Green Shirt Studio

Repetition: The Foundation Of Our Work

Repetition: The Foundation Of Our Work

In Level 1: Living Truthfully, we build an exercise step-by-step called repetition. This exercise, created by the legendary acting teacher Sanford Meisner, lays the foundation for the work we do in Levels 1 – 5 of our Meisner Acting Program.

As this exercise looks different from what one might expect from an acting class, students can be confused as to why we start with repetition. With time, the foundation we set  becomes clear and students see why repetition is a revolutionary way to develop skills they need to be powerful actors.

In his book Sanford Meisner On Acting, Meisner says “Repetition eliminates all intellectuality from the actor’s instrument to make him a spontaneous responder to where he is, what is happening to him, what is being done to him. It plays on the source of all organic creativity, which is the inner impulses…the practitioner is somebody who is learning to funnel his instincts, not give performances.” 

Below you can see what a few Green Shirt instructors and students have taken away from repetition and how it’s impacted their acting.

“Repetition has taught me what it feels like to let things happen in my acting rather than making them happen. It’s how I practice letting go of control.”

– Jack, Green Shirt Instructor

“Doing repetition has helped me to sharpen my focus by learning to pay attention to my partner and notice what is happening in the moment. It has also taught me to know when to react. It can be easy to react for the sake of doing something, but learning to wait until you must react produces a more powerful and authentic performance.”

Raychel, Green Shirt Instructor

“It (repetition) helps me to focus on the scene or exercise and uncloud my thoughts.  It’s like doing an icebath before a boxing match.”

– Gilbert, Student in Level 3: Emotional Preparation

“It (repetition) really helps you stay present. We often ponder what’s next or dwell on what just happened instead of focusing on what’s happening NOW.”

– Phuc, Student in Level 4: Doing The Work

“The process strips away any pre-learned or pre-conceived notion of what acting is, and brings it back to the barest of bones: there is a human across from you experiencing something. Start there.”

– Mary, Student in Level 2: Under Imaginary Circumstances

“Repetition has really helped me stay present in a scene and really working with my scene partner, which has greatly improved both my scripted acting and improvisation.”

– James, Meisner Program Graduate

“Practicing repetition has helped me connect with other actors while staying true and open with my emotions.”

– Nate, Student in Level 4: Doing The Work

Ready to start your Meisner journey? Next session is now enrolling! Visit our Classes page for all the info.