Learning Your Lines & Getting Into Character | Skill Collective | Skillshare

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Learning Your Lines & Getting Into Character

teacher avatar Skill Collective, a Collective offering skills

Watch this class and thousands more

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Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Watch this class and thousands more

Get unlimited access to every class
Taught by industry leaders & working professionals
Topics include illustration, design, photography, and more

Lessons in This Class

    • 1.

      01 - Learning Your Lines & Getting Into Character - Introduction


    • 2.

      02 - Auditioning vs Being On Set


    • 3.

      03 - You Got The Part, Now What?


    • 4.

      04 - Read First Then Play


    • 5.

      05 - When Words And Character Marry


    • 6.

      06 - Characterization


    • 7.

      07 - Outro


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About This Class

Learning Your Lines & Getting Into Character

Acting is a craft, just like any other art form. Painters develop their own unique strokes; writers have their own toolbox full of tricks to create a story. It’s the same with acting. This course is not based on a specific acting technique like Meissner or Method. We as actors should never be limited to just one technique only. You should explore and take what works best for you from the various techniques available. 

During this course, we invite you to join us on this creative journey on how to learn your lines and get into character.

This course consists of the following lessons – and more:

  • What you do on set will most probably l be different to what you did in the audition room.
  • Forget everything you knew about your character and start from scratch.
  • Other characters are just as important as yours
  • Pre-recording the other character’s lines to learn yours.
  • Steal from the other character’s lines to remember which line comes next.
  • Use your imagination when it comes to characterization  
  • Meditate & make decisions regarding your character
  • Find your character’s spirit animal to help you with your character’s mannerisms & characteristics.  
  • And finally, find your character’s song to help you get back into character on set

We truly hope that you will enjoy this course and learn a lot! We believe that you will knock their socks off with your performance!

Meet Your Teacher

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Skill Collective

a Collective offering skills


Hello, we are Skill Collective!

