Onwards and Upwards

It’s that time of the year again, the time of reflection and readjustment as we dive into the festivities, and prepare to emerge after the new year with enthusiasm for whatever wonders it may bring.


This year has been a cracker, as most of my family, friends and colleagues have noted. It shot by most of us in a haze of sparkling sulphur, whirling us giddily into a spin of delight, confusion and exhaustion. Was I really there? Did I do that? Were you there when it happened?   I feel I need someone else to validate this past year for me, it was so rich and yet so fleeting.

Being in Voice, The Acting Class had an extraordinary year, with some students continuing on from last year, new students joining the pool, and visits from past students adding to the richness of the mixture.  We finally got to perform, as a student ensemble, when the BitsFestival gave us the opportunity to present our ten minute show The Sonneteers.

I am now planning for next year’s Class, with e-flyers scheduled to go out over the weekend (after I recover from the Christmas Prawns). The Class will begin on Sunday 7th February, and we will be getting very up close and personal with our voices from the word ‘go’. As usual, I am struggling to find ways of explaining what we do in terms that make sense to anyone who hasn’t worked with us before. Why does it seem to hard to communicate how working on the voice is actually working on your whole fabulous self? Why is it so difficult to explain that actor training involves learning a host of techniques and skills, and they all involve the voice? As you can see, I’m still working on my thesis…

So I’ll just say that working on your voice means developing your creative potential, and keeping yourself physically and vocally fit at the same time.  It means honing your craft as an actor, as you acquire new skills and techniques and gain experience in performing with other creative individuals.

I’ve received some wonderful testimonials from the students, and I’m looking forward to working with Paula and Shikhara again in 2010. All our very best wishes go to those who have moved on, to Jean Marc out there on the Rig, and to Tegan in Melbourne, to Robert who will be working on his amazing new project (congratulations on getting accepted by the Metro Independents Program!).  David will be coming back, but this time officially as my assistant teacher.

Here’s wishing you and yours a wonderful festive season, I hope you find yourself on the other side of Hogmanay rested and relaxed, ready to face another year of fireworks and crackers, all of them exploding creatively with love and peace.

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Come join me at The Big Sing! on THE MODERN VOCALIST.com

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Flloyd Kennedy Flloyd Kennedy Flloyd Kennedy has invited you to the event ‘The Big Sing!’ on THE MODERN VOCALIST.com!

Apologies for cross posting.

It would be wonderful if you and your friends and colleagues could join us for a day of joyful sounding!

With all good wishes

The Big Sing! Time: February 6, 2010 from 9:30am to 4pm
Location: to be advised
Organized By: Being in Voice with Flloyd Kennedy

Event Description:
A one-day workshop for everyone who ever wanted to explore their vocal potential, or just play with their voices in a truly non-judgmental environment.

We will spend the morning warming up our bodies and our voices, getting to know our voices from the inside out in the nicest possible way. After a relaxing luncheon, we will play with our voices, improvising with pure vocal sound, and invent our own unique massed voice symphony.

You don’t have to be a ‘singer’ to make music in a crowd. Come and join us as we


See more details and RSVP on THE MODERN VOCALIST.com:
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Yes, we make funny noises!

It’s true, when we work on our voices, we make sounds we wouldn’t normally make in the course of our everyday lives. That’s because we are extending our range, broadening our capacity, developing our potential. It doesn’t make sense to just sound the way we usually do, after all, that is why we are training in the first place.  And of course, we use our bodies to do it.

So, here is a short film of some of the Being in Voice Acting Class students, generously sharing their process with you as they did some of their own individual warm up in class last week. Mostly they are exploring Fitzmaurice Voicework exercises, but there are other influences present also. Then you will see them playfully exploring some particular Archetypal qualities.

The Acting Class 20 Sept


Wanna be an Actor? or wannabee actor?

Here are some excellent tips for how to present yourself at auditions.  The tipster is Ken Davenport, a highly respected off-Broadway theatre producer.

The Producer’s Perspective

Ken makes the point that many people think they are actors, but there are very few Actors around. The difference is not in the level of talent or training, but in the level of professionalism and commitment that is brought to the process.

I shouldn’t be surprised, or shocked any more at the care-less attitudes I hear about among actors, but I can’t help being hurt when I come across them. Yes, foolish as it sounds, I actually care so much about Theatre that I feel personally offended when I come across examples of disrespect towards it.

Recently I heard about some students (on a respected University degree course) who decided they didn’t need to participate in group assignment work, because they were ‘going to New York’, presumably to find opportunities to let down even more colleagues. Actually, they are in for a very rude awakening if they do make it to the Big Apple hoping to get into a drama college, or to make it on Broadway.

Those of us who care about theatre, and who work to create theatre that is engaging and provocative, entertaining and refreshing, we know that it doesn’t happen without a great deal of hard work, sacrifice, love and patience. It requires people to arrive at rehearsals on time, and to stay till the rehearsal is finished; to take regular classes (arriving at those on time also); to audition over and over without getting frustrated with the auditioners; to put up with boring paid work in order to survive while doing soul-sustaining unpaid work, and to REFUSE to be involved in unpaid work that is not creatively satisfying – because it is not true that any stage work is better than none.  It is bad enough when shallow, mediocre work is presented on our mainhouse, funded stages: we don’t need to add to the agony by dropping our standards to the lowest common demoninator.  This applies whether you are an actor looking for work, or a director looking for actors. Be choosy, be selective, make sure you know the difference between an Actor, and a wannabee.

Oh, I could rant on – and I do – but I guess I’m ‘preaching to the converted’ anyway. So, good on ya! Carry on fighting the good fight! Let’s make some cracking good theatre, together, soon…

Some more Really Useful Blogs

I’m adding a couple of new links, these are fascinating blogs by dedicated actors, teachers and theatre makers.

The Shakespeare Blog offers some great insights into matters of interpretation, and performance techniques on all matter Shakespeare.

The Ottawa Theatre Network is going to be an interesting discussion to follow, as a group of actors and theatre makers set about organising themselves into a force to be reckoned with.

Sterling Lynch is the Ottawa-based actor who is keeping the information flowing for the Ottawa Theatre Network, and his own personal blog offers some insights into the life of a working actor.

Closer to home, take a look at Kate Foy’s blog The Groundling. Kate is former head of Voice at USQ, still a force to be reckoned with on all matters theatre in and around South East Queensland, and all round wise woman.