biomech & biomx
* one act fest
“The actor must train his material [the body] so that he is capable of executing instantaneously those tasks which are dictated externally.” V.E. Meyerhold, 1922
Lion King Tickets
Odd Couple Tickets
Use The Importance of Being Earnest (Oscar Wilde Online) for class monologues and scenes!
THR121 Fundamentals of Acting
THR221 Intermediate Acting: Biomechanics
THR321 Advanced: Method
GeoAlaska: Theatre & Film
Forums: Realism & Method, Comedy & Biomechnics
We do not offer Advanced Acting II and Advanced Directing (replaced with the senior thesis); contact your advisor.
: days 'til the year 2007! Work!
Method for Directors?
ShowCases: 3 Sisters, Mikado, 12th Night, Hamlet, The Importance of Being Earnest, Dangerous Liaisons, Don Juan
prof. Anatoly Antohin Theatre UAF AK 99775 USA
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How to Read a FilmSubscribe to Open Class @ 200x Aesthetics
SummaryPoetics of Theatre: theatricality. What is theatrical (performance) language? First, theatre lost its dependence on dramatic literature (Mayakovsky), good literature; instead -- stage compositions, and any text all together (street manifestation, political happening). Free of the tyranny of the Word, theatre concentrated on stage-forms of expression. Theatre discovered a new author -- director. Designers entered this new theatre as theatre artists. Even light moved from being functional to expressive language of theatre communication. Even in cases of producing the classic ("The Inspector General" by Gogol, "Forest" by Ostrovsky) the new theatre has to fulfill its new interpretive obligations -- new production has a right to exist only on condition of a new "reading" of the classical text. "Text" became a material for another "text" (performance).
QuestionsMeyerhold associated the destruction of the old aesthetics with the social revolution of October 1917 and called his new approach "October Theatre".
Constructivism and biomechanics were the slogans of "October Theatre ". In rejecting decorative sets, Popova together with Meyerhold constructed what they called a "machine" for the dynamic and harmonious movement of actors in the empty space of the stage. Instead of individual costumes all the actors wore similar clothes resembling those of working men, and no theatrical make-up. The poetry of machinery was proclaimed by the constructivists as the principle of liberated labour and a new artistic language, which was transferred to the sphere of acting. The acting technique was based on a training system elaborated by Meyerhold and called "biomechanics", which allowed him to vary the stage dynamics of the action.
Notes[ Biomechanics, in a way, raises these theoretical attitudes to their culminating height. Vsevolod Emilevich said, "if the tip of the nose works – so does the whole body". This continues the tradition of stressing the need for an actor "to observe himself" on the stage, in other words, stressing (once again) the actor as one who synthesises both the creation and the material from which that creation is made. This idea means that an actor has to be capable of "co-ordinating in the space and on stage, the ability to find himself in the whole course of the play, the ability to adjust and the ability to define visually the distance between actors on the stage." The actor must have these qualities in order to construct the whole performance in the best possible way and to give the theatre director (the final sublimater of the creativity of all participants in the theatre) the means by which to plan the development of the performance to the smallest detail. ]
1 - 2- 3 [pages]my yahoo: theatre ActorPoint.com - Casting calls! * Use http://vtheatre.net to link to Virtual Theatre pages!Two new guides -- Apollo and Dionysos (on the right). Do you know why?"He believed that reality should be created in the mind of the spectator rather than on stage, and based his work on Pavlov's Theory Association."
BM & Biomech pages *
[ this page is from the future: acting II (intermediate) class ]
It's theory or simply practicality, but I use BM for comedy. Physical action, big choices -- and the effect.
comedy & comicalUse 12th Night, start with the monologue. Use 12night pages in SHOWS directory. I recommend Malvolio's monologue (letter).
