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Thread: Ethical Functions and Performing

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    wants to be a writer. silverchris9's Avatar
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    Default Ethical Functions and Performing

    Hey, Fi-valuers, what does performing feel like to you? For me, performing is all about feeling the audience, and I'd imagine Fi-valuers feel the audience too, but it has to be in a different way, right? Like, I think I do monitor the emotional dynamic, taking the "emotional temperature" of the room. Someone compared performing to flying a plane, insofar as you shape the emotional dynamic, make sure it has the right arch. I mean, I guess Fi-valuers do that too, but... yeah, just describe how you guys (Fi valuers and Fe valuers) feel when you're performing, what sort of information you give and receive from the audience and from anyone your performing with. Let's see if there are any socionics-related differences.
    Not a rule, just a trend.

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    Yes 'a ma'am that's pretty music...

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    I act as I am, I pick the roles that are me, like the princess in the princess bride is me, shy, emotionally reserved, a bit cold, but internally, full of love, loyalty, and honor.

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    Quote Originally Posted by silverchris9 View Post
    Hey, Fi-valuers, what does performing feel like to you? For me, performing is all about feeling the audience, and I'd imagine Fi-valuers feel the audience too, but it has to be in a different way, right? Like, I think I do monitor the emotional dynamic, taking the "emotional temperature" of the room. Someone compared performing to flying a plane, insofar as you shape the emotional dynamic, make sure it has the right arch. I mean, I guess Fi-valuers do that too, but... yeah, just describe how you guys (Fi valuers and Fe valuers) feel when you're performing, what sort of information you give and receive from the audience and from anyone your performing with. Let's see if there are any socionics-related differences.
    For me performing is being the person I perform. Im not sure I get information from the audience, or that I try to but I do know it is important, if you would glimpse at someone and you would see a disinterested face it would suck. But first of all comes being the person you perform, going beyond what you have to do, not necessarily outwardly but at least inside yourself, trying to make it more genuine. Obviously all of this is a little bit skewed by the fact I grew up in a theater amongst actors. But for them the most important and real drive would come from the audience.
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    My daughter used to do plays between the ages of 4-8. She was pretty good at responding to actions in the play 'as if it was happening to her', personally. Like she placed herself in the position of the character, and responded the way she would respond in the same position.

    If she did something funny, like when she had had to 'stub her toe', and the audience laughed at her response, she might ham it up a little more. Or if she was 'crying', and the audience responded with ''ohhhh", she'd be a little more dramatic. At one point, i don't remember what the situation was, but something painful happened to the character, physically painful. And my daughter cried, with real tears and the whole shebang. Audience members were jumping out of her seats to run over to her to help her. She had to look up at them and smile through the tears to let them know that she was just acting.

    The few times I've done any kind of performances involved me getting myself into 'the mood' (of the music or of the character) and then performing from there. There was little awareness of the audience. In fact, awareness of the audience would have detracted from 'the mood'.

    However, this is only for short term things. For long term things, such as pencil and paper rpgs, my characters always wound up reverting back to being representations of myself as a 'what if I were in this situation'.
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    I don't think I can feel the audience. Not in a tangible way anyway.. I guess I can tell the difference between a tension-filled silence and a restless silence.. but I don't have the confidence to manipulate the atmosphere in a direct way. I just make myself feel a certain way then try to project that. Focus on being genuine and trust that it'll come across as real if I feel it's real.
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    Saturday night I was placed in a position of having to perform. Well, technically I agreed to it, but I shouldn't have.

    I was at a Pink Party. Normally I don't go to these because of the performance aspect to them. Richard and I just aren't into that part that much. But someone showed off a cool toy. With the demonstrator's experience, it had a nice rhythmical sound, similar to dancing around a fire with shells/bells/bones on ankles. The rhythm varied between something that sounded like the two footed jumps, to the alternate leg stomps. Very relaxing sound. And the toy looked to provide a very relaxing massage.

    I wanted to try it out. I think everyone saw how excited I was about the toy, lol. While waiting to catch the owner's attention, one of the other party members asked me if I would learn how to use the toy, and practice using it on him. Uhhh, well, I'd been intending to use it on Richard. I didn't really give an answer, but more of a ..."lemme use the restroom first". Unfortunately, the bathroom break didn't help me figure out a way to politely decline. And when I returned, I was pretty much maneuvered into location, by the demonstrator and the other party member. But, ok, learning how to use it...on the guy...ok, not a problem.

