101 Improv Games for Children and Adults by Bob Bedore
Publisher: Hunter House
101 Improv Games for Children and Adults starts with the basics of improvisational comedy, giving aspiring performers the building blocks required to think on their feet. A great resource for educators as well as for the professional actor or layperson, the book includes rules for 101 games that cover everything from easy warm-ups to over-the-top crowd pleasers, such as Fairy Tales, Bizarre Games, On Your Toes, and Narrative Games.
The Actor's Life: A Survival Guide by Jenna Fischer
Publisher: BenBella Books
Jenna Fischer’s Hollywood journey began at the age of 22 when she moved to Los Angeles from her hometown of St. Louis. With a theater degree in hand, she was certain everything would fall easily into place. Never mind that she didn’t know a single person in the entertainment industry. She was determined, she was confident, she was ready to work hard. So, what could go wrong? Uh, basically everything. It would be eight long years before she landed her Emmy-nominated role of Pam Beesley on The Office--nearly a decade of failure, struggle, rejection and doubt. The path to professional acting was more competitive than she’d ever imagined. Headshots, agents, classes, auditions . . . there was a lot to learn. And with so many obstacles to navigate, it wasn’t always easy to fight off discouragement. If only she’d had a handbook for the struggling actor. Or, better yet, someone to show her the way--an established actor who could manage her expectations, educate her about the business, and reassure her in those moments of despair. Jenna Fischer wants to be that person for you. With candor and wit, Fischer lays out what it takes to establish yourself in the profession. Based on her own memorable and hilarious experiences, she provides invaluable advice on how to get the right head shot, what to look for in representation, and the importance of getting out there and just doing something. She also provides helpful hints on how to be gutsy and take risks, the tricks to good auditioning and callbacks, and how not to fall for certain scams. (Auditions in a guy’s apartment are probably not legit--or at least not for the kind of part you’re looking for!) Fischer’s inspiring guidance will make you feel like you have a trusted friend who’s made the journey and has now returned to walk beside you, pointing out the pitfalls as you blaze your own path toward the life of a professional actor.
Acting Scenes for Kids and Tweens: 60 Original Comedy and Drama Scenes for Young Actors (The Young Actor Series) by Mike Kimmel
Publisher: Ben Rose Creative Arts New York-New Orleans
Acting scenes for youth featuring clean language and family-friendly, real-life scenarios. Ideal for for stage and screen. A practical approach for training student actors that can be applied immediately in the home and classroom. Positive imagery, social relevance, and civic-mindedness are written into the scenes as subtext.
Acting with Power: Why We Are More Powerful Than We Believe by Deborah Gruenfeld
"Most of us tend to think that there are two kinds of people in world: those who have power, and those who don't. But in reality, says Stanford Business School professor Deborah Gruenfeld, we all have more power than we think. And success is not about how much power we have, but rather how we use it. It's often assumed that power flows to those with the highest rank, the loudest voice, or the most commanding presence in the room. But in fact, there exists a quieter, softer sort of power that's just as crucial to learn to wield as the forceful kind. In life just as on stage, sometimes the most powerful actor is the one in the supporting role rather than the lead"--
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