk around the space knowing we've shared very different experiences here, and find some ending for yourself. Look at each other, flying back over this time together.

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COMMENTS: 2

Liz Shipman

17 July 2012

Thanks Hugo! This was an amazing session and touched upon what seems to be a much-needed and vital practice for actors and humans in general. What is it to truly receive? Brilliant!
Hugo Moss

19 July 2012

Thanks Liz, it was a real pleasure to work with you, not only in this session but throughout the week in such diverse and often rich/stimulating classes! Right now I'm back in NYC having been delayed a whole day by Delta, but I'll be back in Rio Friday and we should keep in touch between MICHA's, yes?

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