I love actors. I love designers. I love playwrights. I love the magic we get to create. I love the rehearsal room. I love production meetings. I love the boundless opportunities of a bare stage. I love stillness. I love honest moments. I love when an audience isn't quite ready to say goodbye to an experience. I love that unlike many other art forms, theatre is not dependent upon the one, but upon the many. I truly love every step of the sacred, messy, turbulent, beautiful process.
It is this love that guides me as a director as I set out to serve a script. What is needed to tell the story? I don't need to leave my "artistic" fingerprints on a project, but instead I want to focus on the stories and the lives found therein. I don't know if there's anything more moving than witnessing actors truly, simply talking to one another.
In terms of how I work, I like starting out at the table. I typically begin with a series of questions. I want to hear from the actors. What do the characters want from one another? Where did they come from? What are their expectations? What are their relationships? What does their world look like? What are their hopes? Their dreams? Their histories? I've found that once the table-work is done, blocking comes very naturally.
I rely on actors, writers, and designers. I rely on their expertise. I trust them. I trust the process. My job is to act as a guide. My job is to create a fertile, safe space where actors can make bold choices and be championed along the way.
Yes, it's hard work. But there should always be joy. I don't understand directors that yell. I don't understand directors that dictate. I don't understand directors that cannot trust. I've seen and experienced too many artists shut down by directors who want to rule versus collaborate. It's not about what I get to do, but about what we get to do. It's about making discoveries together. It's about finding where these stories live. It's about failing and succeeding together. I'm constantly thankful that creating theatre is not dependent upon the one, but upon the many.