Playing with masks vs. social media

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Playing with masks in acting or in play can provide a healing experience and possibly counteract the negative effects of social media. Here are a few reasons why:

  1. Emotional expression: Masks allow students and actors to explore a wide range of emotions without feeling self-conscious. In the age of social media where people often feel pressured to present a filtered and curated version of themselves, masks can provide a safe space to express and release genuine emotions.
  2. Authenticity: Social media can create a culture of comparison, where people constantly compare their lives and appearances to others. When wearing a mask, people are liberated from societal expectations and can embrace their true or more realistic selves. This can be a refreshing experience that counters the artificiality often associated with social media.
  3. Empathy and connection: Wearing masks evokes a sense of anonymity, which can encourage actors to freely explore characters and portray different perspectives. By stepping into someone else’s shoes, actors cultivate empathy, understanding, and connection. This contrasts with the potential isolation and superficial connections often experienced on social media.
  4. Physical embodiment: Masks demand exaggerated physicality to express emotions and convey characters. Through this physical exploration, actors can tap into a more embodied experience, which can help counteract the passive and sedentary nature of social media consumption.
  5. Mindfulness and presence: Engaging in mask work requires students or actors to be fully present in the moment. It encourages mindfulness and focus, which can serve as a welcome break from the constant distraction and stimulation often associated with social media.

While playing with masks in acting or play doesn’t directly address the negative effects of social media, it provides an alternative experience that fosters purity, emotional expression, empathy, connection, and mindfulness. These qualities can contribute to personal growth and healing in the face of the potentially negative impacts of social media.