Calling all actors

Jul 1 2018 | By More

Amateur & professionals needed for research project

Actors spend their on-stage lives creating new personalities for the characters they portray, but little is known about the psychological profile of the actors themselves.

Now a new research project into understanding the personality and emotionality of actors, both professional and amateur, when compared to other creatives and the general public is being undertaken from the University of Bedfordshire.

Off-Kilter by Ramesh Meyyappan at EdFringe 2018, explores mental well-being, identity, feeling a little bit different from everyone else.

The research is particularly timely as the issue of the mental wellbeing of actors is being taken up by actors union Equity and the subject of mental health is a leading topic for work at this year’s Edinburgh fringe.

The project is being carried out as part of an MSc in Applied Psychology by student Terry Hayden, who says that despite perception of actors as a type, there has been very little psychological research on actors.

Now Hayden is looking for amateur and professional actors, as well as other theatre creatives, to take part in a ten minute, online anonymous psychological profile. He needs as many people as possible to take part in the survey to give it added weight.

He told Æ: “Actors have had very little psychological research undertaken on them, but there is a public perception about them, and the types of people they are.

“In the past it has been suggested actors are all extrovert – or conversely that they may all be introverted; some are narcissistic, some are mentally disordered.

“Despite these sweeping generalisations, no one really knows the true facts about personality of actors.”

Hayen says that the academic literature has very little in the way of direct of study of actors as a profession, or of the people who take up acting in an amateur context.

emotion as a tool

He adds: “Of the scant research it has been suggested that actors score highly on ‘openness’, agreeableness, and extraversion on a standard personality test.

“But regardless of the fact that actors use emotion as a tool of their profession, nothing has been researched in this area. This study aims to address the missing bits and examine – and hopefully shed some light on – the personality of actors.”

The study is available to fill in here up until Friday 13 July 2018. It should take about ten minutes to complete.

Survey link:

Tickets for Off-Kilter by Ramesh Meyyappan are available here:


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