Sunday, July 14, 2013

So you want to be an actor? Meisner's On Acting

Here is another recent read for January. Meisner and Longwell's On Acting, with an introduction by Sydney Pollack.

I think this is the last book for January. I was thinking of posting this during the time of James Gandolfini's (of "Sopranos" fame) untimely passing. Gandolfini studied the "Meisner technique." At the time of this entry, I have yet to see Gandolfini in Inside the Actor's Studio.
But, thinking about Meisner reminds me of Dustin Hofmann's impression of Robert Duvall.Hofmann did his impression when he was a guest at Inside. Let us just say that Duvall had no kind words for Lee Strasberg, Hofmann's teacher. Well, Meisner also has no kind words for Strasberg in On Acting.One instance of Meisner's dim view of Strasberg, is his claim that Pacino is good in spite of Strasberg!

Meisner's book might not be the best place to start if one is just beginning to study what actors do. But it is worth a read for those who have gone thru some experience and training. Even for those who write plays and have worked with actors, I would add, might benefit from reading Meisner's .

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