Michael Chekhov was an actor who utilized his very rich imagination and incredible facility with his body to create memorable, meaningful theatre. He also worked quite diligently to try to share his methods of discovery with his fellow actor. Because of his dedication to the art of acting, we now have many practices that we can engage in that help us to also challenge, expand, and utilize the imagination, as well as practices that can help us mine, hone, and bring forth the intelligence of the body. All of this in service of richer, more artistic, and at the same time, more truthful acting.
Ultimately, as actors, we are looking for a process to engage in, an activity that enlivens us. In this 6 hour intensive, we will explore some of Chekhov's tools to train the actor's instrument and to help us enter an acting process that yields more effective and more artistic results. Some of these exercises tease out our imaginations, while others explore the vast resource of our bodies to approach acting from a less intellectual perspective.
Successful applicants will need to memorize five lines to a paragraph of text, just a beat, something with a beginning, middle and end. Please do not prepare it like you would an audition, please simply memorize it. If you have a monologue memorized that you are free and easy with, that you are willing to look at in a different way, that is good too. Bring an open mind and an ability to move freely.
Clothing suggestion: Successful applicants will need to wear comfortable clothing that you can move in freely. Please wear soft soled shoes that do not restrict your movement in any way. Working only in socks is not suggested as you may slip. If you wear glasses, you may opt for contacts for the workshop. It is best to choose clothing like you might wear for a movement class.
Bio of Host:
Bethany Caputo is an actress and a teacher in New York City who performs regionally across the country at such theatres as Arena Stage, The Goodman, and Actors Theatre of Louisville. Ms. Caputo studied at the Moscow Art Theatre where she was introduced to the Chekhov Technique in 1997. She is now on faculty with the Michael Chekhov Association (MICHA), the Michael Chekhov Acting Studio (MCAS) in New York City and with the Michael Chekhov School of Acting in Hudson, NY. Ms Caputo has taught at various graduate programs in the New York area, including Stony Brook University, SUNY New Paltz, and Brooklyn College. Through the MCAS, Ms. Caputo was invited to teach at the University of the Arts in Zurich, and at the Shanghai Theatre Academy in China. In 2017, Ms Caputo was invited to teach at the Victoria College of the Arts (VCA), and was invited back in 2018 to teach at the VCA and at the National Institute of Dramatic Arts (NIDA) in Sydney. Ms Caputo was an actor in the Master Classes DVD series produced by MICHA and funded by the National Endowment for the Arts. Bethany has had the great pleasure to collaborate and perform with Chekhov based theatre companies such as The Actors Ensemble, The Moving Dock Theatre Company, and with the company at the Michael Chekhov Acting Studio.