Again...I am flattered.
The most recent role I was in was an ensemble part in Big Love. Actually, the roles of all the women (very heavy women-based show)were as equally important as the leads, another thing I learned through my training here at school. The play is based a Greek Tragedy in which these 50 sisters (there were really only 15 of us for the stage) have arranged marriages to their cousins (it gets worse) and the group of women that I was in, hated men and wanted, for the most part nothing to do with them. The other two groups of women characteristic of being "prissy", "spoiled", very vain, etc. etc. Not that one group was better than the other, but for the stage, that's how each character group was defined. So, in the end, it my group of women who decide to kill all these men on our wedding day and we successfuuly do, along with the rest of our sisters, although we have to live as spinsters for what we did, etc. etc. and get a good "whipping" by the people whose house we have killed all these men. Only one sister does not kill her new husband, and runs off with him to a life neither of them know anymore. That's the general jist of it.
I really liked that role. And as an actor, I try to find a sort of "outlet" for my emotions. For example, we had a ton of fight choreography--punching, slapping, kicking, hair-pulls, quarterstaff, you name it! A good catfight! At one part of the show, I, although I find it humourous now, thought of the movie Mommie Dearestand saw Faye Dunaway's angry, "No more Wire Hangers!!!" face in my mind and I just had at it and let it all show in my face that I was **** off and ready to fight. I don't think I shared this with my other co-actors, but sometimes I would get a raised eyebrow because I would have that line in dark marker written into my script to remind me to get really **** off at the world at that point. I also just stood strong and walked around like I was butch. As you could see, the main emotion here was anger and aggression from all of us. But, that was just one role and I was emotionally, physically exhausted by the end of it all. Actors have to put so much into what they are doing it is like a huge exhale when the role is done. Not saying that it is a "burden", just a lot of work.
I think my favorite role was the one I played in a student directed scene here at Bridgewater State. The scene was called "Bug"--also the name of my character--and she loses her policeman husband to a shooting. We acted out the "memorial service" part of it and let me tell you, that was an emotional roller coaster ride!
I, unfortunately, cannot "turn something on" RIGHT THEN AND THERE unless I am a character. Like if you asked me to cry right now, I would be able to act it, but may not be able to produce tears right away. But like one of my acting professors always says, you should never "stop" rehearsing. You should always work on it, whether lying in bed at night, or in the shower, or at the gym, in the car, wherever, and that's what I've been doing. Another thing I learned: crying is so much more easier than laughing when acting. I still have that worksheet from high school and I look at it all the time! (it gives you certain exercises to do, such as "laugh while saying this line...keeping it audible" or "cry like a little child" or "cry like you were beside your spouse's deathbed", etc. etc. Some things are easier than others!
Fortunately for me, the actor who played my (dead) husband has incredible talent and makes me laugh and cry easily. So, come the scene, I was basically all set. But the hardest thing is, acting the part and being the part has to be clearly distinquished, otherwise actors will have a confused sense of reality...very similar to Method Acting and another thing I learned from one of my professors. But don't let Method and regular acting deter what you think of both of these methods; all acting is generally the same mental preparation as any other part.
I was in 1-2 musicals when I was younger. However, me personally, I like straight acting for the emotional range it demands of its player. I like feeling angry and sad and upset at things in the script. I like getting settled into a mindset of a character and slowly sliding out of it when it is all over. I don't know about mentality, but physically it's like that cool breeze you've been waiting for to "let go".
And yesss, I am guilty of waiting to hit it big. I know in my heart of hearts I deserve to give it to this life I am living now. And, besides, I was told my relatives that I would be the first in family history making it as an entertainer. But, I believe in perseverence and being in the "right place at the right time" and--most definitely--with the "right people". I also believe that if you want something bad enough, you'll get it.
And like I had said before, theatre is theatre and I will try my best at everything. I already know I prefer the stage rather than costumes and prop pieces and lighting. I like design, I would do it, but I don't want to make my career behind the stage. I want "on" it.
I always enjoy making an audience laugh. I can be dramatic and straight and I guess my "homebase" hasn't been quite discovered. In a summer theatre program at Massasoit, we did "The History of Radio and Television", ranging from reading scripts from radio shows in the 40s to The X-Files.
One of my favorite parts was doing I Love Lucy's Vitameatavegamin episode and, you guessed it, I played Lucy. Oh, how the audience was hysterical! Only I half-heard it because as far as I was concerned, I couldn't "see" the audience beyond the edge of the stage. And how I watched that episode over and over and over again to get every facial reaction right. And, judging from the response I got, I succeeded. Granted, I am just an aspiring actress and ppl. now don't stop me on the street to say, "Say! That's...!!!" but it was just one role I was glad to do. And I have Lucille Ball to thank because she was the one that got me into all of this acting nonsense!
So, after all that rambling, I hope I have answered your questions.
Method Acting as opposed to "regualar" acting really doesn't have a distinct line separating the two. I guess "method" is just more "feel real". Stanislavski depended its actors on "emotional recall" and bringing back painful or joyful memories to assist in the emotion that actor is experiencing. One is not better than the other, so don't let that influence how you look at certain actors. All actors have their own set of guidelines and outlets and range and whatnot.
Well! I hope I haven't bored you and I hope I was of some help. Granted, I don't have all the answers, but from experience and training, that is what I come to know. It's alot easier to do than say.
See you on the boards!