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You Need To Love The Work To Really Do The Work…

I never thought in 20+ years of teaching acting that it would be a novel idea to declare that…

You need to love the work to really do the work…

I never thought I would ever have to say…

You need to take the work seriously if you want to be taken seriously…

I never thought I would have to reiterate…

It takes great discipline, commitment, accountability, responsibility, dedication, and perseverance to stay the course of such a tumultuous artistic path if you intend to keep on keeping on along the path…

But, to my great dismay, it seems we are living in different times…

And it seriously breaks my heart every time I come across someone that says they want to be an actor…

But seems to have been led astray…

Or has deluded themselves into thinking…

That the road of the artist is an easy one…

That ya just gotta memorize your lines and go“…

That it is not in the details“…

That it is not in the specificity“…
 

(Insert screeching car brakes sound here!)

Well, let’s stop right now and say…

That is not acting…

Not remotely…

At least not professionally…

That is pure mediocrity…

It is amateur hour…

And to put it bluntly…

That is just dressing up as we do on Halloween…

That kind of thinking is an insult to our great art-form…

And it is an insult to every great actor and actress that has ever blessed our stages and screens…

We are living in a day and age where we use social media stardom as our litmus test to “making it”…

Or at the very least thinking…

I got these likes and followers so I have arrived, haven’t I?”…

We look at others that get a bunch of hearts and then expect to be in that “limelight“…

Or we see actors on tv, stage or screen and think they just got there because they got lucky…

Or because they have a great agent and manager…

Or they networked…

Or they knew someone…

Or they went to that industry event…

So we think it should be the same for us…

Comparing and contrasting has become our little secret addiction… 

So we look for a quick fix…

That shiny appetizing easy road that gets us there at the speed of light without any work whatsoever…

Without any training…

We want the muscle without the exercise…

We want to eat the cake before we even obtain the ingredients and instructions necessary to make it…

And then we get hypnotized by all the expensive seminars, workshops and all those “gurus” that have really exquisite website/ad headshots with huge acclaimed smiles and lets just say it…

Marketing… 

Selling and banking on convincing actors that it is indeed easy peasy…

So we search out for that thing that reiterates the myth…

You know…

Follow us and we will get you there!“…

Click on this link and fulfill your dreams in no time flat!“…

Sign up for this 10 day course and you will book a blockbuster film!“…

Pay this price for headshots and we will make you a star!“…

(Show me one professional acting job where preparation is not necessary)

(Show me one actor that is willing to show up to their first Broadway rehearsal or first day on a major film or TV set without preparation)

You go girl/boy!..

Oh and then there is…

This is so and so and so and so is this and that and so and so knows the way so sign up for so and so’s famous well-marketed course and it will all happen!No rehearsal or work necessary!…Come as you are and it will just happen because we will just tell you what to do and you will do it and feel good because you got encouragement and reinforcement because you followed exactly what we said!“…

And…

Just learn your lines and go up there and see what happens!…You don’t need to know the world of the text!…You don’t need to know the history!…You don’t need to break things down!…You don’t need to have a need!…You don’t need to understand relationships!…You don’t need to know why things are the way they are!…You don’t need to know what got you to this here and now moment!…You don’t need to know your environment and the objects within that environment!…Or how that environment affects you sensorially!….Or what that environment does to your speech or dialect or body!…You don’t need to support your voice!…You don’t need to breathe!…You don’t need to know what you are doing!….You just need to do it!“..

Um Ok…

(Insert unapologetic judgmental eye roll here!)

So what ends up happening is the actor takes the text and creates their own play, with their own thought up givens because they are just doing it without any respect whatsoever to the world the writer put his or her heart and soul in creating…

Or they become stiff as a board…

Or they push…

Or they play ideas…

Or they indicate…

Or they create blueprints of how they think it is “suppose” to be…

Or they strive for what they perceive as interesting moments…

Or they try “taking risks” doing something outlandish or different…

Wrong…

Interesting moments only exist as much as an actor can live authentically moment to moment within the full world of the text and all that comes with it…

Taking risks means living unapologetically, honestly, and courageously within the unknown of each moment as it pertains to a need within the full world of the text…

So is just “doing it” going to prepare one to play Eurpides’ Medea?…

Or Shakespeare’s’ Hamlet?…

Or Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein?…

Or Tony Kushner’s Angels In America

Or Anthony McCarten’s Theory Of Everything

Or Tracy Letts’ August: Osage County

I can keep going  but I hope you get the picture…

Do you want to be an artist?…

Or do you just want to be a picture with several hearts so everyone can look at you in a split second in reverence and then keep scrolling?…

Where are you headed?…

What kind of actor do you want to be?…

What kind of artist do you hunger to be?…

What we do takes work…

Yes, there is no denying that…

But if you are choosing to be an actor…

This work should not feel like “work“…

That does not mean there won’t be tough times…

Of course there will be…

But even then…

There is fulfillment in the struggle…

There is growth…

There is art…

It should be delicious…

It should make your mouth water…

You should feel those wonderful butterflies in your gut every time you get the opportunity to work…

