At the beginning of the school year, Ms Cohen presented multiple drama opportunities to the Years 10, 11, and 12 students interested in the Arts. I decided to nominate myself for a scholarship with the Zen Zen Zo Physical Theatre Company. The winner of the scholarship would receive a year’s worth of free Physical Theatre classes with the company. Unsure of how many people were nominating and what the company was looking for, I was very sceptical about my chances of receiving the scholarship.
Nonetheless, a couple of weeks later, I received an email from Lynne Bradley - the founder and director of Zen Zen Zo, congratulating me on my success on receiving the scholarship.
The program runs on eight-week terms with a different focus each term. Term 1 focused on the Suzuki method, which is a highly physical method of acting training. During this training, an actor’s physical and vocal sensibilities are strengthened, which develops highly articulate body capabilities of expressing and communicating power and precision. Term 2 focused on Viewpoints training, which worked to strengthen an actor’s ability to transform physically for the purpose of developing characters. Term 3 focused on the Butoh Method, which is a type of silent theatre displaying extreme visual images, and Term 4 is about composition, where all of the skills from the past three terms are combined for a performance at the end of the year.
Overall, the experience so far has been unforgettable. The classes are run in a very productive, yet exciting manner. The skills I have learnt are not only beneficial to acting, but also aspects of daily life. The training is very different to anything I have done before; however, I look forward to class every Monday. I would highly recommended this opportunity to anyone who enjoys acting and theatre. I will definitely continue this training next year to further develop my skills.
Ashleigh Hoole (Year 12)