LaTour

One more of *those* weeks gone...

It's officially March 1 here.

February is now gone, and with it the last seven days that I lived in the presence of wonderful people, including old friends, new ones, and others who I thought I would never run into in my life.

I was lucky enough -once more I must say- to participate quite actively in this year's Shakespeare Festival. The weeks leading up to it were just adding more and more excitement to my heart and my head. I had waited a total of 365 days or so to be able to be part of this and share my love and respect towards this actor/playwright called William Shakespeare.

I have always felt strongly attached to his work, but now that I have so much 'exposure' to it, and since every year they have all these activities related to his life and his plays, I couldn't help but dig deeper and deeper.

To be honest, my life has changed so much this last year. Musical theatre, last year's Shakespeare Festival, my trip to the Netherlands and Rome, David Tennant and Doctor Who, leaving Once Upon a Time behind, as well as not spending so much time on the internet doing nothing, really.

Musical theatre was a very huge turning point, because it opened my eyes. It opened my eyes not only to that fascinating world, but also made me realize that I want to work harder, and that I HAD to work harder if I really wanted to do better and be the best.

This past November I started going regularly to the library to study theatre. I decided to start with theatre history, and so far I've gone through cavemen, Egypt, the Greeks, Romans, Middle Ages, Rennaissance Italy (including commedia dell'arte). And those trips are more and more enriching, and every time I go, I just want to go for longer periods of time, and learn it all.

This is the view from the 5th floor. It couldn't be more beautiful and more inspiring.

These past few days I left the book aside and started reading John Dover Wilson, who wrote a sort of biography of Shakespeare according to what we all know and the information that remains until today.

I also read The Two Gentlemen of Verona before watching the performance from the Royal Shakespeare Company from last year. This was such a great thing, because Sarah MacRae was in it. Sarah was Hero on David Tennant's and Catherine Tate's Much Ado About Nothing. She's also on The Globe's A Midsummer Night's Dream. So knowing that I would see a familiar face, but also that I knew that she was going to do a great job, I couldn't wait to see it. Again, she didn't disappoint me. And it was great to be able to tell her on Twitter, as well as reading her reply (yes, she made me cry).

That was on Saturday the 21st. Sunday I visited the Anglican Cathedral to listen to a musical ensemble who played renaissance instruments while someone was reading some lines of Shakespeare, including "What light is light if Silvia be not seen?" from Two Gents. It was again so overwhelming that I cried.

Michael Pennington

Then, the day came when this legend and master of the craft and Shakespeare came to Buenos Aires. He's 'worked with the Bard' for more than 50 years, founded the English Shakespeare Company, has played Romeo, Richard II, King Lear, Timon of Athens...

This magnificent person was coming to have a chat with 50 lucky people who could sign up and get a ticket to enter.

I wasn't one of them.

However, there are always free spots because some people can't go, and I decided to arrive as early as possible to be able to get a way in. And I did. The woman to my right on that photo above was my angel. She wanted to smuggle me in, but I told her I preferred to wait until I got permission to enter. When I did, she raised her hand, and showed me a free seat, a seat next to her that she had saved for me.

I had studied the days before, so I could ask a question to Mr. Pennington when the time came: Which is the most underrated character of Shakespeare's plays? It was a great question, and his answer even better yet: Timon of Athens. The hour went by really quickly, but it was truly enjoyable.

And Friday was the most important day of them all. It was the day when Michael Pennington was going to perform his Sweet William. A solo play that combined his own view of Shakespeare's life, intertwined with the soliloquies, and conversations between his characters.

There were moments when everyone was so quiet. He was mesmerizing. And as he told the Bard's story, I could totally recognize names, and dates, and things that happened because I had read them those past few days. It was a beautiful feeling.

This week has been an unbelievable one. My strength and my energies have been recharged. I met a new friend. I pasted my Globe postcard on my closet mirror, and musical theatre will be starting very soon. I know I am not 100% ready, but I am certainly MORE READY than before.

I am literally speechless. I still cannot believe all this happened. I can't believe it.

PS: something I'll always remember. When we were at the line to enter the room for the chat with Michael Pennington, I met this really nice, kind lady. When we said goodbye at the end, she said: "May all the good things bloom from within you" - todas las cosas buenas, que de ti florezcan.
  • Current Location: bed.. Zzzzz
  • Current Mood: Tired, but joyful
  • Current Music: The Two Gentlemen of Verona
LaTour

A year ago, I didn't know who David Tennant was...


