Monday, October 03, 2011

Theatre as a Humanity

As a career, many feel called to the performing arts and very few are chosen. Some actors might even say they weren't chosen at all, that they simply refused to quit before they had forced themselves in and refused to leave.

There is a wider value to the study and practice of theatre as a humanity. To study acting is to study the self: its nature and its uses. Many of the tools an actor uses in her work are located in the body itself, and the free use of voice, physical expression, and the actor’s imagination. The craft requires a sense of visual composition, a kinetic sense of oneself in space, and a clarity and discipline that become especially important to success when acting before a camera.

In addition to the study of self, the theatre is an ensemble art that practices the very skills essential to academic success and to engaged citizenship. Just as the theatre itself must engage the world, so must the study of acting, literature, design, and dramaturgy all engage in correspondence with our community and the larger society. In addition to building professional skills for performance, a good theatre teacher attempts to ground the study of theatre in the individual’s encounter with their world.

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