As many journeys mine started solo. It was the effort of a person trying to make order out of chaos on the stage. As I kept pushing and pushing, through successes and failures (a lot of them… more to that in another post) I eventually found a personal style and the types stories to which I was truly committed.
However, whatever you do in life, building a team becomes a necessity if you really want to accomplish something. That process… turning from solo artist to building a group of dedicated people is what makes the foundation of a company.
In that process I found myself having to give up what I cared for the most… my ego.
Suddenly, is not about you anymore, but it’s about the group: the technical manager, the actors, the press officer, the administrative assistant, etc. You have to motivate, inspire and lead, and oftentimes lead by example. This not only requires energy, intelligence and integrity but a big deal of emotional balance as well (which really does not match the idea of the mad and erratic artist).
In other words if you are set to create a theatre company prepare to change yourself. Chances are that you may fail but there is no way you can be successful unless you are prepared to undergo a radical process of personal growth. Although, physically I have changed a bit (that’s called aging) I can hardly recognize the person I am now to say just a couple of years ago.
If in the past my focus was centered on me today my attention is fully directed to create what I call “The Dream Team“.
I’ve basically become a football coach (and I detest football by the way). I obsess on building formations for projects and choose the best players for any given position.
It’s not easy, as people are unpredictable and they all have different aspirations and goals. Patience becomes a skill to cultivate and intuition is oftentimes something you have to rely on to take snap decisions. So how do you go about creating a Dream Team?
The first lesson I learned is that you want to have next to you, at the beginning, a person who is the exact opposite of you. If you are an outgoing, extrovert, impulsive person you want to have an introvert, analytical and rational partner at your side. You do not want YES men around you but people who can challenge you and possibly make you see things in another perspective.
That is why your ego has to go… if you’re driven purely by it sooner or later you will fall flat on your face.
A dream team can only be created on the basis of diversity.
Find your opposite first. Kill your ego.