The philosophical notion of a "sense of place," unexplained "place experiences" linked psychologically to the footsteps and the spirit of Manhattan,NYC, underpins this pictorial and informative journey...

(Bridget Jones's Baby)

 
email : don.whistance@icloud.com
 
The Summer School 2016 Dance teacher, Gary and a student dance on The Neighbourhood Playhouse Theatre stage a Jazz Dance Routine on Wednesday, 13th July 2016 - Enjoy:

 https://vimeo.com/175008868

 

New York

June 20th to August 3rd 2015

The six week course at The Acting Studio in W54Street, NYC was my first experience of The Meisner Technique and was on a Monday, Wednesday and a Friday (1..00pm to 4.00pm)...the rest of the time was spent exploring Manhattan and the locations linked to The Clash & Steve McQueen

 

On Tuesday, 8th September 2015 someone suggested that I write a blog about my experiences in New York City and beyond.....so here goes!

 

 

Saturday, 20th June 2015

A friend drove me to the Bournemouth Coach station where I boarded a coach to a Heathrow Airport Terminal to fly out to New York on Saturday, 20th June 2015. I had never flown over such a long distance and found myself talking to an American couple who had flown to the UK to visit their daughter who was studying at one of the Universities that are scattered throughout the Highlands & Lowlands of Scotland.

 

 

New York

June 6th to July 15th 2016

The six-week Summer School was truly, an amazing experience surrounded by professional tutors and talented students.

The daily timetable started at 9.00am and finished at 5.30pm.

The activities included the History of the Group Theatre, Jazz Dance,The Meisner Technique, On Camera, Physical Theatre, Shakespeare and Voice & Speech...if you want to experience this superb course at The Neighbourhood Playhouse, then apply for the 2017 course as soon as you can.

The ambience of this historical building is something that will be part of me for the rest of my life.

And the fact that Steve McQueen was interviewed by Sandy Meisner as a 20 year year old and was offered a two year stay, after his three year stint in the Marines, allowed me to 'walk the walk'...which others may not have been aware of...and for which I will be extremely grateful for

 
 
 
I can recommend flying with Virgin Airways as they were very accommodating and appeared to feed you non-stop!! The cost of the return flight was just over 550...arrived at JFK airport around seven hours later and after passing through customs boarded a Metro to Howard Beach station where we all got off and paid $6 to pass through the barrier to the main Metro terminal. The station master suggested purchasing a Metro card for the month for $117. This allowed me to travel through New York City for approximately $4 per day. Which was very cheap.
 
 
 
Sunday, 21st June 2015
I travelled on the Metro to my first of four "Airbnb" accommodations arriving late on Saturday, 20th June 2015 in Brooklyn. The room was very basic and just off from the main apartment where a family of three lived in their cramped lounge alongside their bedroom and a small 1rest room'. In America, the word 'toilet' is not usually uttered aloud. I realised that I would need to find a local bar to escape to and the elongated Irish bar just across the road from the apartment was where I based myself over the next three nights. The evening passed by with the help of several flat screen TV's showing the Women's World Cup which was eventually won by the USA team.
 

The single bed in Brooklyn.

On Sunday, I took the Metro under the Brooklyn bridge and into Manhattan.
Bedford-Nostrand was the nearest Metro station and is located on the right of the map below:

Walking towards the Metro station, I spied upon a wall a beautiful statement which was captured on my 'philosophical' mobile phone:

Monday, 22nd June 2015 - Airbnb accommodation moved up to W137th Street - a monthly Metro card for $117 (80) was bought to travel around Manhattan.

https://www.airbnb.co.uk/rooms/1337069

 

Three weeks later my accommodation moved up to W189th Street (2015)
Manhattan was very hot during the months of June and July 2015 and on occasions the water hydrant was deliberately set off and spilled out water throughout the day.
Ralph Ellison an American writer lived at 730 Riverside Drive - just a few blocks north of where I lived...(2016)
(2015) The Metro underground is made up of numbers and letters (N,Q). So the RED underground line includes 1, 2 and 3 trains. Often when on a train there will be an announcement - "This is the ONE train...next stop W42 Street. This is Times Square and it was important to take a photograph of a building here:
Square people were celebrating the "Solstice" by praying using their bright, red mat.
 
