Book Review – The Actor’s Workbook
The Actor’s Workbook, A Practical Guide to Training, Rehearsing and Devising and Video
Published by Bloomsbury
From the publishers:
The Actor’s Workbook is an essential tool for actors in training, teachers of acting and drama and professional actors. The workbook presents a system of exercises to develop core acting skills, offering techniques for developing an authored role and models for devising new work, while the supporting video provides a clear, step-by-step guide by learning techniques in acting. These techniques are based on the practices of Konstantin Stanislavski and his recent theatrical descendants including Uta Hagan, Stanford Meisner, Michael Checkhov and others.
The exercises in the book are outlined in a student-centred approach, offering not only in-class exercises, but also pre-class exercises, educational frameworks, teaching-tips, suggested texts through which to apply the work, follow-up exercises and suggestions for further reading in each chapter.
Alex Clifton has worked as an assistant director at the Royal National Theatre, resident director at English National Opera and freelance theatre and opera director. He is now Acting Tutor at The Royal Academy of Dramatic Art (RADA), specialising in teaching Stanislavski’s technique. He is a Fellow of the Institute of Higher Education and a trustee of the International Schools’ Theatre Association. Alex is co-founder and Artistic Director of The Grosvenor Park Open Air Theatre, the UK’s leading open air theatre outside London.
“An actor’s work is play, but in The Actor’s Workbook Alex Clifton makes play a thing of depth and beauty. Generous, wise and spoken from the heart, the book is filled with insights drawn from history, science and daily life.” Glyn Maxwell, FRSL, Poet and Playwright
“I’m often asked by young actors, “But where do I start?” Here is a book that provides a plethora of answers. It possesses all the virtues that have made Alex a hugely valued teacher – clarity, curiosity, intelligence and sensitivity. I can think of few better broad-based introductions to the messy, mysterious and joyful business of acting.” Edward Kemp, Director of The Royal Academy of Dramatic Art
“Clifton is a master teacher and this book a brilliant master class. The work presented is challenging but immediately practical with rewards that are attainable and significant. A must read for those serious about improving themselves as actors, students and educators.” Michael Caemmerer, Head of Performing Arts, American Embassy School, New Delhi
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