How To Stop Acting (Performance Books)
  • How To Stop Acting (Performance Books)
  • How To Stop Acting (Performance Books)
  • How To Stop Acting (Performance Books)
ISBN: 0571199992
EAN13: 9780571199990
Language: English
Release Date: Jun 25, 2003
Pages: 208
Dimensions: 0.52" H x 8.25" L x 5.5" W
Weight: 0.71 lbs.
Format: Paperback
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Book Overview

The Great Guskin (John Lahr, The New Yorker) shares the approach he uses to help actors land roles, develop them, and keep them alive

Harold Guskin is an acting doctor whose clients include Kevin Kline, Glenn Close, James Gandolfini, Bridget Fonda, and dozens more. In How to Stop Acting, Guskin reveals the insights and techniques that have worked wonders for beginners as well as stars. Instead of yet another method, Guskin offers a strategy based on a radically simple and refreshing idea: that the actor's work is not to create a character but rather to be continually, personally responsive to the text, wherever his impulse takes him, from first read-through to final performance. From this credo derives an entirely new perspective on auditioning and the challenge of developing a role and keeping it fresh, even over hundreds of performances. Drawing on examples from his clients' work and his own, Guskin presents acting as a constantly evolving exploration rather than as a progression toward a fixed goal. He also offers sound and original advice on adapting to the particular demands of television and film, playing difficult emotional scenes, tackling the Shakespearean and other great roles, and more. His book will find an eager and appreciative audience among novices and established actors alike.

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Book Reviews (6)

5
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4
   How NOT To Act
While most acting books focus on one specific method and what the actor should do, this does a bit of flip and teaches a non-method, while focusing on what the actor should not do. Or rather, break into bad habits of an actor, which most tend to have. The writing is creative, but the content is quite unique, yet the content is not quite like what you would expedt to find in a book on how to act or how not to act in this case. He also includes lessons he has learned from the famous actors he has taught over the years to give the actor a broader scope from which to consider their own experiences and approaches to acting. It is not a very long book, and while at times it goes on a tangent, a refreshing place from which to perform and audition if you feel stuck in your career.
 
5
   Terrific Guide, Makes Acting Immediately Accessible
This is a wonderful book, an entirely different approach to creating a character that makes acting immediately accessible. I read it with a pen in hand, underlining passages and starring sections that were particularly important. Two years of acting classes had me confused and discouraged. This book made me excited again about acting.
 
1
   Anecdotal, and that's about it.
In the book there is simply not enough substance. It is primarily based on a tool and is otherwise rather arrogantly peppered with the author name dropping known actors who took a session with him at some point using his TIOTP method, as in When So-and-So came to me... as if this somehow makes up for the content. I am not sure what I expected, but what I got was not it. If you're looking for something practical, there are a few alternatives to pass : A Practical Handbook for the Actor '' by Larry Moss, A Challenge for the actor by Uta Hagen and The Intent to Live by Melissa Bruder.
 
5
   Extremely helpful
Within the first ten pages of the first chapter, I learned a breathing technique, used it and BOOKED an audition that was shot in one shot!
 
5
   To be an actor don;t act, just be.
Some excellent and simple instructions in this book, which I read a chapter in the very afternoon I used it and took it off the page. The technique worked well because the audition sounded much better and looked much better. Don 't know yet if I got the part. However, I think that if anyone is chasing fame and fortune on the hope of being a successful actor, they may be disappointed. One thing about this book is that it is crystal clear, true actors are souls with deep passion for quality and truth in their craft. They don 't need fame or money. And the best actors don 't act. Sounds true, but it is weird.
 
5
   From now on, my go-to book on acting
This book not only stresses using your intuition, but also provides actual help to get there. I am very grateful not only for the good advice, but also for the philosophy under the advice. I am sorry that the author is dead because I would love to write him a thank you note. Anyone on whom Kevin Kline depends is good enough for me!
 
1