The Never Ending Story.
"The Value of Emotion in Performance"
This fictional exploration of the debate over the value of emotion in performance was written years before it was resurrected as material to present to the Australian Screen Directors Associations Conference in Melbourne. The conference, "Different Directions" was held in Melbourne in September 2003. This piece now equipped with a scene heading and a new title was to be played by actors at the end of a session called "The Long and Short of Rehearsals". Unfortunately the session ran long, so the scene wasn't played. Here it is. Where do yoiu stand in the debate?
THE SCENE -
Talking Two Directors
"Good acting is really about feeling."
"Rubbish. Feeling has nothing to do with acting it's almost irrelevant."
What? An actor who can truthfully portray feeling is a great asset."
"An actor who is looking for the emotion in a scene will frequently entirely miss the story and the drama."
"That's nonsense. It's the emotional outcome of the story the audience has come to see."
"Look, if an actor says to me, 'I'm looking forward to the big emotional scene.' I immediately begin to panic."
"Well, if one of my actors is looking forward to the emotional scene I'm delighted that they are enthusiastic about putting themselves on the line for the production."
"But what good does it do - an actor putting themselves on the emotional line for a scene?"
"An actor has to feel the emotional truth of the scene or the audience is not going to believe it."
"But I've had actors say to me "I felt everything in that scene. That was fantastic!" And in fact it was not only boring, it was just plain bad."
"Well that's because it lacks motivation."
"Ah! So the motivation is more important than the emotion."
"Of course, but without the emotional outcome what is the point of being motivated. You must have the emotion."
"If I had to chose between an emotionally orientated actor and a motivationally orientated actor I would go for the motivated one every time."
"Well I would rather have the emotion."
"But you do admit that the motivation for the feeling has to come first. So it is more important than the emotion because you can't have emotion without motivation."
"They are of equal importance."
"They can't be."
"They complement each other."
"Maybe, but they can't be of equal importance."
"They can" ...
(THERE IS NO END TO THIS SCENE)
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