Stanislavsky's System, Sense-Emotion Memory, and Physical Action/Active Analysis

American interpretations of the System's legacy

Authored by: David Krasner

The Routledge Companion to Stanislavsky

Print publication date:  October  2013
Online publication date:  October  2013

Print ISBN: 9780415535649
eBook ISBN: 9780203112304
Adobe ISBN: 9781136281853


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The “system” is not a theory; it is a method of work widely practiced, as we have noted in the most divergent types of production both here and abroad. It is not a “Russian” system; the actors of the Moscow Art Theatre were at first as skeptical of it as the most hardened commercial showman might be. The “system” has little to do with realism as a style; the purest exponents of the system were not to be found in the more or less realistic Moscow Art Theatre, but in the studios or derivatives of the theatre which were preeminently non-realistic. In fact, it is no exaggeration to say that the Stanislavsky influence today is more active in the American theatre than anywhere outside of the Soviet Union.

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