I haven’t really had the opportunity to write about the experience of attending the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London since I’ve been too busy experiencing it, but now, as we prepare for our final presentation – a full production of “Much Ado About Nothing” with yours truly as Benedick – I have the time and the inclination to look back at what has been an incredible, life-changing experience.
As an actor this experience has been incredible for me. The teachers are all masters of their craft, and contrary to popular belief, place more emphasis on feeling the text than on anything else. Language of course plays a part, and the ways Shakespeare’s verse can help in one’s interpretation of a character are mind blowing, but a lot of our work has revolved around internalizing this understanding, and letting it affect us only in the moment, without planning an entire delivery ahead of time.
We have been encouraged here to explore characters outside of our comfort zone and for me, the wild madness of Lear has provided that. As someone who enjoys logically working through an argument, to scream and shout and beat my chest has been extremely cathartic and eye opening, even if I’ve got some more time to go before I can really play the part properly…
I’ve capitalized on all this newfound knowledge and auditioned by video for a production of “Hamlet” being put up in NYC by Tisch School of the Arts once I’m back. I got the part of the Ghost, and am already prepping the text, bringing to bear all the tools RADA has provided me with.
I've even gotten to write a bit! The director of the Ionesco festival I was a part of over the summer asked if I had any short pieces she could direct for a 5-minute play festival at London's LOST theatre. I trimmed a scene I had written for two friends and we submitted it, and it made it's way into the Finals of the competition! Some of my RADA friends even turned up to support. It was great fun.
London has been an unforgettable experience for me, and after final show, this final celebration, I’ll be ready to come back to New York and keep learning everything I can about all aspects of my passion.
Stay tuned for word on “Hamlet” and my adventures as I start attending the Stonestreet Film/TV Studio to work on my camera acting technique!