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The Actors Instrument And Physical Expression – Meisner Acting

The actors instrument is something actors may have heard before, especially if they study the Meisner acting technique. While directors and actors are sometimes at odds due to creative differences, the truth is actors are the instruments, the components, that make up a successful production with a director as a conductor. Creative differences may find actors and directors at odds, but the actors are the instruments directors use somewhat like a conductor to tell a story. The actors instrument is what the actor uses to channel the vision of the writer and director, creating the most artful, interesting character they can to make the vision a reality. Actors who have worked hard to develop their actors instrument are the ones who most often enrich a story, by bringing complex, interesting characters to the vision.

Instruments make beautiful sound, actors make a full range of expressions, from voice and sound to physical, and subtle emotional communication to tell us about our unique human experience. Expressions, both internal and external, are what Meisner technique actors work hard to develop and integrate into an “instrument” they can use as actors. There are six parts that comprise the actors instrument, generally, and they can be listed as Intelligence, Emotion, Sensory expression, Imagination, Empathy and Physical expression. By mastering as many of these aspects as possible, and working hard at developing all of them, an actor has the ability to take on any role. Some of the most successful, award winning actors have mastered all six of these forms of expression.

The Maggie Flanigan Studio provides acting classes in NYC for serious actors. Find out more about meisner acting at the studio website or read this article about acting instrument.

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