Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Stereotypes

I have been patient with my disappointment at my work in the PATA auditions. The disappointment has been good for me. It's moved me into a state of 'hopelessness' about myself as an actor even as I remain committed to acting. At the moment, I'm without much expectation of an acting 'career,' and don't see myself turning into the actor I'd hoped to be.

This is proving to be a relief.

Since the PATA audition, I've let slide my usual need to posture around both others and myself. My need for approval has been mellowed. I'm looking into the mirror less frequently. I've withdrawn my wandering mind from hypothetical visions of my future and have been seeking respite by minding my actions in the present. I go to yoga, the gym, acting class, do my voice exercises, and work at home. I watch my diet. For the moment, at least, I'm not trying to square the circle of my commitment to acting-mediocre prospects-commitment to acting-mediocre prospects--etcetera. I can't resolve the contradictions between my desires and (limited) talents, so, for the moment, I'm not trying.

I'm hoping that my stereotyped idea of a 'good actor' leaves me altogether. Without it, I might discover what kind of actor I am, instead of seeing only what kind I'm not.

My insides are gripping less.

5

3 comments:

The Amazon Queen said...

I feel that Actors(male and female) are sterotyped. Once you are identified as being funny or serious, etc, it's like you are stuck with that role forever. When I was in college, I auditioned for everthing dramatic and when I finally landed a role, it was in a humourous play. I was told by the director that I really do well with humor. That was o'kay, and I do admit that I do better with comedy, but damn it(pardon the French:))I refused to be sterotyped. Since graduating from college, I have landed parts in three community theater productions 2 of which were serious. And I am currently taking a theater class, in which the instructor, really wants us to explore drama. Keep your chin up and be your self.
peace

Cindy said...

"Our task is to balance the many roles we play and refrain from volunteering to understudy everybody else's." Quote from a book I've been reading and pondering lately.

Thanks for this: "I'm hoping that my (stereotyped) idea of a 'good actor' leaves me altogether. Without it, I might discover what kind of actor I am, instead of seeing only what kind I'm not." Substitute "actor" with any other person specific role, and it serves universally. Stings and encourages.

Anonymous said...

Well, just to play devil's advocate, the nice way to say "stereotype" is "niche focus". Obviously nobody wants to get pigeon-holed, but at the same time you have to know what you're good at, and what people want to see you do (unfortunately not always the same thing). If you know what you excel at, if you know how people conceive of you onstage, you can choose projects better, commit more to an audition, even choose monologues more wisely. People have tried to put me into leading-type roles and nice-guy roles for years - it just doesn't work. I've been trying to get creeps and villains, but only now, at 35, am I being considered for that. It seems to be working out (knock wood). I think I could stand ten years of consistent villains if it kept me working.

jason