Wednesday, Jan 21, 2004
(first in a series)
It was more than ten years ago that I spent a summer studying drama in London. A program(me) in acting, directing, and playwriting, it brought about 25 college freshmen and sophomores together, half from the UK and half from America, though only one other from so far away as I was.
In the early days of the course we spent a good amount of time learning about the differences between the Brits and us Yanks. Easy differences like power voltages, the difference between cookies, crackers, and biscuits. Surprising differences like what it takes to get a bank account in London versus New York, and what that relationship means to you.
Each morning us Yanks would emerge from our dorms at the London School of Economics, vacant for all the budding economists were on holiday, and walk, rain or shine, to Euston Station, get our morning biscuits and march down into the tube for our two-part runs to the theatre in Sloane Square.
Emerging from the station it was a quick right, a few doors down, then another right, down the alley to the back door of the theatre, in the door, up the steps, past the offices, around to another black-clad stairwell, then up one more set of winding, narrowing stairs with a rise-over-run fit to remind us again that we weren't on western shores anymore.
There, on the same attic studio where the Rocky Horror Show was first performed, we would learn about theatre and about humanity: what makes us different, what makes us the same, and how the delta between people is drama.
More than ten years ago, and still the memories flood back, like vignettes of mirror-world humanity.
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