Tenn's bed, in the second-floor suite of the Royal Orleans Hotel, was a cluster of curiosities: notes, drawings, photographs, rough drafts of plays, poems, opening paragraphs. Among these many items were two pages of notes--on creased pages--about Meryl Streep, an actress who clearly fascinated him. Here are the notes, precisely as they were written or typed on those pages. Talent is a sacrament, and one doled out by a miserly God, who understands that its worth is sustained by its rarity, and its value increases when the ecstasy it releases upon exposure is felt by those who understand and appreciate it--those who can recognize it. I have searched for faith, which people keep telling me is the greatest and rarest of gifts, but I see now that talent is the great gift, the pearl of great price, and a mean seductress, for you can only search for it in others: It will never arise from within you through faith or prayer or diligence. You either have talent or you don'
Interview with Kim Stanley conducted by James Grissom/1992/Los Angeles "I'm going to stop you right there, because I do not teach acting. Acting cannot be taught, and anyone who tells you that it can is a charlatan. You are either born with the talent to act or you are not. A teacher, a guide, a coach can only enhance what you've been given, and this is done primarily through showing the actor where to look--at books, at theatre, at films, at art, at people, at life all around. Expand their minds and hearts. You can give them confidence by the foundation you build beneath their feet, and then you can hold those feet to the fire by demanding that they be truthful--in life and in any scenes they do before a class. "There is so much out there to learn and to ingest, and we can share our experience of a book or a painting or a performance by incorporating into our roles what we saw and felt. We have to think and be big. A class is where you dare to take on parts you kno