    Except that it turned out that the guy was wanting a full scene, not a couple of minutes of trying out the new toy. ARGH.

    Hence, I was put into the position of having to perform.

    For the next two-five minutes I was torn up inside mentally. The location we were in was too close to another couple, and in the way of their demonstration. So I was having to keep track of that and make sure I moved out of her way when needed. The guy was stationed too low, forcing me to bend and put strain on my already pained back. The sticks I was using were...well, not heavy, but required a lot of forearm muscle power. The rhythm is something that definitely has to be practiced. And trying to do both sticks at once...right AND left hand?? no freakin way! People were walking back and forth, so I'm having to track that as well. The guy's wife/partner was there, encouraging me, but I just kept thinking...I DON'T want to DO this!! Then there's having to take into consideration the sensations the guy is receiving, while the demonstrator is standing over my shoulder critiquing my efforts. (admittedly, he's a laid back guy, and he wasn't like a drill sergeant or anything like that....but I'm already a harsh critiquer on myself, and painfully aware that I lack certain skills that would have helped) My arms were getting tired, my back hurting, I didn't want to do this on this guy, I wanted Richard involved, etc.

    Finally the demonstrator took over, and then the guy's wife/partner.

    It was just...an icky position to be in, for me. I'm just not into performing for others. And it's the kind of performance that has to take into consideration the responses from the other partner, and usually also the responses of the 'audience'...for 'status' reasons.

    I just couldn't do it. I didn't feel it in me. It's not a role I want to play.

    But for the similar situations, in private...while there's still an element of performance, I don't have to worry about anyone else's responses. I can just do what I want, as I want. Basically, it's "performance" if I'm doing it for another person, but it's just a part of "me" when I'm doing it for myself. Even if the actions are the same.


    So I would say that performance is greatly influenced by ability/willingness to get into the mood/groove. For me, the mood has to come from within myself, and a dislike for having to take into consideration the responses of others. When I have to take into consideration the responses of others, I feel fake...and it creates a lot of internal icky tension.
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    Hm, so, given aixelsyd's example, perhaps Te-types are more likely to be turned off by feeling the audience, and Fe-types are more likely to at least have the potential to feel the audience. I know that my favorite part of acting is feeling my scene partner and feeling the audience, which is why I HATE HATE HATE monologues, and especially practicing monologues by myself. I feel like I work up all this energy and it has nowhere to go and so it just rots in the pit of my stomach, leaving me with this gross, sour, overstretched bladder feeling.

    EDIT: And yeah, I also feel that the "play to one specific person," rather than feeling the whole crowd, comes from an Fi/Te perspective. It's useful for everyone, but I do think it originates from a more Fi/Te place.
    Not a rule, just a trend.

    IEI. Probably Fe subtype. Pretty sure I'm E4, sexual instinctual type, fairly confident that I'm a 3 wing now, so: IEI-Fe E4w3 sx/so. Considering 3w4 now, but pretty sure that 4 fits the best.

    Yes 'a ma'am that's pretty music...

    I am grateful for the mystery of the soul, because without it, there could be no contemplation, except of the mysteries of divinity, which are far more dangerous to get wrong.

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    Quote Originally Posted by aixelsyd View Post
    I'm not interested and would rather not feel the temperature of the audience because that would make me feel really, really insecure.

    That's why I perform better when I don't recognize anyone in the crowd and become really self-conscious and sloppier when I do know people because that makes me wonder how they are receiving it and that's not something I like knowing. Ignorance is bliss in regards to knowing how 'they' feel about what I am doing. Fe PoLR in action? Probably.
    I'm not an actor or a musician, but I find the above really rings true for me. I used to be a science teacher and I constantly worried about how my students were responding to my teaching style. I've been told I made poor eye contact with the students and didn't connect with them as well as I could have. A large reason why I didn't make good eye contact was because I was afraid to really look at the audience, to see the boredom and frustration in their eyes. I worried enough already about presenting the material well, and students' reactions would just add to the anxiety.
    A large reason why I quit teaching was tied to this performance anxiety. That and the stress of lesson planning and grading.

