The Physics & Math of Acting

Acting Space, BioMX
SPACE page in Theatre Theory

2009 --
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Must read chronotope and time pages!

Theory of Spectatorship
THR221 Intermediate Acting
GeoAlaska: Acting, Directing, Theory, Shows, Books
GeoAlaska: Theatre & Film
Meyerhold, Directing Books

Spring 2003: Don Juan

film books
virtual theatre
THR121 Fundamentals of Acting Fall 2004
Directing Showcases
ShowCases: 3 Sisters, Mikado, 12th Night, Hamlet, The Importance of Being Earnest, Dangerous Liaisons, Don Juan
prof. Anatoly Antohin Theatre UAF AK 99775 USA
2006 *
* stageplays *

BM-Chronotope Remember what Leonardo said about liberating the sculture from the stone (cutting everything extra)? You have to do with the space too. There is too much space in this world. Cosmos is nothing but space (that's why we call it "Space"), you have to narrow it, my friend. How do you focus me? With your movement (or voice). I leave aside the directorial tools (light and etc.)

The figures. I do it "mechanical" in class: I say -- circle. Walk in circle during your monologue. Now, the square. Next -- triangle...

It forces actor to think about the movement design for the character and situation.

Now, change the directions. When do you do it? On what line? Why?

Change it from square to circle -- when, why?

I call it "physical exploration of the text"...

Yes, yes, you need it. Use the directions: left, right, up, down, diagonal... enough of standing on one spot! No, I can't believe that your monologue doesn't ask for movement, that you are in witness box in court!

Did I mentioned that I ask for the vertical levels too: lay down, sit, stand, get on the chair, on the table...

That's how your movement directs me, the spectator. Everything is in your text, take another look at your monologue (scene)!

Nothing is more lowd than movement.

If space is not used, it's radio. I close my eyes... you are gone.



There is more on "Paper-Acting" @ Thr w/Anatoly

So, where is the border between Method and BM?

2004 & After


Read Chronotope and Time pages; if you want more, go to Theatre Theory (Space), I will be working on the subject over there. Also, keep reading The Book of Spectator (the place where Acting, Directing, Drama should find the common center).

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One Act Fest


If we indeed believe that "body language" does exist, we should know the grammar of this language. Crossing stage from right to left is different from "left to right" and from upstage to downstage is a different statement from the diagonal movement... Where to to talk about the analysis of lines?

Michael Chekhov


2006: Total Directing = stage + film


INDEX * fundamentals of acting * Theatre w/Anatoly * Virtual Theatre * Theatre Theory * Virtual Theatre Forum * Classes * Method * StageMatrix: Directing * Script Analysis * Shows * Spectator * Plays * FilmMaking 101 * vTheatre * 200X Aesthetics * Mailing List & News -- subscribe yourself * BM+ * Anatoly Film Blog & thr blog
BioMX Theory for Actors
* The acting area is the area within the theater where the action takes place.
From Eistein' "space-time" to Psychology: in physical science, single concept that recognizes the union of space and time, posited by Albert Einstein in the theories of relativity (1905, 1916).
[ absolute space * noun (ca. 1889), objective space (common), subjective space (dramatic), "time as space" ]

Acting Space

Semiotics of Space? What is space? In your case -- the stage. Look at your right (public's left), look on your left, look behind... and look above. The demenssions you have. Did you check the time, the duration of your looking? This is the 4th dimenssion -- time. Walk around. Go left, go right, go downstage... Those are the places you have to use. Space is your friend, actor. Use it! It asks to be used -- it's empty.

Now, think negative. The places you do not need to go. It's called "set" -- it's build to limit your movement. I and my designer put the stage landscape to limit your movement -- and we did it for a good reason: to make your motion meaningful. So, there is a limited space you have -- great! Follow the logic of limitations. You are limited by the words, situations, reactions, light, sound.... Limitions? No, the forms!

It has to be short. For more see Semiotics in film. Or Drive-Throu-Theory! Also, Glossary * Part2

You know about nine squares on every stage: downstage (left, right, center), center, upstage.... In short:

Upstage Left (UL) --- Upstage Center (UC) --- Upstage Right (UR)

Center Stage Left (SL) -- Center Stage Center (SC) --- Center Stage Right (SR)

I call it "levels" -- three horisontal, three vertical (2D), nine!

Downstage Left (DL) --- Downstage Center (DC) -- Downstage Right (DR)

You can find it in every textbook (remember that left and right are the public's POV).

This is a basic geometry. What grade did you have for trigonometry? Can we turn it into acting areas?

First, you have to remember that you MUST use all nine!

Define each space in 9 squares. After you established the patterns of your character, think about the movement design for the scene. Be simple. Cirle? Triangle? Square?

Changing directing? When? Look again at the text. Stop? No stop?

Do the "paper acting"! Right on the back on the copy of the monologue of your scene (Actor's Text): in my classes I ask them to show the pages -- to see if they did do their home work.

Not sure? Try your first choice. Try the second. Try again. The answer should come by itself, you feel it, it feels right!

Now, keep it! Don't drop it, because we have to build on it!

But one step at the time. Never try to get it all at once.

After you got the horizontal plan, go for the virtical. Even without any set you have 3 levels: the floor (lay down), seating, standing. Leave the movement for now, try your text with those three positions in one spot. Do the most common - "rondo" composition (the end is the same as the beginning). Save the standing for the climax in your monologue. Get seated on the "rising action".... try with the words.

Try to match the meaning with the motions.

Try "To Be or Not To Be"! (Hamlet)

Now -- try to bring the two exercises together, horizontal and vertical.

Aha! Now you understand that you have to break it into the cycles Mr. Meyerhold was talking about! Because there are several thoughts (emotions) in your monologue and they have to be expressed in different movement statements!

Structuring 4D Field (3D space + time):

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Directions & Addresses

Vectors -- In media aesthetics, a perceivable force with a direction and magnitute. In mathematics, a physical quantity with both a magnitude and direction.
Vector Field -- Acombination of various vectors operating within a signle field.
Vector Line -- An imaginary line created by extending converging index vectors or a motion vector.
Vector Magnitude -- The degree of the directional force of the vector; the amount of energy we perceive. A high-magnitude vector is a strong vector; a low-magnitude vector is a weak one.
(Use the photos and pictures to draw the vectors).



Distances & Durations

See Glossary

Peter Brook: "Empty Space"?

Questions & Answers

1. What are ACTING AREAS?

2. Actor needs ground plans, because...?

3. How do durations depends on distances? How you establish distances with durations?

See Monologues & Scenes @ SHOWS (copyrighjt free).

There are several relating pages in Directing Directitory : Mise-en-scene, StageMatrix and etc.

metrix page + stage direction (form 1)


In order to transit the public to the subjective time, you have to destroy the objective space ("Magic If" in Method Acting). You have to take them from the habbitual space and time and substitute it with the wonder world, the art, the dreams, imagination, their secret hopes... their inner hidden world they reveal to nobody, even to themselves. Can you do it, actor?


Learn how to transit to this world first.


See Stagematrix directory *
* Space as "given circumstenses" -- an event that constitutes a detail (as of a narrative or course of events) [webster]
Next: time
stage direction (form 2)
@2000-2004 contents *