Twenty-Five 5-Minute Power Scenes

Overview

An invaluable tool for the developing actor to hone his or her dramatic skills.

Lena Harris, award-winning actor and renowned acting coach, has written these twenty-five original scenes for two to four persons to both train developing actors and showcase, to best advantage, their talents.

Unable to find scenes from existing plays that would best exercise the dramatic skills of her acting students, Harris ...

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Overview

An invaluable tool for the developing actor to hone his or her dramatic skills.

Lena Harris, award-winning actor and renowned acting coach, has written these twenty-five original scenes for two to four persons to both train developing actors and showcase, to best advantage, their talents.

Unable to find scenes from existing plays that would best exercise the dramatic skills of her acting students, Harris decided to sit down and pen her own dramatic situations.

These riveting scenes, both comedy and drama, take actors through a dramatic arc of action in just five minutes, drawing fully on both their dramatic and comedic skills and their ability to portray, succinctly and accurately, characters and situations. Characters and venues range from yuppie professionals in a Manhattan bar to small-town Texas lovers to a convict locked up in prison.

These scenes help actors to build their acting "muscles" in the classroom and are also perfect audition material, showcasing their talent for agents, managers, and casting directors.

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
Unable to find scenes that suited the talents of her students, Harris, owner and operator of the Lena Harris Acting Workshop (LHAW) in Southern California, has written her own. Divided into comedic, dramatic, and romantic categories, the scenes were written specifically for her students to perform in front of a camera, not only for instructional purposes, but also for auditions. As such, they do not reach toward any sort of artfulness; the five minutes are packed with a wide range of emotions that will most likely make the actors appear shrill and unnatural. Other scene anthologies provide material that will allow actors the opportunity to present a reasonably thought-out portrayal, e.g., Michael Schulman and Eve Mekler's Play the Scene: The Ultimate Collection of Contemporary and Classic Scenes and Monologues or the many volumes in Smith and Kraus's "Best Stage Scenes" series. Not recommended.-Larry Schwartz, Minnesota State Univ. Lib., Moorhead Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781575254326
  • Publisher: Smith & Kraus, Inc.
  • Publication date: 11/28/2005
  • Series: Scene Study Ser.
  • Pages: 112
  • Product dimensions: 5.10 (w) x 7.60 (h) x 0.40 (d)

Table of Contents


Introduction vii
Ally 1 male/1 female, Drama
Amanda and Joe 1 male/1 female, Comedy
Armadillo 2 males/2 females, Comedy
Best Friends 2 males/1 female, Drama
Casting Call 1 male/1 female, Romance
Family Shoe Store 2 males/2 females, Comedy
Fear of Flying 1 male/1 female, Comedy
45 ACP 1 male/1 female, Drama
Geoffrey's 1 male/1 female, Comedic Drama
I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus
1 male/1 female, Comedy
A Kiss Good-bye 2 females, Comedy
A Little Table in the Corner
1 male/1 female, Drama
Making Up 1 male/1 female, Drama
Mary and Joseph 1 male/1 female, Comedy
Medea 1 male/1 female, Romance
My Lover 1 male/1 female, Comedy
Nadine's Diner 1 male/1 female, Romance
The Oak Bar 1 male/1 female, Romance
The Proposal 1 male/1 female, Drama
Sing Sing 1 male/1 female, Drama
Sisters 1 male/1 female, Drama
Sixth Sense 1 male/1 female, Drama
The Topanga Ranch Motel
2 males/2 females, Comedy
Top Secret 1 male/1 female, Drama
Wild Flowers 1 male/1 female, Drama
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Introduction

As an acting teacher and coach, and in my work with the studios, I have found a desperate need for short, contemporary scenes that are universal and not limited by age or nationality-scenes that provide an extreme range of emotions, actions, and impediments and that give the actor a complete workout.I have spent endless hours reading plays and scripts, only to end up cutting and pasting the scenes together in an effort to provide the needed material. Ultimately, I found it to be more efficient and pragmatic to write the scenes myself.My scenes are used in a variety of ways. In my Audition Technique Workshop for example, the actors are given the same scene. They have an hour to memorize the scene and apply their tools and techniques; after which, I direct the scene and videotape the actors as though they were auditioning for a casting director. In the real world, actors typically receive their scripts a day before the audition. Consequently, this exercise is a "muscle-building" workout. The scenes may also be used as part of the actor's reel. Additionally, actors use these scenes for showcasing and for auditioning for agents (and managers). The agents often request that actors prepare scenes in addition to monologues, the reason being that uninformed or overzealous actors sometimes direct their monologue performance to the agent, even though the agent is not a character within the monologue. Doing this immediately creates problems. The agent becomes uncomfortable because he or she has unwittingly been forced to become part of the monologue, and as such, the agent is unable to observe the actor's performance. Notwithstanding the importance of a monologue, only the performance of a scene enables the agent to observe the connectedness between the actors, the specificity of their relationships, and the use of the behavior.Most agents request both a short comedy scene and a dramatic scene. Therefore I present a variety of each for this book, to best express each actor's talent and uniqueness.
Lena Harris
Beverly Hills, California
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Foreword

As an acting teacher and coach, and in my work with the studios, I have found a desperate need for short, contemporary scenes that are universal and not limited by age or nationality-scenes that provide an extreme range of emotions, actions, and impediments and that give the actor a complete workout.I have spent endless hours reading plays and scripts, only to end up cutting and pasting the scenes together in an effort to provide the needed material. Ultimately, I found it to be more efficient and pragmatic to write the scenes myself.My scenes are used in a variety of ways. In my Audition Technique Workshop for example, the actors are given the same scene. They have an hour to memorize the scene and apply their tools and techniques; after which, I direct the scene and videotape the actors as though they were auditioning for a casting director. In the real world, actors typically receive their scripts a day before the audition. Consequently, this exercise is a "muscle-building" workout. The scenes may also be used as part of the actor's reel. Additionally, actors use these scenes for showcasing and for auditioning for agents (and managers). The agents often request that actors prepare scenes in addition to monologues, the reason being that uninformed or overzealous actors sometimes direct their monologue performance to the agent, even though the agent is not a character within the monologue. Doing this immediately creates problems. The agent becomes uncomfortable because he or she has unwittingly been forced to become part of the monologue, and as such, the agent is unable to observe the actor's performance. Notwithstanding the importance of a monologue, only the performance of a scene enables the agent to observe the connectedness between the actors, the specificity of their relationships, and the use of the behavior.Most agents request both a short comedy scene and a dramatic scene. Therefore I present a variety of each for this book, to best express each actor's talent and uniqueness.
Lena Harris
Beverly Hills, California
Read More Show Less

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