Theatre Director/Producer/Educator


FB #Theatrefolk: Talking about how we rehearse

Public link with conversation comments


I'm starting to realize that outside of academic settings, we almost never talk about rehearsals. 

We so rarely discuss approaches, techniques, and approaches. Process after process, I see everyone bring assumptions about how the process only to see it rarely line up with the assumptions of the next person. For example, often, we artists will have expectations as to how "table work" will go and what specifics we need out of it that conflict with or at least aren't compatible with the needs or expectations of the others around the table. I don't believe it comes from malice of selfishness--not at all. I think it comes from the fact that somewhere along the line, we decided that every process was the same. That every training program lined up with another.

I'm now wondering if it's the least articulated aspect of our craft. For every article and SM post about craft discussion I see 25+ about marketing strategies, audience building, etc (which is WONDERFUL and I read them all). But why aren't we talking about how we approach the actual process of creation in the rehearsal room? Because, I believe, to discuss this would lead to a realizaton that we all work differently. Every director has a specific process. Many actors have differing expectations. But we seldom take the time to set those expectations and articulate a plan of attack.

After years of unproductive table work sessions and "clean up" conversations to re-set expectations that come late in the process, I've started to add some of my approach thinking to audition calls or at least to emails ahead of rehearsals beginning. 

Directors/Actors/Stage Managers: Does this ring true to you? And if so, what are your approaches to articulating how you work or how you want to create?

Michael Dove