Actor at Work, The

Series
Allyn & Bacon
Author
Robert Benedetti  
Publisher
Pearson
Cover
Softcover
Edition
10
Language
English
Total pages
224
Pub.-date
January 2008
ISBN13
9780205542079
ISBN
0205542077
Related Titles



Description

This edition marks the 40th Anniversary of this classic and comprehensive introduction to acting. With this new edition, Benedetti continues to provide students with wide-ranging insight into the techniques and demands of acting today. Centered on the concept of action, The Actor at Work covers all the major skills of the actor, including voice, speech, movement, analysis and role-playing. Using many ideas from contemporary psychology and various physical and spiritual disciplines, this text helps students uncover and develop the actors within themselves, as it encourages self-discovery through participatory activities and exercises.

Features

  • Combines Stanislavski's “Method” with techniques drawn from contemporary psychology to teach students a broad range of approaches to the acting process.
  • Stresses the sense of purpose, personal discipline, and the ethics of acting.
  • Contains an appendix of useful plays and scenes for students' further reading and practice.
  • Divides speech, voice, and text analysis into three distinct chapters to provide additional focus on each of these important topics.
  • Contains a Glossary of Acting Terms that explains the terms introduced in the text, as well as many other common terms used in stage and film acting.

New to this Edition

  • Several exercises for voice and textual work, as well as the forward, are provided by Cicely Berry, OBE, Hon. D. Litt., Voice Director of the Royal Shakespeare Company.
  • Three new chapters on the qualities of good dramatic language, the techniques of rehearsal, and staging provide insight into the demands of various performance environments from the actor's point of view.
  • New and improved exercises encourage students' personal growth and guide them toward self-discovery.
  • Improvisations, monologues, and culminates lead the student through the analysis and preparation of a scene for performance.

Table of Contents

List of Exercises      

Preface      

 

Part I   The Ground: Preparing Yourself

     The Exercises and In-Class Performances

     A Note On Discipline

Lesson One: The Actor In You

     The Skills Of The Actor

     The Tradition Of The Actor

     The Modern Period

     Acting and Your Personal Growth

     Summary

Lesson Two: The Creative State

     Tension and Excessive Effort

     Restful Alertness

     Experiencing Wholeness

     Relaxation

     The Here and Now

     Summary

Lesson Three: Centering, Moving, and Gesturing

     The Pure Center and the Voice

     The Actor's Use of Center

     Grounding

     Your Changing Relationship to Gravity

     Phrasing Movement

     Gesture

     The Genesis of Gesture

     Summary

Lesson Four: Voice

     The Voice and Emotion

     The Source of the Voice

     The Cycle of Energy

     Tone Production

     The Voice and Inner Dynamic

     The Voice and Attitude

     Using Your Own Voice

     Summary

Lesson Five: Speech

     The Process of Speech

     Nasal Sounds

     Oral Sounds: Vowels and Diphthongs

     Oral Sounds: Consonants

     Projection

     Speech, Context, and Character

     Further Training of Body and Voice

     Summary

Lesson Six: Dramatic Language

     Text and Subtext

     Word Choice

     Context

     Rhythm

     Melody

     Imagery

     Summary

Lesson Seven: Working With Others

     The Bodily Center and Relationship

     Commitment, Support, and Communication

     Transaction and Teamwork

     Summary

 

Part II   The Path: Exploring Action

Lesson Eight: The Flow and Shape of Dramatic Action

     Aristotle on Action

     Action and Reaction: The Life of the Scene

     The Shape of Drama

     Drama and Conflict

     Summary

Lesson Nine: Action for the Actor

     Action According To Stanislavski

     Action in Life

     Internal and External Action

     Believability

     Indicating

     Summary

Lesson Ten: Action, Character, and Emotion

     Public Solitude

     Dual Consciousness

     Action and Character

     Action and Emotion

     Emotional Recall and Substitution

     The Role of Emotion in Performance

     Personalization and the Magic If

     Summary

Lesson Eleven: The Acting Process: Givens, Needs, Objectives, And Actions

     A Scene of Your Own

     The Given Circumstances

     Needs and Aspirations

     Objectives

     Defining Productive Objectives

     Defining Playable Actions: Verbs

     Automatic Actions

     Summary

Lesson Twelve: Beats, Through-Line, And Superobjective

     The Levels of Action

     Scene Structure

     Breaking Down The Scene

     The Through-Line

     The Superobjective

     The Acting Process

     Summary

 

Part III  The Fruition: Preparing The Performance

Lesson Thirteen: The Function and Elements of Character

     Functional and Likeness Traits

     Physical Traits

     Social Traits

     A Note on Style

     Psychological Traits

     Moral Traits

     Economy of Characterization

     A Character Checklist

     Summary

Lesson Fourteen: The Character's Mind

     The Instroke of Reaction

     Choice

     Automatic Actions

Direct and Indirect Action

Not Doing: Suppression

The Character's Self-Image

Summary

Lesson Fifteen: The Character's Body

     The Character's Center

     The Flow of Bodily Energy

     Physique and Personality

     Body Alignment and Character

     Summary

Lesson Sixteen: Rehearsing

     Auditions

     Preparations and Homework

     Early Read-Throughs

     Exploring the Action

     Establishing the Score

     Communication in Rehearsals

     You and Your Director

     Getting Off Book

     Summary

Lesson Seventeen: Staging

     Directions on Stage

     The Scale of Performance

     The Groundplan and Setting

     Blocking

     Summary

Lesson Eighteen: Performing

     Shaping and Pacing the Performance

     Technical and Dress Rehearsals

     Spontaneity

     Growth after Opening

     The Desire for Success

     Your Sense of Purpose

     Summary

 

Afterword: Transformation

 

Appendix A: Monologue, Scene, and Play Sources

     Play Anthologies

     Plays

     Anthologies for Students of Color

Appendix B: An Acting Checklist

Bibliography

Notes

A Glossary of Acting Terms

Index

 

 

Back Cover

The Actor at Work, 10/E

Robert Benedetti

 

This Fortieth Anniversary edition of Benedetti's classic and comprehensive introduction to acting continues to provide wide-ranging insight into the techniques and demands of acting today. Centered on the concept of action, The Actor at Work covers all of the major skills of the actor, including voice, speech, movement, analysis, and role-playing. This tenth edition will help you uncover and develop the actor within yourself using many ideas from contemporary psychology and various physical and spiritual disciplines, as it encourages self-discovery through participatory activities and exercises.

 

The New and Classic Features of the Tenth Edition

  • Combines Stanislavski's “Method” with techniques drawn from contemporary psychology to teach you a broad range of approaches to the acting process.
  • Emphasizes the personal responsibility, sense of purpose, personal discipline, and the ethics needed to succeed in acting.
  • Provides insight into the demands of various performance environments from the actor's point of view, with three new chapters on the qualities of good dramatic language, the techniques of rehearsal, and staging.
  • Includes several exercises for voice and textual work, and a foreword by Cicely Berry, OBE, Hon. D. Litt., Voice Director of the Royal Shakespeare Company.

 

What Reviewers Are Saying about The Actor at Work

 

“. . . it goes beyond any trends and focuses on communicating the basic craft and art of the actor. This is an excellent introduction to the process of acting.”

-Denise Gillman, ChristopherNewport University


Instructor Resources