Last night I attended a screening of the new Pedro Almodovar film, “La piel que habito” (The Skin I Live In), followed by a Q & A with stars Antonio Banderas and Elena Anaya. I enjoyed the film, and the Q & A was especially great. In talking about the turmoil he went through as an actor filming this film, something that Antonio Banderas said resonated with me. He was quoting something Laura Linney said to him years ago. She said something to the effect (and I’m paraphrasing) that if you are an actor on a set and you are comfortable and relaxed, you won’t bring anything to the table. You need to be shaken, stirred and on edge to do great work. It reminded me of a conversation I had a while ago with someone about creativity. I came to the insight that to be creative takes great courage. To really create something is to bring into existence something that was hidden – to expose something unseen. Antonio’s words reminded me that the nerves I often feel when being creative (acting or singing), are a vital part of the creative process. They are to be embraced rather than fought. The trick is to find that balance where the nerves and emotion doesn’t get in the way of the creative process, but are there informing it. I do believe that when emotion is true, others can feel it in themselves, and I think that’s what makes art. It was a great reminder to me! Thanks Antonio!
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