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Advanced Acting Assessment
‘The actor does not needto “become” the character. The phrase, in fact, has no meaning. There is nocharacter. There are only lines upon a page. They are lines of dialogue meantto be said by the actor. When he or she says them simply, in an attempt toachieve an object more or less like that suggested by the author, the audiencesees an illusion of a character upon the stage. To create this illusion theactor has to undergo nothing whatever. He or she is as free of the necessity of“feeling” as the magician is free of the necessity of actually summoningsupernormal powers. The magician creates an illusion in the mind of theaudience. So does the actor.’ Mamet, D. (1999). True and false: Heresy andcommon sense for the actor. New York: Vintage Books. Pg. 3.
Themain focus of your essay should be a critical analysis and reflection on yourexperience of testing out the various exercises explored in workshops and inyour practical assignment.Thinkof these exercises as research. Your task is to experiment with, test out and critically evaluate theseexercises in relation to what did and didn’t work for you as an actor and why.
You’llneed to read some of the articles on Moodle to give your analysis sufficientcritical depth and focus. Aim to use two to three article as your main sourceof evidence plus two to three other articles as supporting evidence.
Section One (300 words approx)
Inthis section set out the key areas of debate and discussion that will informyour main argument. This requires you to identify and discuss key concepts andarguments from the required reading and.You should engage with some (though not all) of the following issues anddebates;.-Diderot’sparadox of acting–Stanislavski’s system and how it helps actors connect to emotions-DavidMamet’s criticism of Stanislavski’s ideas–Bella Martin’s defence of Stanislavski’s system and criticism of David Mamet’sargument
Rememberyou are establishing the field of enquiry in this opening section. The mosteffective way of doing this is engage closely with the reading to set out thespecific debates and arguments that your main thesis will develop from.
Section Two (700 words approx)
Inthis section discuss your experiences of testing out a range of actingexercises to explore some of the following questions in relation to thespecific demands of Annie Bakers writing style:What do we mean by feelings andemotions?How do we access feelings and emotionsthrough an acting process?When acting do we ‘feel it or fakeit’?Can an audience tell thedifference?What inhibits the actor and createsobstacles and problems when trying to connect to or stimulate feelings andemotions?1. What methods/techniquesdid you try out and why?2. How did you adapt theseexercises in to the specific needs of your characters and scenes?
These are some of the questions that could becovered in your analysis. Develop your own and don’t try to cover everything.Keep your analysis focussed and only engage with questions that are relevant toyour thesis. Remember, an analysis is anin-depth study of the whys and how’s of your process. As if you are looking through a microscope atdifferent elements—go in depth about your research and choices.
Section Three: (500words approx)
This is a section toreflect on the process and what you’ve learnt about specific aspects of actingtheory. And detail any insights and conclusions from your experiences of youracting process and you’ve explored the relationship between acting and emotion.
Annie Bakers work has been described as ‘hypernaturalism’. What this requires is a form of mimetic acting that presents humanbeings on stage as they actually behave. For the written analysis you shouldanalyse and critically reflect Based on your work on the play this practical assignment you’re encouragedto investigate this term and find ways of performing extracts from the playwhich allow you to achieve some of the following:a micro-naturalistic depiction of thecharacters and their behavioursperform dialogue and movement whichavoids some of the adornments and theatrics of more dominant styles ofnaturalistic actingperform Bakers dialogue in styles thatmimics natural life and reflects the stutters, silences, confusions andmeanderings of everyday life
The Essay mustbe properly referenced, and include a properly formatted bibliography.
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Advanced Acting Assessment

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