Friday, April 10, 2009

ON ACTING: Accomplishing Elegance

Elegance comes naturally to the brave and confident and connected actor: to the actor who is honestly (really) looking and listening to the other characters in the scene--and let's the unconscious sense of that oppositional force dictate force of their opposing actions.

In life, a rule of human economy operates that instinctively calibrates the expenditure of human effort against the estimated, expected resistance of the opposing force.

And so it should be in good acting. Only a fool (a bad actor) pays more emotional energy into a created action than is required in accomplishing a task. There should be no grunt to lift a feather; no wasted over-effort to push a weakling.

A bad actor on the other hand, eager to show off their acting prowess, who ‘says’ with his body language: ‘Let me show you how hard this action is—and how brilliantly able I am to accomplish it!--exerts excessive and unreasonable (actor’s) energy to accomplish a simple task. The feather is shoved with a grunt; the opposing whisper is reacted to with a shout!

'Watch my acting--as opposed to reality'--is the shout the audience hears; and it turned off by!


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