06
Jan
10

heighten it!

In Shakespeare’s day, folks went to “hear” a play, not to see it. After all, the Globe had no lights or elaborate set pieces, limited costumes and special effects. We are in debt to these production limitations for necessitating such beautiful use of the English language. Even now, we could sit back and rely fully on the heightened language to engage the imagination and transport us to battlefields in France and ports in ancient Greece. That’s still the heart of it. But in an age when one goes to “see” a play, the heightened language, some of it archaic and lost to modern ear, can benefit from a heightened physicality and staging. Embracing the theatricality of a classical text increases clarity, energy, and engagement.

At least that’s my theory.

As such, in rehearsals so far this week, scripts have been on the tables only ever-so-briefly. Text has been pulled in to complete exercises that begin with breath and body, harnessing particular energies and actions to funnel into the words. With a cast of fifteen, the Fisk basement pulses with energy – a great first step on a journey to make the walls of the Louis Room hum, too.

Now we will put physical life and text in dialogue, ie, begin blocking. Very excited to get started…

kS


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