To discover…

To explore…

To dig…

To open up…

To expand…

To overcome…

To find a known or unknown piece of you within the world of every text…

The exploration of the human condition…

And the creation of character…

Should be exciting…

It is supposed to be fun…

It is supposed to be stimulating…

It should be carbonating you so much…

That you cannot wait to get into that space with your partner…

And trust your work…

To go after your needs moment to unknown moment…

And live

But you can only live in that unknown of the moment as long as you have done all the work that allows you to bring full breath to the character and the world of the text…

And grounds you within the known…

So you can fully live in the unknown…

It is not science homework…

It is not algebra homework…

It is not a cold read…

(Though I truly believe working on cold reading is an important skill every actors should exercise…especially when it comes to exercising listening, impulses and instincts)

It is acting…

It is life…

We can’t perceive our work as this laborious task that drains us of life…

NO!!!!! 

That is not the work!…

And if one is experiencing the work in that way…

And continues to expereince the work in that way…

Dare I say run for the hills…

Because you are in the wrong field!…

The work is for those that love the work…

It gives them life…

It excites!…

It does not deplete them of life…

Acting is to do

Your work is there solely to stimulate you to do…

But if you do not find joy and love and wanting to do this kind of work…

Well then I do not know why anyone would put themselves through such a difficult path…

It is the love of the work that allows the artist to persevere when most may want to crumble…

Remember this…

Life is created out of love…

Our work is about life…

It needs your love in order to breathe life into all those black and white sheets of paper which we call the text.

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MC² Actors Studio An Ensemble Oriented Acting Studio Cultivating Craft For The Professional Actor For more information MC² Actors Studio & MC²=Mario Campanaro’s Masterclass, please contact our administrative department at assistant.MC2@gmail.com or visit us at www.mariocampanaro.com Visit our new MC² Actors Studio Amazon Store Front at: www.amazon.com/shop/mc2actorsstudio #mariocampanaro #mc2actorsstudio #mc2masterclass #actingstudio 


A New & Necessary Approach To The Actor’s Work…

Despite what is going on in the world and all the changes occurring in our industry, @mc2actorsstudio ensemble members are still BOOKING!!

Check out what MC² Actors Studio masterclass ensemble members Amanda Bird @anoisybird @noisy_nest and Holly Hubbell @hollyjohubbell have to say about this whole new way of working with regards to the necessary adjustments in our industry!

REPOST @anoisybird @noisy_nest : “I booked it, we shot it… In quarantine #mc2actorsstudio @anoisybird and @hollyjohubbell on the changing industry in my acting class is held on zoom are the way of the future! @mc2actorsstudio”

REPOST @hollyjohubbell : “Commercials in quarantine. The industry isn’t stopping, but shifting… And so should you. We SAFELY shot a global commercial over the weekend with the director in France and production team in Germany. Times and protocols are changing – so if you want to stay relevant, it’s time to learn to expand your craft.“
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MC² Actors Studio An Ensemble Oriented Acting Studio Cultivating Craft For The Professional Actor For more information MC² Actors Studio & MC²=Mario Campanaro’s Masterclass, please contact our administrative department at assistant.MC2@gmail.com or visit us at www.mariocampanaro.com Visit our new MC² Actors Studio Amazon Store Front at: www.amazon.com/shop/mc2actorsstudio #mariocampanaro #mc2actorsstudio #mc2masterclass #actingstudio




Fuel Your Courage: You Have Been In Training For The Unknown Of The Moment Every Single Moment…

By our very nature as human beings, we are constantly facing the unknown of the next moment.

There is no way of getting around it.

It is an absolute fact of life.

As much as we would like to think that we have some inkling of control…

The truth of the matter is…

We do not.

That is a pretty scary notion…

Or I should say reality…

When you take a moment to consider it.

We have no idea what we are walking into as our next life moment approaches.

We have no idea what the next moment will bring us.

We are presently living the very best way we know how and can in this here and now moment.

And we are doing so by what we have learned from our past experiences…

Married with a pretty incredible natural ability to adjust, adapt, and move forward…

Step by step…

Moment by moment…

Instinctually…

And in some, many and/or most cases…

Impulsively…

Based on what life throws out at us at any given moment.

Think about how courageous and brave that really is…

Think about how miraculous that is…

How miraculous you/we are…

Based on everything we humans had…

And still have to face moment to moment.

For 100% of our lives…

We have been living in a present moment…

(which was once a complete unknown moment)

And then enter into a complete unknown next moment…

Carrying with us only the knowledge and preparation that past experiences…

(of confronting and living through what was at that time an unknown moment)

Have taught us.

As actors we are always responsible and accountable for doing our preparations to bring any given role the full life that he or she deserves.

