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Acting: The Gister Method / Edition 1

Acting: The Gister Method / Edition 1

by Joseph Alberti, Earle Gister


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Acting: The Gister Method / Edition 1

Debuting it its first edition, Acting: The Gister Method moves from the beginning process of establishing character and given circumstances, through Gister’s unique principle of action, and into step-by-step examples of applying the ideas to plays, scenes and monologues. Along with a reader-friendly breakdown of the theoretical aspect of his method, the book contains many down-to-earth examples of experimenting and playing via the imagination and of putting the methods to work in real-life rehearsal and theatre situations.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780205032259
Publisher: Pearson
Publication date: 02/02/2012
Pages: 192
Product dimensions: 5.40(w) x 8.30(h) x 0.50(d)

Table of Contents


  • A Brief Tour of the Evolution of Acting Methodology since Constantine Stanislavski
  • Students of Stanislavski: Strasberg, Chekhov, Meisner, et al
  • Gister

Chapter 1: Who am I?

  • The play as A Guide to Who am I?
  • First Reading
  • Second Reading
  • Third Reading
  • The Imagination
  • Exercising your Imagination
  • Transformation into Character
  • Types
  • Stereotypes and Functional Characters
  • Real People
  • Anomalies
  • Narratives
  • Actions
  • Other Areas to Investigate
  • Body
  • Relationships
  • Vulnerability
  • Discovery
  • Questions and Answers

Chapter 2: Where am I and When am I there?

  • Designers
  • Sources
  • The Play as a Guide to establishing Where am I?
  • What Where am I? means to You as the Character
  • Some Areas to Investigate
  • The Play as a Guide to Establishing When am I there?
  • What When am I there? means to you as the Who am I?
  • Preceding Time
  • Some Areas to Investigate
  • Questions and Answers

Chapter 3: What do I want?

  • Super-objective and Objective
  • Action, Intention and Motivation
  • Classical Plays
  • Prior Knowledge
  • Articulating the Super-objective and the Objective
  • Revealed Meaning
  • Stakes
  • Obstacles
  • A Word about Listening
  • What do I do after I get or fail to get what I want?
  • Questions and Answers

Chapter 4: How do I get what I want?

  • Some Common Definitions and Why to Put Them Aside
  • Action Defined in this Approach
  • The “How” of the Action
  • Using Action with Images and Objects
  • Consequences of Playing an Action
  • Action is Anchored in the Objective
  • Action in Classical and Modern Plays
  • Action, Objective, Paradox and the Present Moment
  • Questions and Answers

Chapter 5: Putting it all together

  • Getting Started
  • First Reading
  • First Impressions
  • Second Reading
  • Third Reading
  • The Questions
  • Who am I?
  • Where am I?
  • When am I there?
  • What do I want?
  • How do I get what I want?
  • How of the Action
  • What do I do after I get or fail to get what I want?
  • Using this Approach to Analyze a Scene
  • The Test to be Analyzed: The Sea Gull, Act 2, Nina and Treplev
  • A Note about Transitions
  • Remembering it all: Marking your Script
  • Preparation and Rehearsal

Chapter 6: More Examples of Applying the Methodology

  • Yelena in Uncle Vanya by Anton Chekhov
  • Commentary
  • Reading One: Understanding the Story
  • Reading Two: Gathering the Facts
  • Reading Three: Yelena's Point of View
  • Commentary
  • Emilia in Othello by William Shakespeare
  • Reading One: Understanding the Play
  • ReadingTwo: Gathering the Facts
  • Reading Three: Emilia’s Point of View
  • Commentary
  • Male or Female in Sonnet Number One by William Shakespeare
  • Commentary
  • Action on an Audience
  • Male or Female Using Lines from Savage/Love by Sam Shepard and Joseph Chaikin
  • Creating your own Text

In Conclusion

Appendix 1: Action Word Lexicon

Appendix 2: How of the Action Word Lexicon

Appendix 3: Annotated Playlist

Work Cited


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