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Moving to the Natural: An Embodied Actor Exploring A Stanislavski Technique Through "The Children's Hour"

  • Author(s): Cunha, Melissa Victoria
  • Advisor(s): Jannarone, Kimberly
  • et al.
Abstract

My process of approaching the role of Karen Wright in The Children’s Hour, directed by Danny Scheie, serves as my practice as research; this document is a further component of this process. In this document, I will explain the process of this production, which will include, but not be limited to, the table work done with the script, the process of creating a backstory for my character, the staging of the play, conversations with the director and actors, and the performances. These examples will provide context for my work on this play as I explored what it meant to be an embodied actor in a play with a director influenced by Stanislavski, surrounded by other actors with a variety of training.

I will specifically touch on my acting technique and explain how my training and involvement in experimental theater aided me in this production to develop Karen Wright. The direction from Scheie on the acting itself was within the naturalistic approach of psychological realism. I observed others and trained myself how to work within the Stanislavski acting technique and naturalism, while also using my prior training as an embodied actor to produce the best work I could, combining these techniques. I believe it is beneficial to expand your toolkit to gain new insights and methods of approaching a play or production.

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