We do that part of the work using our craft to help us along the way…

But despite all the preparation in the world…

The true magic…

The true living…

Can only exist within the unknown of the moment.

It can never be planned…

It can never be blueprinted…

It can only be discovered, experienced, and dealt with as it happens in the unknown of the moment.

And it is the actor’s courage…

All of his or her bravery…

The full willingness to really live moment to moment…

That that magic happens

That the real work is

That the life truly exists

It can only really be within the rawness of the unknown.

And your entire life has been training you…

Your entire life has been preparing you…

To work in such an ordinary…

(because we all have no choice but to live this way)

Yet extremely extraordinary…

(when you really think about it)

Very human way!

That bravery…

That courage…

That willingness to live your most authentic, honest, truth…

In relationship to the given circumstances of any world of text…

Within the complete unknown of each and every moment…

Is what makes the actor…

An actor.

I hope you enjoy this stay at home virtual Masterclass Lecture. 

 Stay safe and stay healthy!

Much Love,

Mario

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For more information on MC² Actors Studio, MC²=Mario Campanaro’s Masterclass & Mario Campanaro For The Actor, please contact our administrative department at assistant.MC2@gmail.com or visit us at www.mariocampanaro.com


Your Calling, Your Mission & Your Testimony…

One very important point that I always speak of at our studio…

Is that Life will always be the most potent, informative and powerful acting teacher any actor will ever study with…

Life itself gets all the credit and acclaim!…

What we do…

This thing called story-telling (living)…

Is a mirror or reflection of life…

It is there reflecting the human condition from generation to generation…

We will always connect with the things that we relate to…

And those things will always be the stimulus that create story…

Because of present circumstances…

I felt compelled to share a very critical season in my personal life to one of our classes…

And an important lesson that I learned from those circumstances….

Because of severe chronic illness that I fought for many many years (often in secret)…

I almost lost my life a couple of times…

In addition…

I lost friends, family, career…joy, happiness, and even love…

During this time…

The one thing I had to do was basically isolate for 10 years,…

At least as best I could…

To protect myself and my immune system…

YUP!!!…

TEN YEARS!…

That isolation…

That loss of time and life…

Created a craving that I knew was my calling…

Everything I missed out on became my mission…

That long, difficult, horrendous, scary, lonely desperate test became my testimony…

The opportunity I was given during that “downtime” was an opportunity to understand things about people, circumstances and life that I was not able to understand before…

Everything beforehand came easily until it didn’t…

Those circumstances forced me to stop doing what I loved (my career as an actor on stage and screen)…

And gave me the chance to study the thing I loved in a completely new way…

It forced me to witness and understand humanity with a completely new and compassionate lens…

It forced me to slow down…

Ask questions…

Seek answers…

And bear witness to others…

Their circumstances…

And their pain with a bird’s eye view…

And more importantly…

It forced me to relate!…

It completely changed me as a person, actor and teacher…

I was able to begin to see and understand things in story that I never even thought possible…

It deepened my relationship to the work…

And the understanding of characters…

And why they do what they do based on the circumstances they are in… 

Why do I bring this up?…

During this crucial time in all of our lives…

It is so important to remember these three simple yet powerful statements …

WHAT YOU CRAVE IS YOUR CALLING…

WHAT YOU MISS IS YOUR MISSION…

AND WHAT YOU ARE TESTED BY WILL BE YOUR TESTIMONY! 


What we are experiencing in the world right now is inevitably going to create stories…

Many many very human beautiful complicated layered heartwrenching and also victorious stories…

And EVERYBODY’S story has the right to be heard and witnessed…

Every one of our stories is backed by the pain we have endured and experienced during some season in our lives…

And all of what we have done to try and overcome that pain and suffering to make it through…

Tough times and tough circumstances will always try our most vulnerable point…

And that is a beautiful and very human map as to what needs our attention…

Our awareness…

Our awareness, observation and the exercising of what we learn about ourselves and the human condition inevitably inspires and informs how we live honestly, truthfully and authentically in our work as actors…

And a lot of the time this may feel inconvenient, difficult, tedious and maybe even heart-wrenching work during the process…

During the season…

Especially when there is not an immediate payoff…

But the more we stay on track…

The more we continue to persevere…

The more we continue to align, refine and cultivate our craft…

The more we continue to grow…

And the more the payoff will eventually and inevitably come…

It is about pushing through…

Even during those moments when we feel like we don’t want to push through…

It’s not about going around it…

Or over it…

Or underneath it…

But going through it…

Being religious (meaning disciplined) in our approach to what we want to achieve as artists…

Being focused and disciplined…

And holding ourselves accountable within and throughout the process…

Because we (you) love what we (you) do…

And because we (you) know there is…

Always has been…

And always will be greatness within each of us (you) worthy of doing the work we (you) love with all our (your) heart and soul.

And with that invested, mindful, committed work…

We must remember the word ‘ACT’ means TO DO!..

