Thursday, March 12, 2009

ON ACTING: Developing Expressive Powers

A complex acting style does not automatically result from an actor experiencing complex feelings.

Sometimes complex feelings are held hostage by a deficient underdeveloped delivery system: in such cases, an actor may bring to the performance an advance nuclear bomb of emotions but not the missile system to deliver it.

To rectify this shortcoming, actors should take voice lessons, dance lessons, movement lessons to develop and maintain a multi-faceted complex physical vocabulary capable of expressing—‘delivering’--complex emotions.

It takes a very flexible body and mind to create good acting.

Shakespeare’s complex dialogue, with dependent clauses wrapping around independent clauses sometimes modified by adverbial phrases, issuing forth often in iambic pentameter while addressing the profundities and complexities of life, requires a vocal, breathing and grammar and mental pliability that takes years to develop.

How sad if an actor can feel the complex feelings possible in a Shakespearean character--and in performance is eager to feel and reveal that complexity--but has not developed the breathing capabilities, intellectual capabilities, or elocution abilities to serve his desires? How sad if a person has a million emotional ideas but a 'hundred-word' performance vocabulary!


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