Mythic Imagination and the Actor: Marissa Chibás Shares New Approaches to Actor Training in Latest Book

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School of Theater faculty and director of Duende CalArts Marissa Chibás offers new perspectives on contemporary actor training in her latest book Mythic Imagination and the Actor: Exercises, Inspiration, and Guidance for the 21st Century Actor, published by Routledge Press.

The 120-page book, which features illustrations by Makena Janssen (Art MFA 22), is described as a “new approach to contemporary actor training that envisages a move towards the mythic, the poetic, and the inclusive.” Through comparative analyses between method and mythic acting and an array of practical prompts and exercises, the book is an innovative resource for actors and acting students, film and theater studies, and American drama. 

Mythic Imagination has already garnered glowing reviews, including from José Rivera, playwright of Marisol and an Academy Award nominee for The Motorcycle Diaries:

“A beautifully written exploration of the key aspects of the actor’s craft as seen through the lense of mythology, imagination, spirituality, and the hero’s quest. Essential reading for all artists willing (and needing) to challenge themselves to replace the literal with the poetic in their work and in their lives. Rigorous exercises guide the participant and inspire them to connect with their joy, their dreams, the metaphors of their lives, and the secret oracle energy lurking there to fully embrace and become the artist they were destined to be. As Marissa Chibas states, drawing from profound experiences over three decades as an actor and teacher, “You will be led toward placing the magical and wondrous forward in your work.” A game changer!”

A book launch takes place on Monday, Aug. 2 at REDCAT in downtown Los Angeles. The event will be co-hosted by former School of Theater faculty Charlayne Woodard and Elizabeth Frances (Theater BFA 08), featuring a special performance by choreographer and former CNP resident artist Kati Hernandez. 

Preorder Mythic Imagination and the Actor at Routledge Press.

PUBLISHED BY Taya Zoormandan

As digital content and social media producer, Taya enjoys lifting up the stories and accomplishments of CalArts' students, alums, and faculty. She fancies herself a visual artist but is really more of an overzealous collector of art supplies.

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