The Pellerin Post – Finding Focus

April 20, 2011

Just yesterday we were on set for a big shoot – when someone’s cell phone went off…I mean what kind of ‘pro’ makes that kind of rookie mistake??? (Thank goodness I wasn’t fired).  The good thing was we could just cut and shoot at the top of the scene. But if that was live theatre?…well there’s no stopping the stage production.

It got us to thinking about the 'focus' for actors when it comes to live theatre... a cell phone goes off, or someone sneezes or bigger still when there's worries in your daily life - you can't bring that to work like you can in other jobs...so what's the secret? 

Krystin Pellerin Our TownWe hear of baseball pitchers having 'cones of silence', etc....so we put it to the lovely lady of stage and screen Republic of Doyle star actress Krystin Pellerin

This season she’s performing in 3 shows with the Soulpepper Theatre Company in Toronto and no doubt has the inside scoop on this sort of thing, so for this edition of The Pellerin Post was asked...

 “How do you stay focused when the show must go on?”  .

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The Pellerin Post – Finding Focus

I find my biggest battle with focus during performance comes from the negative self-talk that happens while I'm on stage. When I am judging myself I take myself out of the moment completely. I'm listening to my own voice and watching myself act instead of being present and open to my fellow actors and to the spontaneity of the scene. It comes from the fear of being judged harshly by the audience I guess, but I find that my self-criticism becomes less painful with experience and the more I work the more I find myself not caring what other people think as much.

It doesn't go away really, but I can deal with it much better and I can quiet that voice in my head more quickly so that I am free to do my work well. The same goes for distractions like messing up a line or hearing a cell phone go off or a missing cue. It's often not the mistake itself that gets in the way but your reaction to the mistake that throws you off. The best actor's I know mess up all the time but you'd never know it because they accept it immediately without shame and move on. It's really impressive to watch. KP

Read Krystin's previous posts The Pellerin Post: Premiere Edition ,  A Time and a Pace , Character Profile , First & Third , Ready, Set...Perform and You Act, You Learn You Grow

And check out our feature interview with Krystin Pellerin “A Lot of Stuff” plus her “Insights IN 10”

For all things Republic of Doyle visit www.cbc.ca/republicofdoyle

AND if you're in the Toronto area do whatever you can to see Krystin on stage with the Soulpepper Theatre Company www.soulpepper.ca

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1 Comment »

  1. Hello, just wanted to say i love the show 'Republic of Doyle'. I do not have cable anymore, but i have borrowed copies of the first 4 seasons from our library. Not even sure if the show is still on, but its inclusion of many other great Canadian actors is inspiring. I'd love to see Kristen Pellerin and others on stage some time i'm in T.O. Go gettem Kristen wherever you are. A fan from Woodstock, ON.
    be good and take care. Scott

    Comment by Scott Rublee — May 9, 2014 @ 4:01 pm


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