Hi, my name is David. I'm a junior at Bennington, and I'm going to talk to you about my plan process and how it's changed and where it is now at Bennington.
So I study mainly Dance, Drama and Music. Those three things are part of my plan. And throughout my three years, those have stayed at the core of my my plan, but my relationship to them has really changed from the classes I've taken and the experiences I've had. And one of the best classes I've ever had was called Nuts and Bolts. It was with Dina Janice, a drama faculty member, and I took it my sophomore year. And what made it truly amazing was that it was process based. We weren't rushing anywhere. We weren't, you know, felt like we had to create some level of perfection in our acting, but it was really the time for us to think about our process as actors and what the work of the actor is, how can I come to the rehearsal space every day and do the work and be curious and rediscover every single time. So I did one scene the entire term, just one scene with one scene partner from a Sam Shepard play. And I remember coming in to work just with some vague ideas and just being pushed so much harder to be more specific, to go deeper and further to a point which I didn't even know I could go to. And what was amazing was that I really got to see my peers, my classmates do the same, go through the same thing and watch each other grow every class and have breakthroughs every class. That was probably the most priceless experience, to be honest.
And after that class, my relationship to theater changed, and I was writing my plan at the same time. So I was really thinking about now what it means to become someone else, to embody someone else, something that I never thought about. Even though I had been acting for a while, I never thought about that simple thing, and that became the core of my plan. So now, it's been a year. It's been a year since I wrote my plan, even more, and so many things have changed. I've had so many experiences, so many classes, just so so much. So much has happened through time. And now that we're not on campus, that I'm not on campus, I'm using this time to rewrite my plan. And the best word of advice I've gotten from my plan committee has really been that the plan is not something that you write to look a certain way or to be a certain way. The plan has to be like this, and it has to be good and smart, blah, blah, blah. But really, it's just about where you are now, and what you're interested in right now, and what has interested you in the past and what you want the rest of your time at Bennington to be. So I'm really excited about that actually, really warmed by the feedback that my plan committee has given me.
And right now, I'm collaborating with a Dance faculty member, an MFA faculty member. Her name is Mina Nishimura. She saw me dance at a dance workshop and asked me to do a duet with her. So I'm really, really excited about that. We're still communicating through distance and sending each other videos. And I hope that we get to perform with each other as we plan to do. But that's another part of the many experiences I've had here is that I get to work closely with faculty members like Mina and Elena Demyanenko. And just thanks to them, I've had all of my field work term experiences. If it weren't for my faculty, I really wouldn't have found such opportunities that I have and opportunities that I'm still, you know, having, opportunities that are still coming my way.
And I really can't talk about my time at Bennington without at least mentioning some field work term experiences and how they've changed and changed me throughout my time at Bennington. So my first field work term experiences has been in New York City. I was in New York City by myself working with with the National Yiddish Theater, scanning sheet music and taking a lot of dance classes and really just exploring, doing a lot of office work. And my second field work term I could probably say, without a doubt, was the best experience of my life. I was at Double Edge theater, which is a small theater on a farm in Massachusetts and doing a lot of physical theater, working with a small international ensemble and just getting really, really close with them and really asking myself questions that I never asked before. And it was just such an amazing, magical time. That was the first half of my field work term. The second half was in New York City, where I worked for Ishmael Houston Jones, choreographer, professor, dancemaker, curator, writer. And what made that really special was that it was like a mentorship. We had conversations every day, we had lunch together, and then I took his class. And it didn't feel like I was working for him so much as with him and learning from him. And I even learned how to make a website, something that I never learned how to do. So this year, my teacher, Elena, suggested I go to Russia. As a post-Soviet and Russian speaker who's never been there, I really got to go to Russia and meet new people, amazing dancers and actors and just have amazing experiences that I've never had before. And it was just an amazing time that I'm so grateful for. So I'm really looking forward to my next field work term. I don't know what's going to happen in the near future, but to some dance projects that I've got because of my dance teachers, and that's my plan. That's where I am right now and where I'm excited to go.