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To Be or Not to Be or Fake It Till You Make It

To Be or Not to Be or Fake It Till You Make It

This month’s blog post comes from Daryl Walker, our Head of Performing Arts and Business Strategist and he wants to talk about following your dreams.

Growing up in a big city in the Midwest I’ve always known I wanted to do more than what my life at the moment had to offer. I grew up pretty ordinary. My parents divorced when I was young and that too seemed normal. All of my friends were raised by a single parent so I didn’t know anything was different. Now it wasn’t always rainbows and butterflies but it was mine and I wouldn’t change anything about it.

I was always into performing and putting on shows when I was younger, but every time anyone would ask what I wanted to be when I grew up I always said, a lawyer. It wasn’t because I really wanted to be a lawyer I just really wanted to play one on TV.

Fast forward to when I was 13 and was bitten by the acting bug and I never turned back. I wanted to see and hear everything theatre; it was my happy place, but I still never openly admitted I wanted to go into the performing arts until I was in university. I didn’t just want to act I wanted to direct, produce, and also work behind the scenes.
At the same time, there was a shift in my life. I decided I didn’t want to stay in America any longer. On a whim I decided to move to South Korea and put my performing arts career on hold. I missed it, but eventually I found a great theatre group to perform with and the same old feelings I had came flooding back. I needed more. I decided I had to learn even more than I knew before. I started learning monologues to refresh myself. I got a Masters in Entertainment Business just so I could learn more and eventually would be able to go into any field in the Business.

But my time in Korea had to come to an end. I needed to move on and figure out what the next step would be. I moved to Hong Kong on another whim. I knew I loved it here but was not sure about moving here. Would I be able to do any acting? Would I feel fulfilled or accomplished? I got a job at Colour My World and I was pretty lucky to find a job at a creative arts studio that valued my input on not just things related to Drama but also some of the day to day things to help the company grow. I am able to do so many wonderful things here.

Is this my last stop? No. I have to keep pushing myself to make sure the goals I set out are fresh in my mind and make sure each move is a stepping stone to something that’s bigger and better. So I guess the moral is; never feel complacent. No one is going to give you your dream on a silver platter. You have to go and take it. Hard work and your perseverance will pay off. I am not there yet, but I am closer than ever before from really doing what I set out to do so many years ago.

Our Audition Tips

Our Audition Tips

Hello Everyone!

This is your friendly neighborhood theatre director and since it is audition season, I just wanted to pass along some tips to help you get the part.

Tip 1: First Impressions are EVERYTHING!! When you walk into the room you have to exude confidence! Hold your head up high and “own” it. Make sure you don’t shuffle your feet and try to speak as clearly as possible and make sure you are heard.

Tip 2: Show your personality. Speak in complete sentences and try to be as likeable as possible. Directors can always sense a little bit about your personality by how you interact with them in an audition.

Tip 3: Do your research. Make sure you know what you are auditioning for and prepare all the required pieces. If it is a musical, make sure you have a song with the accompaniment. Never go into an audition without at least reading the play/musical that you are auditioning for.

Tip 4: Loosen up! Relax your body before you walk into the room. Do a few stretches in the waiting area and try not to let your nerves get the better of you. If you walk in relaxed, the person watching you will automatically relax as well.

These are just a few tips to get you going. Don’t forget we have auditions for A Midsummer Night’s Dream: A Pop Musical August 30 and September 6 at 4:00-5:00 and September 7, 2019 at 2:30-3:30 and again at 4:00-5:00.

Think Like an Artist’ by Will Gompertz

Think Like an Artist’ by Will Gompertz

Recently I finished reading a rather inspiring book called ‘Think Like An Artist’ by Will Gompertz which I bought from Kelly & Walsh during Art Basel HK 2018.

Why do some people seem to find it easy to come up with fresh, brilliant ideas? And how do they turn them into something worthwhile?

Will Gompertz is a BBC’s art editor. Previously director of Tate Media, Gompertz has written extensively for The Guardian and The Times newspapers. He is the author of What Are You Looking At?: 150 Years of Modern Art in the Blink of an Eye. In Think Like An Artist, Gompertz doesn’t just comment on the artist’s finished work itself, he also tells the life stories of the like of Michelangelo, Caravaggio, Bridget Riley and Ai Weiwei etc., trying to guide his audience to get into the artist’s mind and explore where their inspirations and creative ideas come from, getting into the artist’s habits and their path to success.

Interesting quotes from the book are :

‘One eye sees, the other feels.’ – Paul Klee
‘I proceed by trial and error.’ – Bridget Riley
‘When bankers dine together they discuss art, when artists dine together they discuss money.’ – Oscar Wilde

Jennifer Lee

Buying vs. Creating: What’s more valuable?

Buying vs. Creating: What’s more valuable?

Can’t think of the perfect birthday gift/Christmas present for your parents, relatives or friends? Don’t know what store to start with? Then maybe consider creating something, as opposed to buying it. Although you might not always think it, there’s great value in putting in the work to both think of and make something of your own, something designed only for that one person you intend on giving it to.

After having made

many drawings to my parents and relatives as a child, there was a long period of time where I felt that giving them one of my artworks was “cheap” or not a “real investment”. But lately, I’ve come to realize that giving someone your artwork can actually be a lot more valuable than something you bought at a store. Think of the amount of time you put aside for making it and the reason you had for doing it. It’s the greatest example of the phrase “It’s the thought that counts” — except you also have something to look at for decades to come. And isn’t it more common for your parents or older relatives to show you a drawing that you made for them a long time ago, rather than something that you purchased?

I’d say it is.

(The illustrations below were made as a Christmas gift for my stepfather last year and a recent birthday gift for my mother. They both portray they’re old summer houses back in Sweden.)

Andreas von Buddenbrock,
Programme designer/
facilitator of Ready Set Draw at CMW

Fun for all Ages?

Fun for all Ages?

At my recent visit back to the UK, I experienced a rather fun art installation by Superflex, a group of Danish artists (founded in 1993) who is best known for their playfully subversive films and art installations. At Tate Modern, Superflex installed an orange line of swings woven through the Turbine Hall.

Each swing has been designed with three people on the same seat; specifying that swinging with two other people has greater potential than swinging alone, thus the work is called One Two Three Swing! Swinging in group of three’s, creates a collective energy that resists gravity and challenges the laws of nature, as claimed by Superflex.

By taking part in this collective installation, you are bound to enjoy the company of many other visitors of all ages! This brings people casually together in a relaxed ambiance to have a good laugh and excitement!

So, if you are heading to the UK sometime in the next few months, do drop by the Tate Modern, London. This installation has extended its exhibit period to 2 October 2018. So try experience One Two Three Swing! first-hand!

Vivien Thumb

Play in Two Days

Play in Two Days

We are offering something totally new this summer at our visual and performing arts workshops. For starters, we are introducing ‘Play in Two Days’. A Play in Two Days is the name of our new Drama Festivals where the participants will come in and plan, write, produce, and co-direct a small performance over two days with the Performing Arts practitioners. It’s something that’s really fast-paced and fun for all. In addition to the new Drama Festivals we will also roll out Visual Arts Festivals where the participants will work with two practicing artists-educators on two very different media and conceptualization direction. Of course we are also running our every popular ActOut! and Specialised Art workshops as well as new Music & Lyrics workshops!

Daryl Walker,
Head of Performing Arts /
Director of CMW Centre Stage Production 2018