1. “The Meisner technique” by Sanford Meisner

“On Acting” by Sanford Meisner is a must-read for actors at all levels. The renowned acting teacher and member of the Group Theater in the 1930s lays out his approach to acting which emphasizes the importance of being fully present and connected to other actors on stage. Meisner’s techniques, including “sense memory” and “repetition exercises,” help actors tap into their emotions and instincts for truthful and meaningful performances. Meisner stresses that the actor must be fully invested in the reality of the scene to “live truthfully under imaginary circumstances”, and not simply recite lines or “play a character.” With an introduction by Sydney Pollack and read by Jason Culp, Arthur Morey, and Mark Bramhall, this book offers a clear and practical approach to the craft of acting.

2. “The art of acting” by Stella Adler

“The Art of Acting” by Stella Adler is a must-read for actors of all levels. Adler, a renowned acting teacher, actress, and member of the Group Theater in the 1930s, shares her decades of experience in this comprehensive guide to the craft of acting. Adler emphasizes the importance of understanding the “given circumstances” of a scene, including the character’s history, relationships, and motivations. She also stresses the importance of using personal experiences and emotions to bring truth and depth to performances, and encourages actors to use their body and voice as expressive tools. In addition to the technical aspects of acting, Adler also touches on the importance of the actor’s self-awareness, encouraging actors to constantly strive for personal growth and development. She stresses the importance of ongoing study and the need to challenge oneself as an artist. The Art of Acting” is a valuable resource for actors at all levels, offering a clear and practical approach to the craft of acting. Adler’s insights and exercises can help actors analyze scripts, create specific characterizations, and bring truth and depth to their performances. This brand-new audio edition of The Art of Acting is vibrantly narrated by Bonnie Agan.

3. “A challenge for the actor” by Uta Hagen

Uta Hagen, a renowned stage actress, taught acting for 40+ years at the HB Studio in New York. Her first book, Respect for Acting, published in 1973, is still a best seller. Her second book, A Challenge for the Actor, is now available in audio format. Hagen expands her thoughts on acting and teaching, discussing the actor’s goals and techniques, relationship to physical and psychological senses, and offers exercises to help actors learn their craft. The exercises deal with developing the actor’s physical destination in a role; making changes in the self serviceable in the creation of a character; recreating physical sensations; bringing the outdoors on stage; finding occupation while waiting; talking to oneself and the audience; and employing historical imagination. The scope and range of Uta Hagen here is extraordinary. Her years of acting and teaching have made her as finely seasoned an artist as the theatre has produced. This audiobook is masterfully read by award-winning narrator and actor Barbara Rosenblat.

4. “Acting: The First Six Lessons” by Richard Boleslavsky

Acting: The First Six Lessons is a book written by Richard Boleslavsky, a Polish actor and director. It is considered a classic text on the art of acting, and covers a range of topics such as character analysis, scene study, and the use of imagination in performance. The book is based on the acting classes that Boleslavsky taught at the American Laboratory Theatre in New York City in the early 20th century, and is widely used as a guide for actors and acting students.

5. “Directing Actors: Creating Memorable Performances for Film & Television” by Judith Weston

In this essential guide to acting, internationally renowned directing coach Judith Weston demonstrates what constitutes a good performance, what actors want from a director, and what directors do wrong. She also goes over script analysis and preparation and how actors work, and she shares important and helpful insights into the director/actor relationship. The Directing Actors audiobook was recorded by Judith Weston in 2019 and is based on the classic best seller from 1996. 

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