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Live Theater, continued

The Rich Writer: Live Theater, continued

The Rich Writer

How to Thrive on the Writer's Road

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Live Theater, continued

Watching live theater may be great for character creation, but participating in it (with a mentor or in a class) might be an even better tool. Acting gets you up close and personal with yourself, your physical body, and other actors. And, if you're anything like me, many (most?) of those other actors are better than you are...which makes them great material. (Don't worry, Phil, I would NEVER turn you into one of my book characters. Much. At least, I wouldn't tell you about it....)

Think you don't have anything to learn from theater? Try this exercise (from a recent acting workshop) on for size:

Get together a group of people to participate. Prepare a "stage" so that only the actor's feet are visible. The actor receives an emotion card--sad, happy, impatient, fearful, etc.--and must portray that emotion using only his or her feet. The rest of group guesses the portrayed emotion.

Did you try it? Hmm? Or at least run through it mentally? I bet you never knew feet could be so expressive. And I bet using feet to portray fear definitely frees you from all possible cliches.

:-) Cheryl

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