Starting from scratch

Giampaolo Gotti


Acting, Expressing yourself, Group, Preparation, Theatre



Teacher of Theatre Improvisation and Director at Accademia Teatro Dimitri. In the theatre you always have to go back to square one. What you created, the performance that went well yesterday no longer exists. You cannot rest on that memory. Because as you take the stage and rest on that memory and see that what was there yesterday is no longer there, the ground starts shaking beneath you. You must start from scratch every time, using what there is. This is both the beauty and the curse of the theatre. The fact that it is an art which, whilst being created, destroys itself. And then I’d like to say something else. I’d tell myself something else. More than about expressing yourself, think about conveying what you have to say. What you wish to convey. Try and convey it, try and build a bridge between you and your partner, between you and the audience. Think less about yourself. About what you feel. And think more about your partner if there are two, three or four of you in the scene. And think more about your audience. This taking yourself off centre will allow you to act better. Because you are less withdrawn, more directed towards the other, you act on the other and, in this way, the best of you will come out. Because you are trying to put this urgency across. And I’d say this, perhaps in the beginning it’s understandable that you will start, that you feel this vocation as a desire for self-expression. But I’d say, gradually: “go towards communication, go towards the other”. In some way, it’s more urgent than you, it’s more important than you, that you should get within him, communicate with him. Pay more attention to how your partner is acting than to how you are acting. Pay more attention to how your audience is reacting than to how well you are speaking or acting. This I’d tell myself.

Design for Wellbeing is a collaborative research project coordinated by the Laboratory of Visual Culture and the Conservatorio Svizzera italiana and funded by the SUPSI in partnership with Accademia Teatro Dimitri.