Getting into character can be difficult, especially if you’re playing someone very different to you! Here are some tips to help you put yourself in the characters shoes.
- Try Out Different Ideas
There is not one way of performing a character. Try out all the different interpretations you can think of with your teacher, parent, friend or yourself, until you find one you like! For example, Voldemort could be emotionless, creepy, and quiet OR he could be loud, dramatic and terrifying! Try them all out, and don’t be afraid to make mistakes, or have a bad performance while you are testing out what you like.
- Make a Table
Once you’ve decided how you like to perform your character, make a table! Here’s an example of a table I like to use to figure out how I should be moving my body, or changing my voice to be a specific character. It’s important to use your face, body and voice to shape a character. By making this table, you can start thinking about how the characteristics your character has translates into actions. You can add to this table by watching the movie and taking notes, reading the book and noting down adjectives other characters use to describe them, or googling information about your character.
|Character||Characteristics||Facial Expression||Vocal tone/ pitch/ loudness||Body Movements|
Lots of authority
Looking down his nose at people
Pacing backwards and forwards
Hands behind back
Seeing bizarre sights
Quiet and soft
Fast and loud
Walks in circles
Looking over her shoulder
- Get in the Hot Seat
Once you’ve decided how you think your character walks and talks, it’s time to put it into action! Get into character, and sit on a chair. Get a friend, family member, or teacher to ask you some random questions about you, unrelated to your passage. Here are some possible ideas:
- What’s your favourite food? (Voldemort: Harry’s blood, or very rare steak!)
- What’s your favourite movie? (Voldemort: Horror movies about witches)
- If you could be any animal, what would it be? (Voldemort: A leech or cobra)
- If you could take three things to a desert island, what would they be? (Voldemort: Harry Potter, my snake, and books)
By asking unrelated questions, you can put yourself into the shoes of your character. Remember to keep your voice, body physicality, and facial expression while you’re answering the questions!