Performing Arts Books
Part clown manual, part storytelling and part rant - The Clown Manifesto covers the experiences, philosophies and methods of the clown performer/director/teacher Nalleslavski.A book for clowns, physical comedians, actors, musicians, jugglers, puppeteers, magicians, street performers and dancers. Whatever form your clowning takes - theatre, street theatre, comedy, burlesque, magic, circus - the mischievously named Nalleslavski Method gives you practical tools to create comedy material that works universally, across cultural and language barriers.
- RRP £12.99
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Funny, lively and unpredictable, stand-up comedy is above all a medium to be enjoyed. Popular as a good night out and packing the TV schedules, stand-up permeates British society and culture. Ubiquitous though it is, we are generally reluctant to consider comedy's social consequences. When comedians offend we seem ready to consider the potential for stand-up to do some wider harm, yet we rarely consider the good that it might do. This book looks at the social and political impact of stand-up comedy in both its positive and negative forms. Drawing on exclusive interviews with comedians such as Stewart Lee, Josie Long, Joe Wilkinson and Mark Thomas, and examples of comic material on everything from revolution, terrorism and homosexuality, to knitting and the inefficiency of the home shower, it explores comedy's role in determining our attitudes and opinions. While revealing the conventions comics use to manage audience response, Sophie Quirk demonstrates how comedy audiences allow themselves to be manipulated, and the potential harm - and real benefits - that may arise from 'just' being funny.
The Comic Offense from Vaudeville to Contemporary Comedy examines how contemporary writer/performers are influenced by the comedic vaudevillians of the early 20th century. By tracing the history and legacy of the vaudeville era and performance acts, like the Marx Brothers and The Three Keatons, and moving through the silent and early sound films of the early 1930s, the author looks at how comic writer/performers continue to sell a brand of themselves as a form of social commentary in order to confront and dispel stereotypes of race, class, and gender. The first study to explore contemporary popular comic culture and its influence on American society from this unique perspective, Rick DesRochers analyzes stand-up and improvisational comedy writing/performing in the work of Larry David, Tina Fey, Stephen Colbert, and Dave Chappelle. He grounds these choices by examining their evolution as they developed signature characters and sketches for their respective shows Curb Your Enthusiasm, 30 Rock, The Colbert Report, and Chappelle's Show.
'This is the kind of book that troubles grey-suited committees of academic peers. It's too enjoyable. But that, given its subject, is just what it ought to be, and it treats that subject seriously ...There isn't a "dull" page anywhere in the book.' - Professor Peter Thomson, Studies in Theatre and Performance Comedy is changing: stand-up comedians routinely sell out stadia, their audience-figures swollen by panel-show appearances and much-followed Twitter feeds. Meanwhile, the smaller clubs are filling up, with audiences as well as aspirants. How can we make sense of it all? This new edition of Getting the Joke gives an insider's look at the spectrum of modern comedy, re-examining the world of stand-up in the internet age. Drawing on his acclaimed first edition, Oliver Double focuses in greater detail on the US scene and its comedians (such as David Cross, Sarah Silverman, Louis CK, Demetri Martin and Margaret Cho); the 'DIY' comedy circuit and its celebrated apostles and visionaries, from Josie Long to Stewart Lee; the growing importance of the solo stand-up show; the role played by Twitter (including an interview with the organiser of the world's first comedy gig on Twitter), and the driving force that is the TV guest slot, be it on Mock the Week or Live at the Apollo. With expanded sections on joke construction, as well as ways to challenge the audience, and a host of new and updated exercises to guide the aspiring comedian, this new edition of Getting the Joke is the only book to combine the history of stand-up comedy with an analysis of the elements and methods that go into its creation. Featuring a range of interviews with working comedians - from circuit veterans to new kids on the block - combined with the author's vast experience, this is a must read for any aspiring stand-up comedian.
Working at the cutting edge of live performance, an emerging generation of artists is employing digital technologies to create distinctive forms of interactive, distributed, and often deeply subjective theatrical performance. The work of these artists is not only fundamentally transforming the experience of theater, it is also reshaping the nature of human interaction with computers. In this book, Steve Benford and Gabriella Giannachi offer a new theoretical framework for understanding these experiences -- which they term mixed reality performances -- and document a series of landmark performances and installations that mix the real and the virtual, live performance and interactivity. Benford and Giannachi draw on a number of works that have been developed at the University of Nottingham's Mixed Reality Laboratory, describing collaborations with artists (most notably the group Blast Theory) that have gradually evolved a distinctive interdisciplinary approach to combining practice with research. They offer detailed and extended accounts of these works from different perspectives, including interviews with the artists and Mixed Reality Laboratory researchers. The authors develop an overarching theory to guide the study and design of mixed reality performances based on the approach of interleaved trajectories through hybrid structures of space, time, interfaces, and roles. Combinations of canonical, participant, and historic trajectories show how such performances establish complex configurations of real and virtual, local and global, factual and fictional, and personal and social.
