A Challenge For The Actor
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating

A Challenge For The Actor

4.16 of 5 stars 4.16  ·  rating details  ·  267 ratings  ·  13 reviews
Theoretically, the actor ought to be more sound in mind and body than other people, since he learns to understand the psychological problems of human beings when putting his own passions, his loves, fears, and rages to work in the service of the characters he plays. He will learn to face himself, to hide nothing from himself -- and to do so takes an insatiable curiosity ab...more
Hardcover, 336 pages
Published August 21st 1991 by Scribner
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.
A Dream of Passion by Lee StrasbergFilm Directing Shot by Shot by Steven D. KatzA Whore's Profession by David MametWriting & Selling Thriller Screenplays by Lucy V. HayRebecca by Jennifer Leigh Wells
Acting and Cinema
8th out of 24 books — 7 voters
The Technique of Acting by Stella AdlerThe Stanislavski System by Sonia MooreOn the Technique of Acting by Michael ChekhovActing Class by Milton KatselasMy Life in Art by Konstantin Stanislavski
Best Acting Books
19th out of 30 books — 12 voters

More lists with this book...

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 601)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
Feb 16, 2009 Jil rated it 3 of 5 stars Recommends it for: theater theorists, the thinking actor
Recommended to Jil by: Connie Crawford
Shelves: school
I think what Uta Hagen had to say here could have been said in an essay rather than a 300-page book. And from what other actors have told me, Hagen already said much of this in Respect for Acting anyway, but better. Regardless, I do not think I will be reading Hagen's other work, because I'm pretty sure I already understand her gist.

I'm sure Hagen is a great actress, and a great person. The respect she has for the theatre is admirable, and I appreciate that she tries to get actors to push themse...more
I wish Uta Hagen was still alive. I want to go to her house and watch her sit in her favorite seat and smoke ciggarettes with her and ask her a million questions about how the hell she can be the most self aware actor ever without also being the most self concious actor ever.

This book is a bit more helpful than her previous acting book, but it still begs many questions. I would be her most annoying student contstantly poking my hand up into the air, “But Mistress Uta!” Hm. I wonder what student...more
Cassidy Liston
This book could be condensed down to a couple points that are easy to explain. It's about two hundred pages too long. Also it's very dense and poorly written.
Little in this book that I hadn't learned elsewhere... and while it's possible that the other authors were only recycling her main points, I think they did it better, without overly dramatic language and periodic complaints about the present state of acting. Guh.

I agree, it should have just been an essay.
Aug 13, 2008 Benaboo rated it 5 of 5 stars Recommends it for: actors/actresses
Recommended to Benaboo by: played a Beatles record backwards; it recommended this book
Uta Hagen clarified and revised the ideas presented in "Respect for Acting". If you had to choose between them, get this book. She teaches people to act by using their own life experiences. This book contains plenty of acting exercises that can be done alone.
Feb 28, 2008 Alison rated it 3 of 5 stars Recommends it for: actors
Recommended to Alison by: HB Studio
Even though I haven't been acting for years sometimes I'll do some of these exercises when I'm bored and I'm waiting for someone. They're all about going inside yourself and observing your behavior and then naturally replicating in in front of an audience.
Ming Siu
It does clarify some of her concepts in her previous book, but it's rather repetitive and wordy. The ideas are remarkably intuitive, but it's tough to unearth them from beneath all the rambling sentences.
Excellent! Very inspiring with plenty of excersises. Though it has a different title it is basically a revision/update of the book Respect for Acting.
Mark Woodland
Follow-up to Respect for Acting, and lives up well to its title. Again, not a technique, style, or training guide, but a way to view the art.
Antonia Marrero
Just Wonderful!! Very informative, helpful and smart. I will certainly be able to apply my new found knowledge to my own work.
A rehash of Respect for Acting. I prefer the earlier book, but both are helpful.
Uta Hagen is a genius. Every actor should be required to read this text.
Tracy Morton
Great exercise for actors of every level
Jillian Hendricks
Jillian Hendricks marked it as to-read
Apr 09, 2014
Kaie V
Kaie V is currently reading it
Apr 05, 2014
Candace Boahene
Candace Boahene marked it as to-read
Apr 05, 2014
Dardi  Osaj
Dardi Osaj marked it as to-read
Apr 03, 2014
Lovejot Bhullar
Lovejot Bhullar marked it as to-read
Mar 30, 2014
Madeline is currently reading it
Mar 28, 2014
Faith Chua
Faith Chua marked it as to-read
Mar 26, 2014
Cruz-William Castillo
Cruz-William Castillo marked it as to-read
Mar 26, 2014
India marked it as to-read
Mar 25, 2014
Lily marked it as to-read
Mar 25, 2014
Gregor Schmidinger
Gregor Schmidinger marked it as to-read
Mar 25, 2014
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 20 21 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • Audition
  • The Art of Acting
  • To the Actor
  • Sanford Meisner on Acting
  • A Practical Handbook for the Actor
  • Building a Character
  • Acting: The First Six Lessons
  • Acting in Film: An Actor's Take on Movie Making
  • The Empty Space: A Book About the Theatre: Deadly, Holy, Rough, Immediate
  • Freeing the Natural Voice
  • Playing Shakespeare: An Actor's Guide (Methuen Paperback)
  • A Director Prepares: Seven Essays on Art and Theatre
  • Improvisation for the Theater
  • Theatre of the Oppressed
  • Towards a Poor Theatre
  • Impro
  • A Sense of Direction: Some Observations on the Art of Directing /
  • True and False: Heresy and Common Sense for the Actor
Respect for Acting Uta Hagen's Acting Class: The DVDs A Challenge for the Actor The Other Sources: A Memoir

Share This Book

“It must be noted that it is often the colleague or direct disciple of a new thinker who gets stuck in literal interpretations of the work, tending to freeze the new ideas and language into an inflexible, static condition.” 4 likes
More quotes…