Actors in any capacity, artists of any stripe, are inspired by their curiosity, by their desire to explore all quarters of life, in light and in dark, and reflect what they find in their work. Artists instinctively want to reflect humanity, their own and each other's, in all its intermittent virtue and vitality, frailty and fallibility.
Art, especially the stage, is an area where it is impossible to walk without stumbling. There are in store for you many unsuccessful days and whole unsuccessful seasons: there will be great misunderstandings and deep disappointments you must be prepared for all this, expect it and nevertheless, stubbornly, fanatically follow your own way.
Never give all the heart, for loveWill hardly seem worth thinking ofTo passionate women if it seemCertain, and they never dreamThat it fades out from kiss to kiss;For everything that's lovely isBut a brief, dreamy, kind delight.O Never give the heart outright,For they, for all smooth lips can say,Have given their hearts up to the play.And who could play it well enoughIf deaf and dumb and blind with love?He that made this knows all the cost,For he gave all his heart and lost.
On those nights, the words were for me alone. They came up unbidden from my heart. They spilled over my tongue and spilled out my mouth. And because of them, I, who was nothing and nobody, was a prince of Denmark, a maid of Verona, a queen of Egypt. I was a sour misanthrope, a beetling hypocrite, a conjurer's daughter, a mad and murderous king.
Fresh from a costume fitting, where I had been posing in front of the mirror assuming what I thought was a strong position - arms folded, butch-looking...you know - I met with the woman in charge of Holloway police station. She gave me the most invaluable advice: never let them see you cry, and never cross your arms. When I asked why, she said 'because it is a defensive action and therefore weak.
Well anything thats interesting in a film, or in a character (all your passion, your sex, your anger, your rage, all that) comes from that part of you that you want to hide and push away, and you want to deny all those things most. So if you can sort of visualize a version of your shadow. And if you sort of invite him or her to the party. And if you can really understand that this is where you're going to let that shadow come out (this is where its home) Its really just understanding that its your job to get vulnerable. And most people who have the exact opposite; most people go through life and they try all their time not to feel all those dark things. We have to go feel them, but its an opportunity too. I think to think of it that way, that just gets you into flow and that unclocks your subconscious, so you get out of your head and into your heart. Thats what I do, I just try to remember that the part of you thats going to do a good job is the part of you you want to most deny.