Saturday musings - and happy Halloween!
This is a continuation of yesterday's blog...
As you begin to explore the repertoire of monologue/character/type relating to fach/authors/form etc - then you need to find an acting class and acting coach!
Personally, this portion of how we are trained is lacking from the beginning! Opera is theatre and even though voce leads, you MUST have some working knowledge of building a character and being on stage!
So, invest in your craft by finding an acting class that allows you to build on basic vocabulary, or renewed vocabulary, and then find an acting coach who works specifically with monologue work. This can make all the difference in the world to your understanding, your development and your presentation as a singing actor!
How do you find these coaches? Ask! Ask your teachers, ask your colleagues, check out acting schools and email for information about people who teach there who specialize in monologue work and check into private coaching. There are many great coaches who are working in this capacity and there is no excuse to not find them!
Monologue books are great resources and I will give you a few suggestions to get you started on this blog (Thanks Doug for your comment on yesterday's blog...!) but it is important to then read the full play as well. KNOW THE WORK you are excerpting. Just like understanding the context of the aria you are singing, so you should have the same knowledge for your monologue.
Acting with your speaking voice has physicality, melody, rhythm, subdivision, pulse and beat. We work with the musicality of language as actors and then take it deeper into dramatic beat, subtext, breath, resonance and tempo. We have to discover ALL of this to allow for a reality to emerge and make specific decisions to create this reality! The layers of discovery are exciting and tangible if we follow them carefully! Great coaches can help bring this to your consciousness and your physicality with triumph!
So, start digging through monologue books, plays, anthologies of authors, ask questions, explore and development this crucial part of being on stage!
Here are some suggestions of monologue books to get you started that can be filled with great ideas and information and this list is by no means exhaustive! As I said yesterday, Drama Book Shop in NYC is a great resource for material, but also for a staff that is knowledgeable and helpful - another great resource!!!
221 Monologues for Women (and one for Men) by John Capecci
One on One: The Best Women's Monologues for the 21st Century (and one for Men)
The Actor's Book of Contemporary Stage Monologues: More Than 150 Monologues from More than 70 Playwrights
Hope this is helpful...and just a few to get you started!!!
Don't eat too much chocolate tonight and enjoy your monologue exploration!
Susan Eichhorn Young
Susan Eichhorn Young covers all things voice—strong and sophisticated singing and speaking.
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