Monday, September 19, 2005

On ACTING: Training and Rehearsal: Behavior Modification

On being offered a role (after assuming the actor has learned the 'craft' of acting: how to live real life on stage or on screen in accordance with the human logic implicit in the dialogue and action in the scene) the rest of an actor's preparatiuon for performance is behavior modification, learning how to alter that actor's everyday behavior so that she/he behave excitingly within the logical parameters of the script. To analyze the offered character-role in a script is to simply ask "What side of me do you want today?" "How do you want me to modify my everyday mode of behavior to fit such script-offered circumstances. to have my onstage behavior conform to a person behaving excitingly when he or she said the lines of my (character's) dialogue in response to the dialogue or action of the other character's?

An actor's training in general therefore consists of identifying general unproductive behavioral patterns from an actor's everyday life, one's that are dull, uninvolving and pedestrian, and correcting for them. For example, actors who in everyday life 'whine' or quit under duress, or move away instead of toward an adversary in conflict, or hide emotions so deeply within themselves that they seem emotionless--all behavioral patterns that while perhaps logical to survival and peace in everyday life, de-dramatize an acting performance--must learn to modify their on stage or on screen behavior so that in any performance they not only live logically but also excitingly. They learn on stage to "win, not whine; solve, not suffer"; and enjoy engaging in confronation, and are unafraid to feel and be revealed in front of an audience. These kinds of exciting acting behaviors--only a few of a good actor's learned behavioral modes--creates the fullest and richest experience for the viewing audience.


Post a Comment

<< Home