Some Acting Basics
Some Acting Basics
1) Choosing a Place to begin
India is rich in languages and dialects. You can consider beginning with something like Awadhe, Mithila, Bhojpuri etc.
2) Find out something about your character’s place of origin
For your dialect or accent to sound like the real thing, you need to study certain influences that are typical of the region your character comes from. For example, is that region a predominantly wealthy or working-class region? Is your character a school dropout or has he got himself a decent education? What about the religious and political climate of that region? The age of your character is a small detail and can always be left for later. What requires your immediate attention is imagining what your peers will be like as their behavior is also a factor that influences your character and molds his personality and thought process.
3) Studying the people actually from that region
After you have equipped yourself with information about the region whose dialect you have chosen, finding a real person speaking with that dialect or accent will greatly help. If you are able to get that opportunity, listen to a sound sample of the dialect or accent, which keeps the rhythm, placement, and sound changes of the original. Learning from a voice sample like this will help immensely in understanding intonation and syllable stress patterns presenting you with a good chance of being understood by your audience.
4) Practice and listen to yourself
Practice the dialect or accent using reading material like the actual script or even a magazine. Record your voice a couple of times and play it back each time to monitor your progress. Don’t stop at this. Use the dialect or accent you have chosen wherever you possibly can. After all, there’s nothing like constant practice. Remember, whomsoever you use this dialect before should know that they are not supposed to sit in judgment of how your accent sounds but just talk to you (the character) in order to keep the character ‘pure.’
5) Working with a professional
If you feel you don’t have it in you to train yourself or you are not happy with the progress you are making, you can consider approaching someone who will be willing to train you. Or, even if in your estimation you think you are doing fairly well for yourself but want expert opinion in the form of someone who will judge your progress critically to make sure you are on the right track you may approach an expert or coach. Working with a professional when attempting to create a dialect is very important as friends and family may really have no idea how speech works. Even if they are willing to help, they might not have the required expertise to point out your mistakes and show you how you can correct them. Incorrect advice, even though well meaning, will only complicate matters for you.
6) Always be on the lookout for interesting sounds and dialects
Form the habit of keeping your ears tuned to any interesting and unusual sounds you hear. You never know how someone you run into might have something about him or her that fits perfectly with an aspect or quality of the character you are rehearsing for.
Being aware of your own speech patterns is particularly useful when you need to change it to any other kind of speech your role requires. Being able to distinguish between a voice pattern that is your own and a pattern you have picked up can be fun as an exploration exercise.
- Vocal Action
- Vocal Action and Breathe
- Diction and Practicing
- Speech and Text
- Voice Quality
- Acquiring Good Communication Skills
- The Actor and the Voice
- Using the Lines
- The Actor and Subtext
- Constantin Stanislavski
- Internal and External Communication
- Sounds You Can Practice
- Speech Patterns
- The Way People Want to Hear You
- Personal Disconnection
- Making Sure You’re on the Right Lines
- In short – Acting Voice and Speech