LEAPpost 2: plans and tone
I was also struck yesterday by the connection between this form and commedia. In both forms, the story being told is subservient to the relationships between the actors/characters doing the telling. Both forms rely on an intense kind of focus from the actor, who needs to focus both in the shared work between herself and her partner and also on the shape of the whole thing the ensemble is creating together. Commedia is a much more structured and formalized form, with its stock characters and well-known plots. Long form is more mysterious, and in some ways more immediate. It’s hard work – there is absolutely no tuning out allowed. Even when off stage I am nearly on stage, so complete is the listening and watching required to prep for an edit or a snog.
I hit a bump yesterday around the idea of “tone” – specifically comic tone. We did a sequence of exercises meant to buff our comic skills and sensibilities. What ended up happening is that some of us – like me – created over the top characters, and others simply continued with creating scenes as we had before, which weren’t especially funny. The things is, we have each created funny scenes, but they are funny almost by accident, and when we draw our attention to “comedy”, it seemed to send us off into some other territory. Bobbi and I had an interesting discussion about the word “realism” too. I tend to regard any kind of character transformation as unrealistic, though it can be quite truthful. Bobbi uses the term more to identify an aspect of believability.
Anyhow – onwards.