34 thoughts on “Questions for our Performance expert.

    • Hi Emily and Lana,
      This is a very interesting question because strategies for memorising scripts can differ from actor to actor.
      Time and location are a very important factors and how you use them! Learning your lines in the car or while you are waiting for dinner to be cooked or waking up a little bit earlier and going over lines when you are alert are some ways to learn.
      When I needed to learn may lines, I was able to learn them in the car on the way to rehearsal. I had recorded all the dialogue in scenes and then was able to know the dialogue of other characters leading into my line. I also recorded the dialogue as voice memos on my phone and listened to them over and over when I went to bed at night sometimes while reading the script at the same time when I needed to. I listened to the dialogue with head phones so I wouldn’t wake up Mr Weston (he was usually snoring anyway!!!).
      In general, repetition is the key. Learn one word, then two, then three, then four etc if that suits you. BUT you need to know your lines in context with the whole script(narrative) so if you need to improvise(because you forget your lines) you are still able to keep the story going because you know what is happening in the scene. GOOD LUCK!

  1. If somebody on stage fell over, would the show go on? I am keen on an answer to this question just in case I fall. Thankyou

    • Hi Kara
      You need to believe that you will NOT fall over!! You WILL be in control of your body and voice in the performance space. That being said, if something happened the meant you fell over (and you are ok) then you would need to be clever enough to make it fit into the story or just get up and pretend that it never happened. If you get on with the performance after a little mishap, the audience will admire your skill. If there is ever a big, serious fall on stage, the stage manager or the adults who are there to keep you safe will deal with everything and you will be ok. I already believe that you will NOT fall on stage Kara!

    • Hi Lucia,
      If you read the response to Kara’s question it answers your question as well. Mistakes on stage happen all the time. It is how you keep the narrative going and ‘act’ like everything was meant to be demonstrates your excellent improvisational skills. You need to know the story you are communicating to the audience really well so that when something happens that shouldn’t happen or someone says something wrong, you are able to bring the narrative back on the right track. The audience will never know but you and your fellow performers will know how you ‘saved the day’ and you will be respected for your ‘quick thinking’. I’m sure you will be great and make sure you have fun!

      • Thanks for the advice I will be sure to remember it on the night!
        Also what do you do if somebody else messes up before your line? Thanks Lucia

        • Hi Lucia,
          A good actor will always be listening to the other actors’ characters, just like you listen in real life. If you are listening carefully to the other character, you will hear their dialogue has been altered (if someone messes up) You will need to decide if you can just say your line or you may need to change it slightly (or a lot) to keep the story going. That is called improvising and you may only need to do it for a little bit, just enough to get the narrative back on track. Never get angry with some one who makes a mistake on stage. Just help them and they should be very grateful afterwards because you ‘saved them’! Chookas for your performance this week. (Chookas means good luck in theatre language)

    • Hi Georgia,
      These are great questions! I believe that you become confident on stage when you know what your character is meant to say, how your character is meant to say it and why your character is saying it. You as an actor will also become confident when you know when, where, how and why you are on stage. You also develop confidence when you are able to watch your peers perform and know that you can trust them to do what they need to do.
      Learning an accent if quite a skill. Many actors need experts to help them to speak with an accent. This applies to stage and film actors. All I can recommend is for you listen to speakers of the French accent as much as possible (online or in movies). Good luck!

  2. I would like to know how actors make themselves cry when their not emotional?

    How do you project your voice to be louder and clearer in performances?

    How do you get over stage fright?

    • Hi Emily and Isalei,
      Crying on stage is very easy for some and very hard for others. It is strongly believed that if an actor needs to cry in the story, they truly believe the sadness for suffering that their character is feeling and then they are able to cry because the feelings are real. Another way actors sometimes are able to bring tears to a performance is to remember a time they were really sad and use those feelings again in their performance. It is really tricky to cry. If it doesn’t feel right then maybe just look really sad and as long as it fits the story, the audience will believe you.
      When projecting your voice, just use the ‘outside’ voice you use in the playground. There are other skills involved, but this is a good starting point.
      Stage fright is also known as nerves and you can turn your nerves into energy that you can you on stage. So think of any stage fright you might have as a real and positive aspect of your performance. To try and lessen your stage frigh,t just make sure you know everything you are meant to say and do on stage to build up your confidence. Many famous and great actors suffer from nerves but they get on with the job because they love it. Good luck!

