Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Part 8 - Free Acting School - Goals as an Actor

On the final part of this class, reflect on being an actor again. What are some ways you'll continue to practice your acting? Set some goals for yourself.

Here are some possible goals:

1. School plays are great experience. Casting directors like actors with theatre/stage experience.

2. Community theatre plays are another way to train yourself and work with adult actors who can teach you a lot and maybe even help make connections.

3. Make your own short films. Even if you make bad short films, you still learn a lot of acting and then watching yourself. Have fun with it and don't worry about being good. But watch the finished film and think about how you can do better.

4. Start a YouTube channel. You can even make a little money by monetizing the video. And if you're lucky, you'll have a viral hit and make your mark early.

5. Start going to Auditions. Here is a great source for auditions: http://www.actorsequity.org/CastingCall/castingcallhome.asp

Agents: It's better to wait until you have some experience before going to an agent. Agents want to see that you can get paid work with your acting. Once you get a paid acting job, that's when you can go to an agent and ask to be represented.

TIP: Avoid agents you charge you money up front. A good agent will only charge you a percentage when you get a paid acting job. They only get paid if you get paid work.

Check the Screen Actor's Guild (SAG) website for approved acting agents. Here is a list of SAG approved agents. The best agents will be on this list: http://www.sagaftra.org/agency-relations/sag-franchised-agents

Going Hollywood: The best way to go to Los Angeles or New York City is to be a college student. USC, UCLA and NYU are great schools with connections to the film and theatre industry. At these universities, you create a network of people who will help you get jobs in the future. Plus a degree gives you other options to make money in the future. Acting rarely pays the bills so it's good to have something to fall back on, especially when you get started.

There are other cities such as Austin, Texas or Orlando, Florida that have a lower cost of living and have active film industries. You can consider these places as well.

Final Post!

Write about your acting plans and goals for the future.

Students who complete all lessons including recording two monologues (and making corrections from the instructor) will get a Freedrama.net Acting School Certificate.

Best student performances each month will receive $50 and get featured by Freedrama.net on our blog and YouTube page.

Go to Part 9 - "What's Next?" - coming soon

Back to Part 1 - http://freedramaplays.blogspot.com/2015/05/free-acting-school-for-2015-part-1.html

Or check out the $200 voice acting contest - http://freedramaplays.blogspot.com/2015/04/actors-win-200-freedrama-voice-acting.html

Free Acting School - Goals as an Actor
Watch out for people like this!

Part 7 of Free Acting School - Record your monologues

Day 7 of Free Acting School

You will now record the two monologues you selected from this link: http://www.freedrama.net/small1.html

You can do a video or audio recording. If you do a video, upload it to a website like YouTube.com Or you can create an audio recording. There are cell phone recorders and apps as well as free audio recording programs for computers like Audacity.

Email a link to your video or email the audio file to your instructor Doug Larson at doug@freedrama.net

After your instructor listens to the two monologues, he will provide feedback for changes on one or both monologues. You must then make the changes to your monologue, re-record it and send it again.

Tips on recording: Try to find a quiet place to do the recording. Before you record, close your eyes and listen. Are there any sounds that might make your recording hard to hear? A tv in the next room or loud outside noises? Close windows, close doors, turn off these noises devices to try and get things as quiet as possible. If you're doing a video, look at your background. A plain wall is better than a background with a lot of things that will distract the viewer. Hang up a plain colored sheet (no patterns or designs) if needed. You want the focus on you, not the background.

Best student performances each month will receive $50 and have their video featured on the Freedrama Blog and YouTube page.   The winner will be announced on this blog.

Continue to Part 8 - http://freedramaplays.blogspot.com/2015/05/part-8-free-acting-school-goals-as-actor.html

Back to Part 1 - http://freedramaplays.blogspot.com/2015/05/free-acting-school-for-2015-part-1.html

Part 6 of Free Acting School - Do you need some acting tips to help you prepare for your performance?

You will now memorize and practice your two monologues.  Here are some tips on preparing.

After you practice and memorize the monologue, you can act it for friends or family or video yourself doing it and watch it on your own for ideas to improve. If a part is boring or hard to watch, then think of ways to make that part more interesting. Do the monologue over until you feel like you'd be proud to show someone else. When you do show your video monologue to someone else (or even a small group of family and friends), watch how they react rather than watching the video with them. Are there parts that they have good reactions to? Make a note of the good parts and then think of ways to improve the other parts.

Question from new actor 1: Do actors feel emotions when they act or just pretend? For example, if they are meant to appear sad and possibly cry, do they internally make themselves sad like their character (by pretending to be that character) or do they just fake what it is supposed to look like?

Answer: There are two different types of actors: method and technical. Technical have techniques for showing emotions but don't really feel them. Method actors actually feel the part and become the character in their own minds. Method actors do some amazing performances but can be overwhelmed by the parts (i. e. Heath Ledger). Technical actors can be good and popular as well (i. e. Harrison Ford) but they often seem like they are always the same person in many roles.

