Haley Brown is currently a wanderer, finishing up her year-long project "Infinities: Expanding the Modes of Performing and Being through Improvisation," as part of a 2014-2015 Watson Fellowship. She plans to pursue a rich, messy collection of different kinds of work in visual arts, theatre, clown, education, childcare, advocacy, face-painting, and raising chickens.
I was first introduced to the Seidenstein method via a weekend workshop with Caspar Schjelbred, and decided very impulsively at the last minute to join the Quantum Clown Residency in Brisbane this year (2015). I can already tell that this decision has changed the course of my life!
As a bewildered, new, young independent artist and performer, I very much needed a structured practice with which to nurture my creativity and take ownership and responsibility for myself. So far, the Seidenstein method has offered that to me in a way that really clicks. Six months later, I'm still reveling in beginner-hood but I am also feeling increasingly affected and inspired by Ira's method; I have been practicing and co-facilitating core mechanics and creative solo trainings twice a week with the wonderful clown Suzie Ferguson, who is teaching me so much.
By doing this work I've also realized that the hours I spend quietly drawing, painting, and paper mâcheing are a necessary compliment to the hours I spend flinging myself around onstage -- and that I don't have to give up one for the other, which seems obvious now, but the world tends to push us into thinking that we have a singular "purpose" or "passion."
It's exciting to have fallen into clown because it celebrates the messy, truthful wholeness of each human, and seems especially well suited to combinations of my many passions: improvisation, visual arts, honest performance, physicality, humor, political theatre, poetry... it's such a beautiful and flexible form.
I'm endlessly grateful to Ira for being such a tough, supportive, loving mentor. He is magical and brilliant in the way he works with and sees people for their full humanity. Also, he can kind of read minds. I am so humbled and excited to see where this work leads.