Art is a Battle

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Writing, painting, choreographing a dance, making a YouTube video in the back room… it’s a savage battle. 

The TIME to create has to come out of something, dug out of the schedule like a vein of gold ore chipped out of granite.  Time extracted out of the myriad pointless activities of the day, the mundane chores, the necessary rituals, the acceptable, the understood, the predictable.  The things one does because one has always done them.

Translating “important” tasks into art is a battle of wills– the will of the artist against the robotic “will” of the upholders of the status quo, a will that exerts itself against the artist with a dreadful and remorseless automaticity.

How many times have you been interrupted from your daily job with a command to hurry up and get that song written, that painting started or that poem finished?  Unless you are a professional with a deadline, it’s possible that it never has happened to you. 

And even if you are a professional, a cascade of other “needful” little activities will land on you whenever you try to focus on something artistic that exists in your mind only, and just outside boundaries of the physical universe.The battle to keep you from creating something unique, something wonderful, something divinely YOU is a bloody one, even if nary a shot is fired.

And then of course, there’s the blog you started that needs regular contributions, and in which, to your embarrassment, your own attention is hopelessly diverted, away from the gentle and invisible impulse to create something artistic that only YOU can do… if you could only break away.

Uh… Like this.  The End.  There, I did it!

Published in: on August 22, 2013 at 4:23 pm  Leave a Comment  
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JIMPRESSIONS: review of the new show in Hollywood

Jim Meskimen: A Man for All Voices

By Bonnie Priever The Tolucan Times
May 12th, 2011

Jim Meskimen opens his show, Jimpressions, at the Acting Center in Hollywood, with a pithy, profound statement: “It’s all about the voice!” This enjoyable evening of impersonations and clever humor takes me back in time to Las Vegas showrooms, featuring headliners like Rich Little and Fred Travalena, and their visceral performances of celebrities past and present. As Meskimen succinctly states, “there is an infinity of voices — we have stumbled upon in our lifetimes, and clearly recognize — yet each one is unique and special.” The audience is in for quite a treat, as they get to once again hear the distinct voices of Robin Williams, David Letterman, Jack Nicholson, and President Barack Obama, and many more, as if these larger than life personalities were right on stage themselves!

It’s a true art to impersonate the famous (and infamous!), from JFK to Truman Capote….it’s not an easy process to learn a specific voice, its tone, inflections and accent, yet Jim Meskimen makes it look easy and effortless, while enjoying every moment. His impressions take us into a world of ‘in the moment’ theatre, created by Lee Strasberg, fully immersing himself in the character portrayed. The show covers a range of territories, geographically, from Southern politicians to New York actors. He does a segment, honoring the “New York Greats,” such as Pacino, DeNiro, and Woody Allen; followed by a Presidential walk through memory lane. The audience is transported to another place and time… it’s like fingering the pages of history, and makes one proud and patriotic. In times like today, with the recent death of Bin Laden, we know that we have been graced with the presence of greats, and their voices of hope and courage linger on.

In Act Two, Meskimen portrays a professor of Ancient Art History, with improvised Q&A from audience members. Jim, both passionate about arts, performing and visual, decided to opt for the performing arts. With his strikingly good looks, amazing voice and talent, along with a chance encounter with Harvey Keitel, his professional venue and crowd-pleasing is the perfect choice.

Jimpressions plays one weekend every month through the rest of the year at the Acting Center located at 5514 Hollywood Blvd. For ticket information, call (323) 962-2100 or visit www.theactingcenterla.com/on-the-stage-2.