At the bottom of that photo says Domingo 16. That is Sunday the 16th of February, 2014.

The day before I found out by pure coincidence that they were holding a Shakespeare festival here in Buenos Aires to mark the 450 years of his birth.

I remember Maaike mentioning Doctor Who and talking about David Tennant. Or was it I who told her that they were screening this play from The RSC and she couldn't stop talking about him?

I honestly can't remember. I just know that I had to rush to the place where they were screening the play and pray that they had a seat for me. You needed to sign up for all of the activities for this Festival, and since I had known about it the day before, I couldn't sign up.

But there were seats. And there I was, watching this man for the first time. He was the first actor in this huge Shakespeare play, in this iconic place, with such marvelous artists all around him.

That was the moment. Right there. I could (obviously) understand half of the play, but there was magic in that stage and his performance glowed. There was something special about him. Something that made me pay my full attention to him at all times.

I went back home to talk to Maaike and tell her that the play had been fantastic. That's when she told me about Much Ado About Nothing. That's when I got to know who Catherine Tate was. That's when she told me I should give Doctor Who a go.

And I gave the show a go.

And I was utterly amazed. And that's when I knew that before Catherine and David had been on Much Ado, they had been Doctor and Companion. And that's when I rushed through all the Doctor Who episodes to see the perfect characters that they both were (and that's when I got to see Billie Piper's and Christopher Eccleston's superb talents).

And then came all the rest. Then came all the rest of shows, all the rest of hilarious sketches, all the rest of talk shows, interviews, but most of all the admiration.

And now I'm here. It's been one year. That day of 2014 presented itself as a clear path. It showed me that I had to take the long road to get to where I wanted. This ride has been incredible... and I can't wait for the rest.
  • Current Location: Home
  • Current Mood: excited excited
  • Current Music: Into The Woods
LaTour

Never

Yesterday I went to watch the musical The Three Musketeeers.

One of my musical theatre teachers was part of it. He had a small role, but nonetheless, he was part of the show.

I wanted to go because, as he told us one day, we have to attend shows to be able to experience what goes on, how the performance is done, how the lighting works, how the songs sound, etc.

So, I said to myself that I had to buy the ticket and go see him perform. He was Cardinal Richelieu and although he did a good job, there were so many things that I saw that I need to write down.

I cannot forget what I saw last night. Because it all serves for the great goal.

It was a pain in the behind

I gotta say first that I was having really high expectations towards this musical. I don't know why. Perhaps because he was in it, and also because the price of the ticket was quite high, I thought that the show was going to be better.

They will only perform it three times, and I don't know why I think that this made the whole thing worse. They probably didn't rehearse much and you could totally notice that.

  • Many of them forgot their lines.

  • The sound guy forgot to turn off mics of some of the actors.

  • A girl singing didn't start right. She did well, but it didn't sound good at first.

  • No set design whatsoever. It was all black, and they'd change places with lights. That was it.

They started late and at one point, I just couldn't bear it anymore.

It just proves that it is not easy. It's not enough if you just want to go on a stage and sing, and act. There's so much more into that. You really need to study your lines, know how you are going to convey the meaning. The subtext, how you'll engage the audience with what you say and sing.

Some of them sang beautifully (almost all of them, honestly), but some of them lacked that bit where you do it because you're telling the story, not because you want to show everyone how good you are.

It's a challenge. It requires a lot of sacrifice, a lot of rehearsals, a lot of commitment, and studying.

You see?
  • Current Location: home
  • Current Mood: hungry hungry
  • Current Music: mute
LaTour

Hamlet, by The Globe Theatre

Once again. It's time to be grateful.

It's time to say: "Hey, I know I'm not there yet, but I've come a long damn way". It's also time to say something like this: "Thank you. Thanks Buenos Aires. Thanks Argentina..."

Shakespeare Sunday was absolutely perfect.

I knew what I was going to see, and I was ready for it. I was more than ready, to be honest. Thanks to Maaike and Maressa who bought me A Midsummer Night's Dream performed at The Globe, plus all those other performances I have watched online via Digital Theatre, I was familiar with what kind of acting I was going to see, how long it was going to be, and how magnificent it was going to sound.

I had forgotten about one thing though. They play instruments and sing songs at the beginning, before the intermission, and at the end. So when we got there these guys were just playing the accordion, violin, that percussion thing he's holding (no idea what it's called).

The guy in white shirt is Hamlet and he did a wonderful job, and so did the rest.

