Home > Articles and tips > Learn to Cry On Command

Learn to Cry On Command

Created the: 26-05-2020

Actors in both film and theater can often end up with a role that requires them to cry on command. Mastering this technique and showing compelling signs of sadness is very difficult. We have listed ten methods that should help you get your tears flowing in any role.

#1. Firstly, make sure that you do not have a fluid deficiency, as it makes it much harder to produce tears. To get started, relax your facial muscles.

#2. Think of something that makes you sad. It could be a family member, a sad movie you saw, or anything else that makes you shed tears. This sensitive technique can be challenging to control because you may get emotional and you may have difficulty stopping crying. Acting is a fun profession, so use this technique properly and maintain control of your emotions.

#3. Invest yourself in the role. What causes the character to be upset? Channel the character’s environment and backstory to link yourself with the fictional emotions to get crying.

#4. Keep your eyes open without blinking until your tears come.

#5. Plug your nose so you cannot breathe through it. Keep it plugged as you try and breathe air through your nose. Sometimes, the lack of oxygen access through the nose can provoke tears for some.

#6. Apply tiger balm under your eyes. This ointment should make your eyes water.

#7. Just before starting the big “crying scene”, lather your hands with tiger balm. When you are about to need to cry, cover your face with your hands, just like when you are crying. By doing this, you can get the tiger balm under your eyes without the audience noticing. The tears will then appear sincere to those watching, and you can continue with your scene freely.

#8. If you are having trouble realistically crying, as the play or film requires, try and pretend that you are holding back tears. This battle of emotions is maybe even more touching to an audience. Try and make this action look as realistic as possible to appear natural to the audience. Destroying the realism of the acting destroys the illusion of emotion.

#9. Remember the entirety of the emotion is what truly counts. All of the mimicry should convey that you are sad, otherwise, the illusion of emotion is ruined. If possible, try letting your lower lip tremble and breathe heavily and quickly as if you were dehydrated.

#10. Everything can be seen in front of the camera, especially in close-ups. It is very difficult to “cheat-cry” in front of the camera. On the contrary, in a theater performance, the audience is usually not close enough to see your tears, so the body language of sadness counts more than the tears themselves.