Acting: Onstage and Off, 6th Edition

  • Robert Barton University of Oregon
  • ISBN-10: 0495898864
  • ISBN-13: 9780495898863
  • 416 Pages Paperback 
  • Previous Editions: 2009, 2006, 2003
  • © 2012 | Published
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About The Solution


ACTING: ONSTAGE AND OFF demonstrates how offstage performance can be effectively adapted for the theatre, as well as how onstage training can be applied toward leading a full life outside the theatre. Barton's humorous and conversational writing style helps students learn all phases of actor training, including scene study, auditioning, observation, and mind, voice and body relaxation techniques. The use of examples from daily life instead of dramatic literature facilitates student understanding and leads to meaningful class discussion based on everyday experiences.

Additional Product Information


  • ACTING: ONSTAGE AND OFF demonstrates how offstage performance can be effectively adapted for the theatre, as well as how onstage training can be applied toward leading a full life outside the theatre. This basic approach focuses on life experience rather than on dramatic literature for background material, and positions fundamentals such as auditioning as basic skills that can be applied in many areas of life.
  • The author uses a conversational, down-to-earth, accessible writing style, with original terms, rather than invented vocabulary, for acting concepts, and emphasizes the actor's responsibility for in-rehearsal active contribution and out-of-rehearsal exploration.
  • The text provides ample actor testimony from well-known performers, both proven veterans and successful newcomers near the ages of the students.
  • There is a clear interpretation of Stanislavski (the father of actor training as we know it) for modern readers.
  • The text includes enough exercises and approaches to allow flexible selection and adaptation. These exercises may be cut back in scope easily, and written assignments adapted into thought-discussion questions and improvisations, in those instances where a minimum of academic work is deemed appropriate.
  • The Offstage Actions provide a framework for those who intend to use this training in venues outside the theatre, and the material now includes professional skills to supplement personal ones.

What's New

  • A new section called The Invaluable Thirteen expands on the original Dreaded Thirteen with pragmatic advice on preparing for and excelling at interviewing.
  • UPDATED STANISLAVSKI is the result of new publications about and translations of his works, providing recent resources for students wishing to know more about the master and his system.
  • ALTERNATIVE WARM-UPS offer a range of choices, adding a new set to the standard sequence in the text, providing variety and an exciting exercise progression.

Table of Contents

1. Acting Acknowledged.
2. Relaxed Readiness.
3. Individual Inventory.
4. Stanislavski's System.
5. Stanislavski Stretched.
6. Truth/Technique.
7. Scene Study.
8. Performance Process.
9. Acting Anticipated.


Instructor Supplements

Instructor Supplements

All supplements have been updated in coordination with the main title. Select the main title’s "About the Solution" tab, then select "What's New" for updates specific to title's edition. For more information about these supplements, or to obtain them, contact your Learning Consultant.

eBank Instructor's Manual  (ISBN-10: 084006098X | ISBN-13: 9780840060983)

The Instructor's Manual contains sample syllabi, tips for lecture vs. lab time, sample quizzes, answer keys, and study guides for every chapter, and many teaching tips for your course. Please contact your local sales representative or Customer Service to receive this resource.

Meet the Author

About the Author

Robert Barton

Robert Barton is a professor emeritus in acting at the University of Oregon and has also taught for the American Heritage Association in London. He has acted in most of the plays of Shakespeare and directed half of them. He is a prolific author, whose works include the books ACTING: ONSTAGE AND OFF (soon to be issued in its seventh edition); STYLE FOR ACTORS and VOICE: ONSTAGE AND OFF (with Rocco Dal Vera), both recently published in updated editions; and the new text ACTING REFRAMES: USING NLP TO MAKE BETTER DECISIONS IN AND OUT OF THE THEATRE. He most recently served as editor and adaptor of the 21st Century edition of the classic text THE CRAFT OF COMEDY. Robert is recipient of the Theatre Association's Best Book Award and has been honored as Outstanding Acting Coach by the American College Theatre Festival. He has numerous articles in scholarly journals, and his regular column, "Many Right Ways," appears in each edition of Voice & Speech Review.