Stage terms and Resources

Hello, my dear thespians.  This blog post is inspired by a young actress who wants to dip her toes in the theater just to see if that is her thing.

Most of these terms you'll come across when you do some theater in school. But not everyone who acts professionally starts in the theater so maybe these terms are new to you too.

To learn more about starting your acting career and getting your very own agent, check out my book on sale now!

Here is a quick breakdown of some basic stage terms.

In theater, you as an actor have some freedom during rehearsals to get in tune with your character, however the director will block your movements before the performance.

When working with the blocking given to you, find a reason for your character to execute that moment.

Blocking: to set where each actor will stand and move during the scene.  

Downstage: to move closer to the audience.

Upstage: the part of the stage that is away from the audience.

Right or Left: the actor’s right of left as he/she faces the audience.

 

stage terms

Theater is Life

Personally, I love theater. I love acting in one and I love watching them.  There is so much energy in the room. Many actors thrive in that energy.

Having the live audience just feet away from you is part of the thrill of theater acting but you must find a way to not be distracted by the audience.  

Stage Fright

If you are prone to stage fright practice meditating or ask your stage teacher what you can do to enforce the 4th wall.  The 4th wall is this imaginary wall that actors on stage put in between their world and the audience.  There are several methods that help the actor concentrate on something on the stage allowing them to stay in the moment and disregard the presence of the audience.  

Other Theater Notes

Stage actors need to learn when to allow the audience time for reactions or to build tension. The stage actor feeds off of the audience’s energy and reactions. During rehearsals, jokes aren’t as funny or moments aren’t as powerful until you perform them in front of a test audience.  

This isn’t something you will learn in any acting class or workshops, this is something you will experience once you are on stage and you might get so hooked on this feeling that it will make you come back for more.

Theater in Texas

For many Texans, especially in the Rio Grande Valley, El Paso, and Pan Handle areas, the theater might be your only choice until you move to Austin, Houston, San Antonio, or Dallas.  

Don’t feel left out, however, theatres listed in the back of my e-book Getting an Agent in Texas have fabulous programs to help actors gain training that can be applied to your film career. The best thing you can do is immerse yourself in theater and perform in as many productions as you can to fatten up your resume.  

What type of training again?

Acting for Stage

Even if you are a film actor, take one or two acting for stage classes. There will be a lot of movement involved, diction, and other technical lessons.  You get to experience stage acting and might even love it more than film.

Stage classes help you explore your creativity and expand your theatrical knowledge.

Classes are usually offered by levels.  Acting I and II focus on scene work and in-class exercises. In Acting II you explore what it really means to be in the moment, deeper script analysis skills, and work to create three-dimensional characters with depth. 

You may opt to take further classes but generally, this is enough for the film actor.

Acting requires your body to be free, theater helps you become more confident with your body. Usually, in theater classes, you begin classes with a series of activities to limber up and warm up your body.

Activities can include breathing, meditation, exercises, and even yoga poses.

Give it a try and see for yourself why many actors LOVE working in theater 🙂 If you have an audition or performance coming up... BREAK A LEG!!! Let me know what you are doing so we can show our support!

 

xoxo

Nancy

Thanks for reading!

P.S. Don't forget to subscribe to my e-mail list.

To learn more about starting your acting career and getting your very own agent, check out my book on sale now!

acting in texas

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Got questions? Comments? Leave a message below. If you want more resources or more detailed information on how to work as an extra and how to get gigs, check out my e-book.

Thank you so much for reading and break a leg.

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