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Spoon River Anthology Opens Next Week: Actors Company Tackle Life’s Big Questions…

This year I have had the privilege to work with a dynamic group of young actors aged from 16-21- The Actors Company at Hunter Drama. As a professional Writer/Director and Acting Teacher, I am used to working with adults- so to work with this ensemble of bright young sparks has been an eye opening experience. This year the group has been challenged immensely as they have delved into the realms of life’s big questions that have arisen from bringing Edgar Lee Masters’ “Spoon River Anthology” to the stage in my new adaptation.

If it weren’t for the age range of the ensemble, this production would have taken on an entirely new formation. To connect with the material and subject matter, an emphasis of life before death, rather than life after death had to take the lead in the unfolding of story and character.

Show starts next week at The Civic Playhouse- get your tickets today! Performances- 27th, 28th,29th (matinee and evening shows)- October, 2016.

Come and see this amazing young cast before they’re famous- (front row from left to right: Evie Laurence, Ali Jensen, Jessica Morgan- back row- Will Parker, Isabelle Clements, Laura Macleod, Jacob Gamble and Sebastian Szeszeran)

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Spoon River Anthology- a Performance which may change the way you think about your life…

I was first introduced to Spoon River Anthology in 2003, when I was a student at The Royal Conservatoire of Scotland. I saw a production- produced by RCS-a comical musical version of Edgar Lee Masters’ collection of first person epitaphs which paint the portrait of a rural community in the midwest of America in the late 1800s/early 1900s. I thought- how interesting- the dead are given voices, they say the things in  death, which they could not in life…

Fast forward to the present day and in two and a half weeks, my own adaptation of Spoon River Anthology will open at The Civic Playhouse on October 27. I am reflecting on what has been an amazing journey. For more than a decade, I have wanted to interpret this text in a unique way and bring it to life- and that is about to happen. 

Since February, I have had the privilge of working weekly with a wonderful group of young and dynamic performers, The Actors Company at Hunter Drama. During this time I have been working on upping the performers skill set both vocally and physically and developing a performance that is both moving and original, yet stays true to the essence of Masters’ beautiful and lyrical portrait of a town built on secrets and lies.

In this new adaptation, unlike the original- for the most part- we see the characters in life. We meet the Pantier family- a husband and wife who can’t stand each other, and their son Reuben, who is in love with his dynamic young school teacher- Emily Sparks. We meet Minerva Jones, the Village Poetess who longs to escape the prison of the small minded town and Butch Weldy, a demonic trouble maker with hidden depths. In this version, characters have become hybrids, some have been created and some are close to their original essence. However, we see the moments in life, where they chose not to follow their truths and live with the regret of not following their hearts.

My hope is that this piece will challenge audiences to examine their own lives and ask themselves the question- “Where am I not telling the truth? Where in my life can I do better?” As Eminem says “You only get one shot” at life, and it is my hope that audiences will be inspired to soar after watching this moving piece of theatre. 

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Sign Up This Week!

Hi Peeps,

If you haven’t jumped on board yet for this unique opportunity for Actor Training- now’s the time. I only offer these courses several times a year and if you want to take your skills to the next level- sign up today!

“Acting Fundamentals” $295 for 5 Week Course Monday Evenings, 6-8pm (starts August 22nd) and “Pasvolsky Studio” $320 for 5 Week Course, Thursday Evenings, 6-8.30pm (starts August 25th).

You snooze, you lose. Call me to chat about the courses- 0412155950

 

 

 

Adult Performance Courses for Actors and Non-Actors in Newcastle

Hi Peeps,

I’m thrilled to be offering my latest round of Acting courses for Adults here in Newcastle. The classes will run for 5 Weeks on a Monday (Acting Fundamentals) and Thursday (The Pasvolsky Studio) evening at St. Johns Church Hall, Cooks Hill from 22nd August (6-8pm) and 25th August (6-830pm).

