August 15, 2022
What is a motivational objective and how does it work? Let's explore. What is my motivation? Translate that into what am I fighting for? What do I want? So, modern acting is based on the works of Constantine's tennis Slosky and his books and actor prepares building a character, creating a role and his biography, my life in art., the first one, an actor prepares was published in 1936.
In Russian, but it was translated by Elizabeth hap good Reynolds, an academic. When I work with British actors, they love the gut level American take on text. Particularly Shakespeare. So, what you're always asking yourself is, you know, in a relationship when's the last time you said to a partner, what's your motivation?
How many times have you said, what do you want? What do you want? I don't know what you want from me. Now, one of the great things about this stuff is the more you learn to play a want. It carries into your personal life. You just get clearer about asking for what you want and saying no to what you don't want.
Write down, ask and fight for what I want and say no to what I don't want. You've gotta play the positive, but motivation objective to me, it sounds very formal and what I loved about Mr. Shirt Lift's work in the book audition and when we became very fast friends in the early 90s. we just shared a take on the way you speak to yourself as an actor has to relate and come out of your personal life because you're a person. Always be a person first
and an actor second in any audition, we're always gonna talk to you for at least five minutes. I want to know about you. Maybe some anecdote will come up or maybe I find out we're both from Buffalo or Western New York, or that you're a football fan. We're football fans, or, you know, you love the Beatles.
Don't get me started. I don't know. I want to talk to you and see if we share some stuff and it's also going to relax the actor. What I don't love is when actors say, may I take a moment? I think, oh, please. Don't, don't take a moment because the moment you want to take is the one that's gonna take you out of this one and start from this person that I'm enjoying talking to in the, in the chair.
I wanna see if that person comes through these words, right? Because when they say, may I take a moment, it's usually, you know,
and then they and they make some Kabuki face or something. Don't ever do that. So, write down acting as private moments made public and your first job as an actor is to personalize the text. which feels somewhat audacious because you're not yet part of this project under the heading of the text, the four agreements, one of those is never make assumptions as an actor.
That's an assumption you want to make that you're already part of this production. So, come in. Ready to go to set. Ready to go to camera. You could go on stage tonight. If the other actor, somebody got sick, you know, their role. So, prepare, prepare, prepare. If you wanna know what luck is, it's practice.
Practice practice practice, but how you speak to yourself as an actor in your life will equal what the work looks like. So, always put everything into an eye statement and I was taught, you know, what's your motivation? What's your objective? It didn't really speak to me because it sounded somewhat highfalutin rather.
What do I want? Oh, what do I want, what do I want? What do I want? Our technique is based on 15 guide posts. Six viewpoints, four parts of vocal variation and the four agreements of the 15 guidepost. Is there one or two that is the most important number one is relationship. Our life is nothing. If not a series of close relationships and number two conflict, what am I fighting for?
How am I meddling? These are the most important and they translate into objective the relationship Determines how you will fight for what you want. If it's a first date, if it's, you've been living together for a year and you're fighting for something, it's a different set of tools you would use to fight for that.
Right? Cuz there's a certain familiarity there. If you are fighting for a job. In the corporate sector as a server, as a bartender, the corporate sector may have a certain formality. Now we go back to Ms. Reynolds originally, Ms. Hapgood until she married Mr. Reynolds, who was prime minister. To Denmark that, you know, again, this is an academic person, a rather renowned academic person.
By the time she turned am mere 21, she was heading the Russian department at Columbia university and they didn't have one. So, she created it. And then she went from there to teach the same stuff at Dartmouth, but this was not an actor, a choreographer, a director. So, and of that era, remember the first book was published in 1936, building a character.
The second book was published in 1949 and creating a role, the. Of the three wasn't published until 1961, relatively new stuff. But the first one 1936, if you look at films of the thirties, there is a certain formality to the way people spoke and carried themselves. As opposed to this very era, we find ourselves living in the relationship, determines how you will pursue your objective.
Also known. How you will fight for what you want. So, think in terms of verbs and ad verbs, active verbs, and also there is no mileage in speaking any other way, other than an eye statement, I want you actors avoid this and it's always curious to me why they wanna avoid it. Well, what he's feeling in the scene or what she's thinking?
Well, if I say what he's feeling, they're probably gonna hire him. So, I, I. Makes me feel more vulnerable makes me feel that it's more personal. I think you've seen this in any skirmish with a friend. Don't say, I'm sorry. You feel that way? say I'm sorry. I made you feel that way or I'm sorry. I was thoughtless.
I'm sorry. It's really hard for guys particularly, I'm sorry. I never intended to hurt your feelings rather than I'm sorry. You. Feel that way and that won't get you anywhere, probably make it worse. Remember this and you know, when your, Ann swiftly, you can thank me. Yeah, in your prayers and under the heading of you can't play what you don't want.
That means you must make positive choices. I've never met the actor who makes too many positive choices. Why do the choices have to be positive? You ask because the negatives in life are a given. We find ourselves living in a particularly negative graceless age. Yes. Gravity is a given death is a given.
Taxes are a given. You must provide the positive, the positive opens you to the world of possibility. So, play the positive, even if it seemingly makes no sense to you. play the positive more on why it's so challenging to play the positive click on the link below. Are you playing the positive in your life?
So when we think of competition, well, I've had people say, but can I compete nicely? Great. Well, you know, all of the relationships in your life, if they don't challenge you to grow in some way, why are they there? Because you are superior in every way to everybody you're around. No, you need to surround yourself with people that are good at certain things you're not good at and vice versa, and you will both grow together, but all scenes are about competition.
