Saturday, 13 February 2016

This is how to do it!

I had this memorised at one time - copying the rhythm and inflections.

Not many modern actors can do, or even attempt to do, what Olivier does and all actors used to do - speak blank verse as verse. Indeed, their directors will not let them.

And if you do not, you lose a great deal. Shakespeare wrote it as verse for a reason, and so speak it as prose throws away half the effect - and creates a different effect.

But, of course, if you are trying to be different from Olivier just for the sake of being different... well, greatness casts a long shadow.

[PS I don't blame Tom Hiddleston for the above fiasco - he is indeed one of my favourite actors - because he is only doing what the director's 'concept' demanded; and makes as good a job of it as could be done.]