And the artists perseveres when it may make sense to want to crumble…

The artist perseveres because by the very nature of being an artist is to create…

To move forward…

To give ‘birth’ to something from something…

And because of something…

Our work…

This thing called Acting…

Is not for the faint of heart…

It is not “substance-less”…

It is pregnant with the human condition!…

All of us…

In our darkest times…

Are spending our time being moved by YOU, the actor, in our homes or other venues where our work lives…

This is why we must take our work seriously…

And with responsibility…

Don’t forget what you do…

Why you do it…

And what it serves…

It is a rite!..,

It is responsibility…

It is a gift…

And it (you) matters!…

Our darkest moments will be the greatest inspiration for our most important artistic endeavors!

Stay safe and stay healthy!

Much Love,

Mario

“One very important point that I always speak of at our studio…

Is that Life will always be the most potent, informative and powerful acting teacher any actor will ever study with…

Life itself gets all the credit and acclaim!…

What we do, this thing called story-telling (living), is a mirror or reflection of life…

It is there reflecting the human condition from generation to generation…

We will always connect to the things that we relate with…

And those things will always be the stimulus that create story…

Because of present circumstances…

I felt compelled to share a very critical season in my personal life to one of our classes and an important lesson I learned from those circumstances….

Because of severe chronic illness that I fought for many many years (often in secret)..

I almost lost my life a couple of times…

In addition…

I lost friends, family, career…joy, happiness, and even love…

During this time…

The one thing I had to do was basically isolate for 10 years, as best I could, to protect myself and my immune system…

TEN YEARS!

That isolation…

That loss of time and life…

Created a craving that I knew was my calling…

Everything I missed out on became my mission…

That long, difficult, horrendous, scary, lonely desperate test became my testimony…

The opportunity I was given during that downtime was an opportunity to understand things about people and life that I was not able to understand before…

Everything beforehand came easily until it didn’t…

Those circumstances forced me to stop doing what I loved (my career as an actor on stage and screen) and gave me the chance to study the thing I loved in a completely new way…

It forced me to witness and understand humanity with a completely new and compassionate lens…

It forced me to slow down, ask questions, seek answers, and bear witness to others, their circumstances, and their pain with a bird’s eye view…

And more importantly, it forced me to relate!…

It completely changed me as a person, artist and teacher…

I was able to begin to see and understand things in story that I never even thought possible…

It deepened my relationship to the work and the understanding of characters and why they do what they do based on the circumstances they are in…

Why do I bring this up?…

During this crucial time in all of our lives, it is so important to remember these three simple yet powerful statements …

WHAT YOU CRAVE IS YOUR CALLING…

WHAT YOU MISS IS YOUR MISSION…

AND WHAT YOU ARE TESTED BY WILL BE YOUR TESTIMONY!

What we are experiencing in the world right now is inevitably going to create stories…

Many many very human beautiful complicated layered heartwrenching and also victorious stories…

And EVERYBODY’S story has the right to be heard and witnessed…

Every one of our stories is backed by the pain we have endured and experienced during some season in our lives and all of what we have done to try and overcome that pain and suffering to make it through…

Tough times and tough circumstances will always try our most vulnerable point…

And that is a beautiful and very human map as to what needs our attention…

Our awareness…

Our awareness, observation and the exercising of what we learn about ourselves and the human condition inevitably inspires and informs how we live honestly, truthfully and authentically in our work as actors…

And a lot of the time this may feel inconvenient, difficult, tedious and maybe even heart-wrenching work during the process…

During the season…

Especially when there is not an immediate payoff…

But the more we stay on track…

The more we continue to persevere…

The more we continue to align, refine and cultivate our craft…

The more we continue to grow…

And the more the payoff will eventually and inevitably come…

It is about pushing through…

Even during those moments when we feel like we don’t want to push through…

It’s not about going around it…

Or over it…

Or underneath it…

But going through it…

Being religious (meaning disciplined) in our approach to what we want to achieve as artists…

Being focused and disciplined…

And holding ourselves accountable within and throughout the process…

Because we (you) love what we (you) do…

And because we know there is…

Always has been…

And always will be greatness within each of us worthy of doing the work we (you) love with all our (your) heart and soul.

And with that invested, mindful, committed work…

We must remember the word ‘ACT’ means TO DO!..

And the artists perseveres when it may make sense to want to crumble…

The artist perseveres because by the very nature of being an artist is to create…

To move forward…

To give ‘birth’ to something from something and because of something…

Our work, this thing called Acting, is not for the faint of heart…

It is not ‘substance-less’…

It is pregnant with the human condition!…

All of us, in our darkest times, are spending our time being moved by YOU, the actor, in our homes or other venues where our work lives…

This is why we must take this work seriously and with responsibility…

Don’t forget what you do…

Why you do it…

And what it serves…

It is a rite!..,

It is responsibility…

It is a gift…

And it (you) matters!…

Our darkest moments will be the greatest inspiration for our most important artistic endeavors!”

