It’s not a lie when people say that Shakespeare was ahead of his time. When it comes down to the words he writes there is no one that can match him. His words flow over the audience capturing them in the intensity of each story line.
Well… that’s what is supposed to happen. In order to have that effect, the actors put in hundreds of hours into the words spoken. I have seen my fellow actors working to learn their lines and it’s amazing to see these busy students find the time to become so in tune with their lines.
Not only are we busy, but five of our cast members were participating in two productions at once, myself included.
For the first two weeks of rehearsal, I was working on two shows. I was so amazed to see my fellow actors learn lines for two shows at the same time. I would go from rehearsal for Midsummer and right after go straight into No Exit rehearsal.
Now both are different kinds of shows, No Exit was a drama and Midsummer is a comedy. Having to jump from one show to the other was one of the hardest things I have ever done. The two characters that I played were the complete opposite of each other. I continued to struggle with the emotional switch until I learned a meditation trick.
I would take five minutes and imagine taking the character of Helena and putting her in a box. Then I would imagine taking the box that held Inez, cutting the tape and pulling out the various things that made up the character of Inez.
This is a technique that I will always use. This definitely came in handy this past weekend when I would run between rehearsal for an opera and rehearsal for Midsummers. I would only have the few minutes it took to get to one stage to the other, to get into a different character.
I was very happy to find that I was able to stay sane.