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What is a "Deep Dive" with Barbara Houseman?

"Barbara's work starts with voice, passes through the physical and results in a character." Jude Law

Barbara Houseman is not only a voice teacher but an established and renowned industry institution and has worked with actors such as...

Kenneth Brannagh

Jessie Buckley

Lenny Henry

Cush Jumbo

Jude Law

Clive Owen

Harriett Walter

Daniel Radcliffe

and many, many more!

At Both Feet we are not only lucky enough to be able to work with her but to call her a friend.

So, what does a Deep Dive with Barbara Houseman really look like?

The Jude Law quote say's it all but what does that mean?

"Barbara's work starts with voice, passes through the physical and results in a character." Jude Law"

Deep Dive isn't a voice retreat, well it is but it is more than that, this is a full body experience designed to teach you how to trust the thing that carries you around every day of your life. We're with ourselves 100% of our lives but sometimes we trust ourselves the least and in acting, trusting yourself is essential. This retreat encapsulates what it is to feel. To feel gratitude to your body, for the work it enables you to do, to feel in charge of your own body and mind. To feel like you can do it!

As we approach our 2023 Barbara Houseman Deep Dive I wanted to take a moment to reflect back on what it was like for one of the last participants to experience the Deep Dive first hand. This is their account of the final day of that retreat...

"Our final day with Barbara Houseman is here. A few reflections from the group of our day canyoning with Bearded Men Adventures, a wrap up in the studio in the afternoon and an evening up on the moors making fire and dinner, singing our hearts out and filling ourselves with scrummy s'mores!

Today we went canyoning. It challenged me in a way I don’t think I would have been able to face at the beginning of the week. I felt taken care of by Steph and the Bearded Men - they checked in on how I was going and let me decide whether to go on with an activity or not. The campfire in the evening was communal and a wonderful soul experience. Looking out over the hills of Wales with the purple, yellow and green foliage and the sun setting over one hill while the moon was rising over the other is an experience I will remember for a long time. Feel the fear and do it anyway. Allowing yourself a moment to breathe and soak it all in. Acknowledging the amazing achievements I’ve had while here no matter how big or small they are. Learning to keep going through the challenges, breathing and releasing. The difference between jus keeping going in a song or the text, and stopping at every crack, analysing and beating myself up is transformative. I think of myself as a ‘calm’ person, yet I knot my hair and have to cut bits out, check my phone constantly, bite my nails, and panic work/plan. This week I haven’t felt any of those impulses as I have found such better ways to ground myself.

I learnt lots from Canyoning in terms of just going for something and also even if something upsets you being able to continue try again. And in my case I found the outcome was that I could come away from an activity with a positive experience and association because id taken the time to try again with a sense of ease and understanding. Now I've learnt so much about the part of me that judges myself. Particularly the part that doesn't feel safe to express intense emotions around new people. It is definitely a process but I am welcoming my fears and trying to focus on what feels good. Yesterday was a real test, a chance to put into practice what we have been learning all while in the studio. What a relief it is to know wholly and completely that we are in charge. We are the directors and our bodies will do as they are asked if we do so in loving kindness. The limiting mindset we use to curtail our own greatness can also be sweet talked into surrender. Great news! I don't have to hide."

Such powerful and moving sentiments which everyone deserves to feel.

If you want to find out what the Deep Dive with Barbara Houseman, come along and find out

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