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The Actor’s Language – Action Verbs

Verbs are used to stimulate an emotion. In order to perform truthfully, actors need to find the right action to fit a particular line or a particular dramatic situation.

Actors need action verbs (an action.) They cannot act truthfully with adjectives. By using action verbs instead of adjectives, an actor can focus on convincing the audience of the feelings to be found in the scene. EX: If they are playing a bully, some action verbs you could use are “to intimidate, to threaten, to ridicule.”) These action verbs are the motivation for the character and that’s what the actor needs to make a character come alive.

And if you want more intensity in the performance, you just give a stronger verb. EX: you can start off with “to complain.” You can then use “to warn.” If that isn’t enough, you can use “to punish.”

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