Frank Ferrante, of An Evening with Groucho, featured in the new Kindle edition of:
Biography and Solo Performance: Recreating Famous Lives On Stage
The road to success with a biographical solo show is a long and treacherous one, paved with good intentions though it may be. “One of the pitfalls is, you can pick any celebrity and you can cause a monologue to happen. But the theatre is for drama and that’s what you should present, not biography,” observed playwright Marty Martin, whose “Gertrude Stein Gertrude Stein Gertrude Stein” is a classic of the genre.
The durability enjoyed by the likes of Hal Holbrook (“Mark Twain Tonight!”) and Julie Harris (“The Belle of Amherst”) requires not only the perfect fit of actor and subject but a penchant for improvisation. Frank Ferrante, who has performed “An Evening With Groucho” more than 2500 times in some 200 cities, attributes his staying power partly to the ability to think on his feet. The scripted first half of his one-man show is essentially the same every night but “I’m not the same. I’ll drop set material in favor of improv. It’s like surfing; you have to gauge it while you’re up there,” noted the actor.
This ebook is a chapter from the revised and expanded edition of ACTING SOLO: THE ART AND CRAFT OF SOLO PERFORMANCE, which will be available in Fall 2012. Ed Asner (“FDR”), Tovah Feldshuh (“Golda’s Balcony”), Jeffrey Combs (“Nevermore…”), James Whitmore (“Give ‘Em Hell, Harry!”), Herbert Sigueza (“A Weekend with Pablo Picasso”), Libby Skala (“Lilia!”), Hershey Felder (“George Gershwin Alone”) and his director, Joel Zwick, are among the many solo artists who discuss their work.
View the book here.
14-15 theater tours announced for L.A. Theatre Works and Aquila Theatre
L.A. Theatre Works and Aquila Theatre
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