If you want to succeed in the entertainment industry, the last thing you’ll want to do is create or continue habits that end up shooting you in the foot and limiting your options. In our last post, we talk about the do’s for your success, and in this post we’re going to focus on the don’ts.
It’s more than a feeling. Acting isn't simply about reciting your lines with feeling. It’s fine to do that to get a feel for the performance, but then you need to hone it in and make it real, especially for film acting. Merely reciting lines with feeiling doesn't take into account anything else about the character, and if your only approach to the piece is reading the lines emotionally, you'll likely come across as just “emotional” or exaggerated. Create your character with a distinct thought process, purpose and personality.
Don't just "wing it." This is an easy trap for an actor to fall into. Preparing a monologue or scene for performance takes a lot of dedication and hard work, and sometimes, there isn't enough time to fully commit to or even memorize the piece. However, winging it hardly ever works, even for an experienced actor. More often than not, the audience will be able to tell you aren't prepared. So get into the character. As far in advance as possible, become your character and you will feel far more ready and confident.
Don't “pretend” the emotions. In theater, there is no way to "play happy" or "play sad" or "play angry." Why not? People have infinitely different definitions of what it means to be happy, sad, or angry. Instead of playing an emotion, play the objective and know the why behind your character’s emotion. Perhaps you just discovered your significant other has been cheating on you, resulting in a whole slew of different negative emotions. This will allow you to portray the emotions in a believable way, rather than just becoming a caricature of the emotion.
Don’t live in your ego. Watch your temper. You will be rejected. You will receive critique and criticism. Someone else will get the role and you’ll have to deal with your disappointment with maturity and respect. If you can hold your temper and move on with grace, you’ll get fewer and fewer call backs.
Learn this and more as well as access classes and acting coaches that take your interest from hobby to professional at the New York Acting School for Film and Television. Contact us today to find out more information!