“Hi. Hey Hi. Wow. All right. Nice place. Nice, uh, nice theatre. Good vibes. Okay….for my…..can you hear me? Can you? No? Yes? You are out there, right?”

So begins Jane Martin’s monologue appropriately entitled “Audition” from her show, “Talking With…” When I finally sat down to create this blog, after months of ideas popping in and out of my head, the only thing that came to mind was this. I’ve been wanting to write something about this topic for a long time, and my brain wants to go in every direction at once…


Okay. So let’s start with that. Breath. Most people in the arts understand that breath is vital to performing on stage, in front of the camera, basically any type of performance requires some knowledge and understanding of breath.


It supports and gives more flexibility to our voice, keeps us grounded, relaxes us, it’s the beginning of life, of thought, of emotion, yes yes yes but could it also enhance our mental state on stage?

What DOES an actor think about onstage? I’ve heard everything from “blocking” to “lines” to “who my character is” to “what I’m trying to do” to “nothing” to “how to say my next line” to “how I’m affecting my scene partner” and everything in between.

The one thing that seems to remain consistent is that we have an awful lot of brain traffic onstage.

There are LOTS of books, theories, studies and classes out there that will give you lots of techniques for handling the inevitable amount of brainwave traffic that we deal with, both on and off stage. I am not here to tell you what is the “correct” method. I myself use many different methods of sorting through the thoughts in my head. But I want to talk about one method in particular because

1. I think there are a lot of misconceptions about it,

2. I have found it to be useful both in my theater practice and in my day to day life (and you might too), and

3. I’m hoping that by writing about it and hearing your thoughts about it, I will be able to clarify my thoughts about its potential uses in the theater.

And that “method” is called meditation.

There are MANY different types of meditation, so specifically I am going to be talking about the Tibetan Buddhist style that I personally am learning about and practicing.

Okay, so I probably sent up all sorts of red flags when I mentioned “Buddhist,” but I want to make myself very clear that this blog is NOT intended to convert you to Buddhism. I do not consider myself a Buddhist. There are parts of Buddhism that I like and parts that I don’t like, and the point, at the end of the day, is for you to have access to another TOOL that you can try out and add it (or not) to your Actor’s Toolbox.

So, here we go.

To be continued in “Meditation and the ‘Not Thinking’ Problem”