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Posted December 1, 2002
William Ball (1931¿91) founded A.C.T. in Pittsburgh in 1965 and, on invitation from San Francisco¿s civic leaders, moved A.C.T. to San Francisco two years later. He remained the company¿s artistic director until his resignation in 1986. Among the first plays he directed for A.C.T. were the company¿s opening production in the Geary Theater, Tartuffe (starring René Auberjonois), Six Characters in Search of an Author, Under Milk Wood, Tiny Alice, and The Tempest. He directed two of his productions for PBS, Cyrano de Bergerac and The Taming of the Shrew, for which he was nominated by the Television Critics¿ Circle as best director of the year. In June 1979 Ball accepted A.C.T.¿s Tony Award for outstanding work in repertory performance and advanced theater training. He was also an active director and teacher in the A.C.T. Conservatory. An inspired and inspiring force in the American regional theater movement, his creative genius was felt far and wide by thousands of actors, directors, designers, educators, and theatergoers. In his book he translates his technique of directing into a printed format, including his theory/lecture on "Positation." Every person I've known who has either seen his production of Cyrano de Bergerac or Taming of the Shrew for PBS, or have come into contact with either his live productions or this book, has remarked on how it has made them rethink the craft of directing. It's a concise and balanced marriage of the logical and creative sides of the brain. Actors benefit greatly from this book as well, since it teaches good acting technique while stressing the importance of a director's relationship with his cast.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.