On joy and fun
In a production I did recently, one of the actors came up to me after the first performance and said, “That was such fun!”
How do you have fun as an actor? It’s a serious issue because for so much of the time you’re under pressure, you’re being judged and you’re anxious about pleasing everyone.

But consider: that enjoyment was not you in isolation. It really came from the reaction of the audience. The measure of your enjoyment on stage is the degree to which your audience enjoys your performance. So it depends on your attitude and state of mind. And this brings in the principle that like attracts like.

At the risk of sounding cheesy, acting should be an act of love. If you send out enjoyment to the other actors and the audience, they’ll send enjoyment back to you. Send out love and you’ll get love back.

It also works the other way. If you send out cold distain to your audience, a collective sneer will come back. I recently heard an actor say, “I hate audiences.” Send out hatred and your audience might hate you. Give them coldness and their response will be cold.

So this comes back to your attitude, which is fed by your values. These are subtle shifts of your mind, but they alter the signals your fellow actors and the audience pick up. And they in turn alter the signals that come back to you. As I say, like attracts like. So, have fun.

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