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Rhythm in acting and performance: embodied approaches and understandings

Rhythm in acting and performance: embodied approaches and understandings

Morris, Eilon, author

Rhythm is often referred to as one of the key elements of performance and acting, being of central importance to both performance making and training. Yet what is meant by this term and how it is approached and applied in this context are subjects seldom discussed in detail. Addressing these, Rhythm in Acting and Performance explores the meanings, mechanisms and metaphors associated with rhythm in this field, offering an overview and analysis of the ways rhythm has been, and is embodied and understood by performers, directors, educators, playwrights, designers and scholars. From the rhythmic movements and speech of actors in ancient Greece, to Stanislavski's use of Tempo-rhythm as a tool for building a character and tapping emotions, continuing through to the use of rhythm and musicality in contemporary approaches to actor training and dramaturgy, this subject finds resonance across a broad range of performance domains. In these settings, rhythm has often been identified as an effective tool for developing the coordination and conscious awareness of individual performers, ensembles and their immediate relationship to an audience. This text examines the principles and techniques underlying these processes, focusing on key approaches adopted and developed within European and American performance practices over the last century. Interviews and case studies of individual practitioners, offer insight into the ways rhythm is approached and utilised within this field. Each of these sections includes practical examples as well as analytical reflections, offering a basis for comparing both the common threads and the broad differences that can be found here. Unpacking this often mystified and neglected subject, this book offers students and practitioners a wealth of informative and useful insights to aid and inspire further creative and academic explorations of rhythm within this field

eBook, Paperback, Hardback, Electronic resource, Book. English. Electronic books.
Published London: Bloomsbury Methuen Drama, 2017
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Available: Online

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    Barcode Shelfmark Loan type Status
    2767446-1001 E-book Online Available


Statement of responsibility: Eilon Morris
ISBN: 1472589882, 9781472589880
Note: Includes bibliographical references and index.
Note: Formerly CIP.
Physical Description: xiv, 281 pages : illustrations (black and white)
Subject: Rhythm.; Drama Technique.; Individual actors & performers; Acting Psychological aspects.; Performing Arts; Movement (Acting); Acting techniques; Plays, playscripts
Reproduction: Electronic reproduction. Askews and Holts. Mode of access: World Wide Web.
Other formats: Also available in printed form ISBN 9781472589859


  1. Part One - Establishing a Pulse
  2. What Is Rhythm? An Open Question
  3. An Epoch of Rhythm: Now & Then
  4. Part Two - Stanislavski on Rhythm
  5. Tapping Emotions: The Ins and Outs of Tempo-Rhythm
  6. Part Three - Structure and Spontaneity
  7. Suzanne Bing: Music and Games in Actor Training
  8. Vsevolod Meyerhold: Rhythm Not Metre
  9. John Britton: Smashing the Ensemble Groove
  10. Anne Bogart and Tina Landau: A Horizontal Viewpoint
  11. Part Four - The Ecstatic Performer
  12. Rhythm and Altered States of Consciousness: Entrainment & Communitas
  13. Jerzy Grotowski: Seeking Pulse, Movement and Rhythm
  14. Nicolßs N·±ez: Becoming Present
  15. Eilon Morris: Cultivating Simultaneity
  16. Part Five - A Plurality of Voices Chapter 12 - Rhythming Words: Where, How & Why
  17. Creating Spaces: Conversations with Judith Adams And Karen Christopher
  18. The Poetry of the Breath - Conversations with Bruce Myers and Kate Papi
  19. The Tune is a Framework - A Conversation with Chris Coe & Frankie Armstrong
  20. Part Six - Reflections Glossary of Terms Notes