Biomechanics (BM) - antirealistic system of dramatic production developed in the Soviet Union in the early 1920s by the avant-garde director Vsevolod Meyerhold. Meyerhold drew on the traditions of the commedia dell'arte and kabuki and on the writings of Edward Gordon Craig for his system, in which the actor's own personality was eliminated and he was entirely subordinated to the director's will. Coached as gymnasts and acrobats and emphasizing pantomime rather than words, the actors threw themselves about in puppetlike attitudes at the director's discretion. For these productions the stage was exposed to the back wall and was then furnished with harshly lit, bare sets consisting of scaffoldings, ladders, and ramps that the actors used. Biomechanics had lost its appeal by the late 1920s, though Meyerhold's emphasis on external action did become an element in Soviet actor-training techniques. [ Britannica ]
Use monologues and scenes from "The Importance of Being Earnest" (SHOWS directory).
PSBM is for THR221 Acting; here is only the introduction. To show the artrenative to Method Acting techniques, stressing physical acting.
Visualization requires expressing all the attributes of the character: age, social background, specific traits.
Do you know how to use the center of gravity principle for age characterization? Where is the center of gravity in child's body? In the old person?
The Walks: characterization is a must.
HomeworkScenes for class from Mikado
(Nanki-Poo embraces Yum-Yum. Enter Ko-Ko. Nanki-Poo releases Yum-Yum.)
KO. Go on--don't mind me.
NANK. I'm afraid we're distressing you.
KO. Never mind, I must get used to it. Only please do it by degrees. Begin by putting your arm round her waist. (Nanki-Poo does so.) There; let me get used to that first.
YUM. Oh, wouldn't you like to retire? It must pain you to see us so affectionate together!
KO. No, I must learn to bear it! Now oblige me by allowing her head to rest on your shoulder.
NANK. Like that? (He does so. Ko-Ko much affected.)
KO. I am much obliged to you. Now--kiss her! (He does so. Ko-Ko writhes with anguish.) Thank you--it's simple torture!
YUM. Come, come, bear up. After all, it's only for a month.
KO. No. It's no use deluding oneself with false hopes.
NANK. and YUM. What do you mean?
KO. (to Yum-Yum). My child--my poor child! (Aside.) How shall I break it to her? (Aloud.) My little bride that was to have been?
YUM. (delighted). Was to have been?
KO. Yes, you never can be mine!
NANK. and YUM. (simultaneously, in ecstacy): What!/I'm so glad!
KO. I've just ascertained that, by the Mikado's law, when a married man is beheaded his wife is buried alive.
NANK. and YUM. Buried alive!
KO. Buried alive. It's a most unpleasant death.
NANK. But whom did you get that from?
KO. Oh, from Pooh-Bah. He's my Solicitor.
YUM. But he may be mistaken!
KO. So I thought; so I consulted the Attorney General, the Lord Chief Justice, the Master of the Rolls, the Judge Ordinary, and the Lord Chancellor. They're all of the same opinion. Never knew such unanimity on a point of law in my life!
NANK. But stop a bit! This law has never been put in force.
KO. Not yet. You see, flirting is the only crime punishable with decapitation, and married men never flirt.
NANK. Of course, they don't. I quite forgot that! Well, I suppose I may take it that my dream of happiness is at an end!
YUM. Darling--I don't want to appear selfish, and I love you with all my heart--I don't suppose I shall ever love anybody else half as much--but when I agreed to marry you--my own--I had no idea--pet--that I should have to be buried alive in a month!
NANK. Nor I! It's the very first I've heard of it!
YUM. It--it makes a difference, doesn't it?
NANK. It does make a difference, of course.
YUM. You see--burial alive--it's such a stuffy death!
NANK. I call it a beast of a death.
YUM. You see my difficulty, don't you?
NANK. Yes, and I see my own. If I insist on your carrying out your promise, I doom you to a hideous death; if I release you, you marry Ko-Ko at once!
[from ACT II]
NBRead the whole play in order to understand the scene.
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Biomechanics and "camera acting" in film directing *
ET: I understand BM better, because it's mechanical...
ACT and DIRECT photo-archives:
Presentationalism vs. Representationalism
· Drama is a mix of both. The former would be all performance with no hint of a fictional life, while the latter would lack any spectacle or interest.
· Presentationalism: Frank acknowledgement of stage and audience. Actors may speak to us and stage may be bare, so audience must engage their imagination to create a virtual existence for the characters.
· Representationalism: emphasizes life through illusion (realism and naturalism). Shows people living their life, oblivious to being watched. A play can never avoid escape presentation, though (fights must be staged, for example).
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