First published in 1979, the latest edition of this pioneering study in "the World of Art" series surveys a full century of performance, from the Futurist manifesto of 1909 to the second decade of the new millennium. Art historian and gallery curator Rose Lee Goldberg explains how a medium once used only in sporadic outbreaks of artistic dissent has become, over the course of a century, a vital and integral part of the contemporary mainstream and a global phenomenon.
- RRP £9.95
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This practical and inspirational book introduces readers to the value of storytelling throughout life, discussing the importance of traditional tales, and how they can transform our lives from childhood through to old age. Children develop emotional intelligence by being immersed in stories that deal with the challenges they face in growing up. Josie Felce discusses the use of stories in the Steiner-Waldorf school curriculum, and hopes to pass on this wisdom to a wider audience. She goes on to discuss the therapeutic value of stories throughout our adult lives, how they help us to approach challenges creatively, giving examples of how stories can be used in group development sessions. Felce considers the difference between telling and reading a story, offering practical advice on body language and presentation skills. Throughout the book she recommends suitable stories for different age groups and situations, with examples of how to adapt stories and tailor them for your audience.
- RRP £14.99
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Live, or performance, art is one of the most controversial and hotly discussed areas of art practice to emerge in the second half of the twentieth century. The history of live art is one of challenge to audiences, art traditions and cultural values. With elements of performance now part of the practice of many of today's best-known artists, and boundaries between visual art, theatre and live art more and more blurred, this collection is long overdue. Leading artists and thinkers assess the relevance of live art now, its impact within the visual arts and the broader cultural sphere. Hugo Glendinning's stunning colour photographs of performance events are combined with numerous essays examining the political, philosophical and cultural resonances of the work of a diverse range of international live artists, both historical and contemporary. Accessible, critically astute and expansive, Live is an indispensable resource for all those with an interest in some of the most vibrant and contested issues in art today.
- RRP £25.00
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Confidence is essential for any stand-up comic and having confidence in your material is the first step to having greater confidence on stage. It is said that proper preparation makes for professional performance and this book provides the tools to achieve this, offering down-to-earth practical advice and a logical progression from identifying your stage persona, thinking about your audience and the craft of honing comedy material to fit your persona and audience, through to structuring your stand-up set, preparing for when things might go wrong, and last but not least - progressing your career. Get Your Act Together is a book for anyone who wants to be serious about becoming a stand-up comic and wants to do it well.
- RRP £9.99
This title presents for the first time in one audio collection, all sixteen Yes Minister radio episodes plus six further TV episodes, fourteen Yes Prime Minister episodes and two bonus sketches. Between 1980 and 1988 on BBC television and radio, the exploits of the Rt Hon Jim Hacker MP (Paul Eddington) - later Prime Minister - kept the British nation enthralled. Helped - and hampered - by his diligent Permanent Secretary Sir Humphrey Appleby (Nigel Hawthorne) and his Principle Private Secretary Bernard Woolley (Derek Fowlds), Hacker and his department became synonymous with government bureaucracy and administrative double dealing. Presented here, for the first time in one collection, are the complete radio series of Yes Minister and the complete BBC television soundtracks of Yes Prime Minister. Also included are six TV soundtracks of Yes Minister and two special bonus mini-episodes: The PM's Plan, recorded in 1984 with Margaret Thatcher as herself, and a special segment created for The Funny Side of Christmas in 1982.
- RRP £55.00
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In Victorian England, everyone went to the pantomime, from Queen Victoria and her family to the humblest of her subjects. The English Pantomime is one of the most popular, least examined of all theatrical forms. It's been the festive mainstay of the English stage since the eighteenth century, and it has survived by its ability to evolve. This continual evolution is traced by Jeffrey Richards in the first history of panto through its 'Golden Age' in Victorian England. He explores the spectacle, the slapstick, and the talent for subversion that nineteenth-century pantomime had - and still has today. He shows the panto, with its remarkable actors, managers, producers and punters across the country from Drury Lane to Blackpool, to be a remarkable cultural barometer of its times. This is a treat as rich as turkey and Christmas pudding.
