Most of us admire actors and their skills to memorize all their lines and repeat them time and again, without improvising. We have all wondered how do they do that.
But actors do not possess some kind of supernatural memory, and they do not simply memorize their entire scripts by heart. The process is much more complex than that and involves various techniques actors use to remember the lines.
Part of the actors’ training is to improve their ability to memorize things. Practice improves their memory so, with time, it becomes easier to memorize lines. But actors rarely memorize the entire script before the filming starts. They become familiar with the text and then memorize parts of the script one by one as the filming goes on.
Remember that actors need to read the script multiple times before they start rehearsing. This alone helps memorize some parts of the dialogues. Then, at rehearsals, they perform the scenes over and over again with the other actors.
During rehearsals, actors carry the scripts with them, of course, in case they forget a line (which certainly happens).
In addition to reading the script countless times and then rehearsing, actors rely on some subtle techniques to help them remember the lines. They use props as reminders of things they need to say during a particular scene. If an actor forgets his line, a certain prop he associated with the scene will remind them of what they have to say.
Similarly, they also associate words with actions and movements. When a certain line is accompanied by action, movement, the actor will be able to recall the line every time.
Another useful technique is to associate the words with emotions. Evoking an emotion associated with the scene makes memorizing the words easier. Contact us for more information about help with your acting.