Last week my friends Maryn, Aja and I travelled to Dover in Kent to see the White Cliffs! We took an early bus from London and were in Dover in under two hours- it was a beautiful drive and we got to pass through Canterbury. Once in Dover we walked to the harbor and along the pebble beach. It was an absolutely gorgeous day and very quiet in the little town by the cliffs. Once we got to the trail leading across the top of the cliffs it only took about an hour and a half to walk it to the other end (of course stopping a lot for photo-opps) where there was a little lighthouse with a tea room inside!
Maryn, Aja, and I sitting on the cliffs.
Lunch at Mrs. Knott’s Tearoom in the lighthouse.
The walk itself was breathtaking- the water was a bright blue/green and just on the horizon we could make out France! I didn’t think I was really afraid of heights before walking along the cliffs, but the couple hundred foot drop down the chalk sides kept me at a good distance from the edge! After lunch in the lighthouse we walked back and saw the Dover Castle from afar (unfortunately it was on another hill that would have taken too long to climb since we had an evening bus home).
The Dover Castle
This past week has been a marathon of homework, classes, and shows around London. On Tuesday we went to the Bush theater to see “Albion” and then just last night after a quick trip to the London Zoo (we’re doing animal physicality work in acting right now) we stopped by the Barbican Centre to see Henry Ibsen’s “An Enemy of the People.” While it would take much too long to explain each of these shows, I will say that I enjoyed them both immensely and think that they had some of the best staging I have ever seen. TGIF!
A beautiful animal themed Merry-Go-Round at the zoo.
Some of LDA at the Barbican.
This past Thursday we had another LDA tour around Covent Garden with stops at all the major theaters in the West End! Vanessa and I showed up a bit early so we stopped by Laduree for a sweet breakfast. It was a very foggy day and what I had expected London weather to be like 24/7, but it has been sunny and warm 90% of the time we have been here! After the walking tour a few girls and I went to Wild Food Cafe, an all vegan cafe, for an afternoon pick me up in Neil’s yard. Then today, after our Dramatic Criticism class, we went to the Globe Theater to see The Comedy of Errors! I have never seen a professional Shakespeare play in person before so it was awesome for my first one to be at the Globe. The theater itself is absolutely beautiful and apparently a pretty accurate reconstruction of what the original Globe had looked like (the original burned down when Shakespeare was still alive). I really enjoyed the show- it truly brought the text to life and it was hilarious as the title implies! The only down side was that it poured half way through the performance and we got soaked because we were standing on the ground floor by the stage and therefore not under cover! But it was quite the experience. Tomorrow I am seeing the closing night of Neil Labute’s Autobahn and then taking a day trip to Dover on Sunday!
Covent Garden Market
Neil’s Yard- an alley way turns into a secret neon cove in Covent Garden.
Raw chocolate torte from Wild Food Cafe.
At the Globe!
A Comedy of Errors finale/bows.
Completely drenched from the rain.
Vanessa and I after the show.
Outside Buckingham Palace
This past week was just as crazy busy as the last! We have begun monologue work in our classes and were assigned scenes and scene partners last Friday- I’m working on a Lady Macbeth monologue, a Portia (from The Merchant of Venice) monologue, and the short play Silver Wedding with a boy in my program. But despite being extra busy, last weekend was one of the best yet (check out my earlier post about what I did on Friday and Saturday). And to top it all off on Sunday, my roommate Vanessa, our friend Tim, and I took a tour of the State Rooms in Buckingham Palace! It was absolutely beautiful and naturally the most luxurious place you can imagine. The palace has 750+ rooms and we only saw 19! Sadly we weren’t allowed to take pictures inside the palace but we did have a mini photo shoot outside of it! Then after the tour we walked over to the houses of parliament and saw Big Ben up close! It was a beautiful day and the perfect time to sight see!
Vanessa, Tim, and I
Westminster Abbey- the site of Kate and Will’s wedding and even more beautiful in person.
In front of Westminster Abbey
To the side of Westminster Abbey
Tea and eggs Benedict at the Covent Garden Hotel.
