Friday, April 17, 2015

What helps you with emotions as an actor? Great advice from a non-actor about developing better emotions and getting over a fear of public speaking.

Guest Blogger - Kelly White - follow her on Twitter at @kittylove69420

Acting has always been a dream of mine, the skill, the glamor. To be anyone, at anytime in any place. 

It takes time, practice and passion to pursue. Only select few ever really make it. 

My dream was never realized due to a crippling fear of public speaking, but that didn't stop me from learning tips and tricks.  We all do different degrees of acting everyday in our normal lives (i.e. making up a story to get out of work, playing games with our children).

I have learned that I can control my actions and feelings and use them in different scenarios, whether they be real or fantasy.  For example crying on cue or being happy in times of great sadness. 

Our emotional range controls a lot of the things we do and how we behave. Even simple involuntary ticks that are present when thinking of ice cream on a hot day, or the caress of a lovers touch. Being able to recall those feelings and put them to use is a major benefit.

I found that there are many different ways to say a sentence that can change just by the thoughts in your mind. When you read it thinking happy thoughts your tone is going to be lighter, if you read it while thinking of a sad memory or from a place of sadness the mood and the tone of the sentence with change dramatically.  

Even a sentence as simple as: I took my dog for a walk. Read different ways can give it different meanings. Use your feelings to fill in the blanks that the sentence leaves. Was it a sunny happy walk? - or was it the last walk you would ever take with your dog. 

We all perceive moments in our life as just that, moments, but they are experiences that change us, either momentarily or for the rest of  your life. harnessing and being able to use those moments in acting is a gift. 

For some people those memories are unreadable, either because the person has led a very happy or very traumatic life. In those cases, create the situation; have a conversation with yourself, as two people. One scorned and one responsible, for example. Make yourself feel these things by making them real to you.  Some people feel uncomfortable talking to themselves. (If you can't say these things to you, and make yourself not only feel but believe them, what chance do you have with an audience?) Practicing expressing our emotions gives us better control over them. 

Have deeply disturbing conversations with yourself with a wide range of topics, also have excessively happy ones. Even mixing it up, have a conversation where it starts good and ends bad or starts bad and ends good. In my opinion range of emotion is an actors best tool. It's our emotions and feelings that bring a character to life, not the words on the page.

Also be silly,  you have to be able to imagine the impossible and believe in it wholeheartedly. To be able to have an imaginary dance with a purple spotted trex who loves to cha cha is just as important as having dinner with a foreign dignitary, discussing foreign policy. In some cases your imagination is the only thing you have. Whether due to budget or technological restrictions. You need to be able to put yourself in those places and situations. 

I always tell my son,  imagination is the key. The writer can only go so far in explanation of how the role is to be portrayed. The can give you description and a story but imagination gives the details. We practice using our imagination using a game called " if I could be anything". This game uses the imagination to first come up with something, usually non human, and act out how we believe it would act, Walk, talk, not walk or talk, however our imagination portrayed the object we desire to be. To add more complexity to the game you can imagine and act out how these objects or things interact with each other. 

I think that these are some of the more basic, but still essential tips. As I said in the beginning, I myself a not an actor and have no actual experience, these are just my thoughts and opinions on ideas for helping people interested in the craft.

For more free tips for actors go to

Great advice from a non-actor about developing better emotions and getting over a fear of public speaking

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