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Actors Talk about Shakespeare

Bravo, Shakespeare. Even today, his plays challenge celebrated actors to hone their skills and electrify audiences. Imagine the process actors undergo to recreate these spellbinding roles on stage. In an interview with the author, Kevin Kline declared that playing Shakespeare 'uses a different muscle group in your head'. Liev Schreiber said, 'When I perform Shakespeare, all my pistons are firing'. Performing Shakespeare is tantamount to earning a black belt in acting."Actors Talk About Shakespeare" features personal interviews with a stellar collection of prominent American, Canadian, and British performers of Shakespeare onstage, including Kevin Kline, Liev Schreiber, Judi Dench, Kenneth Branagh, Derek Jacobi, Stacy Keach, Zoe Caldwell, Martha Henry, William Hutt, Tony Church, Nicholas Pennell, and Geoff Hutchings. In conversations equivalent to a magician telling his or her secrets, Mary Z. Maher uncovers the actors' process. The book speaks to theater patrons, to actors both novice and experienced, and to educators who teach Shakespeare. Each chapter profiles a career in context, using the actor's words along with supporting research material. The result is a treasury of talents, tactics, and tales from veteran performers who return often to Shakespeare from careers in film and television.
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About the Author

Mary Z. Maher (Ashland, OR) is the author of the performance classic Modern Hamlets and Their Soliloquies and the biography Nicholas Pennell: Risking Enchantment, as well as several articles on Shakespeare in performance on stage, film, and television. After a teaching career at the University of Arizona, she retired as professor emerita to the home of the renowned Oregon Shakespeare Festival and continues teaching, coaching, lecturing, and writing.

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