Method Acting

Strasberg

day lewis

Method acting refers to a family of techniques by which actors try to create in themselves the thoughts and emotions of their characters in an effort to develop lifelike performances. It can be contrasted with more classical forms of acting, in which actors simulate the thoughts and emotions of their characters through external means, such as vocal intonation or facial expression. Though not all Method actors use the same approach, the ‘method’ in Method acting usually refers to the practice, advocated by Lee Strasberg, by which actors draw upon their own emotions and memories in their portrayals, aided by a set of exercises and practices including sense memory and affective memory.

Method actors are often characterized as immersing themselves in their characters to the extent that they continue to portray them even offstage or off-camera for the duration of a project. However, this is a popular misconception. While some actors have employed this approach, it is generally not taught as part of the Method. Method acting has been described as revolutionizing American theater. While classical acting instruction had focused on developing external talents the Method was the first systematized training that also developed internal abilities (sensory, psychological, emotional).

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