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Physical actor training 2.0: new digital horizons

Allain, Paul (2019) Physical actor training 2.0: new digital horizons. Theatre, Dance and Performance Training, 10 (2). pp. 169-186. ISSN 1944-3927. (doi:10.1080/19443927.2019.1609074) (KAR id:75962)


This article explores how actor training, and physical actor training especially, can shift from the well-established historical norm of live workshop interaction to embrace online possibilities. It briefly examines some of the contextual issues around institutional approaches to training, including recent changes in British Higher Education and students’ expectations, and charts some digital innovations in the field. It notes how significant these advances have been in dance, wondering how these might impact on actor training. It then traces the author’s own evolutionary history of publishing using analogue and then digital tools, from drawings, through CDROMs and DVDs to online materials. This has culminated in the recent publication of ‘Physical Actor training – an online A-Z’, for Methuen Drama Bloomsbury. The A-Z is introduced as a case study, showing how the project team developed film material as a means to articulate key aspects of training practice; for example by showing the learning and training process, for presenting voice work and for actors’ explorations of space and movement. The article describes how many of the project’s films were augmented with various digital tools, such as on-screen animation and it introduces some of the range of approaches in filming and editing that were adopted to differentiate each A-Z term, with references to exemplar films. It concludes by suggesting that we are only at the beginning of a digital revolution regards actor training, its documentation and analysis and related publishing practices, of which this project is a key part.

Item Type: Article
DOI/Identification number: 10.1080/19443927.2019.1609074
Projects: Physical Actor Training - an Online A-Z and ebook
Uncontrolled keywords: digital; training; online; publishing; physical acting; film.
Subjects: P Language and Literature
P Language and Literature > PN Literature (General)
P Language and Literature > PN Literature (General) > PN1600 Drama
Divisions: Divisions > Division of Arts and Humanities > School of Arts
Funders: Leverhulme Trust (
Depositing User: Paul Allain
Date Deposited: 23 Aug 2019 10:00 UTC
Last Modified: 04 Mar 2024 17:56 UTC
Resource URI: (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)

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