Voice For Actors
Voice for actors requires an awareness of body and voice and is one of the primary means of expression for the actor to engage with the creative process. The aim of the voice course is to train and develop the voice into a fully supported, resonant and flexible instrument with strong speech skills. This allows the student to achieve their full vocal potential, whilst developing the individuals own natural voice. No single practitioners work is studied exclusively, but students are taught a wide variety of techniques and methodologies. Movement practices such as release technique and contact work are incorporated in order to integrate the voice, body and mind.
Movement For Actors
‘An Absolute Turkey’ by Georges Feydeau, Directed by Chris White – The Avondale Theatre
Acting is a physical process that requires the body to be available, aware and articulate. It is through the body that we communicate –in movement and in sound. The BA Acting movement training works to prepare and locate the body firmly within the acting process. This is a dynamic and rigorous programme with two primary strands of training that run concurrently throughout Year 1 and Year 2 – fundamental and expressive. The first focuses on developing strength, flexibility, kinaesthetic and spatial awareness and skill-specific physical techniques; the second develops physical acting skills, focusing on how the body communicates meaning, the connection of thought, action and speech, and the understanding of theatrical space.
There is no single technique used. Instead we draw upon and incorporate various techniques and skills at appropriate points in the three year course, including: sound and movement improvisation, authentic movement, contact improvisation, Pilates, yoga, release techniques, acro- balance, period movement, stage combat and social dance. The course philosophy is also influenced by the work of practitioners such as Stanislavski, Michael Chekhov, Growtowski, Boal, Laban, Decroux, Lecoq and Anne Dennis.
Singing For Actors
‘Liolà’ by Luigi Pirandello, Directed by Sandra Maturana – The Avondale Theatre
The singing course aims to provide each student with an efficient and safe technique, encouraging an individual and free singing voice. The actor/singer relationship is very much at the core of what the course aims to teach, involving each student in various strategies and techniques associated with acting through song. We treat sung text very much in the same manner as we would spoken text, applying various acting techniques to the overall process of learning a song. The structure and content of the course offers a range of musical experiences including a working knowledge of various historical styles and genres. By the end of the 2nd term of the 3rd year, each student will be expected to have established a portfolio of solo songs suitable for professional auditions.
The singing department staff are all experienced,freelance practitioners who combine their work at Italia Conti with professional engagements as musical directors, singers and performers.
Camera: Camera classes will start in the second year. The first term is geared towards building confidence, learning basic Camera Craft and knowing ones casting. Students will begin to learn how to adapt the other acting disciplines they have been developing throughout the rest of the course to the subtleties of acting for the camera.
Using scenes from popular Soaps, Episodic Dramas and Commercials, the second term will be dedicated to studying the various skills and acting styles needed when working in television. All aspects of the actor’s preparation, from audition technique to the final performance, will be studied as well as the differences working with both single and multi camera set ups.
All work will be filmed and students will be encouraged to evaluate their performances in order to improve camera skills.
The third term will be dedicated to single camera and film. Using scenes from films, students will be auditioned, cast, rehearsed and filmed on location. In addition, experience is gained behind the camera.
Finally in the third year, students will work on a short film with a professional crew. These scenes can contribute to individual showreels.
Radio: Radio is taught in the second year, usually over 2 terms. In the first term, students learn the technical aspects of studio work, such as studio procedures, cue lights, use of headphones, microphone technique and the general discipline of the recording studio environment.
They also begin to work on simple scripts. In the second term, the work is developed and includes radio drama and radio comedy, classic and contemporary narrative texts, voice-overs, commercials, radio announcements, and mock auditions. Technically demanding skills such as sight-reading scientific papers or creating cartoon voices will be studied. Students learn to apply skills acquired in both voice and acting units, in order to act truthfully and imaginatively in recorded media.
Students may audition for the Carleton Hobbs competition in their third year. The winners are given a 5-month contract with the BBC Radio Drama Company. Successful actors are invited to undertake professional work with the BBC. The Academy is pleased to note several recent successes.
‘Chicken Shop’ by Anna Jordan, Directed by Chris White and Bradley Leech – The Sheridan Studio