As we said on the 'About Us' page – Big Spirit is aimed squarely at helping you become the actor you dream of being. When Michelangelo looked at a block of marble he would say ‘My job as an artist is to release the brilliant sculpture that’s trapped in that rock’. We have a similar view – our job is to help you release the brilliant actor that’s locked away inside of you. It may surprise you to know that you already have all the performance skills you need right there inside of you.
On the whole acting is not something you learn like maths or how to drive a car, it’s more about re-shaping those skills you use every day to talk to friends, to do your Saturday job or join in a family party. If you can do any or all of those things - you can act! This philosophy is what guides the team at Big Spirit - it’s what makes the group unique. We’re not setting out to make you learn new skills – that would be very hard work and to be honest quite boring for you. What we help you to do is adapt skills you already have in abundance. One thing we do teach is the ‘language of the stage’ that is what works in acting and more importantly – what doesn’t. Not every communication skill you possess is equally effective in getting across meaning so it’s vital you know this sort of stuff.
On top of that we show you how to release your imagination. We help you free it up. You’d be surprised how many people come to us saying ‘I don’t have any imagination’. THEY’RE WRONG! Everyone on the planet has a rich imagination but it can get sort of locked away after a few years. Hey – we’re here to help you find the key and let that critter outa its cage!
When you go to most drama schools or Youth theatres they might give you the chance to do one or at most two plays a year. In Big Spirit you might be in 6 plays over the same period. Wow! In fact most Big Spirit members are always in rehearsal for something. And we don’t have long rehearsal periods either, the way we get through so many shows is because we rehearse for a maximum of 8 weeks and often less than that. Compare that to a show that casts in October and goes onstage 5 months later. With that sort of timescale a cast gets worn out, bored and their performances become what we call ‘over-cooked’.
In Big Spirit we do exactly the opposite – we go at it hard and fast. The payment for all your hard work is only ever 6-8 weeks away when you get to perform in front of a paying audience. By performing so often too, you get very used to acting, it becomes second nature – after all you’re doing it all the time. Not workshopping stuff, not going to classes but preparing for a proper performance. If you want to learn French they say it’s best to live in France for 6 months. The immersion in the language means you pick it up real quick. Likewise by using the language of the stage day after day, week after week and month after month you soon get to be fluent as an actor too.
Big Spirit Youth Theatre are based at The Queen Mother Theatre, Hitchin
Box office 01462 55166 - www.qmt.org.uk