The Actor’s Menu – A Review

Bill Howey’s new book, “The Actor’s Menu”, gives the

aspiring actor the one thing most acting class books are

devoid of: that is the opportunity to use a comprehensive

blueprint to get a usable system for executing the craft of

acting on a repeatable basis. Howey’s book, presented much

like a restaurant menu, (presumably so actor/waiters could

understand it) is an enlightening journey into all the

ingredients that make up the portrayal of complex

characters. The Actor’s Menu forces you to think, asking a

myriad of questions aimed at discovering just what your

particular human incarnation has to bring to the table, and

how it can be applied repeatedly as the basis of your acting


As acting class books go, “The Actor’s Menu” is a corker.

Revealing without being preachy; informative yet not

dogmatic, Howey’s book forces you to think and come up with

your own personal menu that brings the best you have to

offer to the role. My favorite section was without a doubt

the Essential Ingredients chapter, where emotions, feelings

and conflict are explored for what they are and are not, and

how to meld them into an actable tool. One of the nice yet

less obvious jewels in the The Actor’s Menu is the constant

weaving and equipping of the actor’s arsenal. You may be

eating a meal here but my view is that it’s an MRE, as you

are fully equipped for battle after reading and implementing

this book.

Bill Howey is no Johnny-come-lately to this endeavor, having

been an actor. teacher, writer and producer for more than 25

years. Howey’s client list is as eclectic as it is talented.

Some of the people he’s worked with over the years include

George Clooney, Robert Mitchum, Sam Kinison, and even his

own son Steve Howey, who stars as Van on the hit WB show


If you’ve determined that you really can’t do anything else

with your life other than act, then The Actor’s Menu will

whet your appetite even further!

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