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Playing Shakespeare: An Actor's Guide

Playing Shakespeare: An Actor's Guide
Your Price: $20.95 CDN
Author: John Barton
Publisher: Anchor Books
Format: Softcover
# of Pages: 266
Pub. Date: 2001
ISBN-10: 0385720858
ISBN-13: 9780385720854

About the Book:

Playing Shakespeare is the premier guide to understanding and appreciating the mastery of the world's greatest playwright. With more than 35 years of directorial experience with the Royal Shakespeare Company, John Barton walks the actor through Shakespeare and the workshop process with the help of numerous great Shakespearean actors. Useful for actors and scholars, this book will also aid teachers and students working on Shakespeare's plays in the classroom.

Together with Royal Shakespeare Company (RSC) actors – among them Patrick Stewart, Judi Dench, Ian McKellen, Ben Kingsley, and David Suchet – the legendary John Barton demonstrates how to adapt Elizabethan theater for the modern stage. The director begins by explicating Shakespeare's verse and prose, speeches and soliloquies, and naturalistic and heightened language to discover the essence of his characters. In the second section, Barton and the actors explore nuance in Shakespearean theater, from evoking irony and ambiguity and striking the delicate balance of passion and profound intellectual thought, to finding new approaches to playing Shakespeare's most controversial creation, Shylock, from The Merchant of Venice. A practical and essential guide, Playing Shakespeare will stand for years as the authoritative favourite among actors, scholars, teachers, and students.

What people say:

"One of the sanest, wisest, and most practical volumes I have ever read about Shakespeare." — Michael Billington, The Guardian (London)

"It is by far the best text I've seen on how to act Shakespeare." — Ed Hooks, author and acting teacher

"Generations of actors joining the RSC have benefited from John Barton's teaching." — Trevor Nunn

About the Author:

John Barton has been associate director of the Royal Shakespeare Company (RSC) for more than thirty-five years and has directed more than fifty productions. He lives in London and conducts Shakespeare workshops throughout the U.K. and the U.S.