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1. 01 - Learning Your Lines & Getting Into Character - Introduction: Hello. I am Chanel. The Yarder, A thespian from Cape Town, South Africa. I've been acting since since I can remember, you might know me from our other courses cast people commercials and hard to create a wing south tape with your smartphone. If you're watching this, you must be an actor. So take a peek of those courses. It's right up your any. But enough about you. Here's a little bit more about me and my. After I studied acting, I landed a part in South Africa's first soap operas Goalie Place. Of course, during my six years on, set off a daytime soap via quickly learned the importance off discipline and hard work that goes into preparing for a C. Since thing I've been in numerous local and international productions, working with actors like Kate Beckinsale in The Widow and Caitriona Balfe Outlander would have been overwhelming if I did not have the skills and tools I've gained over the past 20 years. Thanks to the skills that I will be sharing with you today, I was focused and completely in character during the shoot. Oh, how the what a beautiful city. Why did you leave Paris, Francois I never Defection Week must be one of my favorite sons of the gene poll gold here , Christian Dior show. No, it's just fabulous. You must have been to all of them. Now, before we jump into the listens. I just want to make it very clear that every active techniques acting is a craft just like any other art form. Painters developed their own unique strokes. Writers after own to box full of tricks to create a story. It's the same with acting. My cause is not based on a specific acting technique like Meisner or Method. I strongly believe that RIAS actors should never be limited to just one technique only you should explore and take what works for you from the various techniques available. So I invite you to join me on this journey and hope that you will benefit for my course on how to get into character and learning your lives. 2. 02 - Auditioning vs Being On Set: For me, the auditioning process is the hardest part of acting. This is mostly because of the uncertainty. Yes, your agent send you the script. You've learned your lines, but it's not enough. If you are lucky. You received a for a character brief, and sometimes you have no idea where in the story or character fits. No idea what the back story is. For me, auditioning is 80% winning it and 20% certainty. Keep the following in mind to help you through this daunting part off the craft directors, or really have a very clear idea of what they are looking for in an actor to portray apart . The first take on the first few minutes you have in the studio with the casting director is your own interpretation off the role. Often there, then change gears. They give you new notes and changes they require in your performance. This can throw you if you over rehearsed your scene and made your choices for the character beforehand. My advice is to be open to any changes on the day off the audition. Often when we are short listed, the director will give you more notes and changes on the day off, the callback or recall? Remember, they are testing you. They want to see if you can take direction that are pushing you to see if you have the instinct to grasp the character. Most of the time, the work done in the audition room is very different from the final performance. When you finally step on set, so trust your instinct, that's all you have. 3. 03 - You Got The Part, Now What?: the phone rang. Your agent gave you the great news. You got the part. Congrats, relations. But what you do now, where do you start? Do you learn your lines right away? Do you spend nights and days dreaming off the night you receive your Oscar? Every actor has his or her own way off reacting to the good news. So take a day or two if you have time to celebrate. If you want to. Just don't start spending the money you have not earned yet. Research, research research. Get as much information as possible regarding your role from your agent. Most productions have detailed character Bibles, and don't be shy to ask your agent for this. Remember, you are your agents, clients. They actually work for you. It's not the other way around. So make sure they seem to all the right information and mark them for any other info about the production. Who will be directing what previous workers the production company reduced? They news All your other resource is available. Google is your friend and I m D B Baby now, as discussed in the previous listen, the character you envision during the audition phase was based on limited information you had beforehand. Wipe all that from your mind and start the characterization from scratch. A blank canvas is the base place to start. Auditions are usually watered down versions off the character. So take all the information you could gather and start over. 4. 04 - Read First Then Play: If you're like me, you will start panicking about known your lines off by heart straight away. Don't do that to yourself. Trust the creative process and enjoyed diving into the character. First, choose a few days where you can put the everyday worries aside, Find a comfy space, meditate and clear your mind for a few minutes and then open your script. This is always a magical moment for any actor. So in prices, some actors only read their own lines and ignore the rest. Firstly, I think it's unfair and disrespectful to your fellow actors, as well as an insult to the writer. Secondly, it's just lazy. You're not doing yourself or your character any favors by taking short cuts. Often, the other characters discuss or mention your character. That information is crucial to your re shirts, about your role in terms of back story and where you fit into the story. So make notes of what other characters say will think about you, read the whole script and understand the reasons for your character to be they in the first place. As we all know, acting is reacting, and I'm sure you will agree with me that there's nothing more frustrating than playing opposite. Another actor was self serving or not. In the moment with you, the more you give to another actor, the more work you'll get. It's a universal law. This thing's yourself from your character first when reading your script said back and read it like you are a spectator in the audience with the first initial reading off your scripts . Avoid hearing your own voice in your head, delivering the dialogue as you would want. You're in character that's jumping the gun. Also, avoid reading it out loud to yourself at the stage. You as an active me to see the character. You will play a sport off the whole first before you can start dissecting the layers off your individual. Now that you know the story and you have been introduced to the other characters as well, read the script again. This time you can start investing emotionally. Take your time, Put yourself in the shoes off the character plays your mind and feeling into the character . But don't say the lines out loud just yet. With the third time around, you cannot escape to your scenes. Take out the trusty old highlighter and start highlighting your lines. Keep a pencil nearby and start marking places in the script where your character development is crucial. For the story line. Simply circle around the line or moments where your character will impact the storyline. Also, draw question marks on the pages where you are not sure how to interpret the line, or you don't have clarity about the behavior. I discussed this with the director or even better, the writer. If you're lucky and have to have access to the writer, make sure you understand why your character is saying and doing what he or she is saying and doing. How will the audience ever believe your performance? If you as an actor, don't even believe it yourself, put your script down and walk away. You've read it three times now and remember that your memory is like a muscle. The more you use it, the stronger it gets. Don't start panicking about the lies yet after you've read the script three times, your memory has already started capturing the lines. You know when and why your character speaks on knowing that's will make learning your lines much easier. Take a break. Go do something else to focus your mind on 5. 