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Go out with you? Why not... Do I like to dance? Of course! Take a walk along the beach tonight? I'd love to. But don't try to touch me. Don't try to touch me. Because that will never happen again. "Past, Present and Future"-The Shangri-Las

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Tidy Art Vs. Drunk Art

Over on the M. John Harrison blog the idiosyncratic fantasy writer offers Dionysian advice to those who would be his peers. Check it out here. I posted a link in the comments to fantasy writer Guy Gavriel Kay's website In which Kay offers a more Apollonian approach to fantasy. I like both writers and both approaches, but in thinking about this I got to thinking about how Apollonian or Dionysian I am.

As I understand it, an Apollonian approach emphasises form, specificity and structure. It's controlled and conscious. A Dionysian approach breaks down the orderly distinctions of Apollonian art much like drunkenness breaks down our conscious and subconscious social controls. Bach is Appolonian; G. G. Allin is not.

Well, personally I'm just Apollonian enough to be uptight and just Dionysian enough to be a slob. As an actor I suppose I try to blend the two approaches. Appolonianism(?) helps me learn my lines, Dionysianism (??) allows me to tap into all the parts of myself that I usually try to keep under tight wraps and put them on parade when it's time to play someone who's letting the icky side of the Human come out. I reckon most actors have the same basic blend of A and D. I've noticed improvists do better with "drinking a lot before a show" than actors do, which says it all about the level of Appolonianism (???) in improv.

Minor grammatical editing because I'm ashamed to think folks from these skilled writers' blogs would check this post out and have their retinas burned by awful English usage. There's probably a host of remaining solecisms I'm missed, though.

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