Thursday, 21 March 2013

Five Words to Make You a Better Actor

The five words are: practice, experiment, learn, connect and observe.

Practice: repetition is the mother of skill and no-one ever became good at anything without spending a lot of time doing it.  This is true of sport, mathematics, learning a foreign language, anything you can think of, including acting.  So to get better at acting, do  a lot of acting.

Experiment: try different things, assess whether they work.  Remember that it can be as productive to find what doesn't work as what does work.  Always be ready to stretch your capabilities.

Learn from others: see what other actors do and absorb whatever you see that is effective.  You can learn from your fellow students every bit as much as from the giants of the silver screen.  Learn from writers, too, ancient and modern: study their scripts in all media..

Connect: aim to get to know as many other performers as possible.  The performing arts are a small village rather than a great conurbation and quite soon you will find you run across the same people again and again.  Aim to get involved and make friends.  You will help them and they will help you.

Observe: as an actor, the whole of the human species is your subject of study, so observe what people do in all sorts of different circumstances.  Observe yourself as well.  Wherever you are be alert to how people behave, act and react, their spoken language and their body language.

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