ACTING FUNDAMENTALS- This course is for everyone from the absolute beginner to the student who has perhaps performed previously but wants a refresher course. This is a fun and dynamic course where participants let their inner child come out to play. We study the fundamentals of Acting in this course- Voice, Movement, Improvisation, Characterisation, Text Interpretation and Performance. After completing this course students feel inspired, more confident and that they have a solid grounding in Actor Training. Minimum age entry is 18, there is no upper age limit.

THE PASVOLSKY STUDIO- This course is for students who are at an Intermediate to Advanced level. The focus of this course is based on the style of American Actors Studio such as Strasberg, Stella Adler and Atlantic, where actors work each week to develop their craft and work as collaborators. There is a strong emphasis on Text Interpretation, Improvisation and Characterisation. The emphasis of this environment is to challenge and further develop the actor’s skill at whatever level he or she is currently working with. This course is ideal for current students of Drama, Drama Teachers, Professional and Non Professional Actors. Minimum age for this course is 18- there is no upper age limit.

So, what are you waiting for? Enrol today- early bird specials end August 5th.

Feel the fear and do it anyway!

Claire Pasvolsky

0412155950, clairepasvolsky@gmail.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Remembering Your Kick Ass Self

There is never a perfect picture. There is never a perfect age or stage- when we look back with nostalgia at a time in our life- we are simply shining the flashlight on the best parts, the highlights, if you will.

So- without thinking too much- what age were you when you knew what you  loved? Things may not have been harmonious, or perfect, but you had a strong sense of what you enjoyed, what you wanted to be, do or have… were you three years old and loved to spin around to music till you got dizzy and fell over? Were you seventeen and you were a passionate vegan, who loved indie cinema and bohemian op shop clothing? Were you twenty-one and had gained your independence? What age were you when you knew what you loved? That age holds all the answers.

If your seventeen year old self (or what ever age you have chosen) had a message for you right now, what would it be? “Wear Doc. Martens, listen to Tori Amos, do a drawing and smoke a cigarette.” Cool- except for that last one. A cup of tea will be a good replacement: only listen to the advice that’s good for you. Listen to the guidance and act on it.

Exercise- Advice from Your Chosen Age

Insert the chosen age “When I was ___ years old I loved to…” and then list the numbers one to twenty. Next to each thing that you’ve listed, write the feeling of the experience- for example, when you were seventeen maybe you loved going to art galleries, and the feeling you experienced was inspiration. Identify the feeling for each thing that you loved.

Now- next to each item, write an action step that you can take immediately, or over the next week that can address the items on the list. For the above example, the action step would be to go to an exhibition. If you loved The Beastie Boys when you were fourteen, listen to an album. If The Labyrinth was your favourite movie when you were nine- watch it.

When you reconnect to the things that brought you so much joy, you remember why they did in actual fact inspire you. You remember a vital part of yourself you may have forgotten. You reawaken within yourself an aspect of your creativity and true essence that holds the key to your current happiness.

I‘d love to hear from you after you do the exercise- what did you remember? What action steps did you take in reconnecting to your past passions/interests?

 

 

 

 

ACTING CLASSES START SATURDAY!

Hi All,

If you’re in the Newcastle region and are looking for something fun to do on a Saturday- you should think about joining my seven week course which starts this weekend, Saturday, February 6th at Merewether Uniting Church Hall from 12-3pm.

The focus of the classes is script interpretation and characterisation. Every week, we will get together, do a brief warm up and then get stuck into our scene work. I’ve got some great scenes/monologues lined up by some of the world’s most renowned playwrights and screenwriters- there are some classic texts involved as well as current scenes from TV’s “Nashville”, “Orange is the New Black” and new material straight from Broadway.

Students in this class range in experience- some are newbies, others have been training with me over the past eighteen months, and others have a lot of acting experience but want the engagement/atmosphere of the rehearsal room. Remember, Acting is a muscle and we need to keep practicing and learning to keep our strength up.

We have people in the course from the age of sixteen to eighty-three- there’s an amazing range of life experience in the group, and apart from being engaging and inspiring- it’s also a lot of fun. So if you’re keen- there’s no room to procrastinate- so contact me today to enrol! The cost of the course is $360.

