Tomorrow is the first night of a micro run of Drive With Me (3 shows) and Liz Mills and I have been working hard to reshape the piece to squeeze it into the tiny Alexander Bar theatre. I keep saying how lucky I am to have such a brilliant director, and it’s made me realise how important it is. Here are the reasons.
1. A director interprets the writing. This is especially important for me, because I wrote the piece and I am performing it. Often, writers will direct their own work. In general this isn’t a good idea because most theatre needs that layer of interpretation to bring it alive for an audience.
2. Actor/writers are even more insecure than just actors. There are double the things to make you insecure about, and a strong director, with a clear vision, is the best comfort.
3. A good director is in charge of what the audience see and hear, and they remember that all the time. They are the person who guides you into doing what the story means.
4. A good director holds the moment, the section, the arc, and the whole piece. They are the master balancer of meaning and intention. A good performer will be able to do what they ask.
5. A good director will win some battles and then let others go. They will know which ones are winnable.
6. A good director takes production worries away from the performer, (in my case reluctantly, I am so used to being production focussed.)
7. A good director always makes you feel like you are doing a good job, and always makes you feel like you can do better.
8. A good director makes you laugh, and laughing is the magic glue of all work, especially with a serious piece, where jokes are few.
9. A good director makes even the smallest circle of contributors feel like part of a team.
10. A good director shares the triumphs, tribulations, successes and feedback.
Thank you Liz Mills. I have said it before and I say it again. You are an inspiration.