Have you noticed that when you are interested in something, you seek out information on your own, without necessarily being prompted to do so? And then, once you find something that holds your interest, how do you stay turned-on, tuned in, and awake to the very thing you love to do?
When I was studying acting in New York with master teacher/director, Gene Frankel, I recall how he would remind the class about the importance of continually discovering ways to enrich your life. He would say over and over how vital it was (is) to remain stimulated and how it is our duty as actors, writers, and directors to keep the passion alive.
To this day, I honor what he said as I seek out a vast array of platforms that energize, inform and keep me awake. And, thankfully, my level of curiosity and enthusiasm hasn’t dissipated in the least when it comes to the arts and life in of itself. Every day is an opportunity to discover something new that may inform you as an artist if you are awake and living in the moment.
As a working example, if you are an actor and you just got cast in a role, be it for film, television or stage, immediately there is an opportunity to see the world from a different point of view. After reading the script or play, you will see how the rules of the world created by the writer inform you.
After a second and third reading (required) this world you have dropped into begins to shape and color your point of view through the character’s eyes taking you down a path to a new awakening and (hopefully) enriching your personal life as well.
Of course, you don’t have to be in the arts to have a charged experience. Life is informing us around the clock, providing us an abundance of moments to stay awake. Currently, I’m being guided through the eyes of social media as a platform to share my story and be of service as an actor, acting coach, and poet.
Staying awake requires practice. Some of my practice includes leaning heavily on NPR; The Treatment is a favorite. Also, NY Times Talk, The Guardian, Film Comment, The New Yorker, writing in my journal at a café in Venice, surfing, evening walks, and believe it or not, driving east of the 405 to Samuel French Bookstore in Hollywood to research and read plays.
Guy Camilleri is a Venice-based actor, acting coach, and poet. Read more from Camilleri on Yo! Venice. He teaches regular classes on Monday and Wednesday evenings at the Electric Lodge, in Venice. His private coaching specializes in audition preparation, self-taped auditions, original reels and career consultation. To audit a class and book a coaching session, email firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow Guy on Instagram @guycamilleri and Facebook.