Monday, November 5, 2007

Acting Inspiring Performance

There are some inspired amateur performances in America every year.

Some of them are extraordinarily effective. But those who give them can rarely duplicate their performances-and then only by accident-because talented amateurs haven't developed either voice, body or mind as dependable technical tools.

The important thing is to give an inspiring performance. It's hardly possible that Judith Anderson could have been inspired during the entire run of Medea, in which she played a heavy emotional role.

But with her magnificent technique and dramatic art she consistently created the effects of inspiration and was therefore inspiring to her audiences.

What is dramatic art? Dramatic art is acting PLUS. It may be described, all too briefly, as acting which inspires an emotional response over and beyond the immediate and obvious word,

action or situation in any given performance.

Is there any difference between good acting for the stage and screen, or for television and radio?

Basically, no. The fundamentals are the same. The differences lie in the way an actor or personality adjusts the same tools and materials to the various mediums.

What is the difference between actors and personalities? An actor is a performer who can up to a point efface himself and, motivated by a playwright's words and a director's guidance, can, within the limits of human feasibility,

create and interpret any character.

A personality is a performer whose individuality is so distinctive and strong that it dictates the color of every role he plays.

Do you have to have talent to be an actor? No. Many actors have made a very good living by being such capable craftsmen in their use of the tools of acting that they have overcome the handicap of not having native talent.

They've made up for what they lack as inherent artists by becoming highly skilled, superior artisans-experts in the mechanics of acting.

If you have talent, and know you have it, why must you study? Even if you have talent, it may be blocked and jammed up by inhibitions and tensions, dissipated by lack of discipline, or cluttered and confused by egotism.

Intelligent training in the technicalities that support talent and compensate for its lack frees you from these drawbacks. However great your talent, you have to build a mechanical foundation in order to organize that talent and use it most effectively.

What is a "good, actor"? In the final analysis, a good actor must excite an audience, must be interesting to look at, and pleasing to listen to. He must be able to transmit these qualities with

impact. He must have polarity and balance.

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