Meeting Your Emotional Obligation Inspired by Eric Morris’ Irreverent Acting CLICK TO ENTER References
Emotional Obligation Angry Happy Sad Click on the obligation that best fits your character.Establish obligation BEFORE moving on!
HAPPY • CAUSES OF HAPPINESS • Love • Excitement/Anticipation • Self Confidence • Power • Contentment • Other Warm Up Rehearsal Performance *Choose an area of exercises from the left
SAD • CAUSES OF SADNESS • Loss • Hurt • Guilt • Worry • Other Warm up Rehearsal Performance *Choose an area of exercise from the left
ANGRY • CAUSES OF ANGER • Hate • Jealousy • Deception • Hurt • Annoyance • Frustration • Impatience • Other Warm up Rehearsal *Choose an area of exercise from the left Performance
Warm Ups • Emotional Inventory • Emotional Point of View Without Words • Emotional Point of View Inventory • Intimate Sharing • Ego Preparation • Due Taking Preparation • Relaxation/Breathing • Abandonment *Click Exercise name for deeper description
Rehearsal Exercises • Sounds With A Choice • Moment to Moment Paraphrasing • Nursery Rhymes • Two Person Trick • Inner-Outer Monologue • Choice Irreverence • Antithetical Explorations • Outrageous Exaggerations *Click Exercise for details
Performance Exercises • Inclusion of All Impulses • Personal Inventory • Inner Monologue • Two People Trick *Click Exercise for details EXIT here ONLY if you have explored all three areas.
HOW DO I FEEL? A stream of consciousness exercise, the personal inventory begins with the most minor of feelings and then goes deeper to get the actor into “the now”. OUT LOUD you begin by saying, “ How do I feel?” Then you answer yourself without analyzing yourself…I feel cold, I’m tired, I’m anxious, etc.
Emotional Point of View Without Words Similar to the personal inventory , the actor must react to his/her feelings and surroundings ONLY using sounds.
Emotional Point of View Similar to the personal inventory , this deals with how you feel about and respond to YOUR SETTING AND ENVIRONMENT… “ How do I feel in this room? I feel stifled…”
Intimate Sharing This basically means that you will, with a partner, take time to look into each other’s eyes and 1. Notice and express things about that person and, 2. Share something about yourself. It is not intended to violate privacy but to break down walls.
EGO PREPARATION This is not intended to make the actor conceited but rather empower the actor to be on stage in the first place. It can be a “Superman” exercise where the actor says that they are Superman and continue a stream of consciousness where they can do anything…The actor can also “Count Their Blessings” and in a stream of consciousness think of all the positive aspects of their life.
Due taking Preparation Similar to an ego exercise , the actor “rants” about what they feel they’ve done or accomplished to have earned the right to be onstage. Used for empowerment. They can also talk about why they are special.
RELAXATION AND BREATHING MUST BEGIN EVERY WARM UP! This is the actor’s opportunity to get relaxed and focused in on themselves. Yoga can be a very powerful tool in this area.
ABANDONMENT This is just about what it sounds like. The actor “abandons” all control, screaming, stomping, or anything else they are compelled to do. It is designed to get them “out of their head” and abandoning self consciousness. They can also do a “Go Crazy” exercise where they act silly and abandon all control.
Sounds With a Choice Essentially the actor improvises the scene and its intentions but can only use SOUNDS to express what they are feeling. They can also use gibberish.
Moment to Moment Paraphrasing In this exercise the actor paraphrases the piece into their own words in order to meet the obligation. This can be especially helpful if the actor has no common experience with the character and must try to put themselves in their character’s shoes.
As ridiculous as it sounds, the actor must rehearse the piece only using lines from nursery rhymes. The object is to focus on intention, rather than just the written word so that the obligation can come out, not unlike the sound/gibberish exercises. Nursery Rhymes
TWO PERSON TRICK ONLY to be used in rehearsal the object is to trick your partner in a scene into losing their focus and obligation. This helps the actor to stay focused and intent on following through on the obligation. Of course, do not do this during a performance. They can also try a “switch trick” exploration in which they interject noticings from their surroundings into the written piece, also throwing their partner off.
Inner/Outer Monologue This is a fantastic tool for keeping the actor “in the moment” and helping them to use their “real” emotions in the piece. The actor begins by saying the real words of the piece, and then interjects with their true emotion or thoughts at that moment. Hopefully the actor can pull some of that real emotion into the piece. Even better, hopefully they find something that matches their chosen obligation. They can also “endow” another person or object and express some real feelings that they have in their life.
CHOICE IRREVERENCE In choice irreverence, the actor must be irreverent to any choices that are preplanned, and see where the exercise takes them. One way to accomplish this is to do a sensory exercise in which an actor doing a monologue must explore what the person they are talking to would look like. They would explore this out loud.
Antithetical Explorations In this exploration, the actor rehearses their piece but goes in the opposite direction from the obvious behavior of the character in order to avoid “on the nose” or contrived acting. It helps to foster new discoveries and choices in obligation.
OUTRAGEOUS EXAGERRATIONS This is just what it sounds like…Go to the ultimate extreme with everything: voice, body, emotion, choices, etc. The object is the get the actor out of feeling stifled. With many actors, this is right where they need to be though it feels exaggerated to them. Also, it is easier to tone something down than to pump it up.
Inclusion of ALL Impulses Since we are now in performance mode, of course you must keep with the lines and intentions of your piece and any exercises must be in your mind. Inclusion of all impulses merely means that whatever impulse you have to your emotion or environment, you will incorporate that into your piece. Nervous energy is still energy…USE IT!!!!
How Do I Feel? The Personal Inventory Since we are now in performance mode, of course you must keep with the lines and intentions of your piece and any exercises must be in your mind. Therefore, the personal inventory must be something done in your head before or even during your piece to help gain focus and emotion. If you haven’t already, go back to warm-ups and explore this exercise in more depth.
Inner Monologue Since we are now in performance mode, of course you must keep with the lines and intentions of your piece and any exercises must be in your mind. This is similar to the personal inventory yet can be any inner thoughts or feelings that get incorporated into the piece.
Two Person Trick This is ONLY to be used in the most professional of situations where the show has been in production for a long time!!!! In this the actors find ways to keep the show “fresh” such as playing word tag with lines or improving new material into the piece.
References Morris, E. (1985,1992) Irreverent Acting. Samuel French. Hollywood, CA