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This Above All: How to Live an Artistic Life

This Above All: How to Live an Artistic Life

There are some doozies in THIS ABOVE ALL: HOW TO LIVE AN ARTISTIC LIFE that straight-up revolutionized my thinking. It is a guidebook to both theater and life that needs to live on every creative person's nightstand.

--Sarah Bierstock, Artistic Director of Pass the Salt Productions

Jason Cannon's book is a must-read. Especially if you are an artist, want to be reminded why you become an artist in the first place - or just have always wondered if you could lead a more artistic life. Its honest and transparent and yet deeply witty and insightful look into this entire profession made me want to get back out there and do it even better. Easily the most truthful and yet inspiring book out there on the making of theatre.

--Sean Daniels, Artistic Director, Arizona Theatre Company

  • Is there something holding you back from what you know you can do? From who you know you can be?
  • Are you always starting but never finishing? Your novel? Your music? Your start-up? Your charity?
  • Do you struggle to maintain passion and balance in your work, your exercise routine, or your relationships?

  • Don't hang your head if you answered yes to any of those questions. Chin up and crack open THIS ABOVE ALL.

    In this galvanizing, pull-no-punches examination of the obstacles and rewards to living an artistic life, award-winning actor, director, playwright, and author Jason Cannon shows readers how to harness their creativity, rediscover their courage, and break free of the forces holding them back.

    Even if you've never picked up a paintbrush, even if you can't carry a tune in a bucket, even if just the thought of getting up on a stage makes you break out in a cold sweat, THIS ABOVE ALL will inspire you to unleash your inner artist and live true.

    THIS ABOVE ALL is brimming with philosophical insights and practical advice for young artists starting out in the world. Cannon shares the wisdom gained from many years of artistic practice, providing the reader with powerful reflections on art, life and truth-telling. Essential reading for anyone wanting to harness their passion into a meaningful and sustainable creative practice.

    --Deborah Brevoort, playwright and librettist

    Cannon focuses on artists (especially directors, actors, and writers) in the world of theater, but his penetrating insights apply to anyone in any profession. The book is a series of short chapters filled with exhilarating ideas about how to live artistically, which is to say how to live passionately, how to live, as Cannon puts it, "with all your heart." You will be tempted to read the book through at top speed because Cannon's quick, exuberant prose pulls you along. But then go back to read slowly, to pause on the many epiphanies about living and learning and refusing to be false to oneself or to anyone (the keen analysis of the speech in Hamlet by Polonius, from which Cannon takes his book's title, is worth the price of admission). Reflect on each gem for an hour or two-and then keep on reflecting for the rest of your life.

    -Jeffrey Couchman, author of The Night of the Hunter: A Biography of a Film

    Those who are struggling to make it in their chosen profession, are questioning what's missing, and haven't found their artistic mojo yet, will reap great benefit from reading THIS ABOVE ALL. THIS ABOVE ALL reminded me that the world of business can be much more meaningful when you slow down, take a beat, enjoy the scenery, and re-examine your purpose.

    --Joel Ehrenpreis, CEO, Business Therapeutics

    Publication Date: 
    July 16, 2022
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