Script Websites (plus a dialect website!) (Written by Charlene Mayo, and Steve Moulton, Stage Managers at Lifebook, 7/14/07) Script Websites! If you can’t find your script on one of these script websites do a google search and see what you can find. If you still can’t locate it, rent the film and ask an officer or fellow student to transcribe it for you. (Last resort if you must do it yourself – mute the film and copy the subtitles – try not to look at the actors as we want you to make your own choices and not be influenced by theirs). The reason we ask this is because if you transcribe it, you will play and rewind and play and rewind to jot down the lines and get the actors performance in your head and even if unintentional this may influence your scene work. We want YOU to bring your art and your ideas to the script. Those actors have already been paid!
… AND a Dialect Website!!! Steve’s Note: Studying dialects (or accents) is a lot harder than it looks. Some people are good at them naturally, some people think they are good at them, and some people claim they “can’t” do them at all. Either way, as an actor, the more proper training you have (in anything) the better suited you are to act. This site contains recordings of people from many different countries giving you examples of their own accent. Most of the recordings come with descriptions of exactly where the person was born and raised, and often where else they’ve lived that may have affected their accent. i.e. My father was born and raised with a thick New Hampshire/Maine accent. After 19 years living in Pennsylvania as an adult, everyone in Maine and New Hampshire now think he sounds like he’s from Connecticut. Go figure! Look at just the city of London. The standard, “higher-class” brittish dialect is a far cry from the “working-class” cockney dialect, but both were born in the very same city. Shaw’s Henry Higgins, of “My Fair Lady”/”Pygmalion” quips that, when it comes to London, he can hear a person speak and correctly deduce the block they were raised on. Not just the general neighborhood, but the exact BLOCK. So, with dialects, as with many other facets of acting, be specific, seek tutelage, and practice, practice, practice!!! And be sure to visit … Dialects Archive as a good place to start.