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For more information on MC² Actors Studio, MC²=Mario Campanaro’s Masterclass & Mario Campanaro For The Actor, please contact our administrative department at assistant.MC2@gmail.com or visit us at www.mariocampanaro.com


Resistance: Risky Business…

In this Masterclass interview, we discuss how very often our resistance to our own growth is one of the biggest things standing in the way of our own forward momentum. We discuss what our training as artists is all about. Very often we can easily get caught up in the idea of having to “perform“, having to “be perfect or right“, having to be “on“,  or even having to prove “something” to our fellow ensemble members and/or the teacher. That is the exact opposite of what should be happening. The participation in any acting studio or ensemble should really focus on committed like-minded professionally-oriented actors coming together and wholeheartedly holding space to explore, discover, learn, grow, expand, share, support and cultivate the craft of acting. There should be the focus of committed like-minded professionally-oriented actors coming to work, to really do the work knowing each and everyone is there respectfully for the work. And more often than not, it is there where committed like-minded professionally-oriented actors come to find their tribe, their artistic home, their creative family, their ensemble. But that environment should not be used to contemplate our worth. We have to know we are worthy. That environment should not be used to ruminate about the respect we deserve. We have to know we are deserving of respect. That environment should not be used to ponder if we should be seen and heard. We have to know we have the right to be seen and heard.Part of being an artist in any learning environment is in the knowledge of what we are there to do and why. That does not mean we will not be challenged. Because we will. We will all the time. In fact, that is why we there. Challenges allow for growth as long as our resistance does not hold us back from our very own growth. But we cannot get that famously sought out “breakthrough” until there is an honest awareness and a profound understanding of what it is we are actually trying to overcome and learn. We have to be honest with ourselves and remain open to learning and growing.  Otherwise, we just remain on a merry-go-round of unuseful resistance and continue to have an un-evolved cyclical stagnant experience. Not ideal for an artist. We have to dive deep within ourselves and the work to discover all the treasures. And sometimes the true learning may have to come from the unlearning of what was once learned. One of the biggest obstacles we may have to face as actors is developing a tough enough skin to remain open and available to the work as the work challenges us in a myriad of ways. Very often the work is going to hold a mirror up to us and sometimes it is not going to be pleasant to face things that are stifling us or holding us back. But as actors, we have to be willing to stand up and face the music. There is no room for escapism in our kind of work. As actors, as artists, we have to be OK with allowing our instrument to experience discomfort as we grow. We cannot resist or shy away from it for it is that very discomfort that is the exact ingredient to our growth and to fulfilling the most complex realities of the most complicated circumstances. Our discomfort is pregnant with the substance needed to be utilized in our work. We have to be courageous enough to actually step out of the “safety blanket” of the ego, and into the reality of all that delicious discomfort as the artistic warriors that we are. It is through our instrument that we become the vessel to living the most complex, complicated and even inexplicable essence of the human condition in a very public way. But that kind of necessary bravery has to be consistently and safely worked on without consciously trying to run away from it. We have to confront it in the moment and work through it in the moment. It does not just magically happen when we step onto the stage. Working through it, void of resistance is how real learning begins. We have to stay the course. We cannot let what we were not able to overcome or achieve yesterday hold us back from what we may be able to overcome and achieve today. The fact that we continue to stretch our limits and openly reveal ourselves is a true testament to our inner strength, creativity, and light as artists. Do not take for granted the fearlessness that this art-form demands. As I always say in all of my classes, it is not for the faint of heart. The artist’s way is to persevere.
I hope you enjoy this interview.
With love,
Mario

#MarioCampanaro

TAG ▫️SHARE ▫️COMMENT ⚪️For more information on Mario Campanaro For The Actor & MC²=Mario Campanaro’s Masterclass, please contact our administrative department at assistant.MC2@gmail.com or visit us at www.mariocampanaro.com