Think about any sporting event you've seen. That's a blowout. You know, you, reach for the remote, you notice whenever you watch a football game, if it's a blowout, sometimes at halftime, the stadium's half empty. If it's really lopsided game, it's all about competition. But rework that word in your life, that competition is not.
Competition is positive. Cause once again, back to ask and fight for what I want say no to what I don't want. That's all about competition. Now, if I'm thinking what's my motivation or what's my objective, that feels like I'm in my left brain rather than what do I want here and how am I gonna get it? And that leads to dangerous.
Very vital, vocally vital, physically vital. Acting rather than I have an understanding of what my objective is and what my motivation is great, but it's not a book report. Our job as actors, folks, your job is to supply all the bodily fluids writers, give us ink and pulp. Paper, but it's like musical notes.
It's nothing until you pick up your instrument or you start to sing and bring it to life, it's your job to supply all the bodily fluids, especially those that secrete. Otherwise we have, particularly if it's a classic text, we have what I call bloodless. Museum piece theater. It's very well spoken.
Everyone's alignment is lovely, but you don't care cuz there's no feeling in any of it. But if you looked at us still from that production, wow, that looked great. You weren't there. It looked great acting of the highest level, regardless of the genre always has humor and mischief. That's your job to unearth that, to find it actors love to say, well, I don't, I don't see anything humorous.
Or anything mischievous in this, I go, right? That's why you're not yet getting the work you're capable of getting, because you've gotta learn how to mine that, how to dig it out, because it's always there. If you took humor out of this life, you wouldn't be able to get out of bed tomorrow morning. So, why do people have trouble playing the positive?
Because you're not yet fully living it. Remember we compete folks when you hear competition, people think it's yelling. Well, anger is really the cheapest of the competitive tools and anger is most often a cover for vulnerability. Think about it. The person that can make you the angriest is the one you feel the most vulnerable around, uh, when you feel disappointed and you feel like they don't really understand you, but we compete with our hips.
We compete with our heart and our humor. And lastly, we compete with our head. But when this is in your life, you will find as your acting improves, the quality of your life improves too. Isn't that exciting. So, I refer once again to my late great teacher, Stella Adler, Stella said your growth as an actor is synonymous with your growth as a person.
So, once again, write this down. An actor is a professional human being. And what does that mean? That means you are fully human. You feel everything. You're never that person that says I don't want to go there. Your job is to build your house there, build your home. And that means you feel everything. The highs are gonna be higher.
The lows are gonna be lower, but you will feel more alive. And the good news is, you know, feelings are like storm clouds. They always pass. But above those clouds, the sun is always shining. And the wind that moves those clouds of despair by is your breath. But remember above those clouds, the sun is always shining.
You are the earth, you are the constant, your feelings of the weather. The good news is the worst storm you've ever been in ends. And this sad news is the sont day passes. but it will rise again. So, beware of objective and motivation because they feel. Left brain. They feel intellectual. They feel non-emotional all the choices that you make are to bring you back to your body because that's where your breath is and your feelings right on your breath.
I don't want to get up here. Actors love to say, well, you know, I'm just, I'm I'm in my head. I don't feel connected. I go, well, if you're in your head, it's cuz that's a familiar place for you to be, write it down in my head. I'm dead. Get back in your body, cuz your body is always in the now your head is dragging the dead past in your little red radio flyer wagon with you, right?
And your head is also awfulizing about the future, but only your body, your breath. What you're feeling is here right now, and this is why it's challenging for people to play a moment is they're not fully in this moment ever get in the moment. Get in the now of. Do it now. So, why do I have to be competitive folks?
Life is competitive. You compete for the best mortgage rate you compete for the best life mates, you compete for low rent before you're ready for that mortgage, you compete for the strongest agent you compete. Even that agent's competing to get you into a hot project. Because everybody wants to be seen for that.
It's competitive. Get with it. Don't personalize it. The four agreements don't take it personally. It's not personal, but life is competitive. Remember? Hope is not a life strategy. Give up hope and have faith, faith in yourself. Invest in yourself, get it going. Do it now, do it badly. But get in competition.
It's called the human race first foremost. And finally the one you're competing with is yourself. It all starts with. And it ends with you. So, beware the unspoken pact. I find actors do this where, you know, well, we don't want to compete because in life we're very good friends. So we make what I call the unspoken pact, which is I won't play to win if you don't play to win and you're both lose and the audience maybe the biggest loser of all right.
So, that's a, that's a subconscious thing, Mr. Short lift. And I would talk for many hours about why do people. Think that friendships aren't competitive. They're really competitive. Those of you who play tennis are like watching it. You know, you might have a friend with a serve that is very difficult for you to return, but maybe you have a backhand that's better than theirs.
That's what makes it interesting. So, before the next time we play you, I'm gonna work on my serve and you're gonna work on your back hand because we're really competitive and we both get stronger as a result. But only through competition. So, once again, competition is not a dirty word. Competition is life survival of the fittest.
So, write it down once again, ask and fight for what I want and say Nope to what I don't. This life is about growth and it's about growth through competition mainly with yourself. So, what is your motivation to grow? To fulfill your heart's desire? Come visit us on a Saturday. I promise you will take more notes than you've ever imagined, and we will devise a personalized strategy for you first for your craft, and then ultimately for your career. See you then.