Acting in Real Time
Paul Binnerts University of Michigan Press, 2012 Library of Congress PN2061.B44513 2012 | Dewey Decimal 792.028
Acting in Real Time by renowned Dutch director and acting teacher Paul Binnerts describes his method for Real-Time Theater, which authorizes actors to actively determine how a story is told---they are no longer mere vehicles for delivering the playwright's message or the director's interpretations of the text. This level of involvement allows actors to deepen their grasp of the material and amplify their stage presence, resulting in more engaged and nuanced performances.
The method offers a postmodern challenge to Stanislavski and Brecht, whose theories of stage realism dominated the twentieth century. In providing a new way to consider the actor's presence on stage, Binnerts advocates breaking down the "fourth wall" that separates audiences and actors and has been a central tenet of acting theories associated with realism. In real-time theater, actors forgo attempts to become characters and instead understand their function to be storytellers who are fully present on stage and may engage the audience and their fellow actors directly.
Paul Binnerts analyzes the ascendance of realism as the dominant theater and acting convention and how its methods can hinder the creation of a more original, imaginative theater. His description of the techniques of real-time theater is illuminated by practical examples from his long experience in the stage. The book then offers innovative exercises that provide training in the real-time technique, including physical exercises that help the actor become truly present in performance. Acting in Real Time also includes a broad overview of the history of acting and realism's relationship to the history of theater architecture, offering real-time theater as an alternative. The book will appeal to actors and acting students, directors, stage designers, costume designers, lighting designers, theater historians, and dramaturgs.
In Real Time David F. Bell explores the decisive impact the accelerated movement of people and information had on the fictions of four giants of French realism--Balzac, Stendhal, Dumas, and Zola.
Nineteenth-century technological advances radically altered the infrastructure of France, changing the ways ordinary citizens–-and literary characters--viewed time, space, distance, and speed. The most influential of these advances included the improvement of the stagecoach, the growth of road and canal networks leading to the advent of the railway, and the increasing use of mail, and of the optical telegraph. Citing examples from a wide range of novels and stories, Bell demonstrates the numerous ways in which these trends of acceleration became not just literary devices and themes but also structuring principles of the novels themselves.
Beginning with both the provincial and the Parisian communications networks of Balzac, Bell proceeds to discuss the roles of horses and optical telegraphs in Stendhal and the importance of domination of communication channels to the characters of Dumas, whose Count of Monte-Cristo might be seen as the ultimate fictional master of this accelerated culture. Finally, Bell analyzes the cinematic vision created by the arrival of the railroad, as depicted by Zola in La Bète Humaine.
Television can be imagined in a number of ways: as a profuse flow of images, as a machine that produces new social relationships, as the last lingering gasp of Western metaphysical thinking, as a stuttering relay system of almost anonymous messages, as a fantastic construction of time. Richard Dienst engages each of these possibilities as he explores the challenge television has posed for contemporary theories of culture, technology, and media. Five theoretical projects provide Still Life in Real Time with its framework: the cultural studies tradition of Raymond Williams; Marxist political economy; Heideggerian existentialism; Derridean deconstruction; and a Deleuzian anatomy of images. Drawing lessons from television programs like Twin Peaks and Crime Story, television events like the Gulf War, and television personalities like Madonna, Dienst produces a remarkable range of insights on the character of the medium and on the theories that have been affected by it. From the earliest theorists who viewed television as a new metaphor for a global whole, a liberal technology empty of ideological or any other content, through those who saw it as a tool for consumption, making time a commodity, to those who sense television’s threat to being and its intimate relation to power, Dienst exposes the rich pattern of television’s influence on philosophy, and hence on the deepest levels of contemporary experience. A book of theory, Still Life in Real Time will compel the attention of all those with an interest in the nature of the ever present, ever shifting medium and its role in the thinking that marks our time.