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Theatre

theaterstagetheatrical
The actor performs "in the flesh" in the traditional medium of the theatre or in modern media such as film, radio, and television.
Theatre or theater is a collaborative form of fine art that uses live performers, typically actors or actresses, to present the experience of a real or imagined event before a live audience in a specific place, often a stage.

Acting

actoractressacted
The actor's interpretation of their role—the art of acting—pertains to the role played, whether based on a real person or fictional character. (See male as norm). "As Whoopi Goldberg put it in an interview with the paper: 'An actress can only play a woman. I'm an actor – I can play anything. The UK performers' union Equity has no policy on the use of "actor" or "actress". An Equity spokesperson said that the union does not believe that there is a consensus on the matter and stated that the "...subject divides the profession". In 2009, the Los Angeles Times stated that "Actress" remains the common term used in major acting awards given to female recipients (e.g., Academy Award for Best Actress).
Acting is an activity in which a story is told by means of its enactment by an actor or actress who adopts a character—in theatre, television, film, radio, or any other medium that makes use of the mimetic mode.

Equity (British trade union)

EquityBritish Actors' Equity AssociationBritish Equity
(See male as norm). "As Whoopi Goldberg put it in an interview with the paper: 'An actress can only play a woman. I'm an actor – I can play anything. The UK performers' union Equity has no policy on the use of "actor" or "actress". An Equity spokesperson said that the union does not believe that there is a consensus on the matter and stated that the "...subject divides the profession". In 2009, the Los Angeles Times stated that "Actress" remains the common term used in major acting awards given to female recipients (e.g., Academy Award for Best Actress).
Equity, formerly officially titled the British Actors' Equity Association (although Equity was always its common name), is the trade union for actors, stage managers and models in the United Kingdom.

Film

motion picturemoviecinema
The actor performs "in the flesh" in the traditional medium of the theatre or in modern media such as film, radio, and television.
Preceding film in origin by thousands of years, early plays and dances had elements common to film: scripts, sets, costumes, production, direction, actors, audiences, storyboards and scores.

Character (arts)

fictional charactercharacterfictional
An actor is a person who portrays a character in a performance (also actress; see below).
From this, the sense of "a part played by an actor" developed.

Thespis

The first recorded case of a performing actor occurred in 534 BC (though the changes in calendar over the years make it hard to determine exactly) when the Greek performer Thespis stepped onto the stage at the Theatre Dionysus to become the first known person to speak words as a character in a play or story.
Thespis (fl. 6th century BC) of Icaria (present-day Dionysos, Greece), according to certain Ancient Greek sources and especially Aristotle, was the first person ever to appear on stage as an actor playing a character in a play (instead of speaking as him or herself).

Drama

dramasdramatic artsFamily Drama
The exclusively male actors in the theatre of ancient Greece performed in three types of drama: tragedy, comedy, and the satyr play. Radio drama is a dramatized, purely acoustic performance, broadcast on radio or published on audio media, such as tape or CD. With no visual component, radio drama depends on dialogue, music and sound effects to help the listener imagine the characters and story: "It is auditory in the physical dimension but equally powerful as a visual force in the psychological dimension."
The enactment of drama in theatre, performed by actors on a stage before an audience, presupposes collaborative modes of production and a collective form of reception.

Playing company

playing companiesacting troupetheatre companies
Since before the reign of Elizabeth I, companies of players were attached to households of leading aristocrats and performed seasonally in various locations.
In Renaissance London, playing company was the usual term for a company of actors.

Stanislavski's system

systemStanislavskyStanislavski
In Stanislavski's system, also known as Stanislavski's method, actors draw upon their own feelings and experiences to convey the "truth" of the character they portray. Actors puts themselves in the mindset of the character, finding things in common to give a more genuine portrayal of the character.
Stanislavski's system is a systematic approach to training actors that the Russian theatre practitioner Konstantin Stanislavski developed in the first half of the 20th century.