A few days ago I got to catch up with my cousin, Rox Ana, over English breakfast at the beautiful Covent Garden Hotel! We chatted about school and London and had eggs Benedict (they were delicious)! This past Thursday my friend from my program won tickets to the iTunes Festival here in London, and that night Maroon 5 was playing! They are one of my favorite bands so to see them play an amazing show at the Roundhouse in Camden will definitely be a highlight of my semester. Then after school on Friday a few of us visited the Museum of London.
Outside the Roundhouse for Maroon 5.
Adam Levine of Maroon 5
Londen and I at Maroon 5 (yes- that is his real name).
One of the first exhibits of the museum.
Today my friend, Maryn, and I did some homework at the Blanche Eatery near Notting Hill and tonight my friend, Courtney, and I had dinner at Guaca in Fulton and later walked around a jazz festival which was going on at Imperial Wharf. It has been an amazing weekend already and tomorrow a few of us are touring Buckingham Palace!!!
Blanche Eatery from our table on the balcony.
Having fun at Guaca in Fulton.
Great Mexican food at Guaca.
Walking along the Thames near Chelsea Pier/Imperial Wharf.
Courtney and I along the Thames.
The jazz festival near Imperial Wharf.
The National Portrait Gallery
Hey everyone! Sorry I haven’t posted in a while but I have been super busy with my classes and other fun things during the weekend! Last week/weekend I went on another walking tour with LDA and we saw the Globe theatre, Fleet Street, and ended in Covent Garden near the Royal Opera House. It was a beautiful day (almost everyday has been sunny so far- not what I expected!) and Simon, our guide, told us a ton of fun facts and interesting stories about the buildings we were passing. That weekend a few of my friends and I went to the National Portrait Gallery near Trafalgar Square. It was absolutely beautiful and naturally my favorite picture in the gallery was one of Kate Middleton! Check out this past week in pictures!
The Globe Theatre
A court house on Fleet Street.
My classmates on tour.
National Portrait Gallery
Me and George Washington
National Portrait Gallery
Me and my friends Sara and Kiera
Trafalgar from the balcony of the NPG.
Outside of the Rose Theatre
During these past two days we have started our mornings with guided tours around London! On Thursday, we were taken to the Rose Theatre by our Space Place & Text teacher, Allison, and even had the chance to say a little Shakespeare on the stage! After that those of us who had a later class got to spend the early afternoon walking through the Borough Market having lunch and buying treats, and of course sight seeing along the way. Today we went to pretty much the same area with another one of our teacher/tour guides, Simon. He took us around the Globe Theatre (a block from the Rose) and then across the Millennium Bridge towards St. Paul’s Cathedral and finally ending near Fleet Street.
The Rose Theatre which only seats about 50 people.
Inside the Rose- the red lines indicate the different places the audience stood and where the stage used to be.
Ruins of the Winchester Palace.
A massive building referred to as “The Shard”- as if it was a shard of glass cutting through historic London.
Parliament Bar down the street from the Borough Market.
Outside the market.
Inside the market.
Paella, curry, etc
Courtney, myself, and Maryn having lunch by the Thames.
Tower Bridge from the Millennium Bridge.
Me on the Millennium Bridge.
St. Paul’s Catherdral
The last few days have been occupied by pretty much nothing but classes! Luckily I have LOVED all of them. My teachers are absolutely incredible and amazingly talented- and all of them are still involved in the theatre industry today. A few of them are acting in shows, a few are directors, and a few also teach at some of the top drama schools in the UK- so needless to say I’m getting some great guidance.
So far the classes I have taken are: Movement, Voice, Acting, Acting Shakespeare, Accents/Dialect, Period Dance, Stage Combat, Physical Theatre, Alexander Technique, Space Place and Text, Audition Tutorial, and one masterclass! It has definitely been exhausting but so much fun (11 classes so far and it’s only Wednesday!!!).
Tomorrow we are taking a tour to the Rose Theatre with our Space Place & Text teacher and will have the chance to say a few lines on the stage!! Then it’s back to school for more Acting Shakespeare!