Saturday, April 23, 2011

"The World's Mightiest Teacher"

Here's what I love about teaching!

Clowning is an inside out art form. That means, whatever is going on on the inside has to be magnified and gigantified to the outside.

If you're shy on the inside and think people are judging you. Make that huge on the outside, become the world's shyest person, you pick on someone in your audience and say "quit looking at me!" I promise it's hilarious.

The mistake amateur or newer clowns make, they copy other clowns. You can study, you can appreciate but character is unique, it comes right from the inside. My character is generated from my fears and voices; I put them out there on the outside for the world to look at. But their mine. Yours might be similar but my experiences, my upbringing, my views of the world, my religious beliefs, my family dynamic, where I grew up, my relation to my parents, my relation to authority, the number of classes I've taken...all me and me alone. You can imitate but you can never really copy another character.

When I teach, I want you to reach inside and find the fears and the voices and expose them to the world. Here's the cool thing. I don't really need to know what the voices are saying, I don't really need to know your fears. They are yours. I just want the honesty to bubble up.

Ever been bored in a play? Ever been bored in a movie? The reason you are bored, is not because it's a boring movie, it's boring because the actors are not being honest, they are not reaching inside for character. I can blame the director too but when you get bored you are seeing people pretending to be someone else. When you are engaged and involved in the movie or play, you are not thinking, you are watching and involved. You are not watching people pretend to be something else, you are watching artists grappling with their own personal demons.

Pretty heady stuff.

Clowning is even more honest. You are putting out to the world the things you don't want anyone to know about you. Takes a lot of bravery. You are exposing all your fears, making them big, you are embracing it. It's walking a tight rope for sure, it's probably why some people don't like clowns.

So, I'm the world's mightiest teacher! I have such respect when I work with students, it's the most brave thing in the world to watch. I create a total supportive environment, no one ever falls when they are with me, they falter but no one ever hits the ground.

Now, here's the other side of clowning. At the same time you are being the world's most honest person and putting out your biggest fears to the are hiding behind a wall of make up, you are hiding behind farse and routines, big shoes, red nose.

Strange isn't it?

Ready to hire the world's mightiest teacher? I'm ready!

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