Credulity

Credulity is the ability to say “yes” to a proposition. It is a generally desirable quality for an actor, as it enables her to enter readily into a fiction and to move in tandem with an ensemble process. It obviously contributes to the Ouija effect.

Off stage, it is potentially problematic as it can leave the actor open to exploitation and manipulation by those bloody agents, casters, directors and producers.

I have heard Ariane Mnouchkine, director of the Théâtre du Soleil, describe this as the most important quality she looks for in an actor.

I remember Carlo Mazzone-Clementi working on a project he called "Arlequino, or the Force of Credulity." Typically, and, I now realize, sadly, nobody had a clue what he was talking about. To understand credulity as a blessing was not an idea likely to find fertile ground in late 1970's California.

Arlequino is a character who can be convinced, or even convince himself, of absolutely anything. All things become true, and that releases fantastic power.

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Jonathan Paul Cook © 2010