Director & Playwright, Wild Dreamer Productions
Thoughts on Stage Acting
Article from Chamkaur Gill, Director and Playwright for production Void and Drama Consultant for Wild Dreamer Productions
Chamkaur Gill & Aarti Bajaj working on MEERA the Production in Auckland, 2019
We’re all performers. It could be said that what we do in public is a performance. In private, we are generally ourselves, but when in the company of others, most of us take on public personae. Whether talking or listening, or just being in a public place on our own, we perform to impress. Life, therefore, is theatre. However, getting up on stage to perform in a formal play in front of an audience is a different proposition. The world of stage-acting is not everyone’s cup of tea. It’s a mixture of ingredients that need to be finely balanced and stirred to perfection before it’s ready to be served. The basic ingredients are interest, enthusiasm, dedication, commitment, energy, and skill. The stirrer is the actor. So, generally speaking:
- (a) interest is the sense of wanting to be a part of a production;
- (b) enthusiasm is interest taken to the next level, i.e. getting involved spiritedly;
- (c) dedication refers to believing strongly in the necessity to be an active participant from start to finish and implementing that belief;
- (d) commitment involves enthusiasm, interest and dedication being put into action via effort and time, e.g. memorising lines, attending rehearsals, cooperating with the director and producer;
- (e) energy means tireless physical, intellectual and emotional involvement;
- (f) skill is the ability to entertain and convince an audience through characterisation, voice and physical presence on stage
To be successful, an actor must stay true to all these characteristics throughout the span of the production process, from auditioning for a particular role to taking the final curtain call. Theatre, therefore, can be quite daunting, particularly to inexperienced teenagers and adults. This is less so in the case of children. Speaking from personal experience, young children are tabula rasa when it comes to most things, including the stage. I went from a shy, reserved eight-year old to a child keen to express himself after I had participated in a school play. This happened largely because it was an enjoyable experience. When children enjoy something, they want more of it (adults do, too, but their enjoyment often comes with conditions attached. Children are not personally burdened with these conditions). This was clearly obvious in Wild Dreamer Productions’ Meera on the Gold Coast and in Auckland.
Chamkaur Gill, Auckland 2019
In Auckland, particularly, I noticed completely inexperienced children, some as young as five, becoming excited, overnight, about performing in the play. The key factor was the support given by adults who kept encouraging them and making them feel happy and comfortable. Wild Dreamer Productions deserves a lot of credit for having played a central role in creating, potentially, future thespians. It is a company with tremendous promise, given its focus, determination, and the willingness to do the hard yards.
Given suitable circumstances, theatre can be a very rewarding experience.
We have and will always keep the safety, well-being and enjoyment of our guests, supporters and staff as our top priority, so in this time of universal uncertainty, it is with great regret that we are announcing the postponement & rescheduling of our 2020 premiere of VOID until a later date (TBA), due to COVID-19 concerns.
Purchasers and registered attendees will be contacted by our production team to discuss rescheduling options, but should ticket purchasers be able to attend the rescheduled show opportunities to obtain a refund will be available.