A Day in The Life of a Juilliard Drama Major!
This week’s blog assignment was for us to give a glimpse of a typical day within our respective training programs. I am a second year Drama student and I particularly chose the heaviest day of my week (Thursdays) to share with you. Take note that it is part of Drama Division policy that the taking of pictures and the use of cellphones are forbidden during classes and rehearsals. So almost all of the pictures that are in this post were taken right before or after each class with permission from the teacher.
Thursday, October 13, 2016
6:30 AM Wake up
7:00 AM Leave apartment
I live uptown in Washington Heights and I like getting up early. I often take the 1 train to 66th street.
7:38 AM Arrival at The Juilliard School
8:00-9:00 AM Darryl’s Open Workout class
I woke up particularly early today because I wanted to attend Darryl Quinton’s work out class. When I was in first year, we had Darryl’s workout class integrated into our curriculum on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. Upon second year, we have Moni Yakim’s Movement class replacing Darryl’s workout class. While Moni’s class is amazing, I still need my weekly cardio fix so I attend Darryl’s open work out sessions which are available Tuesdays and Thursdays from 8AM-9AM.
9:00-10:30 AM Movement in Context class
Movement in Context class is a great class where we get to do a lot of exploration. It integrates our bodies in our explorations of character through animal work, various states of inebriation, size, etc.
10:30-10:55 AM MINI-BREAK (Shower!)
I had this mini break right after Movement class so I used it to take a quick shower and grab a bite. Darryl’s class always leaves me extremely sweaty.
10:55-11:30 AM Graduate Speech
11:30-12:00 PM Graduate Speech Duets
Graduate speech is actually one of my favorite classes because it poses a specific challenge for me. I am an international student (from the Philippines) and English is not my first language. I get a kick out of working on something that I did not have access to prior to coming to New York. In this class we work on Standard American English that prepares us for Shakespeare and dialect work.
12:00-1:30 PM Developing Character Through Masks
A lot of my colleagues including myself particularly enjoy the freedom that this class allows us. For most of the week we work on technique (speech, Alexander, scene study, etc.) and so having a class where we can put on a mask and see where it leads us can feel very liberating. It’s one of the classes that help me reconnect to the world of child-like make believe. It also releases deep subconscious and primal feelings within a safe space.
1:30-2:30 PM BREAK
This is my first “official break” of the day where I can eat lunch. I cook all my meals for the week every Sunday and portion them in tupper wares. During breaks I just get them from the refrigerator in our locker room and heat them in a microwave. I also use this time to check mail. Today my “Isaac Asimov’s Guide to Shakespeare” finally arrived in the mail!
2:30-4:00 PM Music Studies
Did you know that Juilliard was originally only a music school in its founding in 1905? The Juilliard Drama Program was created only in 1968. For today’s class we talked about the different voice classifications. We watched recorded performances of various singers with different voice classifications to help us identify which one was what.
4:00-6:00 PM Point of View II
I think Point of View class is one of the classes that makes Juilliard Drama unique from other drama programs. It is not a class on “acting” but a class that helps us gain a broader view of the world and develop the tools to question events or phenomenon outside the world of “drama.” For this class we finished watching a documentary on Maya Lin, an Asian American architect who became known for her design of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington D.C. when she was only a 21-year old student at Yale.
6:00-7:00 PM DINNER BREAK plus reading of “Burn This” for Scene Study
My scene partners and I decided to do a working dinner to continue working on a scene from “Burn This” by Lanford Wilson for scene study class.
7:00-10:00 PM Once in A Lifetime (Second Year Fall Studio Project Rehearsals)
Evenings in Juilliard Drama are allotted for rehearsals. We have an average of four productions in a school year per year level. For the first play of the second year we are doing “Once In A Lifetime” by Moss Hart and George Kaufman. Since we are working on individual scenes today I was only called from 9:00-10:00PM. I used that free time from 7:00-9:00PM to finish my directing assignment and work on my sonnet for Shakespeare class tomorrow. As 9:00PM approaches I get into my costume and wait outside the hall of room 306 (where our rehearsal is) to be called.
10:00-11:00PM Once rehearsals are over I often stay around for another hour inside the dressing room doing some homework.
11:00PM I leave the school building to go back to my apartment.
So that concludes a day in the life of a second year Juilliard Drama student! Today was particularly heavy. Other days in the week I have more breaks in between which are often spent doing more work. Other classes during the week worth mentioning are: the Shakespeare class (where we work on Shakespeare text on plays and sonnets using meter, rhyme, etc.), Scene Study class, Moni Yakim’s Movement class, Directing, etc.
REGINA DE VERA