Beliefs & Practices


Do No Harm: Theatre is a place for exploring and healing. Neither can be done if harm is inflicted. That’s trust broken. Don’t damage a sacred space. Don’t damage a person. Especially as the “leader” of the room. 


“I'm Your Partner & I'm Here to Make You Look Good.”: This is a saying I picked up from Steve Vaughan, a Buffalo fight director. To me, what it says is, ‘Be selfless. Take care of your partner. They’ll take care of you in return.’ It should be noted, you can’t take care of your partner if you aren’t taking care of yourself.


Perspectives: A room should never all look the same. That's one of the most dangerous and often seen downfalls of a creative space. Keeping a diverse room full of people of different backgrounds, perspectives, and ways of thinking is key.


Listen, Learn, Play, Explore: A large part of the process is discovering freedom, the permission to play and the permission to explore. I believe this is done by first listening, then creating the space to do so.


Unearth Common Ground: As humans, we crave connection; common ground. Common ground is often buried; however, that does not mean it can’t be found. Through our work, our words, our actions, our job is to unearth that common ground.


Take Care of Yourself: We ultimately want to do our best at anything we do. Our best will shift every day; however, you can’t do your best if you’re not taking care of yourself.


Collaboration Through Synthesis: "Actor and director are thesis and antithesis; each prepares, each brings to the table their best understanding of the script... Then something new comes out of that, ideas for the characterization that are perhaps better than either one of you thought of separately." - Judith Weston, Directing Actors.


It’s The Little Things That Make The Big Things Count:
If we tell a story, we build a world. Through anthropology, digging into the details of the world, we build a more authentic world. Working on the little details will only elevate the big details. 


Unearth The Story: Altered slightly from Stephen Daldry who said, “Reveal the story”, this is a reminder that the story is always in reach. It’s a matter of taking the time to uncover it, unearth it. I like the verb ‘unearth’ because it sparks the image of digging. Digging takes time, effort, and is a full body experience. Unearthing a story is no different.



*Matthew has  taken many of these beliefs from teachers or books. We stand on the shoulders of giants. He'll happily accept and apply any lessons already learned by others to help advance the work we do.*