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Actors Day Text With The Image of a Stage

Episode #028 National Christmas Lights Day

Dec 6, 2020

Episode #028 National Christmas Lights Day

Episode Summary:

“Good acting — real acting is impossible to spot. Do you ever catch talents like Robert Duvall or Kathy Bates acting? No. I defy you to show me where.” – William Esper

Hello everybody, and welcome to The Happy Holiday Life. Today we will be going over a very brief history of acting, and I’ll be unveiling by big announcement! 


Podcast Quotes

  • “I just sort of thought of actors as people who had a raw natural talent or charisma about them that made them stand out on television and made them able to deliver lines effectively. But, after my research for today, I understand that there is SOOOO much thought that goes into the acting process!”
  • “Intelligence—the understanding of the workings of the human personality—is the faculty that orders these impressions for an audience.” 
  • “The essential problems in acting—those of whether the actor actually “feels” or merely imitates, of whether he should speak naturally or rhetorically, and of what actually constitutes being natural

Show Notes:

  • Disclaimer: ​Hello, everyone. I just wanted to let you know that this episode will be short since I am working on my relaunch!
  • Earliest Form Of Acting:​ The earliest form of acting showed up in Athens, Greece. Now, this wasn’t the acting we are used to today. These were groups of people in choirs singing hymns called Dithyrambs.
  • Why Did They Sing Dithyrambs? : ​They sang to the god named Dionysus! Now, this was the god of wine, winemaking, grape cultivation, fertility, ritual madness, theater, and religious ecstasy, so no wonder they sang and “acted” for him. He is a guy who likes parties!
  • Singing Evolves To Acting:​ As time went by, the singers would wear costumes and masks with particular people assigned to key roles.
  • Does This Connect With Indigenous Culture? : ​Have historians looked at the Indigenous people and their various forms of storytelling? How have other people passed down their information?
  • The First Plays:​ When it all started, there was only one actor, and then the chorus in the background, but as plays innovated with the help of Aeschylus, who created the antagonist, and reduced the chorus to only 12 people, and Sophocles who added a third character, and Euripides added a prologue, introducing the subject of a play, and deus ex machina a divine figure.
  • How The Plays Grew: ​The wealthy figures in the towns sponsored plays by paying a tax called the choregia.
  • Is The Actor An Artist Or An Interpreter?​ : Does the actor feel, or do they imitate the feelings? Should he/she speak naturally or rhetorically? What is natural? These have been questioned ever since realistic acting came about in the 19th century, and everyone wants to know the nature of the acting process itself.
  • The Development Of Acting:​ In the 6th century​, ​Peisistratos​ ​established public festivals, one of which was the City Dionysia, which featured competitions in music, singing, dance, and poetry.
  • Thespis​: “astounded audiences by leaping on to the back of a wooden cart and reciting poetry as if he was the characters whose lines he was reading. In doing so, he became the world’s first actor, and it is from him that we get the word thespian.”

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