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Thinking Shakespeare: A How-To Guide for Student Actors, Directors, and Anyone Else Who Wants to Feel More Comfortable with the Bard
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Thinking Shakespeare: A How-To Guide for Student Actors, Directors, and Anyone Else Who Wants to Feel More Comfortable with the Bard

4.62  ·  Rating details ·  106 ratings  ·  15 reviews
Thinking Shakespeare gives the actors practical advice about how to make Shakespeare's words feel spontaneous, passionate, and real. Based on Barry Edelstein's twenty-year career directing Shakespeare's plays, this book provides the tools that actors need to fully understand and express the power of Shakespeare's language.

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Paperback, 455 pages
Published August 31st 2007 by Sparknotes (first published August 2007)
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Cat
Oct 25, 2011 rated it it was amazing
For anyone who wants to have a more clear understanding of Shakespeare, but especially for actors, Barry Edelstein's "Thinking Shakespeare" is the greatest resource I've found.

If you're an actor, you've probably received that folio packet which I think is public domain. It's full of all kinds of folio rules about iambic pentameter, punctuation, spelling and more. However, at around 15 pages, it's crude to say the least. I received this from directors or teachers at least three times in my strugg
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Lisa McKenzie
Oct 20, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Henry McKenzie
The other night, I was helping my son to memorize the To Be or Not To Be soliloquy. The process was intense, because in order to speak Hamlet's words, my son had to think Hamlet's thoughts, and those are dark thoughts indeed. It was eerie to consider that these words, penned by one man hundreds of years ago, have been repeated somewhere on this planet perhaps every day since. Powerful stuff. Like a virus.
After witnessing this one manifestation of this one soliloquy, I was drawn to read, Thinkin
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Niasaki
Jul 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2019, shakespeare, theater
I thoroughly enjoyed this book, this brought to light so many interpretations and meanings in the Bards work that I had not seen before. I probably have to go over all the plays I've read again to check what I missed. It also gave tips and techniques to use during the acting process that I will surely us next time I preform in a productions. Also the writing felt more supportive than demeaning. It helped you through the methods with plenty of examples and explanations, instead of criticizing you ...more
Jennifer
This book doesn't really fit any of the current shelves I use, but it sort of sneaks in on a couple because it deals with Shakespeare's plays, and it's pretty much a really long essay about how to read Shakespeare.

I would guess most of the people who come to this book have probably already read one or two (or a dozen) of Shakespeare's plays. If you're like me, and have to at least skim through (if not intensively read every word of) the forewords and prefaces, then you're probably already famili
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Juliet the Book Slayer
Feb 01, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: non-fiction
If you're serious about learning Shakespearian acting, this is THE book to read. (This comes from someone who's read quite a few!)

"Thinking Shakespeare" is currently out of print (??? I cannot for the life of me fathom why), so I ended up eBaying a precious copy for 125 bucks. I don't think I can give it more praise than to say that it was well worth it (and then some), and that it'll be an indispensable tool for the rest of my professional acting life.

"Thinking Shakespeare" made clear Shakespe
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Nikki Gatlin
Aug 30, 2012 rated it it was amazing
This book is FABULOUS thus far. It gives such remarkable and candid insight into working on a Shakespearean play and the advice and exercises are so great that they transcend being just applicable to plays by the Bard.

I recommend this to any actor. Period. I ESPECIALLY recommend this to any actor looking to perform Shakespeare. It really is a wonderful tool that I think EVERY actor should have not just on their shelf, but on their nightstand, within reach to refer to all the time.
Shaina
Apr 10, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: shakespeare
There were some wonderful points made by Edelstein in this book. However, sometimes he pounded the points out a little too much. I am an actress...some of the stuff he kept repeating I knew, and it made me feel like I was being treated like a child. However, I loved his examples and the concis ways he worded certain rules.
Ben
Aug 01, 2012 rated it really liked it
This resource provides strong strategies for approaching and understanding Shakespeare.
Melissa
Aug 09, 2012 rated it liked it
Full of useful stuff, but not a page turner..
Magic
Jan 19, 2010 rated it it was amazing
This book changed the way in which I approach acting Shakespeare. So amazingly useful, practical and well written. I must read for any actor working on Shakespeare
Mary
Jul 18, 2010 rated it it was amazing
I'm marking this "read" because I have consumed all of the pages. But I am not finished with this book--not by a long shot. I expect to refer to it All The Time. Love it. ...more
Casey
Aug 09, 2014 rated it really liked it
Ugh. It took me waaay to long to read this. That being said, I did find this book to be well written and insightful. I actually do feel more comfortable with the Bard. Boom.
Denise
Jul 07, 2010 rated it really liked it
This book helped me to understand Shakespeare's ingenuity in a different way than I am used to doing:namely, through acting. This is a very useful well-written book. ...more
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