Friday, July 6, 2012

acting schools nyc: The Human Machine Exercise

Acting is requires advanced team work and social intelligence. In NYC acting schools we get to practice these skills in a group setting through games and exercises. Every committed actor needs to spend many hours exercising their craft in a group setting. Mark Stolzenberg's acting classes in New York City offer the opportunities to do this fundamental group work of acting, in classes designed for beginners to advanced professionals.
The Human Machine is a favorite drama improvisation exercise that develops group movement and cohesion.  One actor begins by making one, repeated movement, with a sound effect. For example, slapping their knee. Another actor joins, and makes a different movement and sound effect repeatedly, playing off the first movement. For example, she may rock back and forth on her feet in time to the slapping sound. Others continue to join the human machine, one piece at a time, until they have built a smoothly operating machine, with its own sound and physical character.
The focus is finding your role that fits with the action already on stage, as one part of a seamless whole. This exercise develops nonverbal communication and collaboration necessary for group acting work.

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