The Lone Actor

Paper Text – $17.95

ISBN 978-0-8101-4010-3
Publication Date
September 2001
Page Count
189 pages
Trim Size
4 3/8 x 7

The Lone Actor

Viola Spolin

Viola Spolin's Theater Games for the Lone Actor offers theater games and side coaching for the solo player. Available for the first time, this handbook presents more than forty exercises that allow actors to side coach themselves at home, in rehearsal, or in performance.

Spolin's improvisational techniques changed the nature and practice of modern theater. Her work has inspired actors, directors, teachers, and writers in theater, television, and film. Her techniques have also influenced the fields of education, mental health, social work, and psychology.

About the Author

Viola Spolin, the originator of theater games, was introduced to the use of games, storytelling, folk dance, and dramatics as tools for stimulating creative expression in the 1920s while a student of Neva Boyd at Chicago's Hull House. During her years as a teacher and supervisor of creative dramatics there, she began to develop her nonverbal, nonpsychological approach. Her books have been translated into Swedish, German, and Portuguese. She died in 1994.

Paul Sills is Viola Spolin's son and the founding director of Chicago's Second City and of Story Theater. He is the coeditor of the third edition of Spolin's Improvisation for the Theater, also published by Northwestern University Press.

"It's like basic research . . . she [has] changed the theater for generations."
--Alan Alda
"Her book is the bible."
--Rob Reiner
"She has genius and shares it."
--Valerie Harper