18th June 2007

Rehearsal Room Theory Tested
Richard Sarell has been running a short course about screen performance for third year actors at the Academy of Arts at Ballarat University. The thirty actors who are completing their third year of tertiary study spent 12 days exploring TV acting processes. The first three days where spent examining the ‘value of story’, the next three ‘bringing complexity to character’ and of course the playing of surprises for the screen was also explored.

“The value of having Rehearsal Room practice exposed to a tertiary environment was fascinating and invaluable,” Richard said. In this new environment a number of theories were expanded and clarified. There was a very clear endorsement of the value of ‘surprises’. Ballarat actors who developed the skill of allowing their character’s expectations to be interrupted by surprises quickly found that their performances were the standout ones in the group.

A number of Rehearsal Room theories were minutely examined because the actors found television process to be very different from the stagecraft they had been learning. The general level of endorsement that the concepts received took some of the theories to a new level. “This was a very stimulating and productive time,” Richard said.

Round Three Audition Workshop
Tom McSweeney and Cameron Harris are the next casting directors in the – to enrol.



KRISTIN SARGENT has won a part in a feature which starts shooting around 18th June. KRISTIN was the only actor to be called back for her part. “Rehearsal Room Audition coaching gave me a clear set of practical tools to take to help make useful choices during the audition process,” KRISTEN said. ‘Prey’ is directed by George Miller. Check it out www.myspace.com/Preymovie Congratulations, KRISTIN!!!!!
PATRICK CONSTANTINOU had a remarkable run with his recent audition for an American feature ‘Ruins’. As part of the selection process his audition was seen in the U.S. by Denise Chamian who cast ‘Pirates of the Caribbean’, ‘The Pursuit of Happyness’, ‘Déjà vu’, ‘Constantine’, ‘Eyes Wide Shut’ and ‘Saving Private Ryan’. Auditioning for Australian Casting Director Ben Parkingson PATRICK got down to the last two options for the part.

After covering (understudying) four female roles in Melbourne Theatre Company's production of "The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee" in 2006 JACKIE RAE LYTHGO is back at work with the same play for the Sydney Theatre Company. One night during the first week of the Melbourne season a cast member suddenly fell ill and JACKIE RAE was thrown into a role mid-performance. (There after she played three shows a week for the rest of the season.)

In a recent email JACKIE RAE wrote – “In Sydney a similar thing has happened. I have just finished my most intense week since,.. well... Spelling Bee for MTC last year! I didn't think it could happen again but, YES IT DID!”

JACKIE RAE had been contracted to understudy all the main parts in the Sydney production and to play Marina Prior’s role every Tuesday night. She only had 2 actual rehearsals for this role the rest of her performance preparation has been done through observation and note taking. She played that role on the first Tuesday of the season but on opening night, Thursday, I spent the entire day getting prepared for another female role Logan Swartzandgrubinerre which she had never been rehearsed in.

“I escaped opening night terror, but had to perform the next evening, Friday, and 2 shows today (Saturday). I'm exhausted and in a state of disbelievement ?? (Is that a word?),” she said.

“I surprised myself again. I had never been given a rehearsal in this role and sheer terror set in, that felt slightly familiar from last time... Can you believe it????? I did really well. I've been reviewed on both roles which I've attached and received many accolades.”

“The reviews are good (“Lythgo seemed a textbook fit for the prim and proper role") but they don't evoke the intensity of the situation I was in. I have now performed 3 out of 4 roles in this show... all completely different vocally and in singing range, absurdly different "types", different in comical timing, story, background, looks... blonde, brunette and a redhead!”

In the midst of all this JACKIE RAE was also negotiating her own working conditions because at the moment she is a freelance performer.

Well done, JACKIE RAE. This is a wonderful and huge achievement. All Rehearsal Room actors applaud your success. Congratulations.

(for more of JACKIE RAE’S performance process – click here)

The NEXT TERM of Rehearsal Room classes commences from 16th July. For details and dates Introductory, Advanced, Advanced (Level 2) and MASTER CLASS.


LOVE??? BLOG 14 is now online. Forrest sets out to find the meaning of love and loses something along the way.
The Rehearsal Room Video Blog continues to explore Forrest's adventures in life. Seventeen entries have now been shot involving thirty actors although only 14 are online. The others are still being edited. The latest one has nine speaking parts in it, is 5 minutes 21 seconds long and was shot in 3 hours. It was great fun to shoot. Because MySpace will only allow a maximum of 10 videos only the latest blogs will be found on MySpace and the rest will be archived at ‘forrestsnewbeginning’ at Youtube.com
Richard Sarell says The Rehearsal Room is still working towards developing Forrerst’s New Beginning into a feature film.

A few thoughts on acting fundamentals that were provoked by a workshop session performing improvisations. Do you forget these simple basics? FOR MORE

1st May 2007

Could 'Forrest' Be A Feature Film?
On Sunday 29th May a small group gathered at The Rehearsal Room to assess the progress of Forrest’s New Beginning Video Blogs. Fourteen blogs have now been shot involving 22 Rehearsal Room actors and totalling 53 minutes of screen time.

The first thing that happens as a result of a project like this is that everyone gets better. There is a very clear improvement in writing and performance skills as the blogs progress – this is the real value of doing the work. Excitingly, according to this group the story was very engaging. Everyone agreed that Forrest’s story was much stronger when it was linked together than it was broken down into individual blogs. So - could it be a feature film??

What’s Next for Forrest?
A number of problems were identified and some of those will be fixed immediately. Others that require re-writing will have to wait until the future of this project is really clear. For the moment we will keep producing more segments with the aim of increasing our skills and our understanding of how this style of storytelling works. But for the future there are high hopes of turning Forrest’s New Beginning into a feature film.

The Latest Escapades
Forrest’s latest two adventures are now online. He is beginning to explore kissing. “Is sex the path to love or love the path to sex?” he wonders. Click here for “Kissing it Better” and here for “Lip Balm Kissing”. Blog #14 “In search of Love” is shot and will be uploaded shortly.

Australian Screen Test Postponed
This event has now been postponed to 5th, 6th and 7th October 2007 (see 8th April news for contact details)

Monologue Workshop
The one-day Monologue Workshop is happening THIS SUNDAY 6th May. It is a great way for professional actors, teachers and VCE students to acquire a fresh view of “How to Manage a Monologue”. A one day workshop that will quickly and effectively change your performance outcomes. (TO ENROL)

"I did an audition a short time after the workshop and they asked me to play it in a variety of different ways. Your process helped enormously with making those changes. It was a significant factor in me getting the role." - Andrea McCannon

"The monologue workshop is a winner. I had an audition the next week and got the role!" - Charity Shaw (FOR MORE ACTORS COMMENTS)

Sunday Introductory and Advanced Classes

Commencing Sunday 13th May these workshops are filling fast. But there are still a couple of spots available. Change your view of acting for ever.

Auditions for magazine show “The Missing Manual” are complete and a diverse range of enthusiastic people with a wonderful range of life experience offered their services. A short list is being prepared and the next step will be to test the potential presenters with small sample groups to assess a general audience response. The plan is to have a team of presenters bringing diversity and balance to the show’s contents. More news soon.



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