I took my MP3 player with me to record my favorite parts. I knew (kind of knew) when they were coming because I watched David Tennant's Hamlet last night to get familiar with the story........ once again.

Although I tried my best, I don't know why they moved 'To be or not to be' to another part of the play. I mean, in Tennant's Hamlet, it happens before the actros arrive. In this one, it's after they arrive to Hamlet's castle. It was really strange and the difference might be in the Folio or Quarto versions. Who knows?

I loved the theatre too, because it was kind of like The Globe. And I was in ROW ONE. I know lots of people hate it, and I actually didn't get to pick my seat, but I was almost right in front. I was the ultimate groundling so to speak.

Since my path towards discovering my talents and my love of acting is just starting (it has been starting for the last 10 years), I really wanted to be next to them, to see, and analyze every move, to hear their words more clearly, to see their faces, how they gesticulated, etc.

I paid special attention to Ophelia and Hamlet, just to know how they were going to don their lines, and characters.

It was a true joy. I couldn't have asked for anything better.

That's why I want to say I'm grateful again. And again. And again. I haven't regretted coming to live to Argentina for a single second. Quite the opposite. I am the happiest person here, and even though it took me some time (and it still takes time) to actually realize the amount of things I can do here, and well... eventually succeed, I know I am taking small steps and that keeps my heart and my soul at peace.

Today's play was truly an inspiration. It made me cry twice, when I realized I was really sitting there, watching these guys give such awesome performances.

It was an inspiration and it keeps me going. It's like fuel to me, energy, power to move me inside, and to push me even harder. I still need to work tons... and I can't wait for that!
  • Current Location: desk
  • Current Mood: Joyful
  • Current Music: #41 - Dave Matthews Band
LaTour

I wasn't nervous, and that was huge


The Audition.

I don't really know where to begin. There are so many things I want to mention, but at the same time, I don't have anything really relevant to write here.

Oh WAIT!

Actually something really wonderful happened. Something Maaike is going to be happy about. We went to class, which starts at 7pm, and we had the auditions at 9pm so in the meantime we practiced some of the choreographies. Not many people came to class this time because we were only going to be there for a couple hours so lots of us didn't have our partners for the tango dance.

Well, the girl I mentioned in my previous post (with all the bitterness, and grudge I had) came up to me and suggested we danced together. It was really surprising, and of course, I was my usual self: nice, and focused on doing it well. It was really good because we got to chat, and know each other a little better in terms of our talent.

We practiced a bit of a Shrek choreography and then, all of a sudden, it was 9pm.

I went there with only one thought in my mind: trying to do it the best way possible. And after a couple of friends auditioned it was my turn. I was shaking for moments, but then, when I entered the room...

I felt this confidence reassuring me. It was great, because the nervousness gave way to this sense of standing on my two feet and feeling sure that I wasn't shaking. That just made me control things a little better. Took of my sneakers, went up the stage, and started doing what I had prepared.

I remember that a couple of months ago this would have NEVER happened. Now, I was there, proving myself that I was capable of it. But then my self-judge comes out. I sang, and tried to perform it, but I feel that it looked too rehearsed, and my voice didn't come out naturally. Because of fear, my neck was a little stiff and didn't let the air flow nicely.

BUT WHAT THE HECK?

I was actually able to sing a 1-minute song without shaking, with confidence in me, with something I had rehearsed, trying to include my feelings in it, and keeping the tune.

I am awesome. Next Monday we'll hear back from them.
  • Current Location: my desk
  • Current Mood: my stomach hurts :(
  • Current Music: Lenny Kravitz - Rock N' Roll is Dead
LaTour

Rose, I am back....


It is with the utmost excitement that I officially announce I've finally watched all of Doctor Who, from 2005 to 2014.

It wasn't an easy job, nor something that you can achieve in a couple of weeks. It actually took me five months to watch, fangirl, cry, obsess, hate, jump, scream, laugh, admire, feel inspired, and feel bored even, to get into the Doctor Who world.

It has even given me nightmares a couple of times. I don't really recall if it happened with Christopher Eccleston or David Tennant's episodes, but I can safely say that some of Matt Smith, and Peter Capaldi's have given me bad dreams.

But, all in all, it has given me so much more. It has given me a new perspective in terms of tremendous acting, of good-quality TV shows, of British productions, and of crazy screenwriting that I could not even conceive if I was on LSD and shrooms all at once. Honestly, the incredible imagination that these people have and how they make it seem like it makes sense astounds me.

