Style For Actors : A Handbook for Moving Beyond Realism book cover
2nd Edition

Style For Actors
A Handbook for Moving Beyond Realism

ISBN 9780415485739
Published August 3, 2009 by Routledge
360 Pages 68 B/W Illustrations

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Book Description

"Style is a journey from tourist to native. It is living in the world of the play, not just visiting it." - from Chapter One

Anyone who has ever struggled with capes, fans, swords, doublets and crinolines should make Style for Actors 2nd Edition their constant companion. Robert Barton has completely updated his award winning handbook for the 21st century with contemporary references and up-to-date illustrations. This is the definitive guide to roles in historical drama.

The past is a foreign country, and this outstanding book is concerned with exploring it from the actor’s point of view. Specific guides range from Greek, Elizabethan, Restoration and Georgian theatre to more contemporary stylings, including Futurism, Surrealism and Postmodernism.

Barton takes great care to present the actor with the roles and genres that will most commonly confront them. His analysis moves from entire genres to specific scenes and characters. A huge resource of nearly 150 practical exercises helps a newfound understanding of style to make the leap from page to performance.

Table of Contents

Part One: Finding Style

1. Recognizing Style: The Eyes of the Beholder

2. Analyzing Style: Survival Questions

3. Mastering Style: The Classical Actor

Part Two: Achieving Style

4. Greek Period Style: Three Generations of Tragic Vision

5. Elizabethan Period Style: Theatre of Earth and Stars

6. Restoration Period Style: Decadence as One of the Fine Arts

7. Relatives of Restoration Period Style: Morals and Manners

Part Three: Exploring Style

8. Displaced Style: Plays Out of Their Time

9. Genre Style: The Isms

10. Personal Style: Creating Reality


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Robert Barton is Professor Emeritus of acting at the University of Oregon. As well as writing a regular column for The Voice and Speech Review, he is the author of Acting: Onstage and Off, Voice: Onstage and Off, Theatre in Your Life, and Life Themes. The first edition of Style for Actors received the Theatre Association's Best Book award.

Support Material

Companion Website

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