- RRP £25.00
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A new edition of Be A Great Stand-Up, now fully revised and updated with new material on setting up and running a comedy night and mining almost any subject for jokes. Logan Murray has successfully taught the techniques of stand-up comedy to thousands, and in this book he distils his years of experience into the essential skills for a great and enjoyable performance. He will help you find your creative streak and your funny side, build the confidence to deliver, and explain the finer details of stagecraft, from dealing with hecklers to coping with props. There is a full guide to the practicalities, from finding gigs to securing an agent, with plenty of valuable hints, tips and advice. Drawing on Logan's years of teaching and his own successful stand-up career, with top tips from some of the most well-known people in the business, it is guaranteed to bring a smile to both your face and that of your future audience. As well as full updates throughout the book, this new edition contains fresh material on how to set up and run a comedy night, mine any subject for jokes and advice on festivals.
- RRP £10.99
"Funny is Funny" Joan Rivers But how do you make it in the world of comedy if you are a woman? With Stand Up and Sock It to Them Sister, writer, actress and performer Gwenno Dafydd looks at the genesis of female comedy from the time of music hall and supper clubs in Victorian London through to the excitement and challenge of the international world of stand-up from Edinburgh to Cape Town to Mumbai to New York and Los Angeles before finally returning to the comedy clubs of London. Stand Up and Sock It to Them Sister tells us in the words of the performers themselves what they had to face and overcome, in an often male-dominated and aggressively competitive world, to make it to the top in comedy. And why and how they do it. Stand Up and Sock It to Them Sister seeks to explain why the women chose comedy and what they have had to sacrifice to make it. It is an inspiring story of empowerment with a resonance for women everywhere trying to create, work and achieve in the modern world.With insightful interviews from over seventy performers and a concise and entertaining commentary this book offers a practical guide and invaluable advice on the practice and challenges of being a stand-up comedian through a unique section of Tips for the Top. Stand up and Sock it To Them Sister is the result of twenty years of extensive research with interviews with over seventy five comics working world-wide from the pioneering Joan Rivers, Jo Brand, Jenny Eclair, Helen Lederer, to newcomers such as Nina Conti, Shazia Mirzah, and Amy Schumer.
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This hilarious and irreverent autobiography is from award-winning British stand-up comedian, Romesh Ranganathan. His book is highly recommended by Jonathan Ross, and The Guardian has said that "His ability to produce bitingly fresh gags marks him out the crowd".
- RRP £20.00
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Starting his career as a math teacher, Romesh then made his comedy debut in 2010 which has since seen the success of his two Edinburgh Festival shows and his critically acclaimed 2015 BBC series, Asian Provocateur.
And now, for the first time, Romesh tells the full story of how he got to where he is today. From the delights of Sri Lankan hospitality to his struggles as a child, teacher and now parent, to his adolescent flirtation with a rap career and his attempts to make it in comedy, Straight Outta Crawley is Ranganathan's irresistibly funny and original memoir.
In THEFT BY FINDING, David Sedaris opened up his written diaries (and himself) to the world in an unprecedented way. Now, in this illustrated volume, readers will for the first time be able to experience the elaborate, three-dimensional, handmade form that his diaries have always taken. For, in addition to being an unparalleled chronicler of the world around him, Sedaris has always been a keen observer and collector of the art, objects, and ephemera that are part of his visual landscape.A celebration of the odd and unexpected, the beautiful and the ugly, and the humorous and sensitive reflections so familiar to any fan of his writing, DAVID SEDARIS DIARIES (1977-2016): A VISUAL COMPENDIUM offers unique insight into the author's view of the world and stands alone as a striking, collectible volume in itself. Compiled and edited by Sedaris's longtime friend Jeffrey Jenkins, and including interactive components, postcards, and never-before-seen photos and artwork, this is a necessary addition to any Sedaris collection, and will enthrall the author's fans for many years to come.
- RRP £30.00
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Discover historical insights, lesser-known facts, and incredible photography of iconic movies including Mother India, Mughal-e-Azam, Sholay, and Bajirao Mastani with this gorgeous celebration of the world's biggest film industry. Bollywood charts the world of Hindi cinema year-by-year from the pioneering studios of the 1930s, through the Golden Age, to the age of Big Money in the 21st century and it's biggest modern stars.With over 1,000 films produced every year, the glitter and charm of Bollywood is unrivalled anywhere else in the world. Bollywood takes you on a behind-the-scenes tour of Hindi cinema's biggest blockbusters, with stunning film stills and plot timelines, as well as insightful biographies of iconic stars including Dev Anand, Amitabh Bachchan, Deepika Padukone, and Shahrukh Khan.Bring the spectacle home and be enchanted by the glamour and colour of Indian cinema with this glittering homage to Bollywood!
