Essay on Notes on Effective Performance in Theatre

1042 Words Mar 3rd, 2014 5 Pages
Notes on Effective Performance – according to Derek
Bowskill, Clive Barker and Yoshi Oida.

THEA 110 Introduction to Live Performance and Production
Word Count: 985


What is performance, in what ways can the actor or actors make a theatrical performance effective? A performance can be said to be the representation of actions executed for an audience to communicate ideas, in which the actors bear a share of the responsibility of ensuring that the performance is effective, or convincing to the audience. This essay will examine three authors varying view points on what this entails and what is required of an actor to achieve this performance and to what extent they agree or disagree with each other, if at all.
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He points out that many of the skills used by the actor are the same as those used by individuals day by day, in response to various situations, and for the actor it is by continual training that these skills are developed beyond the level that are normally used in daily life. The actor then has the ability to implement these learned skills into a situation where there is no external stimuli. Barker stresses the need for thorough understanding of the text of the performance, including the historical context, in order to establish what is required of his character and performance within the play.
Yoshi Oida, in 'The Invisible Actor' (Oida, Y. 1997), also emphasises study of the text as being important for an effective performance, although in a different manner. He believes that the sound of a word carries within it an emotional quality and attention should be paid to every word in a text. Oida refers to the Buddhist belief that the delightful sounds of an infant are pure and god-like, changing with time as the baby learns and adapts to their society, thereby losing the innocence and quality of those first sounds. To enable the actor to recapture the qualities and emotions conveyed by the sounds of words he suggests that the actor experiments with them, trying them with different rhythms, pitch, as well as breathing and pausing at different points. He instructs the actor to try delivering the words with
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