Making Performance Choices
When making your performance choices it is helpful to take a LITTLE time. But it is important to make that time productive.
Casting Directors say that 9/10 actors respond in very similar ways in the audition room. Most actors bring in the same approach to a scene. Most actors deliver the obvious choice for a scene and make the most obvious mistakes.
THE ACTOR WHO IS DIFFERENT STANDS OUT.
WHY do actors find it SO HARD to come up with valid alternative readings of a scene?
It’s not a complicated task!!
THE ANSWER TO THIS QUESTION is explained very clearly by internationally renowned psychologist Daniel Kahneman. It is simply because our minds process information in a predictable way. Kahneman explains that our ‘fast thinking’ facilities very effectively use with great efficiency the most recent information they have accessed.
That’s why 9/10 actors make the SAME choices. They have all read the SAME material. Their minds have processed that material in much the SAME way. They therefore deliver much the SAME performances and their minds have locked them into the choices they have difficulty changing.
The Solution is Simple
# keep them open to a variety of possibilities;
# steers them away from prototypes;
# stops important information from being wasted;
# and develops scenarios based on ‘probability’.
Actors simply need to take time to assess the possibilities. It doesn’t need to be a long time. It just needs to be a productive time. IMPORTANTLY the time needs to be spent using our slow thinking processes and not our fast thinking ones. The fast thinking ones will keep making the same mistakes.
The Rehearsal Room Acting Process focuses on a number of EXCELLENT slow thinking choices. That is its strength.
Currently, The Rehearsal Room is testing a basic form that forces actors to think beyond those first intuitive impressions and consider a number of diverse logical scenarios that provide very practical outcomes. Once it is fully tested it will become generally available.
The Sunday “Story Options Workshop” will also explore these valuable processes. It will provide a lot of practical exercises to build skills at using them.
It’s the next logical step forward.
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