In Times Square
 
Times Square on W42St. would become the 'focal' point through my six week stay...although my initial impression was that I wanted to return to the 'peace and tranquility' of Dorset in South-West England! After a few days, I decided to embrace the experience...

I was here to attend a Meisner Technique course at The Actors Studio and to search for any Steve McQueen locations in Manhattan and in particular Greenwich Village which is where McQueen was based as a twenty year old after leaving the Marines.

 
My first website: www.stevemcqueen-justclickhere.com has a LINK page to some of New York which I made reference to during my residency in NYC...

The second underlying reason for my visit was to locate where The Clash 'punk' band had performed at The Palladium and Bonds and where they had lived during their visits to NYC. My other website: www.theclash.org.uk was used as a reference point.

 

And of course, all good cities has a cowboy of some sort or another...(2015)
There again, all good cities has a 'character' of some sort or another...(2016)
 

Thursday, 9th July 2015 at 6.30pm attended an OPEN HOUSE evening to see around The Neighbourhood Playhouse with the intention of returning next year!!

I was interviewed on my return to England across SKYPE and performed a monologue as part of my interview with the Principal of the Drama school so I fly out to New York in June 2016.

 
Attended two weekends 'VOICE OVER' course (25/7/15 & 26/7/15 and 1/8/15 & 2/8/15) - $160

Located a 'Meisner' acting coach in Greenwich Village and attended several workshops in the evenings (2015) -

http://www.alangordonstudio.com

 

 

THE ALVIN AILEY AMERICAN DANCE THEATRE - www.alvinailey.org - took a Zumba & a Beginner West African dance class (2015) -

405 W 55th St. New York, NY 10019-4402

 

(2016)

 
 
Steve McQueen auditioned for The Actors Studio at 432 West 44th Street in the Hell's Kitchen neighbourhood  of Manhattan in New York (Founded: October 5th, 1947)
On Monday, 22nd June 2015 I stood outside The Actors Studio on West 44th Street, not realising that I should have been at The Acting Studio in W54th Street form the Meisner Technique acting course...

Arriving late was something that appeared to go against me over the next 6 weeks at The Acting Studio as my tutor was always dropping a comment about an English abroad.

 

 
We commenced the session with the Meisner Technique of 'repetition' which is where you sit opposite your partner on a chair and you describe something about them:

"You have a blue top on."

They repeat in the 'first person' :

"I have a blue top on."

This continues until there is an 'impulse' to change the response:

"You are smiling at me."

"I am smiling at you."

 

 
The classes were on a Monday, Wednesday and a Friday from 1.00pm to 4.00pm.

I immediately made friends with a colleague who was based in New Jersey and travelled into Manhattan each day, which took her approximately two hours. Over the six weeks, we would find different Irish Pubs nearby to drink and chat before she travelled back to New Jersey on a coach from Port Authority Bus Terminal at 625 8th Avenue.

 
Whenever I had a spare moment, I would search for locations linked to The Clash punk band and to Steve McQueen and Neile Adams. On Broadway, Neile appeared at St.James Theatre at 246, W44th Street
 
Steve McQueen appeared in a play, 'A Hatful of Rain' at the Lyceum Theatre at 149, W45th Street
 
Monday, 22nd June 2015

Opposite the Lyceum Theatre was where I took coffee - BOND 45 Restaurant.

 
 
Walking through Manhattan, my British humour kicked in as I spied a dead "War of the Worlds" alien-spider in the form of a yellow taxi which are allowed to dominate the Manhattan landscape on a daily basis.
 
Where Central Park and W59St. meet is a clothes store, Toilets and restaurant called TIME WARNER CENTRE at Columbus Circle were two superb statutes (2015):
 
 
Saturday, 4th July 2015
The weekend allowed time for Manhattan to be explored and with it the unexpected such as this "Pop-Up" shop which had an Aladdin cave of art and more art.
 
 
Gallow Green was a superb restaurant with a 'roof top' bar....highly recommend this venue.

542 W 27th St, New York 10001

 

http://www.timeout.com/newyork/bars/gallow-green

 
 
 

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