Recreating a role such as Iago is an amazing experience. Today, we began the tedious but wonderful process of adding the details and motivation to the steps we had learned over the last couple of weeks for "The Moor's Pavane." I became quickly aware of how I was fabricating what I remembered from the last time I played the part rather than beginning again. To get an authentic feeling from a role such as this, I need to simplify, simplify, simplify. Less truly is more. The strange thing is that I didn't realize that I wasn't being authentic until it was pointed out. I really do try to be aware of these things. Thank goodness I don't have to try to direct myself.
Here's a comparison. Have you ever noticed how when a macaroni noodle is left overnight in water it can swell to be extra large? The normal size of the pasta was lovely to see and eat when it was first cooked, but the next day, the swollen left over noodle in the pot looks kind of gross.
This is kind of how acting can be. I was pleased with my portrayal of Iago a few seasons ago. That memory has sat in my head-not unlike the noodle left in the water. Now, if I pull the same Iago out of my memory and attempt to play him again, it isn't as appealing. It isn't the same attractive product that it was the last time. It is swollen, mushy and overdone.
Perhaps this is an odd way to explain this, but I think it makes sense. Today we began to strip away the junk and work on pulling new things out of the character. I was more tired by the end of the day from my mental activity than I was from the massive amounts of physical activity I did last week! Funny how that can happen! I am bubbling with enthusiasm to get back into the studio and continue making discoveries. I am also thrilled by the passion and energy that my cast members are putting into their roles.