David hosts a sequence of masterclasses running through from ‘Face One’ to ‘Face Five’. Each is a progressive step toward understanding.
The ‘Face One’ event can be undertaken on a group or private basis but all of the subsequent ones can only be experienced in the private circumstance.
A group, with no more than ten actors, runs through three sequent days. Always, these events are curated, in each different country, by a national organisation, institution or union of actors. In the UK, for instance, it is the Actors’ Guild which regularly organises them.
A private arrangement is where David works with just two actors at a time, through two sequent days; never with just one actor on their own, the reason for which becomes abundantly clear as the work unfolds. Quite obviously, in the private circumstance, there is much more focus on the individual.
Whereas, the group events are planned well in advance, David, depending on his availability and the country he’s in, is always ready to set up private masterclasses, prompt or in the future. On an ongoing basis, David regularly updates his movements in respect of where he’ll be when, relative to planned masterclass dates, and his availability: ‘Dates Ahead’.
On the day, each actor needs to come with two learnt duologue scenes, not much more than a page in length. They can be from theatre or film but mustn’t be ones the actor has performed in before (resisting, too, the temptation to seek them out on YouTube). The scenes should be emotionally confrontational. It’s much the best if the actor finds his or her own but, if all else fails and that proves difficult, click on ‘Scenes’ for suggestions. Hard copies must be brought along, so that another, or the other actor, can read-in the other character off-camera; this goes for all the ‘Face’ masterclasses.
NB Actors should note that David does not subsequently hand over footage recorded in a masterclass, for use in a showreel or for any other purposes; it won’t have the necessary quality on the one hand and, on the other, revisiting the material serves no purpose going forward. Further, David will not accept non-participating observers attending any of his masterclasses.
The Classes, Step after Step:
Group (max 10 actors) 3 Days
Private (2 actors) 2 Days
David shows what the lens of the camera can see that the naked eye cannot, demonstrating the significance of this phenomenon to which actors are generally blind. He clarifies, in the total exposure of the close-up frame, the power of the camera’s lens, and what it will read. On a technical level, he introduces lens-language, on the more ethereal, what truth is to the lens and, on the magical, the game of creating as opposed to simply filling time.
Private (2 Actors) 2 Days
Here, in the wider frame, David explores the extent to which it’s possible to communicate character and mood through body-language, movement and gesture; important work, squaring the circle following the discoveries of ‘Face One’, the working principles of which are re-affirmed here. Audition technique is also addressed, as is the business of turning to their own advantage direction the actor might consider unhelpful at best.
Private (2 Actors) 2 Days
A deeper and more extensive exploration of the relationship between rhythm, expression and meaning within the frame, dependent upon its size; qualities of play that capture the eye of the lens. Further exercising of the imagination relative to the separate, rational circumstance of the dramatic situation.
Subsequent to these modules, David works endlessly with actors who want to continue the refining of their enlightenment, both generally and in the very specific business of preparing for an upcoming role. FIVE follows on from FOUR, and …
Of course, actual work must come first but if an actor cancels a private masterclass within forty-eight hours of the event, and David isn’t able to find a replacement, the whole of the actor’s fee will be forfeited.
Once actors have partaken of a ‘Face One’ class, and they’ve come to understand David’s working principle, he is available for online sessions via Skype or Zoom ahead of important auditions or self-taping. As long as he has the sides a day or two beforehand, a mutually agreeable time can be arranged for a session of one hour, maximum an hour and a half; more than that and there’s a danger of over-cooking the preparation.
* If or when the actor gets cast in the production, a Resolution Fee is due, the same amount again, and it is worth noting that, more often than not, David wins this further payment!
NAKED FACES IN THE WIDER WORLD
David has helped and is always available to help non-professional actors, in all walks of life, who find themselves having to present to a camera. Business executives, politicians, diplomats, academics, artists, service personnel, sporting personalities etc all find themselves, at some point in time, needing to better understand how to relate to the camera, but to real effect. David knows how to help with this. If interested, email email@example.com.