I’m in Lincoln Nebraska this week (It’s hot. Very hot. And the buildings are air conditioned to the hilt so that it’s almost too cold. And you have to go outside to warm up. Where it’s too hot.) for the International Thespians Festival. Over 3000 students and teachers going to plays all day long, doing workshops, ALL interested in theatre. I love it! I wish I had this when I was in high school. The days are pretty long as we’re manning a Theatrefolk booth for roughly 12 hours and in the middle I go off to teach workshops for 3 hours. It’s exhausting, but a thoroughly worthwhile exhaustion. I like talking to people about plays. It’s about the only thing I can talk about!!!
The workshops are going well too – I’m not a natural speaker. I don’t speak off-the-cuff well and I have to plan everything out. It’s taken a couple of days of practice to get everything set in my head. But knowing what I have to do (and then doing it) the workshops have been pretty enjoyable so far. It’s nice teaching people who want to learn! And I learn things too, watching everyone work.
I’m doing two character workshops, both very catchily entitled “Character Slam!” One is subtitled Inside Out which looks at how to find clues and hints in the text for character development, and the other is subtitled Outside In where we use physicalization as a tool for building a character. The first one is so interesting as I use scenes from my own plays and I love seeing how they are interpreted.
So far so good and they’re still two days to go!