• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Stanislavski's System

Extracts from this document...


Konstantin Stanislavski "All of our acts, even the simplest, which are so familiar to us in everyday life, become strained when we appear behind the footlights before a public of a thousand people. That is why it is necessary to correct ourselves and learn again how to walk, sit, or lie down. It is essential to re-educate ourselves to look and see, on the stage, to listen and to hear." - Stanislavski (Konstantin Stanislavski quotes) "Realistic" drama was said to be born in the late 1800s, however before that, no director or actor trainer had succeeded in creating a method in order to instil believability in a character through the actor. There were some actors and actresses that used their own individual talent to achieve this, but there was not a developed system or method that one could teach or even pass on to the future generation of actors. In the midst of this thirst of authenticity, Konstantin Stanislavski - actor and director extraordinaire - developed his own system over a lifetime. "When we are on stage, we are in the here and now" - Stanislavski (Konstantin Stanislavski quotes) Due to the fact that he was born into a wealthy family of merchants, Konstantin Sergeievich Alekseiv, had to begin his service to the family business, but soon realized that nothing could overpower his love for theatre. His family too shared some of his enjoyment for theatre and built him an amateur theatre in which he had his first stage appearances. His family also funded expensive vocal and stage movement lessons from Moscow's best teachers. However, his love for theatre intensified to such an extent that in 1884, he was forced to adopt 'Konstantin Stanislavski' as a stage name for his first public debut in order to hide his theatre aspirations from his family. In 1888, although he was still being forced to work in the family business, he co-founded the Moscow Society of Arts and Literature. ...read more.


I used this method to first indentify the intentions of my character behind every line, and then match those intentions with an action. This gave every action behind every line a purpose and made it easier for me to recall my emotional memory when I needed it. * Magic If The actor must connect with the character by asking how he would behave if his characters situation was real and was actually happening to him. This helps the actor think like the character and not just impersonate him. Stanislavskis' 'Magic If' and 'As If' has really helped me in my monologue as I have to imagine that I am speaking to a corpse of my best friend. Throughout the monologue, I really enjoy that I am forced to use my imagination and make-believe that a table is a casket and boxes are a deceased human being. Although I don't find it that hard pretending that I am speaking to my deceased friend, I really enjoy the challenge of making my audience believe and see what I am seeing. With more practice and more rehearsal of my monologue, I will be able to make my audience feel not only the pain of losing a friend, but also the pain of my own personal experience that I drew out to play this part. * As If o The actor should get in role and as himself what he would do if here was to be in his character's situation. This brings about convincing actions and reactions for the character. Before I first practiced this technique, I immediately told myself that I would imagine that I was at the funeral of my best friend. However, this will be hard to improvise because I just simply cannot imagine my best friend dying. It is unthinkable. Thus, I decided that I would bring back the memory of when I was at my uncle's funeral and use those emotions in the context of my monologue. ...read more.


The communists had elected his system and made the Moscow Art Theatre "the fountainhead of social realism". (Stanislavski, Konstantin) His theatre quickly began producing Soviet propaganda due to an allegiance that was being maintained between the USSR and Stanislavskis' socially conscious method of production. Needless to say, Stanislavski survived both Russian Revolutions of 1905 and 1917. The Stanislavski System is known to only be as good as the person who uses it. It is not something that will immediately turn a bad actor into a good one, nor will it guarantee success. The Stanislavski System is simply a serious of developments, techniques and ideologies that help the actor make use and develop his skills and talents and to gain control of his gift in order to become a better actor. Using the 'system' requires time and understanding that are not so easily summoned up these days. However, who so ever have studied and have been trained in the Stanislavski System know that it is a diligent method that requires a lot of work, but also makes seem more effortless and believable. Stanislavski always told his actors to "leave your ego at the stage door as you come in" and those who intend to follow the Stanislavski System must know that it is not solely based on the actor himself. The actor must not only develop his own talent, but must also develop a bond with his ensemble and know that a performance can only be put on when there is trust and dependence among the actors. (Stanislavski and the Actor, 149) Thus I will end with a quote from the master himself, "In the creative process there is the father, the author of the play; the mother, the actor pregnant with the part; and the child, the role to be born." (Konstantin Stanislavsky quotes) and say that one must commence on the journey that is the creative process in order to realize the true value of Stanislavski's teachings. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our International Baccalaureate Drama section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related International Baccalaureate Drama essays

  1. Free essay

    How does Globalisation affect theatre?

    (Rebellato, Dan., 2009. Theatre and Globalization. Hampshire: Palgrave Macmillan.) Musicals cost a lot of money for them to be put on, for example, 1982 Cat's Broadway production costs were of five million US dollars those of 1994's Beauty and the Beast were of 12 million US dollars.

  2. Sin and Ego in Crime and Punishment

    This description of St. Petersburg mirrors Raskolnikov's actions toward the two unsuspecting sisters. Dostoyevsky furthermore uses motifs such as dreams, symbolic doubles, and blood to give insight into Raskolnikov's psychology and why he chooses to carry out the murders. The nightmare Raskolnikov has about the, "Poor little horse..." (Dostoyevsky 72)

  1. Oediups: An Analysis of Literary Devices

    (Roche 45) Oedipus will die metaphorical death in blindness and banishment, he is dyed deep in sin Desperation, beginning to realize truth Honorable words from Oedipus "All my advice is bankrupt; I address/myself to you Apollo" (Roche 49)

  2. The Theme of Individual Conscience versus the State in Sophocles(TM) Plays

    During this secret conversation Antigone tells her plan to bury their brother to her sister, Ismene. Ismene's reaction is one of fear and Antigone, always polarizing things, disowns her. In her disownment of her sister Antigone shows some of the same characteristics as Creon.

  1. Augusto Boal and Jacques LeCoq have both had significant impact on theatre, and their ...

    In Forum Theatre, Boal?s philosophy of changing attitudes towards oppression through challenging audiences to step up is realised. Through the Joker, he is able to manipulate audiences to participate in real life theatre, and his ideas that anyone can act are very important in this regard.

  2. There are a number of logistical and dramatic factors to be decided upon in ...

    This scene is presented with a flashback where Gar?s mind flows back in time to that particular event. Kathy and Gar are happy together in his vision, Private Gar sarcastically responds to Kathy?s concerns about their possible future and money issues, ?(imitating)

  1. How does an actor use Stanislavskis acting principles, in order to fully prepare to ...

    to perform and to do that effectively the actor must take the dramatic techniques into consideration and pay extra attention to them such as posture, voice and body language. For this research I will be looking at the character Kipps in The Woman in Black by Susan Hill and I

  2. Which methods could a theatre company use when performing Jean Anouilh's "Antigone", keeping true ...

    to perform the prologue, 'introducing' the audience to the plot and the characters of the play. Anouilh's chorus has a very different purpose though than Sophocles' had and is of vital significance for the play, ceating a detachment from the play at times in order to address the audience directly.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work