Thoughts on actors working behind a microphone and how the medium of radio can drastically affect performance.
Radio excerpts of stage productions
I heard an excerpt from a new Australian play recently broadcast on radio as part of an enthusiastic report about this production. But despite the fact that the reporter praised the production highly my personal response to the performances was that they were terrible.
All I could hear was the actor 'working' the line. Without any context or sense of story the only thing which was communicating was the actor's intention. There was no understanding of why the character was speaking the line only an indication of what the actor wanted us to know. The result was perceived as a very coarse performance.
So were they actually terrible performances or was this a case of a performance which having being designed for one medium was a failure on another? Is it that the level of heightened reality which is required to reach the back row of even a small theatre is many times more than is required for the intimacy of radio? Or is it that
The answer is probably that
all these factors in some way played a part in my judgement.
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