I’ll be on a mission to kidnap and you can watch me doing so.
I had the pleasure of trying out some TV acting last May, in the highest-rated drama series in Finland, “Salatut Elämät”. Since its first episode aired in January 1999, it has been one of the most popular TV shows in Finland. At some point this Finnish daily soap opera regularly attracted around a million viewers (1/5 of Finland’s population). Not too bad, I would say.
Now, I’m a musician, and I will continue being primarily just that. But I’ve been lucky, and I’ve had the chance to try out both acting on stage (I play the role of god in The Rock Opera “Playing god”) and now also on screen, in front of TV cameras. I enjoyed both, very much, and I enjoy challenges in general, but I have also come to realise there is quite the difference between on stage and on screen acting. There is the obvious difference; the location of the audience. When on stage, one has audience in front, but usually quite far away. A stage actor needs to, depending on the size of the theatre, exaggerate their facial expressions and gestures so even the back row can see what’s going on. A single little tear would not do it, for example. On screen, on the other hand, there are cameras detecting even the smallest facial expressions and actors need to be more subtle, controlled, and use more natural expressions and gestures. Acting in front of a camera, and especially doing close up acting, is a challenge, but at the same time there is a possibility of multiple takes to get a scene right. And man did I experience this while shooting my Salatut Elämät scenes! It was take after take, over and over again. If you’ll watch my episodes, you’ll know why I was totally exhausted at the end of the day. Live theatre has no do-overs, actors have just that one chance to get it right. And I have to say, having tried out both now, my respect towards both theatre and on screen acting has grown immensely.
I am very happy to be getting different types of opportunities and challenges. Drumming is my love, profession and passion – will not change it for anything, but it’s great to have the opportunities, and to try out various things in life. Think less, live more.
Jarkko Rantala is in Salatut Elämät, episodes 3244 and 3245.