Tag: acting

What Do YOU Think Of You!

Sanford Meisner once told us in class at Playhouse West in Los Angeles that “it will take you all 20 years to become actors.”

We all had good credits and considered ourselves then actors. So what was he talking about we wondered.

Charles David Richards

Now it all makes sense. To be an actor and understand what that means, how to handle the rejection, the elation, the doing it for love, the doing it for money—it’s all part of becoming an actor. And only after you’ve done it, or struggled to do it over twenty years do you then realize what Mr. Meisner meant about truly becoming an actor.

Country music star John Rich in the same vein told me after I’d shown him a couple country songs I’d written, “Now, write 500 more and you’ll be a songwriter.”

“Once in awhile” is considered a nice percentage for most actors but keeping at it, and going from job to job or project to project or disaster to failure to triumph is all part of the territory. Remember to remember it’s not what they think of you but what YOU think of you! Yes, what they think of you matters. After all it may get you a job but in the long run what YOU think of you is what will keep you going in this business whether on stage,behind a microphone or in front of a camera.

Actor’s “Time”

We’ve all heard the term, “time is what you make it”. But to an actor, “time” can be a period that leads to greatness, failure or possibly insanity. As actors, we all have probably too much “time”. Most of us don’t work steadily, going from one job to the next. Yes, all is well when our time is consumed creating a character for a play, waiting on the set for a movie or learning lines for a commercial. But what about the “time” in between. The “time” when seemingly nothing is going on?

That’s when we as actors have to use that “time” to our advantage.

Ben Slack

A friend of mine, a great character actor Ben Slack taught me a valuable lesson when he was alive. We would get together from time to time, usually when he had some down-time which he had much less of than I did. We would come up with projects, acting projects, one act plays, short film scripts, a study of a play. I would usually get all involved with the project saying I would get something together for the next time we met. A short time would pass, I’d call Ben and ask if he wanted to see what I had only to be told that he just got a TV series or he was off to Europe for a months worth of filming and we’d talk when he got back. The next time we’d meet, he’d have a new project he wanted to explore. After a while I learned that these “projects” was how Ben spent his downtime. “Time” to keep his mind off not working and “time” to keep his actor muscles working.

Think about it…but don’t take too much “time”. Get busy.