Your browser version is outdated. We recommend that you update your browser to the latest version.

 

STAGE PRESENCE

Copyright © 2018 by Nello Bottari

 

(These Main Topic Outlines are a continual work-in-progress; 

actively re-edited and updated for conciseness and accuracy.)

 

A.   STAGE PRESENCE DEFINED

In the performance of his or her character, that actor’s ability to project a sense of ease, poise, competence, confidence and charisma onstage, before an audience.

 

B.  PERSONAL PRESENTATION

An evaluation of an actor’s physical traits. (Gender; Age; Body; Ethnicity; Face; Voice.)

 

C.  DEVELOPED TALENT

Through training and experience, a person’s ability to do something better than the average person.

 

D.  ACTOR TOOLS

 

1. Eyes: “Windows of the soul”, unique, identifiable, point of focus, powerful, expressive.

2. Mouth: Lips, source of speech, affectionate, expressive.

3. Voice: The quality of speech, strong, weak, resonant, shallow, powerful, expressive.

4. Hands: Manual means of doing something, gestures, articulated, powerful, expressive.

5. Body: The entirety of a person, means of movement, expressive.

 

E.  ACTOR ACTIONS

 

1. Enter: Movement from a point offstage to a point onstage.

2. Cross: Movement from a point onstage to another point onstage.

3. Mark: A point onstage where a cross terminates.

4. Business: Anything an actor does that contributes to the effective portrayal of that character.

5. Properties: Anything an actor touches, holds or refers to in a scene.

6. Cue: Something that happens—that causes something else / the next thing to happen.

7. Vocalization: Any utterance from an actor in character.

8. Counter: An improvised cross to regain the actor’s sight line with the audience.

9. Improvisation: Anything an actor does to compensate for an unscripted incident and restore scene focus.

10. Exit: Movement from a point onstage to a point offstage.

 

 

 F.  ACTOR'S TECHNIQUE:  (Unless otherwise scripted and/or directed.)

 

1. Enter and Exit on cue. 

2. Remain incharacter at all times.

3. Concentrate, focus, self-subordinate.

4. Don’t be distracted.

5. Conduct your character business.

6. Gesture upstage.

7. Turn out to the audience.

8. Deploy your props.

9. Keep (don’t break) your blocking.

10. Counter if necessary.

11. Keep your head up.

12. Keep your eyes open.

13. “Cheat” to the audience.

14. Don’t watch the audience.

15. Don’t stare into eyes.

16. Play to the “audience horizon” or to the stage lights.

17. Don’t watch the show: you’ll break character.

18. Know & deliver your exact lines, especially the “cue lines” for your fellow actors.

19. Resist embellishments or approximations of your exact lines.

20. Don’t drop any of your lines.

21. Don’t jump another actor’s lines.

22. Know or be very familiar with everyone’s lines in the scene.

23. Project your voice.

24. Enunciate your words.

25. Don’t sacrifice clarity for accent.

26. Maintain personal energy.

27. Maintain character intensity.

28. Know, be alert to, send, receive and “pick up” your cues.

29. Anticipate the next cue.

30. Don’t “telegraph” reactions.

31. Protect scene focus.

32. Don’t upstage scene focus.

33. Improvise if necessary.

34. Pantomime if necessary.

35. Deliver consistent portrayals.

36. Pursue role & scene mastery.

37. Perceive beats. (tempo)

38. Establish pacing. (action)

39. Achieve “Scene Flow”.