Claire xx (0412155950 or clairepasvolsky@gmail.com)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

YOUR CREATIVE NEW YEAR

Happy New Year!

Here’s a fun exercise to determine which creative projects or goals we’re going to work on in 2016. Instead of looking at the entire year ahead, let’s just focus on the first quarter- this takes us from now up until March 31st.

  1. Get a piece of paper and divide it into 3 columns
  2. Label each column with the heading “Project 1”, “Project 2” and “Project 3”
  3. Now, choose your projects/goals- it could be: Project 1- Learn Guitar, Project 2- Go to an Acting Class, Project 3- Write a novel
  4. Look at your list again- is it realistic? Can you actually accomplish these three things by the end of the first quarter, or is this list already stressing you out? Yes or no?
  5. Re-edit list- it might look now look like this Project 1-Start guitar lessons, Project 2- Start going to an Acting Class, Project 3- Write a short story/plot for my novel
  6. Now you have three projects to work on that are actually in your grasp of achieving.
  7. Now under each heading, list 5 steps you need to take in order to achieve these outcomes- for example “Start guitar lessons” a)get guitar out of the garage b) tune it c) research group classes- where are they on/who’s running them/what appeals? d)listen to some music that inspires me e) sign up/attend classes etc.
  8. Do the same kind of list under each project, the Acting Class process will be similar, but if writing is your goal you will need to be more specific/disciplined and realistic, for example- how much time can you devote to your practice? Do you need to set your alarm half an hour early just to get up and write before the rest of the household interrupts you?
  9. Now you have a blue print for the first quarter of the year. The list should now feel supportive to your wishes, not stressful. Don’t forget to tick off your achievements from this list, no matter how small! For example, you can’t start guitar lessons without getting your guitar out of the garage- tick! That’s one thing off your list.

I hope this year is super creative for you and you are able to connect with your soul through that which you love- be it music, art, writing, performance or whatever makes you smile. I am available as a Creativity Coach both in person or via Skype and my seven week courses are listed below- Love Claire xx

Acting Classes- Term 1- Acting Fundamentals (Beginners class for Grown Ups)- 7 Weeks/$300, Saturday Mornings 9-11am (Feb 6th, 2016) Pasvolsky Studio (Intermediate to Advanced)- 7 Weeks/$360, Saturdays Midday- 3pm (Feb 6th, 2016). Creative and Acting Coaching sessions are available in person or via Skype. Email me to book- clairepasvolsky@gmail.com

 

ACTING SKILLS = LIFE SKILLS

You don’t need to want to become a professional actor in order to gain loads of life skills in a class with Pasvolsky Studio.

Here are some of the great skills you will develop, that you can take back into the “real” world:

  1. Improvisation Skills- Learning to think in our feet can help us out in many ways. If you need to negotiate, communicate or react quickly to something, practicing this skill can really enhance your daily communication skills.
  2. Characterisation- By creating characters or by bringing words to life on a page, we begin to learn more about other peoples perspectives and the world around us.
  3. Games- Our brains get switched on, we have to follow the rules in order to “survive”, we have to adapt and go with the group in order to achieve the intended outcome. The energy and positivity as well as focus is something we can take into the home or into the office.
  4. Scene Work- By working collaboratively with a partner we practice the skills of communication and negotiation. Putting together a scene is like orchestrating a dance- two people need to be in alignment and agreement with each other with their communication and intention or the scene will fail. This is a great metaphor for any relationship we may have in our own lives.
  5. Performance- Whether you need to do public speaking in your job, the skills of performance will give you a firm grounding in life. Learn to ground yourself, to own your voice and to allow yourself to be seen.

Early bird specials for Term 1 end December 31st, so get in quick if you want to take advantage of this massive saving. Acting Fundamentals (9-11am)and Pasvolsky Studio (12-3pm) are held on Saturdays at Merewether Uniting Church Hall, Merewether. The term is 7 Weeks. Cost is $300($270 with the special) and $400 ($360 with the special). Email Claire to book- clairepasvolsky@gmail.com or call 0412155950 for more information.