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Accessing Your Emotions with Ease

Laura Pensiero teaches Reiki classes for actors at the Maggie Flanigan Studio. In this video, Laura discusses the problems that actors face when forcing their emotions.

Reiki Classes for Actors - Laura Pensiero - Maggie Flanigan Studio

Reiki Classes for Actors – Laura Pensiero – Maggie Flanigan Studio

Forced Emotions Feel Inauthentic

One of the most significant challenges actors face is accessing their emotions with ease and authenticity. Often, when the actor has a scene that requires an emotional outburst, the initial instinct is to force the emotions. When the actor forces crying or anger, it feels inauthentic to the audience. The reason the actor tries to manipulate emotions into existence is for fear the emotions will not come naturally. This creates a lot of tension and tightness around the emotional life and makes the body look uneasy and uncomfortable. The throat gets strained, the muscles in the face clench and the actor stops breathing. When the actor stops breathing, they completely disconnect from their emotions. The result and what the audience sees is “bad acting.”


When an actor fears their emotions will not come naturally, they often try to manipulate emotions into existence. To the audience, this feels inauthentic.

Laura PensieroReiki Classes for Actors

What the actor needs is to remain relaxed, open and free of physical, emotional and mental tension. It can be confusing and counter-intuitive for the actor to maintain a relaxed body during a heightened emotional scene. It is crucial for the body, and emotional life to be tension free for the acting to be believable and engaging.

The work I do with actors helps release tightness and tension in the body and around the emotional life. By using the breath, the actor can move out of their head and into their body. The mind becomes quiet, allowing the body to be more present. The actor connects to their emotional life, their intuition, their creativity and their heart, allowing them to be completely open and feel safe in their body. Through the breath, the actor can release energetic blocks preventing them from utilizing their full range of emotions. I use Reiki, which is a Japanese relaxation technique using energy healing, to put the body into a deeply relaxed state. This turns off the fight or flight response and allows the body to enter the restorative and healing rest and digest state. When the body is deeply relaxed and free of tension, the actor can access their emotions with ease and readiness. This work helps release the fear the actor may have when working on intense emotional scripts. The comfort and freedom of the actor’s emotions make the performance genuine and truthful to the audience and sustainable for the actor take after take or night after night.

Reiki Classes for Actors at Maggie Flanigan Studio

Learn more about Laura Pensiero, the acting classes and acting programs at the Maggie Flanigan Studio by visiting our studio website at Prospective students can call the studio during open hours with specific questions about our acting programs and class schedule.

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