method * Acting is a style of living. We all act. The ones who know it, become celebrities....
It will take time to sort out the old pages in Acting Directory @ Theatre w/Anatoly and I plan to keep it for the Method Acting (both the Fundamentals and the Advanced). Maybe I will focus the Advanced Method at Act Directory @ Ant Theatre.
Acting is easy and natural like swimming or riding a bike. Once you learned it, it's always with you.
What does this ReAction to the audience mean?
You act in line and against the spectator's expectations (rememebr the word "play"), they, the poublic, were there first. They already were directed (watch) and now you enter THEIR world. Think how much of the build-up before Hamlet actually enters the stage! Think about the public as your partner, the lead, you know that you have to react to your partner's lines. Yes, they asked those questions already, they came to theatre because of it, they only look silent.
This "4th Wall" concept could be confusing. It was intended for realism ("like in real life") and against bad acting, when the public is the one and only actor's address (like in opera). Stanislavsky understood that the right address on stage can be used by the public for a stronger dramatic impact. When you address the audience directly, the identification with the character is a geopardy (Brecht based his Epic Theatre theory of this principle, when actor and spectator become "themselves" again, breaking away from the staged reality). In our century's drama "apart" method is gone. We don't have to tell our sofisticated public anything (pretending that the rest on stage do not notice it). Even once popular voice-over in movies is used not very often. We don't want our spectator to be back, where we started, we worked so hard to make him a CENTER OF DRAMA.
There is another way to think about PreActing. Think of exposition you need to establish with your entrance on stage. I tell my students: don't rush! Don't go for your "objective" in the scene, unless I met your character. Without know your character I can't know your objective -- present the character!
Remember, the aim is first, not action!
PreActing is the aim. Remember, we are not together at first, actors and spectators, and only when we are together we have drama. Your aim in the scene must be mine too! Your aim is my (spectator) interest!
Call it co-acting.
Did you notice that I haven't mentioned other actor's yet? I consider the relations on stage SECONDARY and with the public -- PRIMARY connections.
Everything I said about your character and your acting equaly applies to all on stage. Often actors complain that their partners do not GIVE -- but they don't give, because they don't get it -- they do not take it from the ppublic!
I'm working on SpectActor book to explain that the publci is that dramatic engine of the show. The audience is the true space of any drama. Theatre begins and ends with the public.
Unlike Stanislavsky, Meyerhold was dealing with the street crowd public, theatrically illiterate and he tried to develop the most powerful tools to turn them in PUBLIC. What is the most powelful? The movement. Here is biomechanics for you! We react to movement mechanically, my friends.
Without repeating the basic 4-Steps cycle, please, go and see ACT Page. Meyerhold believed that every movement on stage must be choreographed, because every change on stage is MESSAGE. We do need to bring theory into acting business as long as actors can't compose the stage sentences. If they don't, they should glance through the pages of "BioMX Theory fo Actors" -- it might help.
Everything in acting is about movement: emotional changes -- and therefore changes physical. They can be small or big, but they are always there. Actor's choices MUST be made. Or they will be made for you, if you work with good director or good actors. No choices means bad performance. Without MOVEMENT you have no "texts"!
I call it Actor's Text (Performance). Stanislavsky called it "Role"! You "write" those texts in time and space. Out of the "empty space" and time, you create YOUR chronotope where your character becomes your ROLE. Do you see the difference between Character and Role? Shakespeare wrote character of Hamlet, you have to write your OWN by using the text of "Hamlet."
You need to learn how to "read" acting texts, if you you want to compose them. The study of "signs" is called semiotics. In method acting it is known as subtext, the actual meaning behind the lines. Biomechanics were developed in reaction to Stanislavsky's System and everything that the method of psychological realism has to offer is EXTENDED to the next level in BioMX. The choices are big and definite! That is why BioMX is so suitable for comedy.
PRE-ACTING Meyerhold used to emphasize the action before any spoken line. How important it is you can see in bad acting: the gesture follows the text -- that is an illustration. Good acting is to set a situation for your line; we anticipate the words, we wait, we want to hear... and only then actor delivers!