BAD ACTING TEACHERS written and directed by Sky Gilbert (Buddies in Bad Times, 12 Alexander). See Continuing, page 77. $12-$15. 416-975-8555. Rating: NN Rating: NNNNN
Bad Acting Teachers sounds like fun. Most artists have had their share of instructors who pass off pseudo-psychology, insults and physical pain as "acting" lessons. Instead, like Jefferson Guzman as the student in search of a teacher, the audience at this show is subjected to a seminar on Drama Don'ts.
The play is almost structureless. It starts with monologues by two of the three acting teachers ( Ann Holloway and Gavin Crawford ) but segues into a scene between Guzman and Jason Cadieux . Where's Cadieux's monologue?
Then there are the scenes themselves, each one longer than the last and playing just one note. All three teachers thrive on manipulation and dispensing pain.
Cadieux's character is driven by his sense of failure, Holloway's by her need for attention and Crawford's by his desire to get laid.
Crawford's climactic final monologue about fellating Edward Albee positions itself as an ironic statement, an art-imitating-life moment intended as the big self-reflexive finish. Like writing an essay about how you don't know how to write an essay, it shows a serious lack of creativity.
That's what makes bad acting teachers bad - they let ego replace intelligence.