UF Day 2 – Intro to the Alexander Technique


Today was a bit of a triumph. Last night, as I was memorizing my one-minute monologue (a section of Barry Champlain’s epic meltdown from Eric Bogosian’s Talk Radio), I kept visualizing how I could manage to worm my way into the Alexander Technique class which was closed with a full complement of students. I wrote an email to the professor, studied everything I could about her, and determined that I would meet her, look into her eyes, and make my plea: Please accept me anyway–this is the moment for me to take this course. I just felt like I needed to focus on acting and acting alone. I did not want “Intro to Lights & Sound” farting up my focus. I could do that class at any time in the future. I needed challenges up to my standards, and they needed to be ACTOR ACTOR ACTOR stuff. I suppose it is good to use creative visualization because the reality unfolded just as I had pictured it. I made my case, sat in on the class, name-dropped (Gregg Jones–my instructor from Santa Fe who had often employed the technique of Alexander in his approach), and then offered a final appeal following the class time. I said I needed to know an answer immediately so as not to screw up financial aid or miss the Tuesday add/drop date. I wanted to drop that Lights/Sound class like a hot potato, and that’s just what I did the moment the Professor said, “Go up and tell Kevin (my adviser) I said you’re in.” Those words made my day. Actually, they made my semester. What a dumb grin I had on my face walking up to Kevin’s office to make this change.

This initial Alexander Technique class was all I hoped it would be. Afterwards, I felt freer, more aware, and I found out how much higher my spine was and how much lower my torso was than I had ever supposed. There was a student in there who was a dead-ringer for Chris Colfer from Glee…so I was having Glee flashbacks. I thought about bursting out into song, but without a backtrack and a line of dancers, I thought it might look tacky so I restrained myself. Great bunch of students in the course, and a few I knew from Santa Fe, so it was very comfortable. I keep forgetting I’m 47, and maybe that’s a good thing. I know I will get a lot out of this class. And being that I dropped the much-later Lights/Sound deal, I can get done several hours earlier and have my late-afternoon for studies. I’m ferociously colorblind anyway. That class would have messed with my head.

Here’s the text of the monologue I’m going to be delivering tomorrow I can do this monologue flawlessly because I pretty much am Barry Champlain:

Talk Radio – Monologue – Eric Bogosian

I am a hypocrite; I ask for sincerity and I lie. 
I denounce the system as I embrace it. 
I want money and power and prestige. 
I want ratings and success, and I don't give a damn about you or the world. 
That's the truth. 
For this I could say I'm sorry, but I won't. Why should I? I mean who the hell are you anyway…you audience? You're on me every night like a pack of wolves cause you can't stand facing what you are and what you've made. Yes, the world is a terrible place, yes, cancer and garbage disposals will get you. Yes, a war is coming, yes, the world is shot to hell and you're all goners. 
Everything is screwed up and you like it that way, don't you? You're fascinated by the gory details. 
You're mesmerized by your own fear. You revel in floods, car accidents, unstoppable diseases. You're happiest when others are in pain. 

That's where I come in, isn't it?

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