Last week, 25 Deaf performers’ minds were blown by a week of Meisner performance workshops in Sheffield!

Part funded by BSLBT, this acting techniques course focussed on the idea that acting is “living truthfully under a given set of circumstances.”  They worked on a few simple exercises that explore what happens when two actors connect and respond impulsively to one another.  People who work in this way include Diane Keaton and Tom Cruise.

Julian Peedle-Calloo attended the workshops.  He said, “I was blown away.  It was wonderful to observe how we all blossomed throughout the week.  A really amazing experience!”

Meisner Technique expert Scott Williams did the training.  He said, “Being in the room with about 25 deaf practitioners was a thrilling event.  I realised in the middle of our intense week of work that these people are already tuned in to the present in a way that provides an example to any actor.  To experience the depth and passion of these remarkable artists was a memorable and privileged moment for me as a teacher and director.”

Deaf director Ted Evans, who arranged the course with 104 Films, told us, “The workshops were quite simply groundbreaking and I’m so pleased with everyone’s focus, determination and commitment. The theory behind the Meisner Technique always worked for me. It makes complete sense and I felt it was exactly what deaf actors needed, but with our wonderful tutor Scott Williams we were able to put that theory to the test and the results were revolutionary. I think this could possibly lead to a milestone in screen acting for deaf actors and I will do all I can to try and supply further training. I’m very, very excited for the future.”

The participants are also very excited and can’t wait to see each other again soon to carry on learning!