Tuesday, 3 April 2007

Oscar shmoscar

Acting is not nearly as complex as they'd have you believe. We were at rehearsal last night (the musical is Sondheim's Into The Woods -- I play the Narrator and the Mysterious Man) getting notes from one of the Princes who is not only handsome and tall and tanned, but a trained professional dancer and actor. I have been using this technique I invented to make myself more dramatic, where I hold my arms out here -- reaching towards the audience, including them in the drama, only sort of twisted around (mysterious, you see?)

Anyway, after the rehearsal the Prince took me aside and said, gently, "Richard, it's about the way you stand on stage. It looks ..."

"Dramatic?" I suggested.

"Painful," he said. "It hurts me to watch you."

"Ah," I said. "So, um, how would you suggest I stand?"

"Maybe more naturally," he said.

I asked if there was anything about my performance that worked for him. "Well," he said, and I could see he was searching hard (he is quite a nice guy), "I did like the way you used the sets. When you leaned on the Baker's oven in Act 2, for instance ...."

"I was just doing that because I was tired," I said.

"Well, keep doing it."

So there's my tip. Good acting is tired acting. I have been leaning on things all morning (counter, stove, wall, desk), working on my technique, but I don't think I have it down yet. I have to be tireder. Fortunately I have a busy day planned. By tonight's rehearsal I'll look very natural. I might even start yawning. I wonder what the Prince will think of that?

2 comments:

Salerio said...

Shhh! You're giving away our biggest secret, you fool!

Richard Scrimger said...

I am such a lousy actor. I cannot be anyone but me. How real actors can turn themselves into Iago or Candide is beyond me.