It keeps you sharp.
It keeps you fluid.
Stay ready so that you don’t have to get ready.
There’s always more to learn.
There’s always something to learn.
Dancers train. They go to class consistently and work out on the dance floor. The best ones make it look so effortless because they train.
Athletes train. Athletes train. Athletes train. They train so that they can compete and perform at the highest level possible. Optimum. They make it look so easy too.
As an actor, I always want to stay sharp so that I’m not relying solely on my persona or tricks. I never want to feel like I’m rusty or catching up. Training allows me to have a system in place to get the job done. And then to repeat the work over and over again. No guessing work.
Training is also important because as we get older, our casting changes. So we need to start understanding those new characters and how to now play them. We have to step into the shoes of these new characters and understand who they are. How they behave. Training will help us to do that.
Training is fun!
Training gets you to a place where you don’t have to think so hard or work so hard. It’s in you and you work more efficiently.
Training keeps you on the artistic path when the bullshit of life and the naysayers of life want to take you off of it. This is a fucking tough business. No mother-effing bullshit. When I come into class every Thursday night or every Friday morning, I’m re-charged and re-inspired to keep going.
Training allows you to make mistakes and figure out the answers to them. Make the mistakes in class. Fail forward in class. Now, mistakes happen in the outside world too. However, with training, you can manage those mistakes like a pro! And they’ll appreciate you very much for it!
My ideal situation is to be a working, professional artist (actor and writer) working on set and then coming back to class whenever the project is wrapped or whenever we have a break in the shooting schedule. Come back to class. Come back to ground zero. Come back to where it all started. Re-energize and then head back to set.
Find a class that speaks to you, that challenges you and that has a great, supportive community. Train and take your craft to a higher level of creation, output and experience.
Cool true story: I was at a small focus group recently and they asked us if we wanted to make an extra hundred dollars. We all raised our hands immediately. The moderator said, “Great! I just need one volunteer to sing a full pop song in front of the group.” Everyone put their hands down except for me. I quickly said, “I’ll do it!” Because of my training, I jumped in and was on “go”. Because of my training, I didn’t question myself or judge myself or be self-conscious any step of the way because I followed my first impression with good-humored inflexibility. I’m a genius unti proven otherwise. Because I work hard and put many hours into everything that I do, I was able to deliver on the spot. Cold. No preparation given. I didn’t have to warm up or make excuses. I started singing “Like a Virgin” by Madonna. That was the first song that popped into my head and I didn’t judge it. Everyone was impressed as soon as I started singing. I connected with each person and sang to them. After I sang only the first verse and chorus, the moderator stopped me and gave me the extra hundred dollars. He jokingly hated the fact that I could actually sing.
Training paid off in this situation-which had nothing to do with acting or an audition…this was a focus group. Training put me on go and I sang really well and I connected with each person. I delivered at a high level and impinged every person in the room.