As you can probably see from the image! I am now on Patreon! If you guys a re a fan of my voice and sound design work you should come and check out what I have for my patrons as special rewards (and my oh so funny and clever milestone goal titles)!
You guys can suggest audios for me to do!
AND ILL BE DOING VIDEOS AND LIVESTREAMS! BIG THINGS!
Film, television, and theatre as we know them today would not exist without the Jewish people. And before you laugh and start quoting “Spamalot” at me, I need to explain how true that joke is.
It’s true, theatre existed in America before Jewish people arrived in droves. But it was basically just an imitation of the kind of theatre you saw in Britain and France. There was nothing distinctly American about it. Then, the Yiddish theatre arrived with it’s grand emotions ranging from the dramatic to slapstick comedy. When people think about Yiddish theatre, they tend to think of the extremes of comedy and melodrama, but there were many more plays that lived between those extremes. When the majority of theatre was presentational and emotionally superficial, Yiddish theatre frequently delved into philosophy and the existential issues facing the Jewish community at the time [see the works of S. Ansky and Sholem Aleichem]. Actors in the Yiddish theatre had to be emotionally honest to win over notoriously fickle crowds.
The Yiddish theatre grew both in London and New York. Yiddish theatre artists collaborated with artists from the Music Halls and gave us vaudeville. From vaudeville we got Broadway and musical theatre and from Broadway we got film and television. If you look at a list of great American musical theatre composers, performers, choreographers, and directors, they are almost all Jewish. If they’re not Jewish, they’re Black and/or gay.
Yiddish theatre also had a tremendous impact on more serious American theatre. Konstantin Stanislavsky is widely accepted to be the father of modern acting, however his American heirs were Stella Adler, Lee Strassberg, and Sanford Meisner: all young Jewish actors who came up through the Yiddish theatre. They brought the raw emotional sensibilities and philosophical depth of the Yiddish theatre, combined it with Jewish intellectualism, and gave us modern acting.
Con: I wanna act. I’ve wanted to act since I was 11 but my low self esteem and shyness always got in the way. BUT I can no longer sit back and force myself to feel that I’m too ugly and too dark to ever be an actress. I had a little taste (I was a thespian in 12th grade, I got two excellence and a superior for regionals and I’ve taken theatre classes) and the feeling of acting is too much to hide. So Ima fight N one day prove to my 11 year old self that I was wrong and foolish. Wish me luck :)
Okay but do you see that? That is fucking creepy. Of all the things I’ve seen on Supernatural, that smile is pretty fucking scary. It gives me chills.
Props to Jared Padalecki, for being the amazing actor he is. You sir, are Oscar material.
“Feel things. Notice how many times you sit next to someone who cries at a play or a film, and an hour later, over coffee, they become very rigid and angry and begin criticizing what they’ve seen–laying it out, seeing things ‘in reflection.’ I think this is terribly poisonous. Admit to and enjoy those things that have moved you. Don’t be embarrassed or feel you have to explain your reactions. If you feel differently years later, fine: we all change. But acknowledge and own your feelings when they come, and write or act or paint in the same way. Don’t think too much about it. Spread your gift; share your gift; ask around and see if it moves people.”–Marlon Brando/From “Come Up A Man: The Hungers of Marlon Brando”/ Come Up A Man: The Hungers of Marlon Brando by James Grissom’s photo.
okay. i’ve spent some time studying lee’s performance as thranduil and chasing down resources that were provided by miriamheddy, lunargoddessrising, meaningfulandoriginalurl and serebi1983. i think the insight i’ve gained regarding costuming, the elves’ history with the dwarves, the origin of thranduil as a character and the ideas that he is war-weary and has chosen to exile himself from love have really helped me understand 75% of what i didn’t get before. so thank you for that!
but after much consideration, there is still one niggling issue for me. and it’s to do with facial expressions/micro-expressions.
