Writing and Acting


I have always deemed that writing and acting are two art forms that complement one another. I majored in English and minored in Theatre Arts.

Everyone says that English and Theatre go together. I have found that many actors majored in English in college. It seems to be the most popular non-theatre major for actors. One main example is a Shakespeare acting teacher who is an expert on acting and teaching acting. He has directed more Shakespearean plays than anyone on record in Europe and the United States.
I think that writing is a deeper art as the writers go to the very core of the art and create it. I believe that anyone who can write has the natural instinct to act. Writers who are most in touch with their emotions and passions can externally express those emotions and passions. One acting teacher said that she loves when writers take her class; that when one writer took her class, she was in love with him. Shakespeare would have made an excellent actor and even made cameo appearances in many of his plays.
On the flip side, there are also many actors that have turned to writing. Julie Andrews wrote several children's books under the pen name, Julie Edwards. I really loved her books, The Last of the Really Great Whangdoodles and Mandy (both of which my Mom's cousin introduced me to) as a child. Julie Andrews wrote as well as a classic children's author.  
In writing, there is the matter of the negative capability style versus the egotistical sublime style. The negative capability style is the capability to negate oneself, to come out of oneself and completely disappear into the character. Shakespeare is a classic example. All of his characters, Hamlet, Macbeth, etc. are not Shakespeare, and none of the writer is reflected in them. The egotistical sublime is the opposite--the charming of the reader into the perspective of the writer. William Wordsworth and John Milton are examples. For example, some part of Milton is reflected in his characaters, such as Adam and Satan in Paradise Lost.
There is the analogous comparison between styles in acting, between the chameleon actor and the evergreen actor. The chameleon actor is like a chameleon--an actor that can disappear into the character, shedding all aspects of his/her personality. IMDB credits Kathy Bates as the textbook example of disappearing into character. Meryl Streep is another revered chameleon actress. On the other hand, the evergreen actor is one that maintains his/her charming trademark personality throughout all of his/her roles. Tom Cruise is one evergreen actor.
At HB Studio, the terms used for the chameleon actor and the evergreen actor were the character-plus-you and you-plus-character, respectively. At HB Studio, one teacher said that at auditions, the casting directors want to see the you-plus-character since they want to see who for you are in the audition. On the other hand, usually in the Academy Awards, it is the chameleon actors that get nominated. The evergreen actors only win when there are no chameleons in the running.
My favorite actor and first crush, Aamir Khan said that Bollywood is full of evergreen actors with trademark personalities, but he prefers the chameleon actor! I just love Aamir Khan and all he stands for, all his philosophies! He is so serious about acting and really dedicated to it. I am so glad that he played the Indian Romeo in my favorite movie, Qayamat se Qayamat Tak, an Indian version of Romeo and Juliet, one of my favorite plays! I always thought myself that Bollywood is about evergreen actors, typecasting, and trademark personalities.
I have been taught that an actor is different from a star. A star is all about glamour while an actor is about raw. bloodshedding,cut-and-dry acting. In the past, the trademarks of acting were all about glamour and stardom while acting is more of a focus now.
Audrey Hepburn is a mixture of a chameleon actor, an evergreen actor, acting, and glamour. In all of her roles that I have seen in Roman Holiday, Sabrina, Breakfast at Tiffany's, Love in the Afternoon, My Fair Lady, Funny Face, The Children's Hour, and A Nun's Story, she came across as sweet and demure. In the role of a teacher in The Children's Hour and in the role of a nun in A Nun's Story, she had challenging roles that deviated from her usual glamorous, romantic roles. She did a good job of shedding her romantic side in The Children's Hour, and I really saw her as an intelligent teacher that cared about her children. In The Nun's Story, I still saw the glamorous aspect of her personality. I think that the glamor will remain with her no matter what role she has. I keep a lot of Audrey Hepburn and Marilyn Monroe dolls in various roles on the window seat in my room as inspiration.
As a writer and actor, I would like to have a combination of an emergence into other characters and a display of my own characters. I would like to have a trademark. Someone told me that in the roles that I play, I am able to express a real part of myself, innocence in my character. He told me that about my performance as a free-spirited, eccentric character, Shelly in Moonchildren. I also played a call girl who was under the cover of a school teacher in Night School. I received the feedback that I came across as demure in that role. I would like innocence to be my trademark in writing and acting. I was fascinated to find that on Wikipedia, it lists Rosamond Lehmann, Katherine Mansfield, and Jean Rhys as naïve writers.
I would like to come across as innocent, but informed as an artist. I would like to explore the following dimensions of myself in writing and acting--the sweet, innocent, ingénue, the classical girl, the free-spirited circus girl, the star imaged leading lady, the enchanting, magical persona, the emotional character, and the passionate character. I particularly like the role of Lilli in Carnival, which represents a delicious amalgamation of these traits as a free-spirited, innocent ingénue that takes part in the magic of the carnival.


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