Introduction by Laurence Senelick
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Stanislavski Collection 2

My Life in Art

Konstantin Stanislavski

Translated by Jean Benedetti
Introduction by Laurence Senelick

‘This wise and delightful book ... is packed with sage, practical counsel to actors and actresses’Times Literary Supplement

‘Even those who are not primarily interested in acting will find in Stanislavski's writing an extraordinary illumination of art’The New York Times

Konstantin Stanislavski lived through extraordinary times and his unique contribution to the arts still endures in the twenty-first century. He established the Moscow Art Theatre in 1898 with, among other plays, the premiere of Chekhov's The Seagull. He also survived revolutions, lost his fortune, found fame in America, and lived in internal exile in Stalin's Soviet Union.

Before writing his classic manual on acting, Stanislavski began writing an autobiography that he hoped would both chronicle his rich and tumultuous life and serve as a justification for his aesthetic philosophy. But as the project grew he was forced to make cuts and changes to keep to a deadline and length. The result was a version published in English in 1924, which Stanislavski hated and completely revised for a Soviet edition in 1926.

Now, for the first time, translator Jean Benedetti brings us Stanislavski's complete unabridged autobiography as the author himself wanted it — from the re-edited 1926 version. The text, in clear and lively English, is supplemented by a wealth of photos and illustrations, many previously unpublished.

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