Tuesday, September 16, 2008

How do you forget something like this?

I think I've become too results-focused and forgotten how to work with teenage improvisers. 

Here's what lead to it: 
  • A rambunctious, to say the least, 12-kid cast in Exit 16. Including about half a troupe in their third year of working with me, which means I have little or no authority. 
  • An early festival show, and the first performance at the school two weeks away. 
  • Oh, and I'm not doing as much directing and teaching. So I may have forgotten what to do. 
So I leave feeling like I've cajoled, yelled and bossed them into scenes. I don't nurture unless they do something right. I'm treating them like adults—actually, I may be treating them like robots. 

They push me—hard—and instead of yielding and redirecting, I push back. I have a feeling I can't win this, and shouldn't be trying. It's an incredibly smart, funny, talented and strong-willed bunch, and I need to channel their energy instead of resist it. 

But then...but then...in some cases, I have to draw a line. When t-shirt brainstorming and scene content get highly inappropriate, I feel like I have to have zero tolerance. 

So the trick is figuring out when to draw the line, and when to move it. 

1 comment:

  1. I bet when you make a decision you feel like you have to explain it. If Joining the military taught me anything it was that authority is absolute. If you explain your decision you open up a forum on why you are making that call. All of your ideas should be final outside of content. It shouldn't be open to debate. Try that line of thinking out and be comfortable with your authority. You might find they will respect and appreciate that.

    just my 2 cents.

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