Great advice from a show-business veteran.



Respected character actor and stage coach reinterprets Stanislavsky’s Method for a modern audience.

Rich, a Los Angeles personality with a long career in show business, re-envisions the actor’s craft, offering practical advice to those that aspire to the stage and screen. With short, vivid chapters, Rich succinctly dispels with the notion that performers must have a natural talent to succeed–plenty of hard work, a willingness to defer to the playwright and the courage to dig deep into a role to discover the central truth of a character will do in its absence. Rich pokes holes into Konstantin Stanislavsky’s psychological approach to acting that asks a performer to search for personal memories to add emotional resonance to a performance. He suggests instead that the actor must not reproduce, but reinterpret a role when playing it night after night. The basis of Rich’s new, simplified approach is the philosophy that an actor must search the text for insights into the character rather than rely on their own past experiences. To be economical on the stage and not rely on physical movement are also important elements to an effective performance, as is the discovery of the essence of the character’s behavior. Rich offers practical recommendations that run from knowing the entire play in order to understand the playwright’s intentions to never sleeping with your leading man or lady, lest the intensity of the stage romance be diminished. A quick autobiographical narrative kicks off this charming, informative manual. The author recounts his early Broadway appearances and the crisis of confidence that led to several lean years and a midlife career as a businessman and art dealer with an itch to return to the stage. Unfortunately, a last section filled with testimonials on the effectiveness of Rich’s method and gaudy plethora of celebrity photographs distract from the polish and professionalism established by the author’s instructive theories.

Great advice from a show-business veteran.

Pub Date: Jan. 11, 2007

ISBN: 978-1-4208-2223-6

Page Count: -

Publisher: N/A

Review Posted Online: May 23, 2010

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Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis...



Privately published by Strunk of Cornell in 1918 and revised by his student E. B. White in 1959, that "little book" is back again with more White updatings.

Stricter than, say, Bergen Evans or W3 ("disinterested" means impartial — period), Strunk is in the last analysis (whoops — "A bankrupt expression") a unique guide (which means "without like or equal").

Pub Date: May 15, 1972

ISBN: 0205632645

Page Count: 105

Publisher: Macmillan

Review Posted Online: Oct. 28, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: May 1, 1972

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From the national correspondent for PBS's MacNeil-Lehrer Newshour: a moving memoir of her youth in the Deep South and her role in desegregating the Univ. of Georgia. The eldest daughter of an army chaplain, Hunter-Gault was born in what she calls the ``first of many places that I would call `my place' ''—the small village of Due West, tucked away in a remote little corner of South Carolina. While her father served in Korea, Hunter-Gault and her mother moved first to Covington, Georgia, and then to Atlanta. In ``L.A.'' (lovely Atlanta), surrounded by her loving family and a close-knit black community, the author enjoyed a happy childhood participating in activities at church and at school, where her intellectual and leadership abilities soon were noticed by both faculty and peers. In high school, Hunter-Gault found herself studying the ``comic-strip character Brenda Starr as I might have studied a journalism textbook, had there been one.'' Determined to be a journalist, she applied to several colleges—all outside of Georgia, for ``to discourage the possibility that a black student would even think of applying to one of those white schools, the state provided money for black students'' to study out of state. Accepted at Michigan's Wayne State, the author was encouraged by local civil-rights leaders to apply, along with another classmate, to the Univ. of Georgia as well. Her application became a test of changing racial attitudes, as well as of the growing strength of the civil-rights movement in the South, and Gault became a national figure as she braved an onslaught of hostilities and harassment to become the first black woman to attend the university. A remarkably generous, fair-minded account of overcoming some of the biggest, and most intractable, obstacles ever deployed by southern racists. (Photographs—not seen.)

Pub Date: Nov. 1, 1992

ISBN: 0-374-17563-2

Page Count: 192

Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux

Review Posted Online: May 20, 2010

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Sept. 1, 1992

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