    I am Fe suggestive, not Fe PoLR, but my Fe is 1-D. Which means, when a student presents a negative emotional reaction to the material I teach, I feel rather helpless to do anything about it even though I'd like to. As an Fe valuer, I'm very sensitive to emotional atmosphere.
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    I met an SEE looking to persue acting as a career. She described it as having a bag full of emotions she could draw on based on the situation. In conversation she also seems to indicate that emotions are like objective or situationally based things that have a right and wrong execution on the stage... and naturally that she's the best ever at it. She always plays the offensive angry types and her expressions seem to make fun of the other actors on the stage, so it's always entertaining .

    It's a blast to watch not because she's convincing, but because she's literally blasting her role/emotes at the audience .

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    Back in my theater days, when I performed I never paid any attention to the audience's reactions. For me it was all about being the character I'm portraying, being in that person's experience and reacting to the situation accordingly. I would actually find it kind of weird when people would say how they felt about a performance I was in, because it never felt like I was doing it to please the audience, rather it was for my own sake and the sake of the other actors/characters in the story. It's actually kind of interesting how the OP talked about what seems to be the opposite of what I've described. The audience is generally nowhere in my mind while I'm performing. I guess I figure that if what I'm feeling is strong enough for me then it'll be the same way for the audience, but that's never something I really think about while performing.
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    when you see the booty Galen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by aixelsyd View Post
    When I am acting, I don't feel the audience at all. I don't feel the audience, either, when performing music concerts.

    But in acting, I perform by feeling the character I am playing. I am searching for the character's feelings, motives, relations, feeling his/her past, circumstances, etc, etc, so that I can step into the character and so convey the character's psyche in the lines of dialogue I have and through my physical presence. I'm not interested and would rather not feel the temperature of the audience because that would make me feel really, really insecure.

    So while I might not really directly engage the audience, I can put on a convincing act. I once was told by a colleague that ":my name: is :character's name:".

    Even in musical performance, I feel the piece, after knowing how to play it properly, and put those feelings into my playing, connecting my feelings to the piece and not connecting to the audience's feelings.

    So in acting, it's like I feel me and the character and bridge the gap, make it one. With music, it's bridging the gap between me and the music, becoming one. The audience is not a factor, they are just there and I try to be as detached from them as possible. That's why I perform better when I don't recognize anyone in the crowd and become really self-conscious and sloppier when I do know people because that makes me wonder how they are receiving it and that's not something I like knowing. Ignorance is bliss in regards to knowing how 'they' feel about what I am doing. Fe PoLR in action? Probably.

    I suddenly realized that this is why I play better when people aren't at home (something really driving me nuts today...wanting to do stuff but feeling hindered, psychologically, because people are around). When people are listening to me play piano, violin, whatever, I tend to suck more, don't want to practice, and feel like people are breathing down my neck. It's a demotivating factor to have people around. When no one is around, I am like, "Yeah! Time to play music, read my script (if I was in theatre), etc" And then when they have to ask questions about it or compliment you or else criticize, it's like, "leave me the fuck alone, Jesus Christ."

    But in any case, with performing, I agree that Fe is more about connecting to the audience and making them feel something while Fi is more about disconnecting but personally connecting yourself to the feelings of the character and maybe trying to convey it to a significant person in the audience or something but ignoring everyone else.
    Hmm, this is an interesting post, and I identify with a lot of it. However I feel that what you've described about your stage-fright is probably more pertinent than type in this context. But if we take that out of the picture then it seems like this thread has something going for it. More responses are needed though, keep going guys!


    Quote Originally Posted by aixelsyd View Post
    God, Socionics is so real, many times, that it's scary in a cool way.
    Haha man I know. It's a great feeling to see socionics stuff apply to the real world.
    "And above all, watch with glittering eyes the whole world around you because the greatest secrets are always hidden in the most unlikely places. Those who don't believe in magic will never find it." -Roald Dahl

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    It's pretty cool

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    So my turn.

    I feel the audience more when performing something comedic than something dramatic. I love playing directly to the audience, and my favorite part of acting is feeling the connection between the audience and the actor. Certainly there's the interplay between the the various actors on stage at any given time, but the part I enjoy the most is the total interaction of the whole room, because certainly an audience gives you something.

