be present

Get present anytime

Do you struggle with being present? Do you wish you could learn be present more often? What if I told you that you are completely in control of your presence, and you can get present anytime? You can. And guess what… I’ll explain to you how to do it in the next few minutes. Keep […]

Give It Away

You’ve heard that thing about the tree falling in the forest, right? It goes like this: “If a tree falls in the forest and no one is there to hear it, does it make a sound?” Commence deep philosophical conversation. I want to apply this same question to communication: “If a person speaks and no […]

Ease up on that emotional pressure

Last week on the blog, I introduced an idea I call “actor voice.” Actor voice is when a performer or speaker doesn’t sound authentic because they are stuck in a vocal pattern. I named a handful of different vocal patterns that are possible to get stuck in, and today I want to elaborate further on […]

Do you have “actor voice”??

Okay, so there’s this thing that sometimes happens with actors that like to call “actor voice.” Let me explain. Actor voice is when something about the performer’s voice sounds or feels inauthentic. As the listener, your bullshit meter starts to siren: “Bull-shit bull-shit! Something about what that person is doing is FAKE. I don’t believe […]

Better OUT than IN

You woke up this morning and you feel crappy. You’re sad, you’re out of sorts, and you don’t feel like going to work (/school/rehearsal/wherever you need to go). What should you do? Option A: Stay in bed. Option B: Get up and mope around feeling sad. Stare blankly at the mirror while you brush your […]

Learn how we learn everything (aka the Unconscious Competence Model)

Recently I’ve been teaching something called the “Unconscious Competence Model” in my classes and sessions a lot. I like to alternately call it the “how-we-learn-anything/OMG-this-explains-everything” model, because it describes how we learn anything new or acquire a new skill. I believe that when we dive in and hack this process it gives us a much better understanding […]

The Three Keys to Performing

I work with and teach a lot of actors, and lately I’ve been thinking a lot about what a complex task it is to perform. On one hand it’s the most natural thing in the world. On the other hand though, to appear natural in front of an audience is perhaps the hardest task ever […]

Stop Projecting Your Voice

I’m sure at some point someone has told you that you need to be louder. They’ve likely said to you: “You need to project your voice more!” It’s very possible (likely, in fact) that after this was said to you, you pushed to make your voice louder. Well I want to suggest that there’s a […]

Being Versus Doing

My junior year of college I studied abroad in London at the British American Drama Academy. It was awesome and I had this amazing dame of a teacher Sheila for Shakespeare class. One day after I’d been working on my monologue in front of the class, Sheila said to me “Elissa, go find the book […]