Are online courses a viable option for actors?

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The issue of online education has been valid for many industries, especially for actors. And with the recent pandemic, it has become even more important. Of course, other professionals can study and work online very well. If you are an online paper writer, you do not need to be physically present in a classroom. But what about acting?

There are pros and cons to online acting classes that you should consider before settling for a program.

Advantages

One of the main advantages of any online training is that it is accessible to many students. You don’t have to move and pay the rent. One can do it from the comfort of one’s home while being taught by industry experts. But here are a few other benefits to consider.

Acquire knowledge

One of the ways to improve as an actor is to acquire knowledge. The truth is, it doesn’t have to be academic. Acting involves constant work on your skills, whether it’s reading a book, watching a YouTube tutorial, or taking a digital class.

Ultimately, it’s about better understanding the fundamentals of performance. Knowing the job well allows you to break the rules or find new means of expression. In this regard, digital learning can be as good as traditional learning, especially when it comes to theory.

Improve video hearing skills

Those who work on movies or TV shows are used to performing in front of a camera. Much of their play takes place in close-up, neck up. So there is a shorter learning curve for them. Zoom or Skype can be much easier for these professionals than for theater artists.

And it helps to know better how to play on video, to be ready to do video auditions with more confidence and knowledge of how to act. We will know exactly where to look and how to translate the emotion of the screen.

Expert comments

Another advantage is that on such courses, we gets feedback on their acting. It comes from the teachers and peers involved. Of course, in traditional education you get that too. But compared to learning on your own with books or tutorials, this is an advantage.

Comfort

For some, practicing at home is more comfortable. It’s a safe place where it’s easier to try something new and experiment with your skills. There is less stress and anxiety playing in front of a live audience. This can be beneficial for beginners or those who have not yet discovered their full potential.

New ways to connect

When you work on a piece together online, you have to find new ways to connect. There is much less physico-chemistry, which is a disadvantage that can be turned into an advantage. It’s a challenge that allows you to explore new ways to find that connection and perform.

The disadvantages

It would not be fair to mention only the good things about online programs. Of course, there are considerable drawbacks that must be taken into account.

Lack of movement

Compared to studio practice, there is a lack of work with space, movement and blocking. It is much more difficult to learn to take up space and to move around. Additionally, there is no way to physically connect to other actors. And these are very viable skills for an actor, especially for acting or performing.

Isolation

One of the main advantages of traditional program is communicating with, networking and learning from others. And this is something that is much more difficult to achieve with digital courses. Of course, people can set up chats and connect that way. But it’s still not the same.

When you play a scene with other actors, you have to create the emotion yourself. This is, of course, easier for method players, but others may find it difficult. However, it can be a perfect opportunity to learn a new skill.

It’s easier to get distracted

In the studio, when a couple performs their scene, others watch them and can learn or give their opinion. With Zoom courses it is also possible to see others working, but it is much easier to get distracted. After all, you just become a dark screen on mute.

You can go make a cup of tea, get distracted by a pet or just lose your concentration. It is important to have very strong internal motivation and discipline to be truly involved.

Conclusion

So is it worth it? Yes, but viability depends on a particular course and expectations. It’s a decent training and a new experience that helps to practice and find new ways of expression and work. At the same time, it cannot completely replace traditional studio training.

Online acting classes are a great option for learning something new or continuing to work on yourself. Still, it’s important to find a good program that doesn’t overload the students. Overall, it’s like going to the gym and working out at home with an online coach. This is good, but you have less equipment, space, and some things can only be trained offline.


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