I can't believe how time flies -- and I haven't posted in about 1.5 months already. Life has been so busy with the film festival lately, so I haven't been working on my own stuff as much. We're now in war mode, so that explains why I haven't been posting (but that's no excuse, right?). During the last section of the first-year at The Barrow Group, we were assigned to do classics. I chose a snip-bit between Mrs. Linde & Nora from A Doll's House by Henrik Ibsen. We had about a month+ to work on it, so it was pretty intense. I remember I had to buy a long dress because that's what womyn wore back in the days. I also put on red lipstick to get into the traditional wife mindset (lipstick makes me look a bit older). When it comes to memorizing the lines, which is always a struggle, it took me about 2 weeks. I memorized it whenever I can--at work, on the subway, at home, with my scene partner. I know it takes me a while to memorize lines, but after I memorized the lines, I found it so much easier to play with what's around me. We were always taught to memorize and throw away the lines because it will come back to us. I always have that instinct to hang on to exact words. Surprisingly, sometimes when I throw away the lines, it somehow comes back to me. Other than the lines, I focused a lot on really getting down the whole story of the play. I read it 4 times to see how the scene really fit into the story. At first, I only focused on the scene itself--with specific instructions on how to play the "greatest story ever told" direction, but when we played with it in class again, our teacher Seth asked about the sequence of events + how the scene had to do with the rest of the story. I just sat there, blank-faced because a) I blanked out and b) I really need to do some homework and read before I make random choices without knowing why. After reading the whole play, I realized how critical this scene is to Nora and her relationship with her husband: she finally reveals/confesses to someone that she did something terribly wrong in order to save her husband's life. That's pretty big!
In terms of really playing it, I had a hard time trying to find a balance between between so excited vs. just serious. Knowing Nora, on the surface at least, she seems like a pretty mindless person. If we were to only read the scene, then it seems like something so serious; but if you relate it to Nora and her life, then she can say it so casually but it will still mean a great deal because of the words coming out of her mouth. The WORDS! That's what's important. That's the most important takeaway from the last bit of the first-year.