24 ene. 2012

Memorize the text, not the performance

When I memorize a text for performance I memorize the words, but I don't develop a single reading or performance of it that I repeat every time. Instead, I let the text speak through me each time. My performances are probably more similar than I realize, but at least in principle I want each one to be fresh in where I slow down or speed up. There is also a difference between a performance in front of people, a recording I make for myself, and the mere repetition of words to myself as I am learning. It is hard to be fully "performative" when I am sitting by myself.

I know some actors, like Brando, did not want to know the text too well. By not knowing the text too well, they could keep a certain freshness. Since I am not an actor, I have other interests, but I too want to have a certain freshness. A performance which is too routine can be deadly. I prefer to improvise the performance even if the text is fixed.