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Michael Chekhov School News, February / March 2016
Spring Workshops in Progress

The Michael Chekhov Technique can be, in its exploratory process, a participatory way of knowing our own human nature in a truly creative way.

Our March  Weekend Immersions are envisioned as an opportunity for actors to experience the school and our teaching style, without having to make a major commitment. The weekends are moderately priced and include accommodation at a B&B in Hudson, NY for a great weekend-escape of concentrated and lively work, a 2-hour scenic train ride away from New York City. If you have been curious about the school, come join us for one of our remaining weekends: March 12/13 & 19/20.

For details & to sign up, visit our website.

Some thoughts from our workshop The Actor's Instrument, which took place this past weekend:
'Just as the body changes in the course of working with the psyche, so the psyche changes in the course of working with the body. We would do well to remember that the two are not separate entities, but mysteriously a totality...
Movement can become a direct subjective experience. It never occurs to us that we have unwittingly lost the body by not experiencing its truth. For movement is the life of the body. The less the body is experienced the more it becomes an appearance...
The less reality it has, the more it must be undressed or dressed up. The less it is one's own known body, the further away it moves from anything to do with one's self.' (Mary Whitehouse)
'What you do not experience in your whole body will remain merely intellectual information without life or spiritual reality.' (Gerda Alexander)

* From a trip to Australia
Following an idea that originated at MICHA's 2015 Open Space, Margot Fenley invited Ted & Fern to spent 10 days in February teaching students of the Victoria College of the Arts in Melbourne. They were joined by Dale March as faculty and also performed "The Ripleys" for the college and the general public. They found the students to be an exceptionally talented group of young artists.  It was wonderful for Fern & Ted to see the work received and executed with such relish. (See below for some quotes of actors' responses to the work.)
* New Film: Lineage & Legacy II
Fern Sloan was a teacher at the original Michael Chekhov Studio in New York City which closed its doors permanently in the 1980's. In this interview she is speaking of the contribution the "Dartington Ladies" made to the Michael Chekhov work, including Beatrice Straight, academy-award winning student of Chekhov's and founder of the studio and Deidre Hurst DuPrey, who recorded Michael Chekhov's lessons and lectures and in this way made much of his legacy available to us. Click on the video link to to watch. Featured in our last newsletter was Ted Pugh's interview about his time at the Studio. If you missed it you can view it here.
* MICHA in Hudson in May 2016
This year the Michael Chekhov Association's ADVANCED TEACHER TRAINING INTENSIVE is taking place in Hudson NY from May 20-22, 2016. Facilitated by Ted, Fern & Ragnar this is MICHA's workshop for teachers who are exploring practical questions on teaching Michael Chekhov's Technique and are seeking peer-based feed-back.  Click on the video link  for some contemplations by Ted and Fern to questions from teachers who participated in the last workshop.
* 9-Week-Immersion News
We have exciting news for our 9-week-immersion program at the Michael Chekhov School. In 2016 / 2017 we are offering 2 sessions:
FALL (2016)     3 weeks of FOUNDATION
SUMMER ('17) 6 weeks of INTEGRATION
Both courses may be taken individually or as a complete 9-week progressive journey through all elements of Michael Chekhov’s Technique. 
The Actor's Instrument
Character / Image
Psychological Gesture
Weekend March 5/6 participants:
Ben, Grant, Lanna, Courtney, Patricia, David and Yuan Rong
The Michael Chekhov School's Home at Solaris in Hudson
Lineage & Legacy II
Lineage & Legacy I
Now accepting applications. We welcome your interest and inquiries.

A letter by Margot Fenley, who invited Fern and Ted to Australia, sharing reactions the students expressed after both of them had returned to the U.S.:
"[We] held debriefs with both the second and third year students and the feedback has been terrifically interesting. They were obviously all very excited by the work – even those who looked less confidently engaged […] They’ve made really great connections with singing and dance and have already begun exploring how the work you all did can help them. I loved a phrase from Kaya: he said that […] the idea of the [imaginary] body going before him when he dances  ‘clears the space for me’ and is allowing him to dance with greater ease. He … said employing qualities of movement has helped him approach dance as an actor and has made dancing much more fun. Lachie said that the notion of the whole self is helping him to realize that even if he isn’t technically perfect, if his whole self is invested, he is enough. Jess said that she re-found her love of dance… before coming to the VCA she spent a year in full-time dance and said that she’s realized that focusing in such a narrow way on aspects of her technique has actually made her a worse dancer than she was, so she is returning her attention to allowing her whole self to dance. She also said that the attention to the feet completely eradicated the cramping in her arches that she often suffers from […] Willow said she has realized what it is to sing ‘with my body, not just my mouth’. Nicola has discovered that ‘my body is something I can get answers from’. Max talked about having found the importance of 'being with myself’ and his realization that ‘singing is an experience’. The Third Years spoke about the qualities of movement being important physical vocabulary for dance. Emily said that the work helped her with the musicality of ballet.  […] Of course there were lots of things said about the application to acting and to their sense of themselves as students, artists and people too, but I thought I’d send you these because I found it so exciting to hear the creative application  to their other skill areas. […] So thank you – the ripple effect I think will be quite significant."

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