ho So We Grub About … | Peter Sardi School of Acting

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So We Grub About …

In 1942 Igor Stravinsky, one of the greatest musical composers of all time wrote, his now famous, "Poetics of Music". I publish it here because it describes beautifully the creative process of an artist. This process, be you a musician, a painter, a sculptor, a director of theatre or an actor, is the same. The creative process must involve, always, that element of "not knowing", of "uncertainty" always observing and listening carefully for the "holy-accident" and when suddenly it appears, it illuminates the TRUTH of what it is we, as artists, are striving and searching for. This is my feeble attempt to describe what I believe to be the artist's creative process. Below is Stravinsky's description of the creative process.
I've titled it:  
So we grub about… 

The Faculty of creating is never given to us all by itself. It always goes hand in hand with the gift of observation. And the true creator may be recognized by his ability always to find about him, in the commonest and humblest thing, items worthy of note. He does not need to surround himself with a beautiful landscape; He does not have to put forth in search of discoveries: they are always within his reach. He will only to cast a glance about him. Familiar things, things that are everywhere, attract his attention. The least accident jolts his interest and guides his operations. If his finger slips, he will notice it; on occasion, he may draw profit from something unforeseen that a momentary lapse reveals to him.

One does not contrive an accident: one observes it to draw inspiration there-from. An accident is perhaps the only thing that really inspires us. A composer improvises aimlessly the way an animal grubs about. Both of them go grubbing about because they yield to a compulsion to seek things out. What urge of the composer is satisfied by this investigation? The rules with which, like a penitent, he is burdened? No: he is in quest of his pleasure. He seeks a satisfaction that he fully knows he will not find without first striving for it. One cannot force one’s self to love; but love presupposes understanding, and in order to understand, one must exert one’s self. So we grub about in expectation of our pleasure, guided by our scent, and suddenly we stumble against an unknown obstacle. It gives us a jolt, a shock, and this shock fecundates our creative power. … IGOR STRAVINSKY, Poetics of Music

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