Question from new actor 2: "How to work on facial expression for acting? i cant convey my emotions when i act. do you have any tips and examples for each emotions like sad, frightened, nervous, etc. is squinting a bad thing. how do i move my eyebrows downward"

Answer: Rather than trying to create the emotions on your face, work on feeling the emotions. Pick something that makes you feel a certain way (scared) and try to really feel that way.

Here is a great monologue with a variety of emotions: http://freedramaplays.blogspot.com/2014/12/advice-on-performing-monologue-breaking.html

Try to think of times in your own life where you have felt like the character and then remember these emotions while doing the monologue. Record yourself and forget about the camera while you do it. Focus on the emotions and really feeling them.

Question from new actor 3: Any tips on voice enunciation because I sound the same throughout the recording?

Answer: First, when you go through a script, think of different emotions the character might be feeling.

In this monologue: http://freedrama.net/protecto.html At first he is excited, then in the middle he is sad or worried. Then he starts to get excited again, but then at the end he is confused and disappointed. You'd want to reflect that in your voice and acting. Show each of those emotions for each part.

Next, look at each sentence. Pick out a word or two in each sentence that you'd want to put the most emphasis on. In the line "I've always dreamed of being a hero." You might pick "dreamed" or "hero" or both to the be the words you say a little more clearly or forcefully.

Memorizing lines:
A quick way to learn lines is to record all the lines and play them back and say them along with the recording. You can record with your computer, phone, etc. Play it over and over and say your lines along with the recording. Then when you know it better, pause the recording after each line and try to say your line. Listen to the line and see if you got it right and try again.

Other ways that people learn lines include reading the script and covering your lines up. Read the line before and then try to say your line while it is covered up. Another common way is to have someone read the cue lines and you try to say them. I have even seen people type all their lines as a way to memorize. Look at the previous line and then try typing your next line without looking at the script. Everyone memorizes differently so it is good to try different techniques to see what works best.

YOUR ASSIGNMENT: Post what tips worked the best for preparing your monologue and any questions you have.

You must then respond to another actor in this discussion.  Give words of encouragement. Share your experiences. Or discuss acting.  Your interactions MUST be positive or you will be disqualified from taking the class and not eligible for the $50 best student award or $200 voice acting contest.

On to part 7 - http://freedramaplays.blogspot.com/2015/05/part-7-of-free-acting-school-record.html

Back to Part 1 - http://freedramaplays.blogspot.com/2015/05/free-acting-school-for-2015-part-1.html

Free Acting School - Do you need some acting tips to help you prepare for your performance?

Sunday, May 17, 2015

Selecting two contrasting monologues - Part 5 of Free Acting School 2015

You will now select two monologues that you will perform for the end of this class.

The monologues must be from this link:

http://www.freedrama.net/small1.html or http://freedrama.net/select.html

Select two contrasting monologues - two that are very different from each other - one comedy, one dramatic - or two with very different characters.  For example, the character in one monologue is good, kind and innocent and the character in the other one is evil or angry or upset)

Post the names of two monologues you like the best. Answer the following questions about these two monologues:

Why do you like the monologues?

Who is the main character of each monologue?

What is the character like?

Where is the character (the setting/place it is taking place)?

Why is the character saying what they are saying in the monologue?  (What's their motivation?)

How did the character get to the point they are now? (what is their background? where did they come from? why are they behaving the way they do?)

Is the monologue from a play? If so, read the play and write about what you learned about the character from the play.

Post in the comments below your answers to the questions above.

You must then respond to another actor. Your interactions MUST be positive or you will be disqualified from taking the class and not eligible for the $50 best student award or $200 voice acting contest.


Having trouble finding a good monologue?  Here are some monologues with acting tips to go with them:

A Breaking Heart - http://freedramaplays.blogspot.com/2014/12/advice-on-performing-monologue-breaking.html

A Thing for Nerds - http://freedramaplays.blogspot.com/2015/02/advice-on-monologue-thing-for-nerds.html

Never Touch http://freedramaplays.blogspot.com/2015/03/advice-on-performing-monologue-never.html

Beauty and Perfection http://freedramaplays.blogspot.com/2014/11/advice-on-performing-1-minute-monologue.html

First Words http://freedramaplays.blogspot.com/2015/01/advice-on-performing-monologue-first.html

On to Part 6 - http://freedramaplays.blogspot.com/2015/05/part-6-of-free-acting-school-do-you.html

Back to Day 1 - http://freedramaplays.blogspot.com/2015/05/free-acting-school-for-2015-part-1.html

What character is most like you? Free Acting School Part 4 - 2015 edition

Free Acting School from D. M. Larson - Part 4 of the Freedrama.net Free Acting School

Now it is time to prepare yourself to act. Below are some scripts by D. M. Larson.  Read the following scripts and decide which character you can relate to the most:

