So I find that when (as now, prepping for my Shakespeare class) I read books on directing, they usually contain some advice that's applicable in larger settings. For example, here's a selection from Notes on Directing: 130 Lessons in Leadership from the Director's Chair by Frank Hauser and Russell Reich:
23. Assume that everyone is in a permanent state of catatonic terror.I wish I'd had some advice like this under my belt not just for previous directing situations, but in any circumstance in which I've had to try to get a large group of people to participate or follow directions.
This will help you approach the impossible state of infinite patience and benevolence that actors and others expect from you.
Not of general relevance, but something I thought was interesting (tender eyes may want to avert themselves now):
Meaning ItI tried it myself with some Shakespeare, and true enough. Nothing intensifies like the F-bomb. For all you concerned parents reading: I do not intend to teach this in my Shakespeare class. Just sayin'.
There is only one intensive in the English language: the word "f*ck" (or "f*cking").
Listen to the actor declaiming:O! What a rogue and peasant slave I am!Note how he strains to make the derogatory language real, as if he really means it. Get him to put in a few "f*ckings":O! What a f*cking rogue and peasant f*cking slave I am!Hear how it immediately hardens and sharpens the images, makes them more like real anger and real self-disgust rather than disguised self-pity. Not just impressive, but meant.
Should you keep these word substitutions in performance?