    There's a degree of "control" to it, not quite "control," but like magic, like sway, in a great performer, which is very Fe. Which is why Fi/Te Auden had such a violent and ambivalent reaction to it (although he was speaking about a poet rather than an actor, I think the response holds true):

    Perfection, of a kind, was what he was after,
    And the poetry he invented was easy to understand;
    He knew human folly like the back of his hand,
    And was greatly interested in armies and fleets;
    When he laughed, respectable senators burst with laughter,
    And when he cried the little children died in the streets.

    I think that's a typical Fi/Te response to strong Fe. This sort of admiration but simultaneously distrust of the potential destructive force because of the sort of "sway" connection without the empathy connection.

    So yeah, when I do comedy, it's all about feeling the audience, feeling where the moment is. So my performance in a comedy can change a good deal from night to night just based on what's landing with the audience, how much energy there is in a given moment or not, are we heading towards a climax, are we simmering down from a big laugh, etc.

    And that's totally true when singing too, almost even more so, because that's all about the arch of the song, the energy in the room. Especially given that song lyrics tend to suck, I do my best to maneuver around the lyrics and just try to sing the emotional arch. I got in trouble for that once in a competition, lol. It was like, "don't get so caught up in the effect and lose the connection to the lyrics." Silly Fi-valuing judge (jk).

    Drama is a little bit different. I'm not quite as consciously relating to the audience in dramatic/serious/sad acting, or even certain types of more "understated" comedy. Because I'm trying to replace my thoughts with the thoughts the character would be thinking, I try to remove myself as much as possible from my own head, and replace my interiority with the character's interiority. But I think that I do have a slight awareness still of the audience, even if I'm not consciously with them. I can tell when they're with me and when I'm losing them, I think. I can feel them in pauses, especially, and that tells me when to come back in. But I think this is closer to what you guys are describing, mostly because I can't consciously think about the audience, because I'm just thinking exactly what the character is thinking. I mean, I do that in comedy too, but I do more switching back and forth between feeling the character's thoughts and feeling my personal thoughts. Maybe I blend the two better as a comedian than as a dramatic actor. Shrug.
    Not a rule, just a trend.

    IEI. Probably Fe subtype. Pretty sure I'm E4, sexual instinctual type, fairly confident that I'm a 3 wing now, so: IEI-Fe E4w3 sx/so. Considering 3w4 now, but pretty sure that 4 fits the best.

    Yes 'a ma'am that's pretty music...

    I am grateful for the mystery of the soul, because without it, there could be no contemplation, except of the mysteries of divinity, which are far more dangerous to get wrong.

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    wants to be a writer. silverchris9's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Galen View Post
    Back in my theater days, when I performed I never paid any attention to the audience's reactions. For me it was all about being the character I'm portraying, being in that person's experience and reacting to the situation accordingly. I would actually find it kind of weird when people would say how they felt about a performance I was in, because it never felt like I was doing it to please the audience, rather it was for my own sake and the sake of the other actors/characters in the story. It's actually kind of interesting how the OP talked about what seems to be the opposite of what I've described. The audience is generally nowhere in my mind while I'm performing. I guess I figure that if what I'm feeling is strong enough for me then it'll be the same way for the audience, but that's never something I really think about while performing.
    That's interesting. The whole point for me is the audience, responding to them, and them responding to me. Even if I'm playing a character, to me, I'm always in conversation with an audience, on some level. I will say that I don't have as good of a bead on how strong the performance was when I'm doing more dramatic stuff and not paying as much attention to the audience. But I still get a feel for if they're with me or not, like I said. It's funny because for some things I can't feel the audience at all. Like, I played in a marching band, and I had NO IDEA where the audience was. It was like playing into a void.

    By the way, I think losing yourself in the character is a very important thing. And to an extent, to think about the audience is to think out of character. But I think you can be totally immersed in the character and still have an instinctual response to the audience. I think. But I definitely feel like what I'm saying is for the audience's sake, almost as if someone were eavesdropping on me, as if I suspected they were eavesdropping on me. Hamlet has a sense of being watched, I think.
    Not a rule, just a trend.

    IEI. Probably Fe subtype. Pretty sure I'm E4, sexual instinctual type, fairly confident that I'm a 3 wing now, so: IEI-Fe E4w3 sx/so. Considering 3w4 now, but pretty sure that 4 fits the best.

    Yes 'a ma'am that's pretty music...

    I am grateful for the mystery of the soul, because without it, there could be no contemplation, except of the mysteries of divinity, which are far more dangerous to get wrong.

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