Don't Move, Don't Speak

Don't Move, Don't Speak

Don't Move, Don't Speak

By Peter Frisch on Aug 22, 2018 at 10:42 PM in Acting Tidbits

A familiar and cynical actor/director dialogue goes something like this; Actor: “But what’s my motivation for crossing to the sofa (or “saying this line,” “picking up this book,” “breaking into song,” etc.)?

Director: “Your paycheck.”

Yes, this does happen. The problem with the director’s answer is that in performance, the motivation will actually LOOK like it’s the actor’s paycheck. The paycheck as motivation won’t make sense to an audience captivated by the world of the play or screenplay. Bottom line: any time you move, any time you speak, it must be motivated by need, circumstance, fear, the conscious or unconscious elements contained in the play or screenplay. Do your homework – move by move, line by line. Knowing Why (and making it real to yourself) is everything.

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"Throughout his work with the PSO he exercised his exceptional taste, knowledge and expertise in both the fields of drama and music. Working closely with Peter was among the most personally enjoyable and rewarding experiences I've had in my long tenure with the (Pittsburgh) Symphony. Whether partnering on selecting repertoire, writing and editing scripts, or brainstorming the complex elements that made these evenings memorable, I always found Peter to be a great co-worker, a warm and compassionate leader, and a man of broad knowledge and impeccable taste. He left a remarkable legacy at the CMU Drama School."
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