Sense of Direction, A
Some Observations on the Art of Directing
- 196 Pages
- 6x9 Paper
Drama Books / QSM
A sense of Direction represents a life’s work at the art and craft of directing. William Ball, founder and long-time general director of the acclaimed American Conservatory Theater, engages his audience in a wide-ranging discussion of the director’s process—from first reading through opening night. Speaking as a director’s director, Ball offers a candid, personal account of his method of working—including the choice of a play’s essential elements, preproduction homework, casting, and rehearsal techniques. Throughout, his discoveries and insights guide the director in building the world of the play and bringing it to life—enlightening for the neophyte as well as the experienced professional.
Theatergoers will find this an informative, insightful, and often astonishingly clear look at the people and process behind that wonderful and magical phenomenon we call theater.
“This book is filled with insight on the nature of theater and sound advice on the more practical aspects of directing. It should be on every young director’s reading list.”
“Ball’s observations, rooted in experience, wisdom, and common sense, leap from the page to an experienced director’s heart, stomach, and mind.”
A native of New Rochelle and a graduate of Carnegie Mellon University, Ball has been the recipient of a Fulbright scholarship, a Ford Foundation directorial grant, and an NBC RCA director’s fellowship. Of his many productions for A.C.T., three were also directed for PBS television, including The Taming of the Shrew, for which he was nominated by the Television Critics’ Circle as best director of the year. In June 1979, he accepted the Antoinette Perry ("Tony”) Award voted to A.C.T. for its outstanding work in repertory performance and advanced theater training. In the same year, Carnegie Mellon University presented him with an honorary degree as Doctor of Fine Arts. He was active as a teacher and director in A.C.T.’s conservatory training program.