05 - When Words And Character Marry: I believe that the script is merely a skeleton. The words on paper only come alive when you make it your own. The words as it is now are just the bones off your character. It's your job as an actor to add the flesh, the heart, the soul, the mind and the unique physical rhythm off the person you are creating. So it's difficult to say what should come first, shoot you first, correct your character, and then you learn your lines. Or should it be the other way around? Personally, I like to learn the lines. First the skeleton, and once you have the lines down, you can start playing around with delivery and, of course, under the guidance of your director. But it's a great area. There are no right or wrong way around this. When learning lines whilst already in character, you need to be very careful that the following doesn't happen. Don't fall into rhythms whilst learning your dialogue. If you learn lines a specific way, never over rehearse it. This will cause you to struggle to get out of the specific rhythm when requested. So by your director, the script and lines can change any time before or on set, so always be open to changes. That's why I suggest you learn your lines called not in character. One of the most important acting notes I absolutely love buys the following for your character. Every time is the first time. Be careful not to over who's your lines. Keep it fresh and full of energy every time you go for a take. With that in mind, I will know Shay the Four Ways Off learning lines that has always been very effective to me . See which one suits you best. The mind on, especially the memory is a wonderful thing. Have you ever wondered why you can remember the words off a song so clearly? It's because you listen to that song multiple times, So repeating the same thing over and over again is a great way off. Remembering your lines. Read your lines 3 to 5 times every night before you go to sleep, and somehow the lines find a way to nest in your memory overnight. So just relax, read and sleep. I promise you the lines will start coming to you naturally during the day. It's very important not to say The lines are loud over and over again. This will cause you to fall into a rhythm and you will end up sounding like a barrette. Simply take your smartphone and record the lines off the other actors. Keep quiet and leave your lines blank. Give yourself enough time to say the lines before you record the other person's next line. I'm sorry. I'm desperate. I need to find your ex. I didn't I didn't know what else to do. Thank you. I'm sorry. I'm desperate. I need to find your ex. I didn't I didn't know what else to do. He moves around. Months go by. I don't hear from him. But when he sent me a scar the other week, he he said it was going to come. Thank you. Stay away from me and my daughter. When you're struggling with a specific line, steal from the other actors. Previous line. Choose a word or a sentence that will remind you of your next line. You can also use the last word off the sentence that was, say to you or even the last later. And make a connection with those letters to remind you off your next line. Usually, if you remember the first word off the next line, the rest comes naturally. Now. This technique requires some imagination and visualize oration. But you, as an actor, have much more where that came from, don't you? After all, the core of our craft is having a good, overactive imagination. This can help you with long pieces during a dialogue, but it's way more efficient when you have a monologue or soliloquy. Start by visualizing the house you grew up in. See the entrance? The corridor, the rooms where the kitchen, The back door is etcetera. Now take the piece you are preparing and split it up into smaller pieces. Place every section in the room. You remember now when delivering your words in the back of your mind travel through the house from start to finish. This will help you remember which part follows to the next 6. 06 - Characterization: So you've read your scenes a few times. You know where your character fits into the story. You've used a technique off your choice to learn your lines, and you almost know your lines. I will say this once more, as it is of utmost importance. Never over rehearse your lines. You will, once you step on state, have had rehearsals with your fellow cost and director, so make sure that for your character, every time is the first time. Now it's time for you to start creating magic. As mentioned in the previous listen. Your imagination and ability to visualize is the biggest weapon you as an actor can carry. Let's start with the meditation you need to do in order to unlock your characteristics. Now, in order to do that, you need to first get to get rid off your own Ford processes, ideas and places in your body that holds your own energy. Being negative or positive during the exercise will be using our senses to find the most authentic character right. The next exercise you can do right there where you are. Just listen to my voice. I'm sure that you are familiar with this exercise lying flat on your back, with your eyes closed and your palms facing towards the sky and your feet relaxed and separated. Visualize the following, starting with your toes. Imagine your flesh, your muscles and bones turning into hundreds and thousands of little bubbles. Take your time that the bubble steak over your feet, your ankles, your carbs, your knees slowly visualize how the bubbles travel all the way up to the top of your head. Focus especially on areas like your shoulders and your lower back way. We usually store our attention. Let go off your reality. Let go off your own worries and thoughts. Just focus on the bubbles. Lie in silence for a few minutes, and when you already start releasing the bubbles into the sky, let them box one by one from your toes to the top of your head. Now that your mind is cleared and you feel as if you have sunken into the ground released from your own physicality, it's time to take the next step. Visualize a piece of street. The string is made of white light. Now tie the end off the string to your little toe and in an anti clockwise direction. The string is now being wrapped around you, but by But as the string starts to circulate around your feet, visualize the kind of shoes your character will be wearing with among whereas the person's feet be. Where is the person going? As with the bubbles, let the string travel all the way up to the top off your head. See yourself as the character. Let your imagination run wild while you slowly become your character. Listen to the voice. How does your character smell? Use all your senses to bring him or her to life. Line silence for a while and greet your character. Fully see the person you're creating. Now slowly start unwinding the string again from your head to your toes. Keep your imaginary string with you in your pocket. Remember the person you met when you did the meditation on. Whenever you feel overwhelmed or not focused, just take the string out of your pocket and do the meditation again. You can do this anyway. Sitting, standing, even driving. Nobody will know now that you've duck really deeply into your character, set in a quiet place and choose an animal that resembles the physicality off your character . Ask yourself if my character was an animal, Which animal would it be? Is it a snake? A wolf? Maybe It's a soft and cuddly puppy. A flamboyant peacock. You will know when it comes to you. Watch YouTube videos off the animal Study how they move. Used this as your inspiration to find the mannerisms and the physicality. This will also help with the inner voice and the speaking rhythm off your character. Go through your music library and listen to a few cents. It's easier to choose a music genre first. Before you decide what your character song is, you'll know it's the perfect song. When you're stood emotionally by the music, it can be classical piece with no lyrics. Ah, blues number basically anything that resonates the essence of your character. So if the song on your phone and listen to it a few minutes before you go on set, this is especially helpful before heavy emotional scenes. Sometimes you'll be on a chaotic set. It's very hard to focus. Just put your earphones in, listen to the song and regain your focus. This will help you reconnect with the character again in conclusion a quick summary. What you do on set will most probably be different to what you did in the audition room. Gather all the information on your character that you can get. Forget everything you knew about your character and start from scratch. Read first, then play. Other characters are just as important as yours. Read through. There seems to distance yourself from your character when you read the script the first few times read, read, read and sleep. Don't over rehearse your lines every time. Is your character's first time pre record the other characters lines to learn yours. Don't fall into a rhythm when learning on delivering your lines. Steal from the other characters lines to remember which line comes next. Usual imagination. When it comes to characterization, meditate and make decisions regarding your character. Find your character spirit animal to help you with your characters, mannerisms and characteristics. And finally find your character song to help you get back into character. On set 7. 07 - Outro: right. That brings us to the end of our workshop. I truly hope that you took something from this works off. And if you have any questions, please do not hesitate to get in touch with me. I'll gladly get back to you. Thanks for watching. And please follow skilled collective for more courses in the near future. Also, please leave a review and write the schools as it really helps us to produce more great courses for you. Now go on. They knock the socks off with your performance.