      • Hi Mrs Weston
        Thanks for your advice in our school play we are going well!
        3 weeks ago on friday it was a workshop day and we created our barricade and our cafe scene backdrop it was really fun using paint!Now we are just practing projection our voices and use expression

        From Emily and Isalei

        • Hi Emily and Isalei,
          You sound like you are very excited about your performance. I know you have worked very hard to Mrs Boyhan to create an amazing performance. My favourite musical is Les Miserables because it is about love, faith, forgiveness, friendship and hope. I believe that it has some of the best music ever written for theatre. Chookas to you both for your performances this week. Chookas mean ‘good luck’ in theatre language.

  3. Dear Mrs weston,
    How do you learn the script fast?
    What would you do if you forgot your lines on stage?
    From Olivia and Victoria

    • Hi Olivia and Victoria
      Thank you for your great questions. If you read my responses to the questions posted by Emily, Lana and Lucia I believe your questions will be answered. Please let me know if you have any other questions or concerns about your performance. Chookas (means good luck in theatre language) and have fun!

      • hello Mrs Weston,
        in our school play i got the main roll as a granny and i need to learn 67 lines.I have 1 question throw how do you remember what you do on stage e.g-standing in the right places.

        From Olivia
        P.S- victoria is not at swchool today

        • Hi Olivia,
          to remember everything where you need to be on stage (that’s called ‘blocking’) you just need to listening and focus really carefully during your rehearsals. When you are in a position and another character is speaking, take a quick look at where you are, what you are next to and where you are standing (in the middle, on the side, towards the back or towards the front. The more you rehearse then the more you will remember – that is if you are really focused. Have fun during the performances this week.. Chookas! (that means ‘good luch’ in theatre language)

  4. Hi Mrs Weston,

    me and my friends have some questions to ask you.

    1. What helps get rid of stage fright?

    2. How do you make your actions bigger?

    3. How do you make your words clearer?

    We hope you answer our questions!

    • Hi Charlotte, Laura and Emma,
      Please see my response to Emily and Isalei about stage fright. In response to your question about bigger actions, this would only be required if you or your director believe ‘big’ actions are necessary. If you need to accentuate your movements so that the audience better understand what is going on in the narrative, then you would need to practice in front of a mirror so that you become comfortable with the big movements and they feel ‘right’ for your character.
      In response to your question about clear delivery of your dialogue, it is important to practice your lines in front of peers(friends) and get them to give you the feedback you need. Ask them to tell you if they can hear you clearly and if you sound believable as the character. Use friends who you know respect your efforts and whose feedback you respect. You can do this with family as well. Chookas with your performance and make sure you have fun! Je crois que vous allez être merveilleux !

    • Hi Alivia and Izzy,
      Please read my response to Emily and Lana as I believe it will answer your excellent question. Je crois que vous allez être merveilleux !

    • Hi Nick,
      this is an excellent question. Try and stay in character. Think about all the things your character is feeling, thinking,seeing, hearing and saying. Your character is ‘in’ a story ‘in’ France NOT in a theatre in Melbourne! If your still struggle with the audience taking over your thinking, then look only at the other characters on stage NEVER AT the audience. If your character needs to looks at the front, then look above the audience not at them. I hope this helps Nick. I am sure you will be fine. Chookas for your performance.

    • Hi Brandon and Harry
      Please see my response to lucia. This will answer your very good question about mistakes on stage. I am sure your will present a wonderful performance. Chookas and have fun!

    • Hi Luca, Max and Ben,
      I believe a person is not enjoying their time on stage if I don’t believe the character they are trying to portray. If the performers are continually looking at the audience for applause to smiles or they keep looking off stage, they are not BEING the character. They are being themselves and they are not having fun. This spoils the story and performance for everyone. I am sure you will enjoy your time on stage because I know you are very well prepared. Thank you for your question. Je crois que vous allez être merveilleux!

  5. Hi Mrs weston,
    How do you perform without getting stage fright or being nervous?
    I don’t get that much stage fright but i do get nervous.
    from Georgia

    • Hi Georgia,
      When you are performing, nerves can be a good thing because they keep you on ‘alert’. Try and save the energy from your nerves and put it into your performance. Chookas for a performance this week. (Chookas means ‘good luck’ in theatre language

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