Life Or Death: The Human Spirit’s Fight For Survival…

In this Masterclass lecture, we open class with a very raw discussion about what it means when it comes to “life or death” stakes in the work. Our very talented and brave ensemble is working on a play that demands each member to viscerally understand and endow what it means to fight for one’s survival in the name of life and love without it being diluted by “ideas” of what that fight really entails. On a personal note, and to be quite frank, this was not an easy week for me to teach. In fact, I felt quite exposed. I felt quite vulnerable. I even felt quite isolated in my experience. And because of those feelings, I knew this was exactly what my heart was asking me to reveal in the lecture. So I needed to face all that and use it as the fire to my own breakthrough as well as in service of the work. Ya gotta practice what you preach, right? Otherwise, ya got no right to ask the equivalent of others. It is not the “easy” that makes us artists. It is not the “easy” that makes the difference. It is our complexity. It is that stuff that we feel we may need to hide. It is all those things that make us feel broken. It is that deep, messy and sometimes even shattered truth within all of us that is called for in the creative process. It is all that stuff that has the ability to open hearts and transform things for the better. It is all that stuff that brings us closer and closer to the ultimate truth. In preparation for this class, I had to do a lot of soul-searching to be able to reveal what I really wanted to teach on this very human and dark subject. I also wanted to be able to teach this part of the work with the utmost integrity and respect that it deserves. In my own life, I have had to fight tooth and nail in order to stay alive from a very complicated illness that has tried to take me out on multiple occasions. And for the most part, I have had to do that alone. When all known treatments have failed me, I had to take it into my own hands to find the answers to this crazy chronic illness that we still just do not have enough research for or answers to. And to this day, I still fight with all I have to make sure that I survive. So having tasted this notion of what it means to really survive based on my own circumstances, I wanted to substitute that experience to be able to share some kind of insight in a way that it can relate somehow someway to the extreme and horrific circumstances of the piece we are working on. We hear the words “high stakes” so often in our work but rarely do we take accountability to truly define what that means in relation to the circumstances and life of the character. We tend to go to the “idea” place of what that means…and even the emotionality of those circumstances…without realizing that in such high stakes, those ideas and all that emotionality may very well be the thing that gets in the way of the character’s survival itself. We have to understand that in those circumstances where it is “life or death“, there is something primitive that kicks in with laser focus to be sure that we survive. Sometimes all that emotion is a luxury that we just do not have in such extreme circumstances. It does not mean that all that emotion and feeling is not present. Because it is. And it is there deep down. And it is complex. And it is painful. And it is scary. But do we have the time and place to reveal it? To feel it? To go through it? Or do we need to refocus that energy, conserve it, and use it as the substance, the gasoline, the useful energy for survival? You see, there is something else that takes precedence. And that is that fight or flight instinct within all of us. It is that something instinctual within that works overtime to constantly figure out what can be done to survive life-threatening circumstances even if it means taking what may be considered outlandish risks just so one can stay alive. And we, as actors, have to find a way to understand and justify such actions without judgment so we can truly live them in our work. And we have to be sure that we are not playing all that emotionality thinking that it will somehow someway gain the compassion, love or sympathy from the audience. That is not the story. That is not our job. That is not what the character has to do to stay alive. If we do that, we lose the very action necessary to fight for survival. We need to stay the course, using all that emotion and feeling as the driving motivation to the do what we have to do in the scene, based on and in line with the text, to try to get what we want based on the circumstances and elements that we are in, the relationships that surround us, the obstacles standing in the way of those needs, and all the actions (spoken or unspoken) that we are willing to risk to accomplish what we are setting out to do with the intention to survive “life or death” stakes. And so we, as actors, begin this brave journey exploring and revealing the human spirit’s fight for survival in the name of life and love. And we honor the lives and stories of those who have suffered such atrocities throughout history. And we shine the light on such darkness that is still happening today with the hope, even if as a small part, of ending such suffering.
I hope you enjoy this lecture.
Much love,
Mario

#MarioCampanaro

▫️ TAG ▫️SHARE ▫️COMMENT ⚪️For more information on Mario Campanaro For The Actor & MC²=Mario Campanaro’s Masterclass, please contact our administrative department at assistant.MC2@gmail.com or visit us at www.MarioCampanaro.com


Unapologetically Accepting & Loving Your “Brokenness”…

In this Masterclass lecture, we have a heart to heart about really understanding the Self and how certain aspects of life, relationships and circumstances can trigger the Self. These triggers can go as far as creating a lens over our eyes that color our thinking into believing that there is something innately wrong with who we are. Those unfortunate lies then out-picture and bleed into our everyday reality. We are innately loveable.Plain and simple. There, I said it! It has personally taken me all my life to know and believe that truth and something that I continuously have to work on. As a teacher, I can only teach through experience otherwise I am teaching fluff in my opinion. I don’t claim to be a Guru. And to be honest, I have no desire to be one. I’ll save that for those who want to be or claim to be. I simply claim to be human, just like you, trying to figure it all out. I just happen to be fortunate to have the the opportunity to contribute all that work into the world of acting which demands the constant examination of the human condition on all levels. No matter what your history is… No matter what you have been through…No matter what you have been told…No matter what you have been taught…And no matter what you have been brainwashed to believe…YOU ARE LOVEABLE! Just as you are. And you matter! And that voice and story inside you matters! Imperfections” and all! It is the Self, who you truly are, that is the necessarysubstance which ignites the creative force within you to create. It is the Self, that amazing soul living inside that vehicle that we all call a body, that differentiates each and every one of us from the next person and makes each and every one of us inexplicably unique and special. And it is allthose differences, “quirks” and all, that are the reason we have so many stories about people. And it is the reason why we connect to so many of those stories on so many levels. The more we understand the Self, the more we have the capability of understanding what may be hidden beneath the many layers of every character…and every person. We have to know, understand and accept that this idea of “perfection” is not the artist’s friend. First of all, there is no way of meeting that standard of perfection save the fact that you are perfect as you are…yes, even those so-called “imperfections“, “flaws“, and all. You are perfect as you are. I(‘)M-PERFECTION. There is always the ability to evolve, expand, and grow, but at the core level, you are perfect for being just you. But the “idea” of perfection does not fill the gap. It doesn’t do the job. It is some made up filter that is simply BS. This idea of “perfection” separates us from the very foundation of what art is all about. It is all that other “stuff” that does the real work! Art is alive because of the “brokenness” that humanity has and still does experience in one way or another. It is our “brokenness” that connects us all. Our “brokenness” is the language that all of our hearts can understand because we have all suffered in one way or another. All that suffering is and always has been the catalyst to create. Art is there to speak up in the face of diversity. Art is there to light the torch in the midst of darkness. Art is there to mend our broken hearts, our broken spirits, and all of our brokenness. And then to bring us all together to know that “OMG, I’ve been there too!” As actors, we have to face, come to terms, accept and love every part of who we are. All the “flaws“, the “quirks“, the “weird stuff“, the “imperfections” and all of our very human “brokenness“. It is part of lifeand it is part of our job!
I hope you enjoy this lecture!
Much love,
Mario

