Ken Sonkin (USF)

I’ve had the pleasure of working with Maura as an actor, teacher and director and suffice it to say, she is a consummate theater artist. Her new book is an excellent guide to acting for all levels that offers a comprehensive vocabulary along with the necessary tools in order to mine the most out of one’s craft. In it, she offers an organic approach to acting that is thorough, humble, and most of all, accessible. She inspires, elates, and educates, all from her first hand professional experience both as an actor and a dedicated theater educator.

Ken Sonkin,

Adjunct Professor, University of San Francisco

Anatomy of a Choice Now Available!

Maura Vaughn’s The Anatomy of a Choice: An Actor’s Guide to Text Analysis has been published by University Press of America, and is now available for retail purchase.

A professional actor and teacher of acting for over twenty years, Maura Vaughn asked herself what was the most basic skill that a young actor needs to acquire in order to bring a performance fully to life.

She realized that it is the ability to read a script, break it down, and mine all of its clues. Until the you can figure out what it is that the script is saying, you cannot act, no matter how well developed your imagination, no matter how strong your commitment to your art, to your fellow actors or to the play. And yet the hundreds of thousands of young actors who study acting every year in America’s high schools and colleges are left without a simple guide to undertaking this most primary of tasks.

Looking for a textbook to teach this skill to her students, she discovered that all of the acting texts that were available were either for advanced practitioners or touched on this essential skill in passing at best.

The Anatomy of a Choice is the first book to offer the actor a concrete, practical process for approaching a script. This concise, clear guide lays out a step-by-step method for mining the acting gold that is buried in any play. Ms. Vaughn leads the actor through a simple process to discover and define a character’s scene and super-objective, obstacle, beats, tactics and much more of the theory that underlies most modern acting training.

Ms. Vaughn developed this textbook over the past decade in the laboratory of her own classroom, refining it as she worked with her students to make it as useful and usable as any text describing an artistic process can be. Jeremy Geidt, longtime company member at American Repertory Theatre and lecturer at Harvard, calls it “an indispensable handbook for any young actor starting out on the long journey to become a theatre artist. Come to that, it’s a most useful tool for any actor already on that journey who should, when lost in rehearsal or performance, quickly refer to her concise, well-written advice. “

For more information:

Visit http://anatomyofachoice.com

Order at http://anatomyofachoice.com/Anatomy_of_a_Choice/Order.html

Email anatomy@anatomyofachoice.com

Jeremy Geidt (A.R.T., Harvard)

Maura Vaughn’s The Anatomy of a Choice: An Actor’s Guide to Text Analysis is an indispensable handbook for any young actor starting out on the long journey to become a theatre artist. Come to that, it’s a most useful tool for any actor already on that journey who should, when lost in rehearsal or performance, quickly refer to her concise, well-written advice.

The Gift of Choice!

Looking for the perfect gift for the actor, theater student or drama teacher in your life? Go to the anatomyofachoice.com order page and order a copy of Anatomy of a Choice: An Actor’s Guide to Text Analysis!

You can order either from our amazon.com store, or from indiebound.org (support your local independent book seller!). In either case, not only can your order Maura Vaughn’s guide to mining every script for acting gold, you can purchase other theater-related (and non-theater-related)  gifts as well!

SIGNED COPY: For the holidays, we also received additional copies to sell directly. For a limited time, you can go to the anatomyofachoice.com order page and order a signed copy of the first edition of Anatomy of a Choice, personalized for the actor in your life!

Mary Anne Cook (NYU/Magic Theatre)

In “Anatomy of A Choice” author Maura Vaughn offers a clear and accessible guide to bringing a character to life on stage. Through years of experience as an acting teacher Vaughn has developed a systematic approach to the acting process, creating a series of exercises that lead the actor through each step in character development. Vaughn’s straightforward language makes this book particularly useful for beginning actors, but the tools she provides are invaluable for actors at all levels.

Mary Anne Cook

Former Director of Studio Training, NYU Tisch School of the Arts, Undergraduate Drama; former General Manager, Magic Theatre, San Francisco

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Darrell James (Vassar)

have been a professional actor and teacher of actors for almost twenty years.

FINALLY, someone has written a book that explains, in great detail, what an actor must do to become truly fluent in the text — how reveal the mysteries of the script and translate them into clear actable choices.

This book is destined to be dog-eared. What a great tool for actors.

Darrell James

Adjunct Instructor/Acting at Vassar College

MFA from the National Theatre Conservatory, 1994

MFA from the Academy for Classical Acting, 2009

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