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Why We Continue To Study The Craft…

In this Masterclass interview, we discuss why it is so important for the actor to consistently explore, exercise and cultivate the craft of acting. Our craft takes work. Plain and simple. It takes discipline. It takes commitment. It takes accountability. It takes consistency. And most of all, it takes dedication. We have to understand that our craft will only support us as much as we have it ingrained in our being as a second muscle easily accessible for the demands of our work. It is not going to be there to fully support us unless it is exercised. It cannot live in ‘theory’. It cannot just live in our ‘head’ or an ‘idea space’. We have to know what we are doing, how to get there, and why we use certain tools to fulfill specific aspects of the life of the text. We have to be in the known so we can live in the unknown of themoment. And it all has to be practical. It has to be tangible. It has to be useable and executable. And for that to happen, it needs to be exercised and exercised and exercised no matter where we are in our career or however long we have been doing it. It asks of us to consistently exercise/explore/discover physical, psychological, listening, and emotional muscles (not to mention textual detective work and the art of actively  listening/pursuing/overcoming) that we do not really tap into within our everyday life and then have the tools and awareness to be able to utilize our instrument to reveal that part of the human experience. And let’s be honest, most do not have the privilege of working in this manner every day. And depending on this or that audition to test out/try to do the work is not going to do the trick. That is a whole other set of muscles that our craft needs to support us in, so our work can fulfill the text with truth, authenticity, and uniqueness in the room or on tape. Just like holding off going to the gym, if we do not work out those muscles, they, unfortunately, become weak and do not have the stamina/know-how to fulfill the task at hand. We live in a day and age where everyone seems to want the easy road. Why wouldn’t we, right? Insta-fame is the new normal expectation or desire. It is natural for us to want to pursue the easy way when we see the way social media presents notoriety. However, when we choose this path as actors, as artists, we have to be honest and understand there is nothing easy about the journey. We cannot be lazy in the pursuit of our work. We have to be responsible. We have to reveal the complexities of the human condition. We have to go to places within ourselves that are complicated, vulnerable, and uncomfortable and then be generous enough in mind, body, and spirit to share a piece of ourselves in service of the text, for the purpose of art and in honor of the human condition. And as we exercise those muscles, we may have to go through growing pains many times as we explore the full color wheel of the human condition. And we have to explore all that in a safe yet challenging environment. It is through those difficult times and the exploration of them, that will come our greatest inspirations for our work.   ‘On the job’ is not the place to experiment and find our craft. We are there, paid, with the expectation to deliver…to already know what we are doing so we can do the job at hand. We have to keep our instrument awake as we do our part in understanding the fullness of life in the text that gives birth to the text and what is between it. And then we have to have a toolbox that we can depend on that will support us in going to those places within our instrument that are necessary to live the full spectrum of the life of the text. And studying the craft, going to a responsible studio, holding our mentors/teachers accountable for challenging us, being honest with us, caring about our growth, and really knowing how to individually give us the tools that will support our craft and work as an artist is simply necessary. Stay in the learning. As long as we are alive, we will have to continue to study the craft because life itself is an endless unpredictable complex lesson…and therefore, so will every piece of text that is presented to us.  
I hope you enjoy this interview.
With love,


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