shia labeouf is not just an actor; he is also an architect of experiences, you see. Through his red carpet appearances and sometimes unnerving press conferences, and his now numerous instances of interactive art, he constantly challenges our assumptions about everything from fame to the space around us. >
now, he wants to show you how to do it too.
literally, you. that is, if you are in or around the general Los Angeles area and are available on Saturdays for the next few months. labeouf will be on hand to oversee the first half of his new slauson r.c. drama school, and it seems like all you need to do is just introduce yourself. no tuition involved.
“If you don’t like it, leave. if you like it, I’ll be there next Saturday,” he tells prospective students in a twitter video. “I’ll be there every Saturday from 9 a.m., taking shit with whoever shows up. I’m trying to change the world, if you are too, let’s do it. explosion.”
in fact, slauson r.c. drama school doesn’t even require prior acting experience from its students. “All they need is to introduce themselves and have a story they’re willing to share,” states the school’s website.
Of course, if you haven’t figured it out yet, school won’t be your typical drama camp experience. (No Shakespearean monologues to memorize here.)
Syllabuses for the first three years of school, entitled “Making Moments,” “Building Short Stories,” and “Creating a Piece,” are usefully posted online.
your first assignment? creating a group circle. a beautiful circle of group, mind you: “gather yourselves & stand in a circle. move together until you have made a beautiful circle. not an oval. ask yourself if you like the circle you have made. ask the others.”
In your first session, you’ll be challenged to consider your own tastes in entertainment, examine accessories, think about light sources, and review the properties of individual costumes. “discover the poetry of the wardrobe & make some decisions about the best way to reveal that. flowing? does it interact with light, whip or drag? read the syllabus.
Eventually, you’ll break into groups to do exercises based on just two lines from an obituary, which seems strange, but in the next class, most of your time will be spent considering the narrative possibilities of a fictional obituary of an obituary. man who hit his head as a small child and lost the ability to form memories. then, in section three, the groups will create their own short narrative works based on three weeks of interviews they have conducted with real-life people (“divide the workload, some company members focus on the perpetrator, others on the victim. Some spend time interviewing the city councilor, some spend time interviewing the homeless population.”
the final line in the syllabus for all three lessons: “go ahead. make it sacred.”
now, you might be thinking “okay… what?” but this isn’t all a grand labeouf ruse. he seems sincere in the goals of the program and has recruited others to help him. They include Shelley Mitchell, a famous actress and acting coach who herself was extensively trained by Lee Strasberg. Bobby Soto, a relatively unknown actor who will co-star with Labeouf in David Yesterday’s upcoming film The Tax Collector, is also involved.
If anything, school may not only teach you how to act, but also give you an honest perspective on exactly what labeouf has been up to in recent years.