on December 9, 2000
Stephen Wangh, a former student of Grotowski and now a teacher of Experimental theater shares his knowledge in this inspiring and well written book. First of all, I want to say that you really need to have a teacher and be in a group to learn Grotowski's physical acting better. Grotowksi's work can also be very challenging and confussing at times and this book really helps guide you through it. The book follows a group of Stephen Wangh's first students through his training. That is what makes the book better then your average acting text book. You take a journey along with these people while learning the Grotowski method. As an actor I could relate to the actors frustrations and fears and in the book we see them overcome them. The book explains everything from what clothes to wear to voice work. I am glad Wangh added a section at the end of the book about how to deal with and survive acting. Very few people talk about this subject and it needs to be brought up more. I read this book before I was about to start working on a play and it re-inspired me and made me more discplined and focused. Stephen Wang also isn't self centered and basically says that do what you have to do to do the role you're playing good but try this method. The book is very well-thought out and easy to understand. Any actor should read this even if they think they know the Grotowski method.
on January 29, 2001
After a long hiatus from performing, reading this book excited me to absolutely no end! Stephen's thoughts and wise teachings brought me back to a place that I'd forgotten and was sorely missing. Thank you for the palpable tenderness and care that LEAPS off the page directly into my world and " where I live " Reading about acting can be confusing, right? This book magically trancends anything stodgy, incoherent, or inconsistent in structure and message. ( SO MANY acting and performance manuals DO NOT EVER get past the lumpy and condescending realm...) THIS is elegantly crafted and now sacred to me! Thank you Stephen.
on November 2, 2000
Reading An Acrobat of the Heart is the very next best thing to having Stephen Wangh as a professor. The book has a delicate, intuitive approach to acting which is as introspective as it is outwardly provocative. Having been a student of Mr. Wangh I can fully attest to the profound effect this method of exploration has had upon not only my acting, but my knowledge of self. There is something gratifying about a physical and emotional approach to acting that I have never been able to find through either Meisner or sense memory work. An Acrobat of the Heart is like a good cup of tea, you are left a little warmer and a little wiser after.