Morris, Eilon (2013) VIA RHYTMÓS : An Investigation of Rhythm in Psychophysical Actor Training. Doctoral thesis, University of Huddersfield.

This thesis investigates the significance of rhythm to the actor, examining the ways it is approached, understood and embodied within a range of training practices. In what ways does rhythm facilitate and transform the practices of individual performers and ensembles, affecting their use of attention, physical coordination, qualities of connectivity, states of consciousness and emotions? The psychophysical mechanisms through which rhythm informs these key aspects of actor training are analysed here via a range of contemporary and historical psychophysical and cultural frameworks. Drawing on this body of research this thesis argues the case for a greater understanding of the pedagogy of rhythm within actor training, indicating a number of areas for further investigation and potential developments within this field. Beginning with Stanislavski’s use of “Tempo-rhythm” and progressing through the practices of Meyerhold and Grotowski, a number of key rhythmic principles will be discussed. This will lead on to a series of case studies on the contemporary training practices of John Britton, Nicolás Núñez, and Reinhard Flatischler. Following this will be an examination of simultaneity in acting practices and an analysis of the author’s own practical research into the use of polyrhythm as a tool for cultivating modes of simultaneous attention and action in actor training.

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