I’m a sucker for people watching. It is amusing to observe others’ movements, expressions and reactions. Everywhere I go, I find myself analysing someone at some point. I go the extra mile sometimes to voice over their situation. I create a whole scenario full of nuances based on their body language. I am a weirdo! I know, but I wonder how many people do the exact same thing to me. I bet they’ll have fun doing that because I speak with my hands and make very extravagant facial expressions, I’ve been told.
The other day, my friend and I were sitting at a Denny’s eating burgers. Yikes! Bad choice for MyFitness Pal, but great place for a conversation and people watching. After a few rounds of voiceovers, we started discussing how different people are. Sitting a few tables over were two guys in their early to mid thirties I would say. They seemed foreign. Next to us sat an older man eating alone. The waitress was very kind to him. He looked like a regular.
Even though we live in the same world and breathe the same air, we all respond to things differently and have different ways of doing things. We are shaped into who we are based on our life journey yet there are many things we still have in common. For example, I think back to the teaching of Quintilian and Hills on how portraying feelings as an actor is about certain gestures and body positions. How the actor is strictly a shell encompassing particular moves and poses to transmit (present) very specific feelings but is immune to those same feelings on a personal level. How does this relate? Well, I realized that my voicing over scenarios focus on those particular gestures performed by the individuals who are oblivious of my – lets be nice and call it creativity. Yes, even before learning about Quintilian, my brain already associated certain moves and expression to a certain feeling.
In my early stages of theatre, I was fixed on the idea of internalization and character building, representing a character regardless of the situation, which has worked for me on stage. However, I didn’t know that I also believed in the externalization of feelings without actually acknowledging it. Playing the writer on stranger’s daily life has helped me find out something new about myself. Always leave some space for growth.
Thanks for reading,