Learn Your Lines by Writing Them Down…Repeatedly!
It’s a phenomenally simple, yet effective technique
(By Javier Guerra)
(Photo: Sam Lion | Pexels)
Here’s an interesting way to learn your lines: Write them down. All of them! Over and over and over again!
I recently spent time with a ridiculously beautiful, young actress on the set of a web series. She had the type of rare beauty that can cause you to underestimate, or overlook, her exceptional skill. At least, that’s what happened to me.
Once I got over her attractiveness, I noticed how adept she was at memorizing large amounts of copy. Literally overnight, this talented, young actress learned a massive number of lines.
She had a notebook, where she wrote out all of her lines and all of her cue lines from the other actors, by hand!
What was her secret?
She wrote and rewrote her lines. She had a notebook, where she wrote out all of her lines and all of her cue lines from the other actors – which, combined, amounted to almost the entire script – by hand!
At the lunch break, I asked her why on earth she would do such a thing. Why rewrite nearly the entire script, even though the director had given us a printed copy? Isn’t that just a bunch of gratuitous labor? Just a waste of time?
She responded that rewriting the script was akin to a student taking notes in class. When a student takes notes in class, it doesn’t just help them stay awake during a boring lecture. It also helps them remember the important parts of the lecture.
The physical act of taking notes not only cements information on the paper, but it also helps embed it into the brain.
The physical act of taking notes not only cements information on the paper, but it also helps embed it into the brain. When it comes time to take the test, a student can correctly answer test questions by recalling what they wrote down about that subject, as well as, what they remember the professor saying during the lecture.
The key, she explained, was to push herself to rewrite her lines from memory, without looking at the script for help. Each time she rewrote them, she looked at the script less and less. Each time, she etched the lines into her brain.
It’s a phenomenally simple, yet effective technique. And it makes sense.
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