Holy cow. That's fucking groovy.
I am SO going to do his workshop. The 'Noon is a genius.
Amazing, amazing, amazing.
What was the process like?
Sorry - getting to this 20 days later - It's killer that someone of Brick fame is down with the Noon.
He believes that all of his characters are himself, which sounds simple enough. But it gets interesting when he describes what his process actually is, which is somewhat unrelated to the character he's playing. Rather than spending time exploring the character's psychology, he spends that time just trying to get to who he is. Tom beleives that there's all kinds of BS that gets in the way of being honest - blocks, defenses, stuff that affects your ability to respond openly to things. By getting rid of it, most of it just a kind of social ettiquette based largely on fear, you can inhabit a character not by becoming the character, but by responding to what the character experiences as yourself.
What then makes the performance interesting is that your response is honest - because your guards are down, you're actually behaving, not blocking, and because you're incountering the characters world as yourself, there's a constant dissonance between the stock version of that character and the version you're portraying, which is full of an actual personality, your own.
The way he puts it is kind of cool and existential; bad acting has very little to do with playing a character; it's actually just the inability to be yourself. You have to be able to feel something as yourself, and act as yourself; which is the real struggle. If you can do that you dont need to be able to act as another. If you are 'compelling present' as yourself, than you're more interesting to watch than the character you're playing.
Ironically, everyone will then be impressed by how much you embodied that character and that other life on screen.