I’ve learned over time that good acting technique is directly related to one’s success as a voiceover artist. I’ve also come to know that continued learning, working out and taking a mix of acting and voiceover coaching is also critical to your career’s positive outcome for a number of reasons.
And it seems like each time I take a class I become more skilled, and I book more!
Classes keep you focused, and most, if not all are safe places to try new things without fear, all the while you’re sharpening your tool set.
This week, I attended a scene study seminar with Alan Feinstein, which was absolutely fantastic! The overriding theme to every acting and VO class I take is all about being real, and finding your truth.
Here are a few of Alan’s nuggets:
- Be in the moment, and you’ll be more believable
- Trust your instincts and don’t overly work the script and repeat exactly what you’ve done before
- Act before you think
After I asked a question about cold reading and how to make the right choices, he put me in the hot seat. I was the first to perform a completely cold reading of a monologue from “Shirley Valentine”. I was completely unfamiliar wth the play so I had no idea what to expect. And yes, I was a little terrified of looking like a fool in the presence of my peers. But another part of me was so up to the challenge of it all, because I’m always seeking the opportunity to workout. The process made me feel so ALIVE!
Alan’s technique which he taught me during my cold read was incrediblly liberating while he coached me through it. He’d have me read the line on the page silently, then look into his eyes and deliver aloud. He was in front of me- and I was speaking, connecting directly to him. I was not allowed to look at the script while delivering the line. The more I read this way, line by line, the more I felt the roadmap of the words taking me to where I was going. My reaction to the words was real. And astonishing. When I was finished, the 20+ attendees gave me applause. A huge “wow” moment.
I’ve also begun a six-week acting technique workshop offered by Cal State San Marcos taught by director Lisa Berger. I took a Meisner class from Lisa last summer that I felt was transformative for me. Here’s the current catalogue description:
Acting can be defined as living truthfully
under the imaginary circumstances of a play or film script. This class focus is on building an actor’s toolbox so that they know how to find
an action and live in the moment. Techniques explored will include
Meisner, Viewpoints, Stanislavsky and Uta Hagen. This class will be
taught by award-winning director Lisa Berger.This course features not only Meisner, but also Uta Hagen.
Well that’s a portion of how I’m spending my summer. Have you noted any similarities in the themes offered by the two different instructors?
And I’m already planning on attending another VO workshop committment this fall. How about you?