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Acting: The First Six ...
Richard Boleslavsky
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Acting: The First Six Lessons

4.1  ·  Rating Details ·  440 Ratings  ·  30 Reviews
This classic work on acting is one of the very few that stands beside Stanislavsky as a must-have for all acting students and professionals. Richard Boleslavsky's Acting: The First Six Lessons is a treasure-box of wise observation about the art of acting, all wrapped up in six charming dialogues between a teacher and a student. Generations of actors have been enriched by B ...more
ebook, 152 pages
Published March 1st 2004 by Routledge (first published 1933)
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Huda Aweys
Apr 03, 2014 Huda Aweys rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: art, influenced
It was a nice book! :) And smooth .. I think I really benefited from the book as an actress ... sometime .. mmmmmm .. I think that this book made me realize a lot about the art of acting ...
استفدت من الكتاب دا كممثة في مرحلة ما .. :)
هوه في العموم كتاب شائق وسلس قراءته كانت ممتعه فعلا :)
Alejandra Bernal
I absolutely adored it. It is written beautifully, clearly stating each lesson in dialogue form. It is of great help for actors, directors and public alike, and shows the philosophical view of Boleslavsky's life in the theatre. For me, as an actress, it allowed me to further understand my relationship with the stage, and reshape the way I work. They are certainly one of the most straight-forward and valuable lessons on acting I have ever had. I hoped, however, for a longer text... I didn't want ...more
Feb 17, 2016 Simon rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The world of actors! I am always amazed after reading any book on acting how it's so much more than a profession. With all the training and awareness required in order to pretend to be another human being, it's more of a lifestyle. Boleslavsky's chapter on Observation is more reminiscent of meditating and truly taking in all the fragments of life than preparing for a working experience.

It is in these moments that I think the practice of learning how to act really are the practice of learning how
Oct 22, 2012 Allegra rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

I had a smile on my face all the way through. Everything about it is so beautiful and real. My teacher gave it to us as a textbook but to me it is a story. I don't know how great of a read it would be for someone who has no interest in theater, but I'm sure that everyone can identify with something in this book. It gave me a new view of life.
Mar 15, 2017 Jay rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: directing
I just can't get over the fact that the dialogues name the younger female as the creature.
I was assigned this text in my introductory Drama 100 class. This book sells itself as a manual on acting, but more than that, it's a work of fiction; even more than that, it's a manual on life.

Acting is set up in the format of a play; dialogue, stage directions and all. It has two engaging characters: the Creature and Boleslavsky himself. The bits of advice he gives to the Creature are essentially the "lessons" of the book. This is a fast read, but to remember what the lessons are, I would reco
Seymour Glass
Sep 03, 2015 Seymour Glass rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I love how advice about the creation of art often doubles up as good general life advice. 'Concentrate', ''observe what is around you and act accordingly', 'persist'. You can apply these words to learning to paint, write songs, act, or get through your day to day life.

I'm so glad I discovered this little gem of a book, written like a play and split into six 'lessons' on the art of acting. It manages to be charming, light and witty whilst also being practical, straight-forward and loaded with exa
Jun 28, 2013 Justin rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
While remarkably insightful into the process of becoming a dedicated actor, this play-styled acting guide takes the actor's inspiration for granted. I want to really feel drawn into acting, not just told, "See me after you take up two years of physical and vocal training." What discouraging bullshit! True but stupid, especially since I take words from a master literally and without my own spin. Well not anymore. I believe I can start developing myself as an actor even while I am working on getti ...more
Elizabeth Ellen
Jun 21, 2013 Elizabeth Ellen rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Published nearly 100 years ago, this is another basic text in the foundation of Method Acting. Using the old-fashioned technique of a dialogue between teacher and student, six "lessons" are offered revealing the techniques of this psychologically-based acting technique.

Reading as a writer, I found great value particularly in the subjects of character-building, what to look for when observing, searching great works of art for clues about mannerisms, posture, etc. Developing skills of identifying
May 31, 2010 Mary rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: theatre
AMAZING!!! This text is written in dialogue format and I can't imagine it written any other way. Boleslavsky imparts an incredible amount of information with so little waste; it's a beautiful reading experience. From an acting standpoint, he addresses and gets to the very core of the foundations that one needs in order to do the job with total honesty. There is humor, pathos, and beauty and I feel very fortunate to have been assigned this book. I will read it many times over and I recommend it f ...more
Oct 01, 2007 Anushka rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone
Awesome book that covers the basics of acting but also skills that apply to experiencing life. Best of all, it is a marvelously quick and easy read (finished in one read in a couple of hours). It's written as a story of interactions between a teacher and student. The simple exercises described in the chapters on concentration, observation and memory of emotion are great in honing in on those skills and improving a person's capacity of experiencing the world (which is what talent in acting is abo ...more
Nathan Inzerillo
I've read this book multiple times since my first reading in my acting class back in college and I always seem to get something new with each successive reading. It's the kind of book where different parts seem to take on greater importance depending on where you are in your acting journey. I recommend this book to every actor not only as a unique quidebook but also as a source of inspiration.
Gena Lott
Apr 12, 2011 Gena Lott rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction
The only way to learn acting is to get on the stage, but this classic instruction manual for anyone interested in theatre is a great book to firm up those theories that the professor tells you are essential for good acting.
Jun 12, 2012 Sammie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: actors
Shelves: acting
I found this book very helpful! It outlines six techniques that can help improve the quality of your acting. It's written in the form of a conversation which makes it an easy read. An absolute must for actors.
Victor McGuire
Nov 29, 2010 Victor McGuire rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This is a excellent book on Acting. the original was written in 1939 or something like that.. I read this my second year in collage in 1975. It is a book on six different lessons with a student/professor. Every theatre student should read it!!
Shawna Mckellar
Nov 22, 2012 Shawna Mckellar rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Jennifer Pierce
Jun 30, 2013 Jennifer Pierce rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
My large format photography teacher decided to make us read this and relate all the lessons in acting to photography. I really wouldn't have read the book otherwise.
Drea Kreth
Very abstract, he is supposed to be the acting god but, if you already have some acting classes and know how behind you this is a waste of money.
Jodi Skeris
Mar 13, 2007 Jodi Skeris rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone
I read this book way before I started doing any theater for real. Such a great and interesting read. Really well written and keeps you invested. Very smart book.
Jun 22, 2009 Monica rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
a quick read that totally pulled me in. although it definitely made me want to rush back to the stage, it has refreshed my perspective of life outside the theatre walls as well.
Feb 06, 2012 Dragos rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
One of the best books i've read in the past years. It makes theoretical issues so easy to understand. And it's short, well written and funny.
Maggie C.
Very interesting, but since I don't plan to dedicate my life to theatre, I don't know how much it really helped me.
Jul 08, 2014 Kaethe rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
If you want to be an actor, you need to read this.
Andrew Pish
Good bock with very far-reaching acting technique concepts. It definitely extends the scope of the craft of an acting technique.
A book I will be rereading and referencing many many times throughout my life.

Chock-full of knowledge and important lessons, and entertaining to boot.
N.A. Ratnayake
May 02, 2010 N.A. Ratnayake rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: theatre
Brilliant. This will take me several reads to absorb however.
Emily Giuffre
Feb 27, 2014 Emily Giuffre rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: film-making
A must read for every actor and director. Should be a requirement for every acting student. I won't waste anymore of your time with my review. Just friggin' read the book!
Greg rated it it was amazing
Feb 15, 2015
Jayme rated it really liked it
Feb 23, 2013
Noelle rated it it was amazing
May 14, 2012
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