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Tale by William Shakespeare
Victor Ertmanis, Patrick McManus and Peter Froehlich
Costumes and Sets Designed by : John Pennoyer
Lighting Designer: Louise Guinand
Photo credit: Gordon King
Produced by the National Arts Centre
When actors aren’t onstage drawing us into the world of the characters they bring to life, they may be found hanging out in the green room during a performance. The green room is a room in a theatre where actors can relax when they are not on stage.
Because professional actors make it look so effortless, it’s easy to forget just how much hard work acting really is. But the polished and natural feel of an actor’s performance often represents years of training and onstage experience.
Other performance skills an actor develops can increase the range of roles for which he or she may be considered. These include singing, dancing and playing a musical instrument; fencing/stage combat and physical theatre skills; circus skills like clowning, acrobatics and juggling; commedia dell’ arte and mask techniques; and training in improvisation.
Theatre training in Canada is available through conservatory, university and studio programs. Conservatories typically offer intensive training over several years. Universities offer programs varying from less to more intensive, depending upon other courses required to complete a degree. Studios offer ongoing courses that may be short or long term, and participants opt in or out depending on their needs.
While there is no agreement on the one right way to train actors, many working in theatre today have been exposed to the great Russian director Constantin Stanislavski (1863-1938) and his ideas about how to build a character. Many actor-training programs are still founded on his basic theories. Some important ideas from Stanislavski an actor may want to know about are:
For information and activities related to acting, visit the Games & Activities section.