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Comment: This book has already been loved by someone else. It MIGHT have some wear and tear on the edges, have some markings in it, or be an ex-library book. Over-all it's still a good book at a great price! (if it is supposed to contain a CD or access code, that may be missing)
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Audition Mass Market Paperback – December 2, 1979

4.7 out of 5 stars 198 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

"What a book! Yet it's so simple that you learn without feeling it happen. Thank you, Michael; we needed it."—Joshua Logan

From the Publisher

Michael Shurtleff has been casting director for Broadway shows like Chicago and Becket and for films like The Graduate and Jesus Christ Superstar. His legendary course on auditioning has launched hundreds of successful careers. Now in this book he tells the all-important HOW for all aspiring actors, from the beginning student of acting to the proven talent trying out for that chance-in-a-million role!

"What a book! Yet it's so simple that you learn without feeling it happen. Thank you, Michael; we needed it."--Joshua Logan

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Product Details

  • Mass Market Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Bantam; Reissue edition (January 2, 1980)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0553272950
  • ISBN-13: 978-0553272956
  • Product Dimensions: 4.2 x 0.8 x 6.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (198 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #8,779 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By J. Remington on June 7, 2001
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Whether one is an actor, director, writer or teacher, Shurtleff's book is simply a critical must read. Shurtleff who spent many years as a top casting director possessed an absolute love for the brave souls who dare to place themselves on the stage. His ultimate legacy to his beloved craft is this indispensable "How To" bible.
Much has been written already about his twelve guideposts, and I have nothing new to add to those already glowing (and well deserved) comments. What I did find most illuminative and refreshing is his comments on how to behave at the job interview. It is in this chapter that this book becomes helpful to even the non actor. In this chapter/section, Shurtleff urges all people to realize that ultimately the pressure in the job interview is on the employer and that a good prospect will immediately put the interview board at ease. All too often actors become so self centered and fail to realize that their performance is really about their audience, not them. The same is true therefore of the job interview. It is about the employer, not the employee.
As a teacher, Audition has been most helpful to me as it has provided objective certainty to an area filled with far too many subjective judgements. In other words, Shurtleff has helped define the skills and tasks necessary to train actors in a manner that will help them transition successfully from the educational venue to the professional market. He has given us clear, active objectives to teach toward.
In Audition, Shurtleff articulates what constitutes good, effective acting. Once that becomes defined clearly, then success becomes not a nebulous ideal, but rather a concrete proposition.
If this is not in your theatre library, it is time you add it now.
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Format: Paperback
I had no acting experience. None. Not even in school plays.
I got into acting on a lark, as a hobby. I had been studying and auditioning for about three years with no success, and very little progress.
An instructor recommended this book. I read it, and then read it again. All of a sudden, things that had been drilled in my head during acting classes finally started to make sense. Within the following 6 months, my skills grew in a series of leaps, and I began booking at auditions. Not a lot, not yet. But the sudden increase in my abilities was astounding.
I am still not a great actor. But this book helped me get out of the "student" mode and into the "working" mode. Well worth it.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
This book is an INVALUABLE resource. And I'm not a traditional actor, I'm an opera singer. I had to read this for a class on (what else?) auditioning, and loved it so much that I finished it the first day of class. Shurtleff's 12 Guideposts, carefully applied to just about any performance (I use them for arias, art songs, etc), can help create something nuanced and fascinating. As if the guideposts weren't enough, Shurtleff gives wonderful ideas on the nitty-gritty of auditions (how to present your past experience, what to wear, etc). I just can't say enough good about this book. When I perform an operatic scene that I've run through the 12 guideposts, I get comments like, "You're a great actress! You really have a theatrical flair!" Boy, does that feel good. I'd give this thing six stars if I could. I hate to even tell other people about this book, because then everyone can gain my edge.
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By A Customer on June 26, 2004
Format: Mass Market Paperback
I highly recommend this book in our quest for the great parts as actors. I also recommend: Voice Lessons to Go by Vaccarino- a cheap way to get your singing lessons taken care of, because we've all had to sing at some audition, The Artsts Way by Cameron- a 12 week program to help you really focus and baby your creativity and abilities, Back Stage West- You've got to have it for audition info, and lots of great friends to support you through all the madness!
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
My acting teacher is actually using this book as our textbook (undergrad intermediate theatre class)! It isn't only guidelines for auditioning, it is a guideline for acting. The book explains how to look at a character in a way that I have never thought. My acting has improved incredibly because of this book.
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Format: Mass Market Paperback
Considering the low price, I can't imagine a more valuable book for the actor. Michael Shurtleff is a luminary of theatre, and this book reads like a private class with him. Remember, this is a guy who basically launched the careers of DeNiro, Streisand, Redford, Vereen, Tomlin, Midler, and Hoffman. His wonderful career included both Broadway and film casting. He knows a lot, and in this book, he shares it with you.

This book may be called "Audition", but the discussions go way beyond the audition. Granted, the opening chapter (Practical Aspects of the Audition) contains sage advice applicable only to the audition. What follows in the book are the "12 Guideposts", the bible of scene study and character development. Following the very readable discussion of the "Guideposts", Shurtleff writes essays on topics such as musical theatre, comedy, pace, and monologues. I know that my copy will become well-worn as I refer back to it again and again.

I am currently in two shows, and I'm putting the "Guideposts" to work for me. I've not had an audition since buying the book, but I am looking forward to using Shurtleff's advice the next time I read for a part.

This is a must-read for actors and directors. Highly recommended.
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