Anna-Katharina has been in touch with the Acting Technique of Michael Chekhov since 20 years. She learned from her father Jörg Andrees who is a master tutor of the method since over 30 years. Through her involvement with movement, dance, theater and circus art she has specialised her approach to performing arts. She is interested in what lies behind the obvious. How can the performer really connect with his creations? The search for a deeper meaning of what we want to say with our art is an exciting and never-ending journey. Anna-Katharina supports performers to find images and tools to feel free and creative on stage and to enjoy with a feeling of ease their own creation. Images are used to define the space, to get clarity in movement and transitions. Working with the space in general and especially with the backspace offers a feeling of freedom and focus at the same time for the artist on stage. Reflecting the work-process as well as support for the rehearsal and performance- structure give joy and freedom in the work.
When you really concentrate, you will get a sense of expansion. You will feel that you are a larger person than you are physically, as if you become a person two or three sizes bigger than your ordinary physical self, and that you are flowing with all your being toward the object of your concentration. Whether it is a physical thing or an image that you are concentrating on, your whole invisible person will be in movement. MICHAEL CHEKHOV
MICHAEL CHEKHOV´s ACTING TECHNIQUE
The central themes of the Michael Chekhov Acting Technique are concentration, awareness, transformation, imagination, working with impulse as well as inner and outer gestures. You learn through psycho-physical trainings and get to know tools in working with atmosphere, imagination and feelings. The tools are clear and practical. Working with imagination brings you to experiencing the truth of the moment. According to Chekhov the performers work is to create an inner event that is an actual experience that takes place in real time within the performer. This inner event, as experienced by the performer, is seen by the audience as an external expression. Michael Chekhov called it the creative individuality of the actor/performer´s, which is not directly tied to his personality. This creative individuality allows the artist to use parts of himself that are not only elements of everyday life, but parts of their unconscious in which more universal and archetypal images occur.
I am a creative artist. I have the ability to radiate. Lifting my arms above me, I soar above the earth. Lowering my arms, I continue to soar. In the air moving around my head and shoulders, I experience the power of thoughts. In the air moving around my chest, I experience the power of feelings. In the air moving around my legs and feet, I experience the power of will. I am that. MICHAEL CHEKHOV
Mikhail Aleksandrovich Chekhov was born in St. Petersburg, Russia in August 1891. His father, Aleksandr was the brother of the great playwright Anton Chekhov. In 1912, Chekhov became a leading actor of the Moscow Arts Theater, studying Stanislavski’s new methods of ‘affective memory’.Chekhov became Stanislavski’s ‘most brilliant pupil’. By 1918 Chekhov began to investigate Rudolf Steiner’s spiritual science through his friend, writer Andrei Bely. Chekhov began incorporating some of Steiner’s philosophies in his work. He began to create his own acting technique. In 1922 he became head of the First Studio of the Moscow Art Theater. He left Russia in 1928 and travelled Europe staging many productions. In 1935 he put together a company of Russian actors to tour the United States, there he met Beatrice Straight and Deirdre Hurst du Prey.
In 1936, they invited him to establish a theatre course in Dartington Hall in Devon, England. In 1938 he moved to Connecticut, United States and set up a new school for actors.
During the forties Chekhov acted in Hollywood movies such as Hitchcock’s ‘Spellbound’, for which he was nominated for an Oscar. His students later included Ingrid Bergman, Gregory Peck, Anthony Quinn, Jack Palance and Marilyn Monroe. Chekhov died on September 30th 1955 in Hollywood.
This text was taken over from: www.chekhovacademy.com