#MarioCampanaro

▫️ TAG ▫️SHARE ▫️COMMENT ⚪️For more information on Mario Campanaro For The Actor & MC²=Mario Campanaro’s Masterclass, please contact our administrative department at assistant.MC2@gmail.com or visit us at www.MarioCampanaro.com


A Crash Course On What It Really Means To Be Specific As An Actor…

#MarioCampanaro

▫️ TAG ▫️SHARE ▫️COMMENT ⚪️For more information on Mario Campanaro For The Actor & MC²=Mario Campanaro’s Masterclass, please contact our administrative department at assistant.MC2@gmail.com or visit us at www.MarioCampanaro.com (Click link in profile)


Warning! Acting Actually Requires You Knowing What You’re Doing!

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Last week I got a call from an actress that was referred to me by a long time student and private client.

I could tell the moment we started speaking that this is one of those actors that really really has respect for this art form.

I could hear in her voice she has that burning hunger that I personally love to witness that keeps the actor going deeper and deeper into the work.

It is quite clear that along with her remarkable talent, she has amazing instincts and intuition that have carried her very far in her career.

She has had a lot of success on a number of tv shows and is now being given the rare opportunity to bring her gifts to the stage in a city that is not very forgiving when it comes to standards.

She has signed all the contracts and in a few months she will play a very complicated and layered role in a new two and a half hour drama minus a much needed fifteen-minute intermission.

And yes, she has to do eight shows a week.

There will be no “Action!”

There will be no “Cut!”

And you guessed it…

There will be no editing to pick and choose the very best takes to bring the perfect performance together!

There will just be her, the ensemble, the set, the props, the lighting, the sound, the arc as laid out by the text that she will have to live without stopping two and a half hours a show, eight shows a week, and about two thousand people in the audience who paid about $150-$300 sitting there to watch her do it.

In short, there is nowhere to hide and no one/no thing to hide behind.

There is no stopping and starting over.

It is happening right now and the stakes are as high as they can possibly be!

That’s the beautiful danger of theater Life!

It is the actor’s true home requiring and even testing our technical accountability to make it through such a deliciously challenging process.

So you can imagine the panic in her voice as she shared:

“I just don’t know what I am doing! I can’t get there on my own! I take class. I have literally taken class all over the place. I mean I get these notes and sometimes I have no idea what they mean. And then within a lot of the class setups, I am scared to actually ask what these notes mean because I don’t want to ruffle anyone’s feathers. But shouldn’t they make sense if they are being given to an actor? Shouldn’t I know what I am doing by now? And then I feel like it is up to luck if things go well in the space or not. Sometimes I am in it and sometimes I am not. And even when my work goes well, I have no idea how I got there. Yeah, I guess it is luck. I always seem to have a breakthrough when I get these random adjustments, but then I have no idea how I can use what just happened from the adjustment without being handed the adjustment to get the breakthrough. So I leave feeling great about the breakthrough I just had from the adjustment but I always seem to have to wait for the adjustment just so I can have the breakthrough. I am literally addicted to adjustments!… to get the breakthrough to discover some kind of opening in which, at this point, I am not even sure has anything to do with the life of the actual text. It’s like I am always being directed rather than learning what the hell I am doing! And I want to know what the hell I am doing! I feel so damn stuck! And I am actually also a little angry that I am still in this position for this long. And worse, I feel absolutely lost! And so I am actually scared to do what I love doing! How the hell am I suppose to do this eight shows a week! What did I say ‘yes’ to? I am terrified!!!”

Before we hung up, we set up a meeting, and then I asked if it would be ok if I dedicated my next blog to this subject and share her story anonymously as I know all too well she is not alone in this predicament.

She agreed as long as I promised to help her “find her way out of the predicament”.

