Thinking Like a Director: A Practical Handbook

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9780571199921: Thinking Like a Director: A Practical Handbook
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The only theater book of its kind -- a guide to directing technique by a professional director.

If professions move in cycles of desirability and glamour, directing is surely in an ascant phase. Actors by the dozens have tried their hand at it and playwrights and screenwriters increasingly direct their own work.

Based on nearly twenty years of directing and teaching experience, Thinking Like a Director is a practical handbook that aims to convey the experience of directing and the theatrical mind-set that successful directors possess. More than a mere set of guidelines, Michael Bloom's book details a comprehensive way of thinking about directing that covers every stage of a production -- from a director's first reading of a play through final rehearsals. Bloom reveals that the key to directorial thinking is a dual-perspective vision, focusing on the life of each character (internal point of view) and the structural elements (external) of a play. In this manner, all of the key elements for interpretation and working with actors are integrated into a single method. Bloom illustrates his techniques by utilizing one of America's most accessible and popular plays, The Glass Menagerie, as his primary touchstone. Concise and engaging, Bloom's book is for anyone who has ever uttered the phrase "But what I really want to do is direct."

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About the Author:

In addition to directing throughout the United States and Japan, Michael Bloom is head of directing at the University of Texas at Austin. His writing on the stage has appeared in The New York Times and American Theatre magazine.

Review:

"Thinking Like a Director is a lucid, concise and admirably undogmatic manual for aspirant directors, from which writers, actors, and ordinary theatergoers will also learn much about the complex business of putting on plays."--David Lodge

"Michael Bloom's Thinking Like a Director helps fill the void of practical handbooks that are available to theater directors. It is smart and lucidly written and should prove to be an invaluable guidebook for students and emerging directors."--Donald Margulies, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Dinner With Friends

"If I ever decided (Heaven and Hell forbid) to direct a play, I'd be sure to have Michael Bloom's illuminating and indispensable text nearby to guide and challenge me, step-by-step, as I found my way."--Ariel Dorfman

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