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Letters to a Young Artist
From “the most exciting individual in American theater” (Newsweek), here is Anna Deavere Smith’s brass-tacks advice to aspiring artists of all stripes. In the manner of Rilke’s Letters to a Young Poet, Deavere Smith mentors her young artist over a period of five years, sharing her hard won wisdom about the challenges and rewards of the artistic life. Drawing on her own life experiences as an actor, teacher, and playwright, Deavere Smith provides a motivating example for how to pursue one’s art without compromise, while addressing the full spectrum of issues that people starting out will face—from questions of confidence, discipline, and self-esteem, to fame, failure, and fear, to staying healthy, presenting yourself effectively, building a diverse social and professional network, and using your art to promote social change. Honest, passionate, and inspiring, this audiobook has life-changing potential.
Anna Deavere Smith is an actress, teacher, playwright, and the creator of the acclaimed On the Road series of one-woman plays, which are based on her interviews with diverse voices from communities in crisis. She is a recipient of the National Humanities Medal from President Obama and two Obie Awards, and her work also been nominated for a Pulitzer Prize and the Tony Award. Onscreen, she has appeared in many films and television shows, including Philadelphia, The West Wing, Black-ish, and Nurse Jackie. She is a professor in the department of art and public policy at New York University, where she also directs the Institute on the Arts and Civic Dialogue. In 2019, she was elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.