Tuesday 24 January 2017



Sometimes, when actors come across words like this in their course of study, they get overwhelmed. A lot of people make things sound more complicated than they really are by making the meaning of what you are studying very difficult to understand. It is already tedious to study all the topics you will need in becoming a good actor, so let us make it easier for you to understand what you are about to study. 

"Remember that this blog is not a full class, it is a guide to make things easier for you so that when you attend a proper class and read books, they become clearer and easier for you." 

As acting students, we already know the meaning of the word SCENE but if you don't then you will need to start all over by getting a book of acting terminologies
There are different scenes in a script for film and all the scenes must be broken down into individual stories so that you can understand what PURPOSE each scene is serving in the script or story. 
Breaking down each scene and exploring its purpose, meaning and impact is what we call SCENE STUDY. Simply put, the study of the scene. 
Sounds so simple, yet complicated.

Every script has a beginning, based on how the script was written; it also has a middle and must have an end. The fact that the story or plot was unresolved does not remove the fact that the script has an end. Even when you are expecting a sequel, the last page of the script is the end of part 1.
The individual scenes must also be broken down the same way, which means that each scene must have a beginning, a middle and an end.
That is how you will have to break down the STRUCTURE of the scene. I like to draw lines to separate them so that it's easy to know at a glance. 

The next thing I do is to identify the characters in the scene. 
Some actors like to work on scenes that their characters appear in, but I like to work on every scene of the script so that I understand the script in its entirety. This helps me know all the characters, the arc of their behavior, how it affects my character and the purpose of my own character in the whole story.

When I am done identifying the characters, I then go back to my RELATIONSHIP TREE (which I will explain in the next blog) so that I know the relationship between the characters in that particular scene.

This is the part where I identify the PURPOSE or the THEME of the scene. This means figuring out what part the scene is playing in the story or what happened in that scene. What was the discovery in the scene or what changed the course of the story in that scene. I usually like to write this at the TOP RIGHT CORNER of the scene I am studying.
After this is done, then you gradually identify the emotions of that scene. In doing that, remember that you have broken down the scene into BEGINNING, MIDDLE AND END, so you must break your emotions down in the beginning, if it changes at the middle then you have to note that down, if it changes at the end of the scene then make sure you note it as well.
This instantly helps you to identify the emotions you are supposed to feel at every point in the scene. Being able to achieve this means that your scene will have EMOTIONAL CLARITY (you will learn this in subsequent blogs). 
It becomes easier to study your scene when you get to this point. All you will need to finish up at this level is your PACE which helps you regulate the speed of your delivery and action; your RHYTHM which is the movement pattern that works with the timing of the scene for speech and action.

So to make a list of requirements for your SCENE STUDY, let us go over the things I recommend for you to do:

  1. STRUCTURE: break the scene down to BEGINNING, MIDDLE AND END.
  2. CHARACTER: identify the characters in the scene and understand the relationships
  3. PURPOSE: find out the theme of the scene and what purpose it's serving in the story
  4. EMOTIONAL CLARITY: understand the emotions involved in your scene STRUCTURE 
  5. PACE: regulate speed of delivery of action and dialogue
  6. RHYTHM: movement pattern of dialogue and action
This process can be much easier for you if have read the script from beginning to end at least 3 times. Before you start breaking down the scenes and studying them, please know the story you are dealing with properly so that you do not give the wrong results in your scenes. 
For those who have never studied any of these acting TERMINOLOGIES before now, please try and get books or attend classes. Knowing these terms makes you more professional and acceptable as a global actor.

Thank you for stopping by. 

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