We can’t wait for our new Acting Masterclass with DugOut Theatre in May, so we thought it was high time to catch up with DugOut’s artistic director, George Chilcot, to find out more about the workshop.
Perfect for budding actors, directors, or anyone looking to find out more about making original theatre, the masterclass will help participants to connect with their creative side, and gain an insight into how professional theatre makers work to develop their shows.
Hi George. Could you tell us a bit about how DugOut was formed?
DugOut was formed to produce our very first show in Edinburgh – Dealer’s Choice. The company met at Leeds University a few years ago and we wanted to sound like a professional theatre company at the Fringe, so we called ourselves ‘DugOut Theatre’. ‘DugOut’ refers to Journey’s End (a play a few of us loved) and the dugout in which the play is set.
How would you describe your shows?
Musical, funny, imaginatively staged. Think Complicite meets Monty Python.
We currently working on a new production, ‘Swansong’ which is due to be on at the Pleasance in Edinburgh and then will go to Suffolk for the HighTide Festival. It’s a storytelling show about three guys who survive a great flood on a swan pedalo and how their whimsical, silly stories become the folklore for the new world.
Devising allows you to harness the creative talents of a group of people, and has the potential to be an electrifying experience
What has been your highlight of working with DugOut?
Each new show is my new favourite moment. I feel more excited by the project I am currently doing than I have felt about any of the others. That is how I’ve always worked and continue to work. My favourite moment with DugOut is the one that is happening right now – we have three great shows that we are getting ready for Edinburgh and we’re having a lot of fun with each one.
What is it about devising your own work that appeals most to you?
Having created a piece is both terrifying and exhilarating in equal measure. If the play is poorly received, you can’t simply blame the writer because you have all written it and, similarly, if people laugh, cry and respond to your work positively then that can be enormously gratifying. Devising, when done well, allows you to harness the creative talents of a group of people, and therefore, has the potential to be an electrifying experience.
We’ve all got a childish desire to play and make things within us
What can we expect from the DugOut Masterclass?
People will get a unique insight into our devising process. We will share the tools we use to build characters, create scenes and write plays.
The workshop should be interesting to anyone who wants to flex their creative muscles – from those interested in acting and writing to those who just want to build up their confidence.
Participants will develop an increased awareness of how the way you move can affect how you feel. How to create different characters by simple changes to posture and physical centres, how to improvise effectively and how to create scenes through improvisation.
What do you enjoy most about running your Masterclass?
Unleashing the innate creativity of people who otherwise wouldn’t consider themselves creatives. We’ve all got a childish desire to play and make things within us, and for some that is buried deeper than others. Being able to unlock that for people can be enormously rewarding. And funny too.
Find out more about the Masterclass with DugOut Theatre, here >>
The Masterclass will be led by DugOut Theatre’s Artistic Director George Chilcot and founding member Will Barwick. Read their profiles here >>