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Sunday, April 10, 2011

Second "C" part 2

So, for the first installment talking about communication as the second "C" of acting, I talked (apparently a LOT) about conflict and objective.  Good stuff.  Conflict engages your audience.  Objective places you firmly in the scene.

Now we're going to address internal obstacles and actions.

Every time we want something, we typically have some fear that works in direct opposition to our objective.  If my objective is to convince the woman that I love not to leave me, my internal obstacle may be that I'm afraid that I may not be good enough for her.

The internal obstacle does several things for us.  It humanizes us, first and foremost.  As far as I've been able to observe, doubt is what separates us from our beastly brethern.  My dog may not want to get caught stealing food from the table, but he doesn't doubt that he should have it if he can manage to obtain it. 

An internal obstacle also gives us dimension.  If I'm 100% sure of what I'm doing, that's kind of boring.  There needs to be that interplay between what we want and what we're afraid of. 

Finally, it gives us something to play when the other person is talking.  While they're talking we really can't pursue our objective.  But we can play our internal obstacle.  While the woman that I love is detailing all of the reasons that she should leave, I'm listening with my fears firmly in place.  I'm hearing everything she says through the filter of "I'm not good enough for her."

So, conflict draws the audience in, objective grounds us in the reality of the scene and internal obstacle humanizes us.  Should be enough, right?


Now we have to be interesting.  And that's where actions come in.  Actions are active verbs that we can do to the other person in support of our objective.  In other words, I may "punch" or "caress" or "tickle" the woman that I love with my words in order to convince her not to leave me.  These actions allow our acting to be specific, active and intensely personal.  The way I "pierce" or "seduce" will be dramatically different from the way someone else does it.

For more detail on these subjects, please join in with me this Thursday at 8 pm Pacific Standard Time, where I'll be discussing this more in depth while live on my show.  Questions about any of this?  Leave a question here in the comments (or in the comments on my blogtalkradio page), @ or DM me on the stream, or email me at actingwithoutthedrama (at) gmail (dot) com.  Oooo... one final option:  call in to the show to have your question answered LIVE!  I love to have callers, so don't be shy.  The number is (424) 243-9619.


  1. Living in the UK I like to read the podcast summary and download from itunes later, excited about this one!

  2. I love the fact that all of these formats allow for an international conversation about acting! So glad to have you listening. :)