Theatre is a wonderful form of art where you can pretend to be anyone you want to be and to act as that character before an audience. However, there is much more to theatre than simply acting out a character on stage. There are five important techniques that are central to theatre.
In theatre, eye contact with another actor is very important because it is a way for actors to gage each other’s emotions. Eye contact also nurtures character development, intensifies emotions and makes the story more believable to the audience. At the same time, when you are acting on stage, you should never show your back to the audience. Some eye contact with the audience is also good because it draws them into the story and keeps them engaged.
Emotion is how you respond to another character’s actions and how you feel on the inside. Emotion is a very complex trait we humans possess. While it is effortless to express an emotion in reality, it takes much effort to feel another person’s emotions. In order to accomplish this, you have to get into the mindset of the character you have been cast to perform. This is the most difficult technique in theatre. That is why it takes months to rehearse a play before it is performed.
You can’t stay perfectly still on stage. Your audience will either fall asleep or leave the theatre in a matter of minutes. When you are on stage, your body must move. Here’s the thing, though. You only move when you have a reason to move, or use hand gestures when you need to use them.
Awareness ties in so well with body movement because both techniques require a high level of focus. You must be aware of where you are on stage. You also need to be aware of the movements you make as well as the movements of other actors. Awareness is so important because it keeps the flow of the story moving along at a smooth pace.
Pausing is the fifth technique used in theatre. It can be used when you are emotionally overwhelmed or when you blank out on stage. In the latter case, it is good to pause and to give yourself a measure of time to recollect your thoughts. If this happens, you want to make it look like it is part of the scene. If your pause is too long, then the audience will know that you have forgotten your lines.
All five techniques; eye contact, emotion, body movement, awareness and pausing play an equally significant role in theatre. They must all be played out effectively on stage or else all fails.