And then there was Rose

My main goal while I was going through Series 5, which, to be honest was the most disappointing of them all,  was to hurry up and finish with it all so I could start all over again. It was my main motivation for a while, after I finally succumbed to Matt Smith's charms. Then, of course, the gorgeous and crazy talented Jenna Coleman came along and it made everything so much better.

The transition from Matt Smith to Capaldi wasn't as catastrophic as letting David Tennant go, so that was awesome too.

But now that I finally finished, I'm grinning just as much as Rose Tyler is because, I'M STARTING THE SHOW ALL OVER AGAIN.

And I'm this much excited because now that I know what the story is about, and how things will develop, I'll be able to pay attention to the dialogues more, to the jokes, the nuances, the little details, and I'll get to appreciate the acting of everyone involved even more. In other words, I CANNOT wait to watch Billie Piper's Rose again. And I'm watching the Doctor Who Confidential episodes as well. At least the ones I find.

And then there was Once Upon a Time


Before I finish with this entry, I need to finally let this out of my system, after some weeks of pondering over my thoughts about my ONCE adored show.

I really wish I didn't have to say this, but I cannot deny it anymore.

I remember how magical it was to watch the first season episodes. I felt this rush inside me, wondering how they were going to lift the curse, and how Emma would finally believe she was the savior. Then came Season 2, with the curse lifted and everyone remembering who they were. August sent the postcard to Neal, and now all these new developments were going to affect their lives and change them. A possible happy ending together with the father of her child was in the near future.

And then it started spiralling downwards. I rewatched all Season 3 before the fourth one started, and I wanted to confirm my fears. Unfortunately, I still felt the same after watching it again. The Neverland part was more logical and well structured than I thought, but I was already pissed off about how they were pushing the Emma/Neal story away.

And then came Oz, which was a complete disaster in my humble opinion. It was so disorganized, so disengaged from the true, original characters, adding plots that weren't really necessary (like the 4 witches and Dorothy or some parts of Zelena's story, and Robin Hood that didn't really add up to the story).

Season 4 has been just average. The showrunners have been poisoned by what fans want to see, and they forgot how rich, and important their core characters are. Emma Swan's story from episode 4 in current Storybrooke was so lame, and poor. She just fought a monster and said to Regina: "I'm home, I found my parents", which in other words means "no character development for Jennifer Morrison".

This show has nowhere to go anymore. I just hope with all my heart that they finish it with this season. I already want to see Jennifer in other projects where she can explore her acting in new ways.

And they lived happily ever after...
  • Current Location: office
  • Current Mood: kind of excited
  • Current Music: Rather Be - Clean Bandit
LaTour

Tomorrow's the audition


The day has come.

I think I'm ready... I'm not 100% sure but I can say I'm around 92%.

I've been working hard. I mean, I haven't complained about the rest of my classmates from musical theatre for nothing. I have been rehearsing on my own for the last couple of months. I have been going over the different choreographies plus the songs that they have taught us throughout the year.

But, ever since they mentioned that they were going to hold auditions for some performances in schools next year I thought to myself: "ok, now this is the perfect reason, and motivation to start redoubling my efforts and commit to being able to sing in front of people in order to make this a reality".

It's been a wild ride these past couple of months to be honest. After that moment of truth, that leap of fate, everything has changed in a really weird way.

I say weird because I have proven myself that I was able to do this. It feels unreal, but it only takes a certain amount of bravery and boldness and fearlessness to finally jump.

And some ambition too. There's this girl in my group who loves Chicago and sees herself as the embodiment of Velma Kelly, and that she's the only one who can perform the Ouverture. But I have proven her wrong. I got to learn the choreography before her, and the previous class we had she saw me do it. I could swear she wanted to eat me alive.

Newsflash. This is not about believing you are her. It's about working hard to get the part.

The song

I have been rehearsing the same song for months, working little by little to achieve what the teacher wanted to see. First I needed to let go of fear, then I needed to feel confident, then I needed to do it as correct as possible. Now, I am going over the moves that will go with the music, and I have to do all that and not be out of tune.

I went to an art center, and rented a room to practice both the Ouverture and the song I'll be singing tomorrow. Then, last night, I practiced it once more, and recorded myself to see the improvements.

I haven't watched it yet.

But I think I'm ready...
  • Current Location: home
  • Current Mood: tired, and achy
  • Current Music: Walk the moon - Anna Sun
LaTour

It was the best Shakespeare Sunday


Yesterday was magical. Going to the theatre has become a part of me now that I have finally realized the wonderful, incredible things that I FREAKING MISSED OUT on the two years that I've been here. I don't know what took me so long and I'd better not start wondering that now or I'll get all depressed and stuff.

