When given the chance, young people with Asperger's can be the most charismatic actors that have ever hit the stage. In this guidebook, author Amelia Davies provides the theories and activities you'll need to set up acting classes that double as social skills groups for individuals with Asperger's or high-functioning autism. Included are acting exercises and plays that teach actors how to control and use body language, nonverbal communication, tone of voice, facial expressions, and movement, which are all important social skills. Using these and many other skills onstage allows actors to develop social understanding through repetition and generalization. Actors can learn as a group or focus on individual challenges through their characters. Lights, camera, action!
Amelia Davies received her Bachelor's of Fine Arts from Boston Conservatory, and her Master's of Fine Arts in acting from Brandeis University. She then made her living for many years as an actress, director, and producer, including a national tour with the Missoula Children's Theatre. Drawing both on her background in theatre and on her experience working with adults and children with autism, Amelia has developed a fun, easy-to-follow, step-by-step drama curriculum specifically for parents and professionals without backgrounds in acting.