i’ve no doubt y’all know what micro-expressions are, but a quick rundown for analysis purposes: 1) they are involuntary, 2) they last 1/15 - 1/25 of a second, and 3) they convey anger, fear, sadness, disgust, contempt, surprise or happiness. micro-expressions are a big part of how we read and interpret others’ emotions. masterful screen actors are really good at using micro-expressions to convey subtext. lee is certainly one of them. (mad mikkelsen is the grand master. but that’s another post entirely.) here’s a great example of a pacian micro-expressions, the nose flare:
the scenes in the hobbit movies in which i have problems understanding lee’s acting choices involve the lack of micro-expressions, or contain facial expressions that just don’t seem to match the dynamic of the scene or the intention of the character. sometimes it feels like thranduil has had botox, his face stays so stony.
the confrontation scene is a good example of this.
first is this:
this is thranduil’s expression while thorin is lambasting him. i don’t understand what it means. is it righteous indignation? is it incredulity? it just doesn’t seem to fit the context of the scene.
then there’s this one:
this is a screencap i did of the last frame of thranduil’s face before his outburst, “do not speak to me of dragon fire.” i don’t understand how the outburst explodes from this expression. it seems too neutral to be the precursor of the passion of that moment.
i would love to hear others’ thoughts about this issue of lee’s/thranduil’s micro-expressions/facial expressions and. i’m kinda fascinated by it now that i’ve spent so much time studying lee as thranduil.
(the gif is not mine. the screencaps are, for what they’re worth.)
You remain convinced that art, whether you study it or love it or engage in it, will change your life, and it won’t. How do you change a life? We are predestined to live out the life chosen for us by birth and habit and chance. We can enhance and jiggle the life, but nothing changes it in the dramatic way we hope for. I am the ideal candidate to look toward in this severe disappointment. I looked for deliverance from all things, but there is no deliverance. There is only acceptance, a little denial, and a great deal of grace. That is the real recipe, but it’s not one that will have people storming down the doors of the schools and the academies.
The reward is within the performance of whatever it is you need to do. It is in the brushstroke. It is in the performance. It is in the act of sex or the act of eating. It is in the act and never in the moments beyond the act. I fell for that. Everyone falls for that. Life is a moment-by-moment experience, and you do have to love whatever you’re doing in that moment. And then it’s gone. And then the acceptance, the denial, and the grace start all over again.
Stop looking for the dramatic alteration to life. Look for the life in the moments you have.
Yesterday I had a pretty shitty read for a new play, and walked out of the building feeling appropriately shit-like. As I was on the phone with my mother, I heard a voice calling my name. It was the casting director, chasing me down the sidewalk, tottering on her heels, asking me if I could come back and read for another part.
Hell yes, I could.
Where does the awkwardness come in, you ask? The part was for a fourteen-year-old. I’m twenty-one.
Further awkwardness ensued when my hair kept getting in my face and one of the women at the table offered me a hair clip. Later research showed that the woman was THE PLAYWRIGHT. THE PLAYWRIGHT HAD TO OFFER ME A HAIR CLIP.
In the spring, the Wilma will stage back-to-back productions of William Shakespeare’s Hamlet and Tom Stoppard’s now classic behind-the-scenes comedy Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead,
both directed by Wilma Artistic Director Blanka Zizka and using
essentially the same cast for both productions. The title character in
Shakespeare’s tragedy will be played by the powerful actress Zainab Jah,
who appeared as Prudence in last season’s production of The Convert.
Prudence (Zainab Jah) enjoying a pipe and cup of tea at Chilford’s house
in the world premiere production of The Convert by Danai Gurira,
directed by Emily Mann
The Wilma is excited to produce what many believe to be the greatest
play written by Shakespeare, and many others consider the greatest play
written in the English language. The fight for the throne of Denmark,
quest for moral righteousness, and complexities of vengeance within a
21st century context will be reexamined on our stage.
He’s always been so good with darker emotions. I gotta give it to him, really I do, because every time you play out these scenes, you pour a little bit of yourself into them. It’s just amazing that someone who talks, walks, and laughs like the sunshine comes out his very ass, can accurately portray inner demons so well. Bravo baby boy. I hope to be half as good as you someday, if I’m lucky. This is what motivates aspiring actors.