What is the course about?
An exploration of Stanislavski's acting technique - learn, extend and challenge existing approaches. Sometimes, suddenly in performance, all around you feels alive and real. Impulsive responses arise spontaneously
and rich, detailed behaviour emerges without effort. Stanislavski called this ‘experiencing’ the role. This course trains the elements that support the emergence of this creative state in performance. Making use of the approaches to preparation and characterisation developed by Stanislavski, as well as the Method practitioners who elaborated his work further, your ability to generate rich, detailed performance choices and the range and depth of your
characterisations will be extended and strengthened. The course is designed as a workshop studio that provides a focused and supportive arena in which to develop your talent, hone your craft, tackle the problems that you may
experience that prevent its full and free expression, and learn new skills.
What will we cover?
We will explore exercises and training techniques that develop your ability to experience real responses from imagined stimuli and to mobilise subconscious creativity in your work. You will learn how to create more vivid and affecting inner images to justify action, to develop the use of oneself as a creative resource, and to avoid more consistently mechanical acting, conventional choices, and the faking or forcing of emotional expression. We will explore characterisation techniques that target the specific qualities that separate you from characters very different to yourself, along with psychophysical processes that facilitate a more expressive embodiment. We will also examine the means by which blocks and inhibitions to a freer expression of impulses and a more connected and vulnerable mode of performance may be addressed. As actors progress through the training, we will explore the ‘active analysis’ of drama and a deeper engagement with the structure and dynamics of dramatic action.
Please note that acting classes by their very nature can involve exercises and the exploration of material that some students may find challenging.
What will I achieve?
By the end of this course you should be able to...
• Extend your own expressiveness
Use the principle of the Stanislavski technique to develop a character
• Apply Stanislavski's system to a play/film text in order to analyse it
• Build character through-lines
• Choose appropriate examples from your own life experience to support character experience
• Recognise and make a 'physical transformation'.
What level is the course and do I need any particular skills?
You should have a desire to explore and deepen your own expressivity.
In order to get the most from the course you will be able to:
• Listen actively and communicate clearly.
• Give and receive constructive feedback.
• Read and analyse scripts to find meaning and clarity.
• Take notes.
• Use numbers to recognise rhythm.
How will I be taught, and will there be any work outside the class?
All work will be practical with some preparation. Students will work alone, in pairs and in groups, according to the exercise.
You may or may not be asked to participate in rigorous activity from time to time. Please consider whether you could do this, if you are in any doubt consult a medical practitioner.
As part of the course content, your tutor may record your image for initial and ongoing assessment purposes. You are entitled to decline to participate in the recording of your image.
Are there any other costs? Is there anything I need to bring?
A notebook and pen.
When I've finished, what course can I do next?
Method, Meisner or general acting courses.
General information and advice on courses at City Lit is available from the Student Centre and Library on Monday to Friday from 12:00 – 19:00.
See the course guide for term dates and further details