Stanislavski's Techniques

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Stanislavski believed that, without imagination, an actor or actress could not be successful, as their performance could not be ‘true'. He believed it was the most useful tool a performer could have, as a strong imagination allows them to truly draw themselves and others into their character. This ties into all of Stanislavski's techniques.

This technique is divided into two sections, both of which must be considered in a role: inner and outer. The inner tempo rhythm represents how the character is feeling and thinking, while the outer tempo rhythm represents how the character is acting. Both of those must be considered as the character the actor is portraying encounters different situations, as the inner and outer tempo rhythm can conflict with each other with different situations. For example, if the character was relaxing on a beach, both tempo rhythms would be slow and calm, whereas if the character was in a romantic situation, the outer tempo rhythm might be calm and collected, but the inner tempo rhythm would be crazy and fast, as if panicking.

Using the magic ‘if' technique requires the actor to use their imagination, and is essentially an advanced form of make-believe. It can change the entire situation and help the actor draw themselves into their character, by asking them simply to consider how they themselves would act if, and portraying this stronger sense of realism in their character. For example, the actor could ask themselves, "What would happen if this actress next to me was really my girlfriend?".

Emotion memory involves the actor putting on a more convincing performance by stimulating their own memories and emotions that correspond with how their character feels. For example, if the character has just experienced a great loss, the actor could think back to a time where they suffered a great loss, remembering the emotions they went through...
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