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Topic: Character

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Fav. BP Song: No One Is Alone and Some People
Fav. BP Show: Gypsy
Fav. BP Character: Rose/The Witch
Fav. BP CD: Gypsy

posted: 10/5/2003 at 7:36:45 PM ET
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Does anybody know if it takes Bernadette awhget into her character before the show or if she can just go on stage and become that character?

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posted: 10/5/2003 at 11:54:46 PM ET
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I heard in an interview with Bernadette that she usually takes a couple of minutes to prep before curtain goes up. How long depends on how familiar she is with the show.

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New York City
posted: 10/6/2003 at 12:20:42 AM ET
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I think (for Gypsy) that she also said she takes the afternoon (late morning? whatever) to take care of herself, and to not use her voice if she can help it(she has to be very careful.) She also said that she does breathing exercises and lies on her back and basically hums a few bars and then lapses again into silence(maybe she's thinking about the character? I don't know) to make sure that everything is "coming from a good place."

One thing you can say for Bernadette; whatever she does to get into character, it WORKS. One of the reasons I think she's so huge is because she doesn't just act; she BECOMES. She somehow manages the stage in such a way that it doesn't seem like acting; she's including the audience by allowing us to see INTO the character. When she plays a character she becomes that character -- no matter who the character is or how unlikable. And whatever she's doing by method, if it's getting into the character's head and leaving Bernadette behind for 2 hours, or trying to relate what's going on with the character to something in her personal life, or both of the above, the emotion she radiates feels REAL. You look in her eyes and you see the person behind the script and blocking and singing -- whether its anger, happiness, or sadness. And seeing REAL emotion (as opposed to "acting emotion" that feels generated for effect) you can't help but empathize with the character. You can't help but feel rivited, like you MUST find out what happens to the character, because she MAKES you care what happens.

I feel like that's why people want to meet actors in general after the show; they want to talk to these people, these characters' real life counterparts. When you make your audience a part of your journey as the character, they will reward you.

Regis: And look at all this hair. My God. That's a lot of hair. Look at this. How does hair get this way?
Bernadette: Um.. it sort of grew out of my head like this.

-- Live with Regis

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posted: 10/6/2003 at 8:40:07 AM ET
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This is from a Q&A Bernadette did on (Dec. 2000).

"From (): Our director always tells us that "serious actors" always stay in character backstage. Is that true? What really goes
on backstage during a Broadway show? Do you run lines, watch monitors or just relax and have a good time?

Bernadette responds: It depends what stage of the show's development you're in. If you're in early previews, you're still thinking of your entrance, or what you're wearing or concentrating on the scene.
We're pretty familiar with Annie Get Your Gun, but I still like to gather myself before I walk onstage. Different actors work different ways. Some people just like to stay relaxed. The way to do that is to not carry stuff around with you offstage. If you're tense
offstage, you're tense onstage. You have to stay relaxed." "ask a star"

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