Anyway, while I was writing this journal, I was also booking my next trip to a theatre. Guess which was the word that drove me to heading to this seedy neighborhood on a Sunday evening in two weeks' time? Shakespeare.

It's a very physical version of The Tempest, with dancing, and with something very interesting: they are wearing and using recycled materials. I watched the trailer and it looked quite interesting. Did you know that the price of some of the plays you can go to here cost around 9 dollars? The beauty of Buenos Aires!

The Globe was free

The picture above though. That was for free. I took it yesterday, when I went for the third time to watch Richard III in this replica of the Globe made with scaffolds to recreate the way Shakespeare used to present his plays in XVI-century England. It is really a magnificent experience for someone who, deprived of the possibility of visiting London (very expensive, plus Colombians need to get a special approval to travel there. Bollocks.), can get this unique chance to kind of get the idea of what it feels like to be in the actual Globe replica in the South Bank.

I went there for the third time and it was actually even more enjoyable, because I was already very familiar with the scenes, the acting, and the plot. Plus, I was at the back, and I could get a sense of how the audience reacted, their facial expressions, and their interaction with the actors.

It was really beautiful, because I wasn't part of the audience anymore, but I felt differently. I could really get to a point of analyzing how the whole climate is created between the actors and the spectators, I can imagine what goes through their minds when they hear every word, when they see what happens, when they hear a joke, etc.

Then, the confirmation

Then, something wonderful happened. I went for a third time because I was going to participate in the interview/chat session after the play. Some of the actors stayed and talked to us about playing in this stage, and about Richard III itself. But someone else was with them. It was an 80-year-old man who has been a very influential person in the cultural and theatrical community in Argentina. And he said something that was a discovery to me.

He started talking -almost to himself- about the difference between the Elizabethan-style theatres vs. the proscenium or Italian-style theatres, and said something like: "there's a mystery that I haven't been able to solve and is: how your life and the actor's life becomes one when you are in a theatre. The actor is there, and you are there. You are breathing the same air, living the same moment, and when it all ends you will leave with a part of me, and I will leave with a part of you"... and he went on reflecting on this, and just reminded me of the wonderful feeling, mysticism, and sensitive experience that theatre creates.

All of this is helping me build the road I want to tread on, and I cannot be more thankful.
  • Current Location: officcccceee
  • Current Mood: anxious anxious
  • Current Music: Amélie soundtrack
LaTour

Watched the Selfie pilot and... erm...


Recharging my introvert batteries in my bedroom and I couldn't feel better.

But I'm not here to talk about me, exactly, but about Selfie.
Ms. Amy Pond Karen Gillan made the leap and crossed the Atlantic Ocean to go live in LA. It's absurdly odd to hear her that she doesn't drive (and apparently hasn't learned yet), and she's living in the US. Yeah yeah she has drivers and choffeurs, and assistants but still.

So I saw all these adverts about the new sit-com, plus Jennifer Morrison's 'facies', plus cute Gillan herself. I finished the Doctor Who era that she was part of, and although I have said already that I didn't really like her character, there were some episodes that were crazy enjoyable, and she is very talented.

I mainly wanted to watch Selfie to find out if she was going to play someone very different from Amy, and I think, from herself. Sadly, I wasn't surprised.

Firstly, Selfie lacks originality. It's New Girl meets Ugly Betty meets Confessions of a Shopaholic meets a bit of Amy Pond. And to add to this mess, they make it hip and modern with all the internet lingo, and newly created worries, urban tribes, virtual tribes, fake cyber friends, morales, and viral nonsense.

I knowww I sound super mean, but that's how it came accross to me. It also seemed that they were trying to hard to make it look awesome and they crammed lots of things in those 23 minutes.

I take it all back!

lol, not really. Overall I enjoyed it, but it was really a shame to see the show is just a sum of situations and conversations I am familiar with.

I also DVRed Un-tag my heart which is episode 2. I hope it conveys a different vibe, and that it separates itself from all these previous TV series. I'm sure Karen's efforts to enter the US market must have been huge (just as David Tennant's with Gracepoint, which hasn't been successful at all. Sigh), and I only hope it all goes well. My fingers are crossed for her.
  • Current Location: my bedroom (:
  • Current Mood: tired tired
  • Current Music: TV - Spy