The Art of The Theatre

Written by: Sarah Bernhardt
Narrated by: Kitty Hendrix
Length: 4 hrs and 57 mins
Unabridged Audiobook
Release Date:06-01-15
Publisher: Audio Books by Mike Vendetti

Publishers Summary

" I have not written this book to attract young people to the dramatic art but to give them friendly advice and guide them by my experience." Thus begins a master class taught by Sarah Bernhardt, arguably the greatest actress ever to grace a stage.
Timeless and surprisingly current, The Art of the Theatre, published after her death at age 78, is the final and most in-depth record of the great actress' views on acting and the theatre. Here "The Divine Sarah" shares advice on everything from speech, movement, role preparation, vocal warmups, and make-up tips to why she preferred to play Hamlet instead of Ophelia. Filled with lively stories and gleeful gossip, The Art of the Theatre shows the intuitive and often humorous observations that were Sarah Bernhardt. She describes her successes, her failures, and the times she lived in with unflinching honesty and an approach to the arts that leaves no doubt as to why she is still considered today to be one of the greatest artists ever to have lived. Out of print and unavailable for decades, this rare book is only available in this audio format.
Public Domain (P)2015 Kitty Hendrix

My Review

This is not to be read as an autobiography, but as the insights of one incredible woman on the art of the actor. Advisory and instructive in tone, it's not an easy listen, one does have to pay attention, however, there are some wonderful lines describing how some, let's say less than attractive actors might alter there appearance in order to improve stage presence. We discover how and why many an aspiring actor fails to impress, and how even the most talented must still learn, must hone their art.
It's little insights such as these which provide a (presumably unintentional) amusing aspect to the book.
This is a book for all those who aspire to become actors, and I must say, it opened my eyes to the sheer hard work awaiting those who's ambition is to tread those boards, acting, it seems, is not for the faint of heart, yet the words of the great lady are as relevant today as they were when first transcribed.


Kitty Hendrix respected the writing style of the time, which, to our ears today can sound a little formal and stilted. Working within these constraints, she delivered a wonderful performance, this was no easy task, but Kitty nailed it.
I received a free copy of this audiobook from the narrator, in return, this is my honest review

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