Exercises 20-21 - Expectation


Expecting Victory - Expectation is the leading edge of an actor’s performance; the character must not only try to achieve a victory, he or she must expect to achieve it. This expectation may be irrational but that is the character’s irrationality, not the actor’s. You have read the script beforehand, but the character has not; therefore your character can expect victory even if victory is not going to be the end result.

-This expectation creates energy of the performance (Interactive Dynamics).

- Expectation is best described by four “E” words.

1. Energy

2. Excitement.

3. Electricity

4. Enthusiasm. * All of these stimulate the audience.

- Audience empathy comes from the audience’s identification with character expectations.

(We tend to think that audiences identify with a character’s suffering, and beginning actors often play self-pity in the mistaken notion that this will stimulate a sympathetic audience reaction. But the audience can identify only with a character’s expectations and enthusiasms.

- A character who is unenthusiastic - who has no expectation of success - is relegated to a purely functional role in the drama & will appear to be “uninvolved”. Audiences cannot - or will not -identify with a predetermined loser or find such people as believable. The fact is, virtually everybody sets out on a difficult with at least some expectation of success. This expectation makes the character interesting.

Exercise 20 Expectations (0pts)

Take a group of students from the audience and have them do the following on stage.

1. Raise hands & expect that you’ll call on them.

2. Expect the others on the stage to follow you.

3. Expect to jump twenty feet in the air even though it sounds irrational.

4. Expect the audience will laugh when you make funny faces.

5. Expect the audience to be afraid of you when you make mean faces.

6. Expect that by waving and smiling at judges in a beauty contest that they will pick you.

7. Expect that by looking said, someone will ask you what’s wrong.

8. Expect the others on the stage will buy your pencil/shoes etc.

9. Expect to split the air molecules.

10.Expect that you are the best dance and that you’ll win first place.

Exercise 21 Bizarre Expectation (15pts)

In pre-selected groups of three, have students write a 3- page bizarre expectation scene. Memorize/Rehearse/Perform.

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