Only Children Believe in Butterflies http://freedramaplays.blogspot.com/2014/12/only-children-believe-in-butterflies.html

Forever on Hold http://freedramaplays.blogspot.com/2014/12/forever-on-hold-comedy-monologue-for.html

The Barn http://freedramaplays.blogspot.com/2015/01/the-barn-free-short-monologue-for-male.html

Sunset Princess http://freedramaplays.blogspot.com/2015/01/sunset-princess-female-solo-monologue.html

Nervous http://freedramaplays.blogspot.com/2014/12/nervous-female-monologue-from-upcoming.html

Double Rainbow http://freedramaplays.blogspot.com/2015/05/double-rainbow-short-monologue-for-kids.html

The Sunday Gamble http://freedramaplays.blogspot.com/2015/01/the-sunday-gamble-free-monologue-for.html

Farting is Such Sweet Sorrow http://freedramaplays.blogspot.com/2015/01/farting-is-such-sweet-sorrow-short.html

Demons http://freedramaplays.blogspot.com/2015/04/demons-popular-dramatic-monologue-for.html

I Hate Buffets http://freedramaplays.blogspot.com/2014/12/i-hate-buffets-free-dramedy-monologue.html

Tearing Me Apart http://freedramaplays.blogspot.com/2015/04/tearing-me-apart-female-monologue-solo.html

Which character in the monologues is most like you?

What character is most like you Free Acting School Part 4

When you pick a character, ask yourself the following:

What do you like about the character?

What is similar between you and that character?

Do you know someone else who is like the character?

Do you have a personal experience that helps you understand this character?

Think about why the character is the way he/she is. What made them the way they are? Make up a "back story" or history of the character. Where did they come from? What do they like and dislike? How old are they? What do they dress like?

I once heard an actor say they always decide what that character might have for breakfast and that helps them figure the character out.

There are no wrong answers. The important thing is to learn as much as possible about the character before performing the character.

Post in the comments below your answers to the questions above.

You must then respond to another actor in the blog discussion below.  Your interactions MUST be positive or you will be disqualified from taking the class and not eligible for the $50 best student award or $200 voice acting contest.


ACTING TIP FROM STELLA ADLER: "The actor has to develop his body. The actor has to work on his voice. But the most important thing the actor has to work on is his mind."
Post your replies to the above questions in the comments below.


On to Part 5 - http://freedramaplays.blogspot.com/2015/05/selecting-two-contrasting-monologues.html

Back to Day 1 - http://freedramaplays.blogspot.com/2015/05/free-acting-school-for-2015-part-1.html

Who are your favorite actors? Part 3 of Free Acting School - 2015 edition

Who are your top 10 favorite actors?

Who are your favorite actors Part 3 of Free Acting School

First check out my list:


Do you agree or disagree with any of the actors on my list?  Who are your top 10 favorite actors?  Explain why some of the actors are on your list.

Post your thoughts in the comments below and then you must then respond to another actor in this class.  Your interactions MUST be positive or you will be disqualified from taking the class and not eligible for the $50 best student award or $200 voice acting contest.  You will hear from your instructor for this class starting on lesson 5.

Go to Part 4 of the Free Acting School: http://freedramaplays.blogspot.com/2015/05/what-character-is-most-like-you-free.html

Go back to the start and check out Part 1 of the Free Acting School: http://freedramaplays.blogspot.com/2015/05/free-acting-school-for-2015-part-1.html

What makes a great actor? Free Acting School Part 2 - 2015 edition

Part 2 of the Freedrama.net Free Acting School

Before looking at your own acting, look at other people's acting. If you are not able to attend a performance on stage, watch movies. Your first homework assignment is to go see a play or watch a movie.

What makes a great actor Free Acting School Part 2

When picking a movie to watch, think about a movie that had a major impact on you. What is your favorite movie and why? Is it the actors? Is there an actor in your favorite movie that you think is very good?

Watch a movie or see a play and pick an actor who you think was really good. What actor did you believe was "real"? Sometimes famous actors aren't the best actors. Was there an actor who was better than the well known person? Was there an actor who made you believe that they were really that character? Or was there an actor who totally changed who they were for the role and were different than you've ever seen them before?

Write in your journal about the actor you watched. Did they become the character? Why was their performance good? What made them better than other actors? Or did all the actors work together and perform as a team? Post your journal in the blog comments below.

NOTE: You must then respond to another actor in this class. Your interactions MUST be positive or you will be disqualified from taking the class and not eligible for the $50 best student award or $200 voice acting contest.  You will hear from your instructor for this class starting on Part 5.


ACTING TIP FROM MICHAEL SHURTLEFF (Casting Director): "Use what you know. Don't worry about what you don't know."


Continue to Part 3 for the Free Acting School - http://freedramaplays.blogspot.com/2015/05/who-are-your-favorite-actors-part-3-of.html

Or back to Part 1 of the Free Acting School http://freedramaplays.blogspot.com/2015/05/free-acting-school-for-2015-part-1.html