First Take: Acting Class

So now that I've had my first class and attended my first Actor's Center meeting, I am feeling even more like a hopeless novice.

For my acting class, we are to spend the upcoming few weeks working with a partner to develop and perfect our assigned dialogue and individually, to do the same with a self-selected monologue. I am excited by the prospects of this but more than anything overwhelmed. In reviewing and rereading my scene, I have become frustrated by the fact there seems to be an unlimited number of ways to say a word or phrase. My character could show her feelings in so many different ways and it is up to me (along with the cast and director) to hone in on my character's essence so that the lines ring true. And I find that daunting.

Part of our assignment this week is to come up with exploratory questions about our character and work on our scene based on the range of answers to those questions (without explicitly letting our partner know the answers). For example my scene is of me being dumped by a new lover. So I need to determine (based on the scene and the rest of the play), for example, how deeply my character feels toward her lover and if she might have baggage that might impact how she expresses herself. She can say "don't leave me" with varying degrees of desperation/conflict/sadness/remorse/relief in her voice and body language. Ultimately, I will have to decide what works best based on my interpretation of the play and how my partner interprets the play and delivers his lines. This makes the whole development process challenging but fun.

I am very happy that I signed up for the class. It has given me many interesting things to think about during the last week. And it is so nice to meet people who share my amateur interest in the craft.

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