Book Review: Collaborating Backstage by Timo Niermann

  • Brittany Strelluf, Literary Critic

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It is easy for an artist to feel lost or to compare themselves to the crowd. However, it is so important to remember that every artist brings something special to their art. This is the biggest thing that I got from the new book Collaborating Backstage Breaking Barriers for the Creative Network. This book was written by Timo Niermann and I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

I am completely blown away by the quality of this book. As an educator, this book is fantastic, I would even go so far as to say that it could become an essential part of classroom foundation work. The writing is very clear and enjoyable to read. I could definitely see using this as a class textbook. This would work in an advanced theatre arts classroom, a college theatre classroom, it would be a great read for theatre teachers. The examples, figures, and tables peppered throughout are very helpful and rather humorous at times.

I was very pleased to see a whole chapter on cultural differences. As an ESL teacher, I’ve studied cultural sensitivity and understanding at the graduate level. This author really understands how culture can affect an individual and how all of those individual cultures can affect a production.

Niermann emphasizes the value of the individual within the team. It feels like every member of the theatre is a strand that comes together to make a strong rope of teamwork. Niermann also gives real, helpful and attainable advice and guidelines to help the actor and crew members.

I highly recommend Collaborating Backstage: Breaking Barriers for the Creative Network. It is an excellent textbook for educators as well as a handbook for personal and professional growth.

For more information on this book you can check it out on the website.