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The Dangerously Powerful 4 Learning Acting Exercises At Home

Become An Actor-4 Learning Acting Exercises At Home
Prabhas- Great Telugu actor of Baahubali who learned recommended acting at home

Due to my personal reasons, I can't join an acting school or a coach. Any solution?

I belong to a middle-class family and can't afford Mumbai's expensive schools. Can you help?

I have been cheated by an acting school at Old MHADA, Andheri-west, Mumbai with a promise to give me a break in the films. Now, I want to learn acting at home. Are there some exercises?


Acting Alone And Practice

I’ve had a number of emails recently about acting students who are in a situation where they can’t be in a class for various reasons - whether it’s financial, location, or other, and want to do exercises to keep themselves in the work.
First of all, I would emphasize strongly how important it is to have a good teacher or coach or a good acting school (where a teacher gives personal attention) to work with. One guy that observes you, identifies your emotional issues, physical movements and has the expertise to help you break your shortcomings and spends time with you.

My Highly Recommended Exercises

1. Three phone Calls 

The scene

In this exercise, you are in your scene, either you are getting ready to leave or have come back from outside. You will make or receive three phone calls. Each call needs to be very different, with a different subject and tone, to three different people. You are in these phone calls while in the “doing”, meaning you are doing something at home during the call. Imagine and create the other person, and hear their side of the conversation. Get totally involved yourself in the call, hear them, respond to them, and complete the call, while doing your other work (like arranging something, changing clothes, dusting etc). As you complete the call you continue your activity and the second call, either one you make or receive. A second phone call with another person with a different life…. Then a third call. When finished, you leave or go back to your activity.
Notes: Your other people that you can create should be A. some close one with whom you have a genuine emotional relationship like a love mate, friend, mother; B. Maybe some stranger or a creditor with whom you may enter into a conflict. Listen to them. Take your time. Make them important, and be creative. Find something that you can be really interesting. Do this while “in the doing something at home or a place” or getting ready to go somewhere. This exercise is about specifics, activity, and living truthfully in the moment. Review the calls – are you being real or “too dramatic”? truthful? fake?

Give the phone calls contrast. These should be people you have a very different emotional point of view about. Show your range of emotions, actions, and reactions. Don’t make them all the same. Keep each call to no more than 2 minutes. Practice, time yourself, and rehearse with yourself.


  • I get home and am getting ready for bed, and see that I have a message. I read the message; it’s my mother… again. I return the call. She’s complaining about something. I feel guilty and irritated when I speak to her. I talk with her for a bit and hang up….. 
  • I continue to get ready and then call a woman I’m interested in, I’m quite nervous, I like her and don’t know if she likes me. I chat her up a bit and then ask her out Friday night…..
  • I continue and make a third call. It’s to a friend who has to give my money back which I loaned him long back. 

You can practice this by yourself, with a friend, even shoot on mobile video camera yourself and review it. Again, the best is a good “eye” watching you and giving notes and feedback is best.
Do this once a week if you are self-acting.

2. Film An Imaginary Audition:

Set-up a camera, cell phone, or webcam to capture your performance
Find and prepare a monologue ( say about 10-15 lines from a storybook, newspaper or just create a scene with someone), get ready as you would for an audition
Choose a point in the room to talk to, a chair, a speck on the wall, whatever
Picture the other character in the room with you and play with them, observing their reactions as you act
Press Record, perform the monologue
Watch the playback and observe yourself. What worked? What didn’t?

This exercise will help you become more comfortable on camera and also help with the technical side of film acting. Do your eyes drift? Are you “overacting”? Experiment with your motivations and technique until you find what works for you. This simple and solitary exercise builds comfort and confidence in front of the camera that directly translates to the film set.

Remember that acting is an internal process that leads to an external performance. Do not focus on external results like your facial expressions or posture. Focus on the thoughts that led to them.

3. Watch Others

Technically, this exercise is not a solo exercise because it requires other people, but those people do not have to be willing participants. People watching is an excellent way to hone character building skills by stretching your observational skills and imagination.

4. Spy on Strangers:

Go to a public place – bus /railway station, ta stall, mall, park, or anywhere else with foot traffic
Pick a person and observe them. Look at the way they walk, talk, laugh, wear their clothes, etc.  Start imagining-allow natural questions to arise. What job do they have? Where do they live? What are their dreams and desires?
Answer these questions as honestly as you can, taking into consideration all that you have observed.
Repeat the process over and over for different people around you.
With this exercise, an actor works on their imagination, taking their surface observations and using them to fill in the details that make a person unique. These skills of observation and imagination directly translate to script analysis. The next time you break down a character, your decisions will be more specific – rooted in observation – and the result will be a well-rounded and unique performance. And to think, this was all accomplished by practicing alone.

Acting alone is a powerful way for an actor to strengthen their imagination and build confidence in a risk-free environment. However, acting alone is only worthwhile if it leads to better public performances in the future. Take these exercises and learn from them, but continue to pursue auditions and classes to further your acting career.
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