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Requisite reading for Actors,
This review is from: An Actor Prepares (Performance Books) (Paperback)
Stanislavski is arguably the greatest theorist on drama stagecraft and its grandfather too. Now, it is fashionable nowadays to shoot him down in favour of acting that's more in the moment, as propounded by the direction first set out by Meinser and the tradition-demolishing impetus of Mamet. I am all for that. Creating an entire character and performance in your mind, using your own emotional memory, without interacting and being influenced by the other actors sharing the stage with you makes for very dead static theatre indeed. But that is not necesserily what Stanislavski intended. Furthermore, he constantly updated his views in search of truth, as all great self-respecting art lovers do. He came a long way from his Chekhov-conflicting days. I think this book has to be read by any budding actor, as it provides a lot of craft basics that should still form a part of an actors preparation. It covers physical, emotional and psychological preparation. It is, in fact, a classic whose offshoots you'll encounter in many and varied guises across the acting spectrum.
This volume will furthermore raise questions, which is always healthy. And it will also inspire. Combined with the works of Hagen, Meisner, Donnellan and Johnstone, you get a great armoury of the techniques available to the actor today - up to you, then, how to use them in your explorations.