Many children build up a personal persona to get them accepted and popular through school, they may build another one to keep their parents happy at home and a third for when out with close friends.
Some use a persona to hide behind a lack of personal self confidence or social ineptitude.
For those on the autistic spectrum it can make life bearable and keep bullies from making them a regular target.
It is no coincidence that many autistic children hiding in their protective persona move on to using it in a creative way in drama. The techniques of building a persona and that of a character are not so far apart.
Many aspects of the autistic spectrum lend themselves to the creative process of which acting is one.
Many autistic children take "make believe" to an advanced level. and that indeed may be being an actor be it for the enjoyment, the escape from real life , or as a career.
It is this core being that reflects how The Halfling projects works and why drama can be so important in the understanding process of autism.
this said many working on act4ward are not on the spectrum, but still enjoy character building, and may also have built up convincing persona's as they grow.
The early work on the project or with act4ward is to build and advance confidence on which foundation the rest of the work can build.
This can change lives and allow better understanding and intergration into society, but importantly
it can also be a lot of fun.
Actor Jonathan Thorp produces different characters in this simple work example for act4ward
Here actor Luke Dunn is basically playing his natural character rather than an impression of Charlie Chaplin - working as directed - this can then be built upon as his personal character as the role builds.
Actor Sonny Skelton in character. act4ward/Halfling project