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From Balthazar Gracian

February 16, 2014

Now once again, from our favorite sage who wasn’t an actor, with another invaluable word on Acting:

“Drain nothing to the dregs, neither good nor bad. A sage once reduced all virtue to the golden mean. Push right to the extreme and it becomes wrong, press all the juice from an orange and it becomes bitter. Even in enjoyment, never go to extremes. Thought too subtle is dull. If you milk a cow too much, you draw blood, not milk.”                                        Balthazar Gracian

We see that the modest performance is the one that is truest to life. Of course, we all take risks from time to time – some calculated, some not. Everyone gets a bold streak on occasion, and there may be a hero in each of us. As Goethe put it, “boldness has genius, power and magic in it.”

But in great part, and on a daily basis, we humans tend to walk the middle way, on the lookout for where we MAY be bold – and survive. Those who do not – tend to catch mother nature’s roving eye. And while they may indeed find a shiny gold coin off the beaten track, they may also be eaten by a lion, or run over by a bus.

Therefore you will see most people, most of the time, engage the world and the people in it with a certain modesty. It is the most authentic thing, and therefore a most valuable thing to be adhered to by the fine actor. If your character is meant to be bold, where and when will certainly be found in the script. The actor, on the other hand, takes the giant risk of being modest in the work, trusting that truth and clarity are in themselves, dramatic.

Now, through the end of this month – IMPACT – five hours of lecture material on acting and dramatic theory can be heard free of charge at 

I have recorded this material for everyone with a passion for acting, directing and writing. Please take advantage of this valuable offer, and feel free to share it with others you think will be interested in hearing this highly-recommended material, which has been used for years as recommended and course material at colleges and universities.

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