N.B. Do you remember when I told you I become rather schizofrenic when dealing with the subject "Richard Armitage"? The black/red colours of the text stand for the two "mes" arguing!
Welcome to RA Friday!
Not many, but some news peeped in the Net this week! And I was just thinking...
What can one do, while idly and eagerly waiting for news?
News - i.e. RA's performance on stage (where? when?) ; RA's new Georgette Heyer audiobook (how long do we have still to wait?); RA's latest interview about Spooks (September? August? Earlier?) ; RA's coming to Italy to present Strike Back at RomeFictionFestival (impossible is nothing!) ; Lucas's ultimate betrayal in Spooks 9 (no, please, Lucas, nooooo)
What can one do, meanwhile? Just sit and wait and long for time passing by as quickly as possible? No. That's too boring and we RA's girls (of any age) are more talented and resourceful than that. We blog , create vids, read about him, read texts he's probably going to perform in, discuss in forums, on twitter, on FB, write FF, collect pictures of him, photoshop old photos, write fan letters, make friends among us, spread the love for our man lending our DVDs or CDs here and there, watch and re-watch his performances, go on playing music clips dedicated to him on Utube, and so on.
What did I personally do since my last RA Friday?
(How wordy you are, MG! Just say: this week I'm going to tell you about what I've been listening and watching!)
Not so many RA focused activities unfortunately, since I've been rather busy with school examinations and all the rest ( how boring you are!!! ) but ... well... I spent some (some?!?) time listening to this interview about and this excerpt from The Convenient Marriage audiobook.
I found the interview so interesting! I would listen to RA speaking about his job for hours and never have enough. He knows how to involve his interlocutors in an intriguing conversation.
(Don't believe her, Richard! She would just stare at you in adoration, understanding more or less nothing of what you would be saying!!!)
What else did I do , then? To better reflect on our very interesting, charming speaker's points about the use of the voice in acting , about music related to his job, about how interesting recording an audiobook may be ( bla, bla, bla... interesting an audiobook be-comes if it is RA to tell you about it, or if it 's his the voice in it) , I decided to transcribe his words. It's not so immediate, nor that simple, for my foreign ears but , I don't know how, when Richard speaks I get the impression I understand his English more than other native speakers' English (maybe you've got used to his sounds thanks to your daily training?)
This is my transcript. I hope I got everything right. Isn't anything he says here extremely thorough?
(If you want you can listen to the interview here while reading below)
"Doing an audiobook compared to filming on something like Spooks is quite a contrast, which is exactly the reason I like to do it, because particularly in the last few years I’ve been doing a lot of action stuff so I’m using probably my body more than I do my voice and…. When you’re working on screen, you actually strip out a lot of dialogue so that you can play with the body and the expressions and in an action film the lack of words is sometimes stronger than the actual addition of words. So, this is very different for me and, actually, sitting very still and trying to convey a story with just the voice is a really exciting challenge and a challenge which I possibly do not always succeed at.
Because, the tool is the word so every action, every physical creation is crafted with the word. It makes it much more of a challenge, whereas I think on film, because the camera does the work, the lighting does the work, the facial expression does the work. The word is probably less revered , as is in an audiobook. The challenge to me is to try and bring some of the audio world into what I’m doing on screen so that those words can be as sharp and useful when you can see a face as much as when you can only hear the voice. That’s the paradox, I suppose.
Doing an audiobook for me is exactly where I get myself a little vocal workout, as I haven’t been on stage for a few years. It’s essential for me to remind myself what words do and when you don’t have the essential line that you desperately need, it doesn’t always work on film so , coming to this I find myself bathing in rich superb vocabulary that had been forgotten for me and reminding myself that four words that all mean the same but actually they feel different in the mouth and there is one of them that is the essential word and a writer like Georgette Heyer understands that and uses her words really beautifully.
Music is really important to me and I play…played two instruments, I played the flute and the cello. I think music hits a certain different part of the body and I think it’s to do with the vibration of sound, it just has an effect on your body so I use music a lot with acting. I almost create a soundtrack to anything I’m doing. But also even in the reading of a book like this, sitting down to read, there’s almost an imaginary soundtrack happening in your head , and I don’t know if that’s a result of seeing this kind of work dramatized or whether is something that just happens naturally to us as human beings. But I do think there’s a resonance in music which is also the same in words and actually you can see the progression of the spoken word to the sung word is fascinating because as the character becomes more animated so the vibration in their speech grows and eventually you go into song. It was something we explored quite a lot when I was training as an actor and I find it’s very useful for characterizing voices because you almost have to sing certain voices. I mean, particularly, in this book I think Horatia has a certain musical vibration in her voice so, it’s all working in the same way.
In recent years, I suppose, we’ve grown very used to digital music and we’ve forgotten what is like to go a live event. And, actually you do have to keep reminding yourself that when you hear Beethoven on your Ipod it’s just not the same as going to a live venue and hearing it with the vibration because most places are acoustically built and it’s made of wood and it’s very natural. It has an immense effect on your emotions. And actually I think it’s the same with text, when you go to a play and you hear a voice speaking Shakespeare, it doesn’t matter if you’ve seen it on screen, it’s just different when it’s live, it has much more impact on you."
Did you get the vibration? (I bet you did too, MG! It was not live, but you did!) There are some nuances in his voice and certain intonations in his way of speaking which ... (but , why don't you finish your sentences? You don't dare say what you were thinking about?!? ) ... well ... see previous posting about RA's voice .
Last week I re-watched Ultimate Force to compare SAS Ian/Richard to SAS John/Richard and I'm still haunted by the experience ( that awful damn freezer scene! I hate Henno and all his mates!)
This week I decided I might watch Richard in the few things with him I haven't seen yet. Since my spare time was very little, I just managed to watch In Divine Proportion ( 90 min.), one of the episodes in the Inspector Lynley Mysteries (2005) in which RA is Philip Turner. It was his first TV appearance after North and South.
Not bad. I noticed again how much Richard (our gorgeous man) has improved his look recently and greatly appreciated his performance, every minute of it. I've even summed - up the about 20 min. of his presence in a clip.
In "In Divine Proportion" Richard Armitage plays Philip Turner, a fascinating country gentleman, bankrupt and haunted by his past, who aspires to nothing and gets on stuck in the little Suffolk village he was born in.
Philip was having an affair with Samantha Walthew - a married woman who had just bought his family's manor house to start a restaurant and whom he had known since they were children - when she was found murdered just outside her house. Philip was the last person to see her alive ...
To fully appreciate Richard's subtle performing art in the few scenes he has in this episode, you should re-watch them after you've got to the end and understood everything: everything Philip hides in his past and is trying to hide from the police and even to himself. Stunning. As always, he conveys so much in few, quick, rather imperceptible (not to our eyes!) gestures, facial epressions, nuances of the voice. If you've got some spare time while waiting for news, if you do not remember Richard/Philip in Lynley Mysteries or if you have never seen this episode, take a look at my clip below (but you are warned... major spoilers!!!)
Till next week, then . Take care and enjoy your weekend.