I’d had a rough night of it the eve before class this week, I won’t lie. Oh, the play I saw, THE IMPORTANCE OF BEING EARNEST, was a god-damn delight, ’tis true. But, as is often the case with borderline manic-depressives like myself, things took a dark turn by the time I got home, and I hadn’t really eaten, and the bottle of Jameson’s was right THERE…
It was a rough day, too. And I was practically falling asleep when I realized I had to run out of the place to make it to class at OSSD on time (stopping for an emergency RedBull to wake up along the way), but I made it just the same. Oh, I was woozy, scattered, fresh scars clearly visible (rough night, like I said), but acting class waits for no man. And I’m…not…no man…that analogy fell apart. Where was I..?
Right, class! Big cheese Brie Barker greeted us (as I now presume to be the norm, but I’m not making any bets) in character, this time switching from his previous week’s tuxedoed gentleman to a British punk, impressing us with a taster of his new song, ‘Pope on a Rope’. He called the roll, asking each of us to reply with the name of our own punk song. Mine was ‘beat yourself to death’, something I’ve given a peculiar amount of thought to recently. Because that’s the kind of upbeat cat I am.
We turned a circle then for a quick game of ZIP (a sort of improv/acting version of dodgeball), then tried it while moving, which was a tricky challenge. Then Brie immediately had us all take on an animal…I chose cat, ’cause I have Winston on the brain. Then, we did another. Then ANOTHER. All while moving around the room, sometimes interacting with our fellow ‘animals’…I had a tricky time as a fish, let me tell you. Afterwards, Brie asked us where our ‘centers’ were…our head, chest, stomach, genitals (snickering in class) or anus (even more snickering). I went two anus,one chest…where do cats and fish lead, if not from their butts? I ask you.
We did a couple scenes each then, improv-stylee, one using a whole animal physicality from our previous excercizes, one only using a specific center. I thought my monkey-physic Bathroom buddy take with Rachel was a winner, tho my Anus-driven pilot’s lounge scene with Catherine (my fav’rit partner, I’ll admit it) had me wondering…just how does one lead from one’s anus? Pffft.
We did a quick break (which was great, because as grotesquely hungover as I was, I think I was sweating through my wallet by this point in the evening), then back for some impromptu lottery action…we had to draw from a hat to pick a center for our continuously building ‘character’. I picked genitals…and then, like, the next 5 people did too. So, we had to do a few redraws just to ensure our whole class wasn’t genital-crazy…I ended up as ‘head’ centered, which was not quite as hilarious, but just as challenging.
We did another quick round of scenes with our new centers…me and Stefan did a try as Lifeguard and concerned Father, which started out fine and ended up in inappropriate laughter. I blame myself. We finished the class in a circle, giving our thoughts on the night’s lessons and feeding off one another, and it was just a good way to end. I passed on a couple offers of rides home to do some walking, because I needed some cool night air to finally clear my head (also, the cheeseburger platter at the Carleton). It was a good class. And I can’t wait til next one. Peace, love and soul,
The Visitor (and Winston)