Communications, Drama and Film – Practice Blog

Communications, Drama and Film – Practice Blog

Celebrating the breadth and variety of practical work in the department

MA Theatre Practice

Posted by jgprimro

15 December 2023

Course leader Konstantinos Thomaidis ended the term with these words:

145 hours of training later… Term 1 of studio work for the MA Theatre Practice 2023 wraps up!

A polaroid that couldn’t fit us all —
I find this quite appropriate, accurate even:
how does one capture in a single frame the careful listening or collective uplifting,
the journeys across the boundaries of our bodies and voices,
the deep knowledge of, and respect for, each other
that only sustained embodied practice can foster?

Our journey this year brought us back to the roots of our work in Meyerhold, yoga, kalaripayattu, Grotowski, Viewpoints, Halprin, Frantic Assembly and polyphonic song & we were fortunate enough to host brilliant invited artist-teachers:

  • Jatinder Verma (Shakespeare and multicultural performance)
  • Japanese physical theatre company tarinainanika (corporeal mime)
  • Dr Giorgia Ciampi (kalaripayattu animal work)
  • Dr Pam Woods (autobiographical movement-based devising)
  • Prof Don Boyd (screen acting masterclass)

And the concluding days involved open sharings of the training
and an ecocritical performance based on The Tempest
As the work progresses over the years,
and as I try to teach more and more from my own place in the world
-meaning: more and more as an actor dialoguing with fellow actors-
studio teaching unfolds as a reciprocal process of learning and discovery.

Here’s a snapshot of what this year’s joyous, inquisitive cohort of students from India, China, Ukraine and the UK taught me:

  • that habits and patterns are not always to be negated or uprooted: they often serve our sense of safety and belonging — one can work with and through them, not only against
  • that profound confusion can be a form of genuine presence
  • that the only way to do a task, and just do the task, is to do it your own way
  • that sometimes teaching is not exclusively the offering of new ideas but a process of helping others recognise what they already knew
  • and that, more often than not, the only thing required is to be gentle and to care

Here’s to you, MATP 2023-2024!
Wishing you a replenishing break and the very best for your Term 2 training and performances!
145 hours, 12 weeks, Term 1: ‘and that moment is gone’

MA Theatre Practice website

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