- RRP £25.00
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'Elis and John are my go-to place when I need a bloody good laugh. Properly funny!' Sarah Millican Comedians Elis James and John Robins have captured the hearts and minds of a generation, and it's time those hearts and minds had a book. Elis and John met in 2005 performing stand-up comedy in a pub called The Yellow Kangaroo in Cardiff. They eyed each other suspiciously before Robins offered the limpest handshake in the history of the world. 'It was a power play,' says Robins. 'I may even have raised it for him to kiss.' James expands: 'It was one of the weirdest things I'd ever experienced, but having known John now for over a decade, it was the tip of the iceberg. I can honestly say he's the oddest man I've ever met.' Little did they know that ten years later they would be presenting a radio show together that would make them comedy royalty... Ok, radio comedy royalty...Ok, commercial digital indie radio royalty...But with a podcast! Now, The Elis James and John Robins' Show has become cult listening, and that cult has registered for charitable status, published quarterly accounts and been given a full blessing by the Archbishop of Broadcasting. It's official: Elis and John are a religion, and this book is their Holy Vible. Have you ever failed to Keep It Session? Is your new flatmate a complete coin? Have you ever eaten Space Raiders on the toilet and written 'Grief Is Living' in your journal? Then this book is for you. If not, don't worry, it won't be long before you're making up games, looking at Freddie, or facing your own personal farthing-gate. Our obsessions make us what we are, and though you may never have addressed a will to Brian May or cried watching Ronnie O' Sullivan make a 147, you'll have done something similar, and Elis and John are here to tell you that you're not weird, so come on in, and taste the vibe! Or should I say, READ the vibe!
- RRP £18.99
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Toss the tuxedo. No more impaling women in boxes. Lose that top hat and set the rabbit free. Magic is getting a makeover. Forget those tired birthday party tricks or overproduced nonbelievable illusions. Joshua Jay's "Magic" is a complete course, jam-packed with over a hundred amazing but easy-to-learn effects. Much more than a collection of tricks, this book teaches both the mechanics and presentation necessary to perform each trick - since only a mastery of both (plus a lot of practice) makes a real magician. In "Magic", the performance scripts are topical (so you can transition seamlessly from a real conversation into a trick), the props are familiar (often right in front of you), and the magic is unbelievable (leaving your audience perfectly flabbergasted). Chapters cover a wide-range of scenarios in which you will learn to make money appear, predict thoughts and phone numbers, control a participant's decision, and demonstrate superhuman memory. As a bonus, "Magic" recasts some of the classic prop-tricks that historically require rubber thumbs or trick card decks, into new modern effects.
- RRP £17.99
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Arron Crascall is one of the UK's leading social media stars. Millions watch his videos online and he's guaranteed to bring a little bit of hilarity into your day.This book is his take on the world. The things that are important to Arron. The good, the bad and the stupid (there's a lot of this third one). You'll find stories about his past, a lot of views on the present and some opinions on how to make the future a more enjoyable place. It's part biography, part self-help book, part text book, part travel book (well, Dover at least), you'll find comedy, crime, drama, romance, and you'll even learn a thing or two about astro-physics (he's not even joking). In fact, he's putting so much into this book, you won't just see it in every bookshop in the country, you'll see it on every shelf in every bookshop in the country.Welcome to the world according to Arron Crascall. SEE YA LATER!
- RRP £16.99
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Anyone responsible for organising a voluntary or public event will want to do it safely and well, complying with the legislation relating to different aspects of their event. This book will help you to research, plan, organise, manage and deliver any event, match, show, tournament or function that will be attended by more than a handful of people. You may be running a gymkhana, fete, fun run, steam fayre, half marathon, carnival, school sports day, jumble sale, tennis tournament, car boot sale, model aircraft show or even a huge pop festival or Formula 1 car race. Whatever it is, the principles are the same. As event manager you will need to research, plan, liaise with authorities, obtain permissions and licences, comply with legal requirements and then deliver the event to the public. Contents: 1. Introduction; 2. The event manager; 3. The event objective; 4. Planning the event; 5. Health & safety; 6. Type of event; 7. When to run the event; 8. Defining your target audience; 9. Audience size; 10. Advertising; 11. Event attractions; 12. Event requirements; 13. Accommodation and services; 14. Event site; 15. Traffic management; 16. Sign posting; 17. Permissions; 18. Car parking; 19. Radio communications; 20. Staffing; 21. First aid; 22. Security; 23. Insurance; 24. Emergency and normal procedures; 25. Formal presentation; 26. Event manager's manual; 27. Money; 28. Accounts; 29. Video diary/evidence; 30. Setting up; 31. Site maintenance; 32. Strip down/clear up; 33. Final debrief 34. Final report; 35. Conclusion; Annex A; Annex B; Index.
