Spring

by user on April 9, 2017

spring-newsletter“One of the greatest virtues of gardening is this perpetual renewal of youth and spring, of promise of flower and fruit that can always be read in the open book of the garden, by those with an eye to see, and a mind to understand.”
E.A. Bowles (British Horticulturalist), My Garden in Spring

“The neuro-physiological pathways connecting words with the sensory apparatus of the body and with nature have not disappeared, but they have been short-circuited as the technology of communication has “progressed”. It is not difficult to re-wire the circuitry…to awaken dormant energies of speech and tap into subterranean channels that may reverberate with unsuspected, sub-verbal meaning. By indulging sensory, sensual, emotional and physical responses to vowels and consonants – the component parts of words – we begin to resurrect the life of language.”
Kristin Linklater, Freeing Shakespeare’s Voice
A Message From Andrea:
I think the image of a garden is a familiar and fitting metaphor for our journey as artists. Similar to a gardener, nurturing our gardens of expressiveness requires patience, a connection to the natural world as well as hooking in to our inner natures, knowledge in what one is working towards and mindfulness in where the weeds are and when to water – which in our case as speakers and performers means tracking where our inhibiting tensions lodge so we can undo them to encourage more freedom and pleasure in speaking.
Just as a garden needs the essentials: water, good soil and fertilizer, so too have we included the essentials of developing your voice in our Spring Session with Freeing the Natural Voice Levels 1 and 2 and in the Natural Voice Level 2 Weekend Workshop. The next step in your development is bringing your voice that is free, strong and expressive to an exploration of text and performance. We have the Acting the Text class where you can connect the essentials of Linklater with Stanislavsky; the Advanced Voice and Text workshop; and our popular annual workshop: the 6-day Intensive – Voice, Body, Shakespeare (you must submit your photo and resume to apply to Voice, Body, Shakespeare.)
So come to The Linklater Center for Voice and Language this Spring to grow your garden and enjoy your journey as you begin to bloom!
Best wishes,

Andrea Haring
Executive Director

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Inspiration from the US Open

by user on September 5, 2016

By Andrea Haring

Venus WilliamsI just watched an incredible match on my TV between Venus Williams and Karolina Pliskova at the US Open.  And although both women played really excellent tennis, and though Pliskova eventually took the victory, my heart was won by Venus Williams.  I sat glued to my screen as she played a truly epic match, and listened to Cliff Drysdale’s and Chrissie Evert’s warm commentary.  They both clearly had great respect for Venus as an amazing athlete – having watched her play through the years.  But there was affection too and a deeper respect for how Venus navigates her life as a person.  Cliff and Chrissie talked a little about how Venus had slipped in her ranking back in 2011 due to injuries and especially due to her autoimmune disease that had weakened her health. At one point this athlete, who had ranked as the world’s no. 1 female tennis player, was down to a world ranking of no. 105.  Venus stayed proactive in adversity – she worked with different health professionals to seek out medicines and to shift her diet, and trained with her coaches to build back her strength and to find smarter strategies that could shift her game.  And eventually, through the years, she has worked her way back to the world ranking she is today at no. 6.  So Venus is an extraordinary example of staying pro-active and moving forward in the face of adversity.  On that tennis court today she strove mightily to win her points, and remained calm in the face of points lost.

But Venus not only battles for her own victories, she fought as an advocate on behalf of all women tennis players for equal prize money for equal effort.  In 2007 she wrote a public letter in The Times in London to the CEO at Wimbledon decrying the act of giving the women players substantially less prize money than the men:

“I feel so strongly that Wimbledon’s stance devalues the principle of meritocracy and diminishes the years of hard work that women on the tour have put into becoming professional tennis players.  I believe that athletes – especially female athletes in the world’s leading sport for women – should serve as role models. The message I like to convey to women and girls across the globe is that there is no glass ceiling.”

 Her letter influenced not only the Wimbledon Board, but Tony Blair and Parliament who advised Wimbledon to change their financial practice the next year.  Which they did.

Another example of how Venus continues to better herself and train her mind is that she also went on in 2011 to complete her college degree in Business in online studies from the University of Indiana. She plans to get her MBA next.  Chrissie Evert, while watching this remarkable women come from behind to make hard-won points and then the next moment accept her losses, said “She has belief…belief in working towards her goals.”  And Cliff Drysdale answered “She has heart.”

I was struck by this word because heart in French is Coeur out of which in English we derive the word Courage.  And I reflected how much of these qualities can also serve the life of an artist: Heart, Courage, Belief…

The belief in striving towards our passion.  To set clear goals, and go through the years of training, hard work and refining our craft that is necessary to bring us closer to our vision.  To have the courage to keep at it even in the face of adversity.  But also the courage to try out new strategies, even if they take us into uncharted territories and new experiences.  To be able to have an open heart as an actor is essential in rehearsal as well as performance – to be connected to yourself in how you feel, and to your colleagues so that you listen to them in a meaningful way. Finally, I feel it is crucial as a performer to actively seek out the joy and pleasure in what you do.  When you experience those authentic moments of creative coalition where your acting impulses, the expression of them through your voice and body, and a true give-and-take with your fellow actors in service of the play come together – you will feel the glow of satisfaction that progress is made.   So thank you Venus Williams – for inspiring us all.
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Congratulations to the 2016 German Designees!

August 18, 2016

By Andrea Haring The Linklater Community recently graduated nine new Designated Linklater Teachers in Frauenchiemsee, Germany! These trainees hailed from Germany, Austria, Switzerland and Ireland, and had been studying for years – getting to know the voice progression with their Designated Teachers.  Some had also taken workshops with me in Bayreuth or New York City, [...]

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Developing Awareness

August 13, 2016

“Great acting is not about putting on disguises and being something you’re not. Great acting is about taking off, stripping off the masks we all wear, to reveal the human being inside…Good actors make us forget that we’re in the theater; they persuade us that we’re watching something truthful, something real. But they have to [...]

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Cottages, Crofts, Estates, and Wills

July 6, 2016

From Andrea Haring In May, I traveled to the UK – specifically Stratford-upon-Avon, to try some first-hand research of Shakespeare’s world for my classes. Of course I had to go to Shakespeare’s family home where he was born and raised.  Here in the master bedroom is a bed similar to the one that Shakespeare bequeathed [...]

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Voice, Body, Shakespeare – Summer 2016

June 19, 2016

JUST FINISHED A WONDERFUL WEEK  – WITH A GREAT GROUP – IN THE WORLD OF THE BARD!  

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My Interest in Grit

May 27, 2016

Andrea Haring I’ve come into contact lately with several people who are interested in Grit.  In fact, one woman who participated in my Professional Women’s Workshop was even pursuing her Master’s degree using the study of Grit as demonstrated by Opera singers.  One definition describes Grit as: “… a positive trait based on an individual’s [...]

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CONNECT, BE PRESENT – FACE THE UNKNOWN

June 30, 2014

We, this people, on a small and lonely planet Traveling through casual space Past aloof stars, across the way of indifferent suns To a destination where all signs tell us It is possible and imperative that we learn A brave and startling truth Maya Angelou – A Brave and Startling Truth (1995) The actor must [...]

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