Actor Care Specialist?
Studies have proven that dramatic story narratives can often trigger actors and/or leave them with emotional 'lingerings' that can have serious impact on their mental health if not managed well. There are also challenging roles that force actors out of their comfort zone demanding them to engage with more of their emotional pallet. Research has shown that this too can bring an imbalance to an actors mental state. As an Actor Care Specialist, I support the actors' creative process during character development while keeping their well-being a priority. My ACES model focuses on;
1) increasing capacity for resilience before accessing vulnerabilities.
2) creating boundaries between actor and the character they are portraying.
3) managing emotional challenges/blocks.
4) elucidating a characters' emotionally complex life.
What's my Responsibility?
When an actors' vulnerability meets their characters' psychologically and emotionally complex inner life their creative journey goes beyond what the skills of an acting coach can offer, is not always understood by a therapist and is not the responsibility of an Intimacy Coordinator. It's in this psychologically and emotionally vulnerable space where my work is valued. I journey vicariously with the actor and meet them at their point of need supporting their journey ‘into’ and ‘out of’ their characters complex inner narrative.
I understand the actors' process and facilitate their personal & artistic journey in the context of character development thus always maintaining clear boundaries between character & actor. I provide a safe and containing space and work toward preventative measures that safeguard actors from potentially being triggered by the narratives' content and/or themes as they fully embody their characters. Yes, It's personal. It's also very creative & empowering work and necessary for maintaining the actor's well-being while engaged in production.
How Does Your Production Benefit?
1) By supporting your cast's mental health needs during production of potentially triggering themes you're not only taking your responsibility to your actors seriously you're also lowering your risk of unhealthy behaviours that can jeopardize a productions shooting and/or rehearsal schedule such as;
i) excessive drinking/drug use and/or violence.
ii) rising tensions among cast members, director/producers, & crew that could lead to events that can slow production.
iii) emotional meltdowns, depressive moods, and anxiety in cast members that could compromise your shooting and/or rehearsal schedule.
2) With Actor Care sessions starting prior to production days, Intimacy Coordinators are well informed of actor boundaries & challenges ahead of shooting saving the production time on set.
3) With Actor Care support actors have increased resilience, awareness & control of their emotional range. This translates to braver performances with richer material for the director to shape.