Sanford Meisner

Meisner techniqueMeisnerSandford Meisner
Method acting is a range of techniques based on for training actors to achieve better characterizations of the characters they play, as formulated by Lee Strasberg. Strasberg's method is based upon the idea that to develop an emotional and cognitive understanding of their roles, actors should use their own experiences to identify personally with their characters. It is based on aspects of Stanislavski's system. Other acting techniques are also based on Stanislavski's ideas, such as those of Stella Adler and Sanford Meisner, but these are not considered "method acting".
Sanford Meisner (August 31, 1905 – February 2, 1997), also known as Sandy, was an American actor and acting teacher who developed an approach to acting instruction that is now known as the Meisner technique.

Michel Saint-Denis

Jacques DuchesneLondon Theatre StudioMichel
Classical acting is an umbrella term for a philosophy of acting that integrates the expression of the body, voice, imagination, personalizing, improvisation, external stimuli, and script analysis. It is based on the theories and systems of select classical actors and directors including Konstantin Stanislavski and Michel Saint-Denis.
Michel Saint-Denis (13 September 1897 – 31 July 1971), dit Jacques Duchesne, was a French actor, theater director, and drama theorist whose ideas on actor training have had a profound influence on the development of European theater from the 1930s on.

Liturgical drama

religious dramadevotional playgospel-drama
By the middle of the 11th century, liturgical drama had spread from Russia to Scandinavia to Italy.
To speak of actors is only pertinent to the plays; in the church, the rites were performed by clerics and monks who did not consider themselves to be acting in any amateur or professional sense.

Principal boy

principal comedian
For example, the stage role of Peter Pan is traditionally played by a woman, as are most principal boys in British pantomime.
In pantomime, a principal boy role is the young male protagonist of the play, traditionally played by a young actress in boy's clothes.

Stage combat

fight choreographyaction directoraction choreographer
Some theater actors need to learn stage combat, which is simulated fighting on stage.
It is closely related to the practice of stunts and is a common field of study for actors.

Screen test

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Film actors also need to learn how to prepare well and perform well on screen tests.
A screen test is a method of determining the suitability of an actor or actress for performing on film or in a particular role.

Bit part

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Bit part
A bit part is a role in which there is direct interaction with the principal actors and no more than five lines of dialogue, often referred to as a five-or-less or under-five in the United States, or under sixes in British television.

Casting (performing arts)

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Cast member
In the performing arts industry such as theatre, film, or television, a casting (or casting call) is a pre-production process for selecting a certain type of actor, dancer, singer, or extra for a particular role or part in a script, screenplay, or teleplay.

Presentational and representational acting

presentationalPresentational actingpresentational theatre
Presentational and representational acting
In every theatrical performance the manner in which each individual actor treats the audience establishes, sustains or varies a particular kind of actor-audience relationship between them.

Leading actor

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Leading actor
Some actors are typecast as leads, but most play the lead in some performances and supporting or character roles in others.

Supporting actor

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Supporting actor
A supporting actor is an actor who performs a role in a play or film below that of the leading actor(s), and above that of a bit part.

Henry Irving

Sir Henry IrvingIrving[Henry] Irving
Henry Irving (1838-1905) was the most successful of the British actor-managers.

Performance

performancesperformingperform
Radio drama is a dramatized, purely acoustic performance, broadcast on radio or published on audio media, such as tape or CD. With no visual component, radio drama depends on dialogue, music and sound effects to help the listener imagine the characters and story: "It is auditory in the physical dimension but equally powerful as a visual force in the psychological dimension."
A performance may also describe the way in which an actor performs.

GOTE

GOTE
GOTE, which stands for "Goal, Obstacle, Tactics, and Expectation", is an acronym devised by Robert Cohen to remind actors of four basic elements to consider while preparing a character for the theater.

Sarah Bernhardt

BernhardtSara BernhardtBernhart
Despite these prejudices, the 19th century also saw the first female acting "stars", most notably Sarah Bernhardt.

Body double

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Body double