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The Actor's Art and Craft cover art

The Actor's Art and Craft

Written by: William Esper,Damon Dimarco,David Mamet
Narrated by: Michael Esper,Damon Dimarco
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Publisher's Summary

William Esper, one of the leading acting teachers of our time, explains and extends Sanford Meisner's legendary technique, offering a clear, concrete, step-by-step approach to becoming a truly creative actor.

Esper worked closely with Meisner for 17 years and has spent decades developing his famous program for actor's training. The result is a rigorous system of exercises that builds a solid foundation of acting skills from the ground up, and that is flexible enough to be applied to any challenge an actor faces, from soap operas to Shakespeare. Co-writer Damon DiMarco, a former student of Esper's, spent over a year observing his mentor teaching first-year acting students. In this book, he recreates that experience for us, allowing us to see how the progression of exercises works in practice. The Actor's Art and Craft vividly demonstrates that good training does not constrain actors' instincts - it frees them to create characters with truthful and compelling inner lives.

©2008 William Esper and Damon Dimarco (P)2019 Random House Audio

What the critics say

"Utterly inspirational.... The best book on the craft of acting that I have ever read." (Mary Steenburgen)

"As far as I'm concerned, there is only way to learn the craft of acting, and that is through the Meisner technique. And there is only one person to learn that technique from, and that is William Esper." (Patricia Heaton)

"The essence of this book is like William Esper himself: kind/clear, caring/generous, passionate/graceful, brilliant/profound. Inspiring. Invaluable." (Jeff Goldblum) 

What listeners say about The Actor's Art and Craft

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  • Swiissjoker
  • 2021-05-28

5 Stars

You have opened my eyes & even more important...my mind & imagination. God Bless You.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 2021-11-29

Very Good Book

I dont reccomend on over the other when comparing to Miesners Sanford Miesner on Acting. Both should be read and both will offer you something of value that play well with one another.

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  • Joshua Bush
  • 2021-07-04

The best actor is your true self

I love this book I wish I could meet the author and learn even more and participate in person.

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  • Joshua J. Slamp
  • 2021-06-20

Ugh.

I am struggling to choke this down.
The narrator’s portrayal of the “students” was simply offensive and awful. It was as if it was his own acting exercise which completely deterred from the actual message.
The writing was over done, over worked and frankly needed edited from unnecessary, meandering details.
I would consider revisiting if it was re-recorded and edited.

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  • Jsan50
  • 2023-03-31

Thoroughly Enjoyed

Great tips, practice exercises, and examples. This was my first acting book and I really enjoyed the simplicity and stories.

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  • Cali4nia
  • 2023-03-27

Brilliant book bad narrator.

A staple for actors. However I do not like the wispy voice narrator. He ends his sentences like he's whispering. Like bro come on say the full sentence at a consistent volume. It was very annoying he'd start off full volume and then end on a lull like it's part lullaby. And this is a book where you don't want to miss details.

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  • Nhu Nguyen
  • 2023-02-27

Game changer

This is one of the best acting books I have ever had the pleasure to listen to. I have both the audio version and the text version. This book will serve me for years to come.

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  • BillionaireManzi
  • 2021-03-18

Step by Step guide to technique in the reasons why

The Meisner book to read over and over again. It takes the teachers work further

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  • Timothy Anderson
  • 2020-04-19

Superb!

This wonderful audio rendering at once amplified and brings to life the text of Bill Espers important book - and is also wholly entertaining. Superb! An important companion to the written work.

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  • Steven Reily
  • 2020-04-12

Required reading for the actor!

The finest book on the Meisner technique available. A must read for anyone who is serious about the craft of acting.

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