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ERIC Number: ED173888
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1979-Aug
Pages: 18
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: 0
Strutting and Fretting: Shakespeare and the Novice Actor.
Barton, Robert
A survey of approximately 450 novice Shakespearean actors was undertaken to determine what could be learned from a careful study of the initiation of new performers acting Shakespeare that might be helpful to others. The findings revealed that the typical initiate perceives acting Shakespeare as different from other acting, indicates a definite belief that knowledge of verse is essential (but usually can't explain iambic pentameter correctly), feels that voice is the most significant element, and has a moderately paranoid attitude toward British actors. In addition, it was discovered that at the end of the first experience, most performers saw the task as demanding more energy and work than they had anticipated. The results suggest that the performer who can be both spiritual and earthy will be best suited to perform Shakespeare. (Emphasizing the similarities between Shakespearean plays and American musicals is noted as a technique to aid actors in performing and a game called "Shakespeare Country," in which the actors engage in conversation about contemporary topics using Shakespearean phrases and language style during rehearsal time, is suggested to make the language seem more real to the cast.) (MKM)
Publication Type: Reports - Research; Guides - General; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Shakespeare (William)
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Theatre Association (New York, New York, August 12-15, 1979)