This week’s challenge: to write a piece about contrasting concepts.
Light and dark
The budding actress was rehearsing her lines for the upcoming production of ‘Macbeth’ and as Lady Macbeth I had been asked to assist her in learning her lines. After labouring her way through most of her lines and me asking myself serious questions over why this young lady had been given the role when at best she was pedestrian, I pulled her up after this line:
‘My hands are of your colour; but I shame
To wear a heart so white.…’
I set out to explain the virtue of the concept of light and dark. She was as I suspected dumbfounded by such a consideration. I went on about delivery, discovering the meaning in each line, the nuances in each word and making decisions as to how that word or line might be said to enhance that discovery for the audience.
Some words and lines I explained were light, soft tones could be used to elicit a response from the audience that might generate empathy for the character or an emotional one from the audience. Some words and phrases evoked a darker response, lines that could be said with strength and vigour have your audience sit up and take notice.
After a good half hour of this I then asked her to think about what I had said as she rehearsed further.
The following harrowing twenty minutes reminded me she was not a light and dark actress in any way but rather one skilled in the act of monosyllabic delivery.