Acting at Eòlia: an open philosophy by Josep Galindo

At EÒLIA, the acting field has always benefited from its direct contact with the professional world. Everyday in their classrooms, actors, actresses, playwrights and professional directors have found (and continue to find) a space to grow and explore new concepts, either as teachers or as students. 

 

Acting at EÒLIA takes an eclectic approach (including different techniques and styles that are constantly reevaluated and renewed) to expand the acting range of our students –aspiring actors and actresses—as much as possible, providing them with the tools and helping them discover what it is that makes them different and therefore unique as communicators and as actors.

 

Based on the conviction that hard work and practice are the keys to stimulating progress, EÒLIA offers students a comprehensive curriculum that focuses on both the practical and the theoretical aspects of actor training. Students can find all the tools they need to fully develop their creative abilities: they will improve the relationship with their voice and their body, strengthen their expressive toolkit, develop the capacity to make decisions onstage and join a creative platform that will put them in contact with other emerging actors, actresses, directors and playwrights.

 

Theatre work is essentially teamwork, and working together and being in contact with others is often the necessary ingredient to trigger one’s own creativity. 

 

Without a doubt, we wish to train the kind of actor that associates with a diverse and modern aesthetic; an actor with his own voice; an actor with the ability to express his freedom and his creativity without filters or inhibitions; an actor that is poised and solid; unpredictable; imaginative. 

 

We want to train actors that are meticulous and dependable, comprehensive and intelligent, that are disciplined and quality professionals willing to take risks and stretch their limits when it comes to the acting craft; actors that are capable of expressing their creativity without adhering to pre-cut parameters that destroy the imagination and the desire to be creative; actors with a solid intellectual foundation that allows them to see and understand the world around them, be more open, be more generous and, in the end, be better actors and ambassadors of our Conservatory.

 

Josep Galindo, Head of the Acting Department and Co-Director of Eòlia

 

To touch this “truth,” even if it’s just with our fingertips, it is better to “be real” than be a pale reflection of what we understand as “daily life.”
 
This is one of the small yet sizeable contradictions of the vision people have when they decide to start training to become an actor: to be real (and thus, “to convince”) does not necessarily mean resembling the reality around us. Instead it often means just the opposite: “to interpret it.” Provide a vision of it. Give us an “interpretation” of it. 

 

The paradox of being an actor. The job of actor is one of the most complex of professions, due to the inevitable intrinsic impossibility they have of being objective about the fruits of their work. An actor acts, and when they are finished, what they have done, “that thing,” has already passed. In the best of cases “that thing” will have left its mark on the audience, but in the actor there will only be an aftertaste, a feeling that he senses inside and in the gaze of those watching. At the core of the actor’s job is a metaphysical paradox: he is the artist and the result of his art, he is the music and the instrument at the same time, he is the cause and the effect of everything that “makes” and that “is” in the act of convincing and communicating with others. And it is this isolation, this inability to observe his own profession from the outside –while he is on the stage–, precisely where the root of this great difficulty lies.
 
Josep Galindo (Eòlia, 2012)

 

 

BRIEF THOUGHTS OF THE DIFFICULTY OF ACTING

 

The value of education. 

Education must go hand-in-hand with “motivation.” From the first to the very last minute. Motivation to test yourself on a physical and emotional level. Motivation to explore the limits of your own creativity. Motivation to go deeper intellectually. Motivation to understand the world and to understand who we are. A learning process requires patience and thoroughness; persistence and decisiveness; growth and maturity. A professor does not “teach” anything, he or she simply suggests dynamics and shares acquired –and hopefully, always growing– professional knowledge and experience. But above all, it is important for the student to understand that “learning” is not in itself a passive act, instead it requires a high level of initiative, self-discipline, and concentration; an attitude of complete openness, willingness and full dedication. 

 

The uniqueness of “truth.” 

The actor is always seeking the “truth.” If we were to ask a random group of actors all of them would agree that they were pursuing the same kind of truth in acting. Afterwards, in practice (onstage or in the classroom) this “truth” takes on a number of other nuances. Many aesthetic opportunities emerge. And often we discover that fortunately (or unfortunately) we were not all looking for the same truth. 

 

This utopian truth (in one of its countless versions) is based on expressing and sparking processes that transmit a “real energy.”