There’s a classic line that directors say to actors. It goes:
Start playing! There’s a reason why it’s called a play.
We often forget how to have fun sometimes. There’s this ongoing pressure to take things “seriously” or make things perfect that make us lose sight of what we love doing. While working on a play, I’ve had the constant stress of getting it right which resulted in a performance I was constantly displeased with. Every time I wanted to perform, I would bash my head in saying the uttermost ridiculous things like “you messed up your lines” or “you need to be better”.
All this constant negativity in my head has blocked me what I loved about the craft of being someone else. It only took the realisation of a project I had an absolute blast to be in to get me out of this train of thought and in having fun, I was able to give a relaxed and amazing performance. After the show, I was grateful to receive praise for my performance even though I had quite a small role but then again there are no small parts. Only small actors.
Your best work happens when you are relaxed and having fun. It sounds wacky but it’s true. As soon as you create the expectation that you need to be perfect, you throw out all possibility about having fun because you become result driven. You have one goal and one view in sight and it’s all about that. The answer to fix this view is really to focus on the process.
As soon as you put on your negative lens on, you become sad and angry and just plain old depressed. I’m not going to give advice on how to change this outlook because honestly, it’s hard. It’s hard to just make everything seem better when you’re at your absolute worse but I can honestly say that the first step is really just making the choice.
Start the choice to have fun and then something will guide you to the best time of your life.
Zoë Schramm chilling during Sugar Sugar Rehearsals | Callum Ford