Acting Exercises and Workshops: A Personal Development Training Ground
Acting Workshops are actually a good personal development training ground for anyone desiring to add value to their being. Personal Development Training Courses are concerned about improving self awareness, building or renewing self identity, discovering or uncovering talents, identifying and developing potentials, enhancing personality, and even realizing lifelong dreams. Acting Workshops provide the very same opportunities of personal growth. I have been fortunate enough to have a first hand experience and have witnessed how others were empowered after taking acting workshops.
Acting Workshops focus on developing the actor’s instrument, his being. As William Shakespeare has said “All the world's a stage, And all the men and women merely players.” We all have roles to play in this stage called life doing as many as 10 roles and beyond e.g. a mother, a daughter, a wife, an aunt, an in-law, a best friend, a career woman, a counselor, a customer, an advocate etc. If we want to be effective in any of these roles then we will need as much training as we can get.
The actor’s instrument is composed of the following:
- The Voice
- The Body
- The Emotions
- The Intellect
- The Power to Believe
The Voice: A Sound Investment
Your ability to speak clearly in front of a crowd and deliver a valuable message is a communication skill that will help you play your respective roles better. Acting workshops develop your voice quality, voice projection, vocal expression, and more importantly, teach you techniques to conquer the fear of facing a crowd.
It is normal for any human being to get jitters before doing anything in front of crowd. I still get butterflies in the stomach before a talk or performance. With the training you get from acting workshops however, it is easier to let go of these uncomfortable feelings the moment you go onstage and say those first lines.
You will definitely feel a different kind of confidence the next time you do a sales pitch, give a concept presentation, read a report to your community or deliver short speeches during special occasions
The Body: A Wealth of Expression
Your body is able to communicate ideas and feelings that words could not fully describe. Unfortunately, we have limited our ways of using our bodies to articulate feelings. Acting workshops allow you to explore the full potential of your body -- its flexibility, its versatility, its strength, its uniqueness, and its beauty.
Body movement exercises in Acting Workshops make you more aware of space, lines, levels, symmetry, coordination, rhythm and how to use every part of your body in various interesting ways. The experience makes you trust your body and appreciate its value in your life. Improving your body expression enhances your public speaking skills, gives you the courage to volunteer your newfound dancing potentials in office programs or family gatherings, and give you the drive to keep your body fit and healthy.
The Emotions: A Wellspring of Truth
Our emotions reveal our personal truths. In everyday life however, expressing emotions are often suppressed to give way to social norms. Many of us may even prefer to numb ourselves in order to avoid pain not knowing that in doing so, this very truth we try to avoid could cause us to explode at the wrong moment and at the wrong person. Acting workshops provide a venue to express these emotions in a creative manner. Conflict exercises and scene building exercises are perfect to serve this need. They allow you to play roles that give way for you to express fully and totally the feelings you could not display in real life.
The process becomes a therapeutic experience. It aids you in releasing negative energy in your system which contributes to better health. Hence, you not only are able to put truth in acting but you also are relieved of some amount of stress in your life. Personal development training through acting workshops improves your ability to face your feelings no matter the pain and then equip you with tools to move beyond the emotions.
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The Intellect: A Storehouse of Information
In acting workshops many group exercises help develop your ability to analyze things, respond quickly, take initiative, and uncover ways of approaching a situation. It uses your power to create things with what is available and from there discover new paths to solve a problem. Most often than not the exercises allot very little time to fulfill a task leaving little time to plan and prepare. In some cases, you are just thrown into a scene spontaneously and will have to rely on your listening skills, observation skills, quick thinking and creativity to help you respond in the scene. This encourages you to be proactive, responsible, supportive and disciplined.
There are many things that occur in life that we cannot predict and having been trained in acting workshops could put you at an advantage because you have explored countless possibilities on how to deal with things as they come. The attitude of openness, acceptance, initiating action and responding to action allows you to easily move from one condition to another and use this power to create a better situation for all.
The Power To Believe: The Wings Of Personal Growth
The ability to believe a situation, a role, a line in a script is essential in acting. You have to believe it all to be true in order to effectively carry out a scene. Believability however goes beyond being a good actor. It crosses over to real life and help you become a better person. When you are able to believe in your true worth as a person, as an individual in society capable of contributing much to the world, as a being with valuable talents and skills, or as a beautiful creation and reflection of God Himself then you can accomplish much in this lifetime.
Acting workshops are filled with exercises that can equip you with tools to increase your believability level. Eric Morris, a New York acting coach, has developed several exercises that make use of your personal truth to heighten believability in scenes and in real life. I know the effectiveness of such exercises and have benefited from them tremendously.
A Total Quality Management guru once said, “To be persuasive one must be believable, to be believable one must be credible, to be credible one must be truthful.” This statement sums up the power of believability transcending the stage realm and positively affect the realm of reality.
Now, if you do intend to increase your value or your “market value” for that matter, then it may be worthy to consider joining an acting workshop for a change.
Act now and see the difference in your life.
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