- RRP £16.99
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In HOW TO PRODUCE COMEDY BRONZE, legendary TV producer Jon Plowman lifts the hood on the comedy industry so you can peer inside and wonder how any of it ever got made in the first place. In a career spanning 30 years Jon has learned (almost) everything there is to know about comedy and now wants to share his wealth of knowledge, before he becomes completely demented and forgets how to do it. Working with Fry and Laurie, travelling with the cast of Absolutely Fabulous, saying 'yes' to The Office - together these stories combine to tell the uncensored story of how TV comedy works, from the first germ of an idea to the after-party at the Emmys - all through a life in comedy. Read this book and if you're not careful learn how to make the world laugh at your ideas too!
- RRP £16.99
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Can you keep a secret? Inside this book you will find many, from the mind of one of the most talented magicians in the world: Dynamo. In this fully illustrated guide to modern magic, Dynamo shows you how you can perform magic yourself. Learn how to make water freeze instantly, read your friends' minds, make chewing gum float 360 degrees around your head, slice a banana without even touching it, discover superhuman strength and many more mind-blowing illusions. A magical masterclass, The Book of Secrets will be the first step on an exciting journey for budding magicians, providing hours of breathtaking fun for all the family.#BeTheMagic
- RRP £16.99
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'The naughtiest, helpiest, laughieoutloudiest and goodest book I've ever done reading on. Give that girl a banana!' DAWN FRENCH *****THE NO.1 SUNDAY TIMES BESTSELLERSARAH MILLICAN'S AUTOBIOGRAPHY WILL MAKE YOU LAUGH, FEEL NORMAL AND PROBABLY SNIFF YOUR LEGGINGS. Part autobiography, part self help, part confession, part celebration of being a common-or-garden woman, part collection of synonyms for nunny, Sarah Millican's debut book delves into her super normal life with daft stories, funny tales and proper advice on how to get past life's blips - like being good at school but not good at friends, the excitement of IBS and how to blossom post divorce. If you've ever worn glasses at the age of six, worn an off-the-shoulder gown with no confidence, been contacted by an old school bully, lived in your childhood bedroom in your thirties, been gloriously dumped in a Frankie and Benny's, cried so much you felt great, been for a romantic walk with a dog, worn leggings two days in a row even though they smelt of wee from a distance, then this is YOUR BOOK. If you haven't done those things but wish you had, THIS IS YOUR BOOK. If you just want to laugh on a train/sofa/toilet or under your desk at work, THIS IS YOUR BOOK.'Of course Sarah Millican's book will make you laugh out loud, but there are moments where she will touch you deeply. The dirty bitch.' KATHY BURKE
- RRP £19.99
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David Kwong is the go-to consultant for Hollywood's biggest illusion-heavy projects, including the hit films Now You See Me, The Imitation Game and Mission: Impossible - Rogue Nation. In Spellbound he reveals how to bridge the gap between perception and reality to increase your powers of persuasion and influence. David Kwong has astounded large crowds, from CEOs to TED talk audiences to thousands of other hyper-rational people, making them see, believe and even remember what he wants them to. Illusion is an ancient art that centres on control: commanding a room, building anticipation, and appearing to work wonders. Illusion works because the human brain is wired to fill the gap between seeing and believing. Surprisingly, these are the tools used by top leaders like Steve Jobs and Richard Branson; masters of control and command who understand how to sway opinions and achieve goals. Spellbound shows us that illusions are more than just a set of tricks; it is a trainable craft that holds the principles of winning over an audience, which can be applied to every aspect of life. Through years of practice, research and learning (including a Harvard degree in the history of magic), David discovered the seven fundamental principles of illusion, like how to use the space between seeing and believing, shape narratives and command your audience by giving them agency. Packed with amazing stories and insights, Spellbound gives you a fresh and engaging way to sell your idea, production or skills to stand out from the crowd.
- RRP £14.99
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