We laughed and I was honored to be brought onto her team.

Unfortunately this is not an isolated conversation.

I am disheartened as I am introduced to more and more actors revealing to me how distraught they are by not getting this “thing” that they seem to knowingly or unknowingly be looking for.

Despite reading numerous acting books, scrutinizing award-winning performances, participating in numerous workshops, and jumping from this studio to the next, there still seems to be something missing that is leaving the actor with a very large question mark about this “thing” they so inexplicably love.

So what’s missing?

Well…

I can tell you, without hesitation, what is missing.

Craft!

No matter what day and age we are in, though “styles” may have changed throughout the ages, the basis of all acting has not:

PLain and simple:

Life, circumstances, relationships, needs within those circumstances and relationships, obstacles to overcome in order to improve circumstances and relationships, and doing all we can that is in line with the text to achieve those needs with the hope of living in one way or another some kind of  peaceful, happy, successful, loving life as indicated by the givens of the text.
Basically what you would know in life, so would the character!

Because all that makes the unknown of the moment possible.

Without it, you are telling your own story and swimming in your own pool of who knows what.

We need tools that will help us physically, mentally, emotionally, and even spiritually do the work.

Just as a ballet dancer needs to know all the technicalities to do a thousand faute turns, the actor also needs to have a set of tools supporting him or her to do the work.

If you want to live in the chaos of the unknown or moment, you have to be aware of what is known to do just that!

And of course, the perfect test of action is can you, the actor, do a play that is two and a half hours, eight shows a week, and still have a consistent, alive, uninhibited, organic and visceral performance as well as the vocal and physical stamina to do your job and tell the story truthfully using the full spectrum your instrument?

And let’s be honest, this is not just reserved for the theater.

Any actor that has the talent, sophistication, know-how, and ability to be dependable and accountable is an actor that has a long life in this business whether it be stage or screen.

I always say at nauseum to my students and clients:

“An actor that is always working…
is an actor that has always done the work!”

So here is my short answer to this unfortunate dilemma.

How do you live moment to moment in relation to the circumstances of the text?

Craft!

How do you live in the unknown of the moment?

Craft!

How do you use your listening in relationship to filter wants and needs that drive your character’s story forward?

Craft!

How do you emotionally live the arc of your character?

Craft!

How do you get to where the text indicates?

Craft!

How do you have a clear relationship with others including your environment and objects that still tell the story?

Craft!

How do you discover the physical or vocal attributes of your character?

Craft!

How do you make sense of your lines so they are not something you are just saying but they have an intention to improve your character’s circumstances moment to moment?

Craft!

How do you organically give birth to the lines you are saying?

Craft!

How do you viscerally understand what is happening between the lines?

Craft!

How do you completely bring your character to life using the accumulation of your life experiences as the instrument to the world of your character?

Craft!

How do you live in the chaos of the life of unknown?

Craft!

How do you do a two and a half hour show eight shows a week?

By being supported by craft!

If you are seeking answers to these issues and are still saying to yourself:

“I still do not know what the F*$# I am doing!”

It is time for you to take a stand and speak up for yourself because you deserve what you are seeking not only as an actor, but as an artist!

And quite frankly, as a consumer!

There is always something invauable to learn from everyone, but you have to be sure you are learning and can use what you are learning for your career as actor to be active and alive and truthful in the work in relationship to the story!

The fact of the matter is you have the right and obligation as an actor, as an artist, to have a set of tools, a craft, that will always have your back supporting you in any and all of your creative endeavors.

And there is not the way to get there!

But there is a way.

And that way is the way that resonates and stimulates with your instrument to do honest, truthful, exciting, sophisticated, and unpredictable work in relation to the circumstances at hand and that always allows for the quality of your work to be consistent and not dependent on luck!

It supports you in your knowing and therefore in your freedom within the unknown of the moment.

That is the craft that you want to cultivate.

That is the craft you want to continue to work with!

This is a craft that never fails you.

It always has your back.

That is the craft that you can always put to the test, refine, mix and match, while always knowing that you are supported and can find your way!

That is the craft that allows you to throw caution to the wind, dissolve fear, and fall back in love with the process of acting once again!


Your Worth As An Artist…

Transcript Of Video:

“It is never going to be enough…

As long as you continue to allow the external world to be the determining factor of what validates you as an artist…

You are always going to feel that sense of lack…

You are always going to have the hole in your heart that is desperately searching for something out there to give you a sense of Self that says…

‘Yes! You should be doing what you are doing!’

Now I am not saying that applause…

And success…

And jobs…

And awards…

Are not worthy of being celebrated…

Because they are…

They are lovely…

But they are fleeting…

You have to know in your heart your worth…

You have to know that what you are doing…

What your are saying…

What you are revealing…

Is worthy of being witnessed…

You have to know that your talents alone are validation enough for you to be pursuing the journey that you are pursuing…

But that has got to come from the Self.”