1. The Beginning

I realised at the age of 11 while performing in a school play called The Miasma in Mostyn Mews that telling a story was somehow very important to me.

A fellow cast member, playing her role, tied to a chair and struggling (with ten times more vigour now we were in front of an audience), fell backward off the raised stage. Fortunately, she was completely uninjured which made it a comic moment rather than a painful one. She was laughing as were most of the audience and the rest of the cast…

…except me.

My only concern was to continue with the story. Watched by my giggling cast-mates, I managed practically single-handedly to get my colleague and the chair back on the stage. I never once broke character. I didn’t laugh myself or get annoyed, I just very clearly wanted to get on with the play.

I didn’t know it at the time but this would prove to be an important moment for me. It cemented what I first and foremost wanted to achieve even then as a young child through the experience of acting. I wanted, above all else, to be lost in the world of my imagination for the duration of the story. I think for me that was and still is, absolute freedom and fortunately this ideal, though it became increasingly neglected, was to stick with me as I grew-up and headed towards a career in acting.

Unfortunately, the older I got the more my imagination became compromised by the perceived pressures of society and adult life. Fitting-in and being cool, worrying about what others thought of me became of great importance. Acting became less about the freedom of being lost inside a fertile imagination and more about being impressive, the centre of attention. This change of my purpose to act, was imperceptible to me at the time because it was a gradual process of going with the flow, belonging and failing, leaving the beautiful and simple ideals of childhood behind.

It took until my early 30’s and a 4 year Acting and Directing course at The School of the Science of Acting, to rediscover the joy and freedom I’d experienced and sought after as a child.

4 thoughts on “1. The Beginning”

    • Hi Alberto, thank you for your comment.

      That’s the most fascinating thing about acting… you’ve rehearsed and therefore know how the character needs to be and when…then in performance you have to make it spontaneous because that is how we live. In other words and as you quite rightly allude to, an actor has to make the known and predictable, unknown and unpredictable and to do that, while remaining in the context of the story and the character’s thinking, takes a good deal of dedicated work, knowledge, design and skill. It doesn’t just happen by chance and it isn’t the result of a mystical, god-given talent.


  1. Just finished watching your video what is the Science of Acting, and felt like I finally understood why I felt misunderstood in acting school. I wanted and still desire that intense focus but felt that the emphasis was on “professionalism” (based on personal opinions and experiences) and not cultivating a personal technique but a regurgitation of what I called “myths and legends” (idol/gods).

    But this explained the feeling I had as well when I spilled water on my head in a comedy and did not break. Instead leaned in and have been trying to figure out how to be in relationship with that as society tells us to be “professional “ and learn from the “greats” deemed greats based on societies needs and standards of beauty.

    I desire to be in the pocket a balance between the audience at large I think is important but what I have not learned and resonate with is how to be in relationship with self in order to have the precise focus you just spoke of.

    Thank you for sharing and please continue to do so.

    • Thank you dre for your comment and taking the time to do so. There are a lot of people think the way you do during and after the drama school experience and even on into the profession.

      Professionalism is a good thing but only when it goes hand in hand with knowledge of your profession and the development of professional skill. In acting, buzzwords like; professionalism, believability, star-quality and charisma, sometimes paper-over a profound lack of understanding of what acting actually is and should be. If you start digging and asking questions colleagues can treat you like some kind of philistine who seems to have missed the mystic, multi-interpretable nuances (in other words confusion) that the acting profession desperately embraces.

      Keep checking in here, my videos and upcoming podcasts and I’ll do my best to give you answers.



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