Saturday, July 28, 2007
The two cold reading workshops that I ran with the TheaterMakers at the O'Neill are now complete. The first one was more succesful than the second, but I had a great time with both and learned a lot about my plays in the process.
The first workshop was held in the basement of the DMT -- and was a more energized space than the second location, which was in the screening room. Also, day 2 was much hotter, the play was more difficult, and the students had just presented their final project the evening before, so they were pretty tired.
The first workshop we put forward WHETHER: A NOAH RIFF. What a blast! The students brought some great work to the table.
The second workshop we worked MINOTAURS. TOREROS. It was unfortunate that the students were not abe to get the text in advance. It is a difficult play to present as a reading, and I'm not sure that the students were able to really understand the play before presnting it. It led to a subdued and careful rendering of the text. Between the heat and the pace, the performance itself dragged. But I thik that the action of working on the play throughout the day was beneficial. I know it was beneficial for me as the playwright.
I was engaged listening to the new sequences, which I think need a little trimming an revision.
I would like to figure out to better communicate cold-reading techniques for future workshops like this. The skills required for cold-reading are invaluble for young actors whoo might wish to make connections with playwrights and theaters. It is a skill to hone, because it can be useful in opening doors.