Author ORCID Identifier

Defense Date


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Fine Arts



First Advisor

Aaron Anderson

Second Advisor

Noreen Barnes

Third Advisor

David Leong


When it comes to actor training in higher education, an extremely strong emphasis is placed on understanding the voice and interpreting the text. While some institutions do incorporate movement courses into the curriculum of the students, many do not serve the learning actor in the most effective way. The work of Rudolf Laban is a way to strengthen the curriculum taught to actors, specifically in regards connecting actors to their bodies. This thesis discusses and analyses the use of Laban’s movement theory in the movement classroom, and focuses on the most effective way of presenting the material to the student. Included is research on Laban’s theories, the structure of a Laban for the actor course, feedback from participants, exercises crafted to better suit the learning actor, and connections to other acting and movement practitioners. The aim is to provide actors with a well-rounded toolbox that will assist them in creating more dynamic and livable characters. This thesis hopes to serve as a guide for both instructors of movement and students alike, providing all with a resource to refer to when working with the body on or off the stage.


© Margaret C. Buckner

Is Part Of

VCU University Archives

Is Part Of

VCU Theses and Dissertations

Date of Submission


Available for download on Monday, May 09, 2022