The Experiencing class is the study of the imagination and how it is stimulated and energized by using the five senses -- the concepts applied in this session are the key to what is called 'the world of the play' and are central to the art of acting and creating reality on the stage. Exercises in this class focus on establishing belief, developing a sense of truth and bringing the internal form of a sensory event to clear, physical expression that leads to character behavior and emotional truth.
Action I & II
"All action on the stage must have an inner justification, be logical, coherent, and real. ... When an actor is completely absorbed by some profoundly moving objective so that he throws his whole being passionately into its execution, he reaches a state we call inspiration."
Action is a class in the ‘language of the body.' By articulating behavior that is born of simple, relaxed movement, consistent with wants of the character, the actor has access to the key that can unlock the soul and thus reveal the play.
The second course continues with the exploration of action as behavior that defines the "mask of the chracter," a place of inspiration where all emotional and spiritual expression is revealed.
Characterization focuses on developing characters by focusing on the muscles, the rhythm, the accent, the vocal sound and other outward manifestations that allow the student to play parts beyond "type." Characterization is an in-depth exploration of the outward images and subsequent inner rhythms that inform character.
This class is the study of phrasing; using the body and the voice to accentuate the expressive word, the tempo and rhythm of the body, and the use of rules of language to add structure and form to th work.
Voice for the Stage
"Words are the actor's tools, as color and brush-strokes are the painter's, and we have to be constantly sharpening our focus on them to find new textures and colors... But the voice is very sensitive to our own ego.. We must not, through lack of trust either in ourselves or in the text, over-control the language. We must first allow the words to act upon us.. and then we must touch them out, let them free."
-Cecily Berry (The Actor and the Text)
A study in discovering, developing and using your voice with power and confidence. This course explores the theory and practice of vocal production for the stage that results in truthful and free-flowing expression. Study includes the principals of pronunciation, the correction of regional accents and the mastery of other dialects. Breath control, relaxation, the use of consonants and vowels, and extension of the vocal range are studied as they apply to a natural, human, relaxed sound that is optimized to convey emotion and meaning.
Movement for the Stage (Clown, Droznin, Commedia)
The physical preparation of the actor’s instrument, his or her body is explored in these classes on physical action. Students will study how to utilize their body in relationship to the five senses and the world of the play. Actors learn to develop an expressive, graceful body with control of the muscles to produce the most powerful expression possible.
Acting: Shakespeare I & II
These courses teach students how to explore Shakespeare's verse. Students learn the rules of verse scansion and underlying technique of exploiting the human heartbeat of iambic pentameter. Students study the plays for clarity and find the musical laws that apply to the laws of verse and speaking. Students study, rehearse and perform monologues from chosen Shakespeare plays. A new kind of 'action' is explored: the action of speech, acting dramatic or comic poetry.
The second course includes continued work on the action of speech, acting dramatic or comic poetry.
A study of the plays by Anton Chekhov and the special acting skills and techniques required to bring them to life. Classwork will focus on Chekhov's plays The Three Sisters, The Cherry Orchard, Uncle Vanya, and The Seagull.
Acting for the Camera
Students study the differences between acting for the stage and acting for the camera. The course covers auditions, cold readings, industrial films, professional criticism, and acting in feature films. Final 'shoots' include preparing a commercial and a monologue for the camera.
This course studies the techniques used to safely create the illusion of violence to further dramatic conflict on the stage, with exercises that emphasize commitment to safety, technique, professionalism, and theatrical skills. Areas of study include: Unarmed, Single Sword, Broadsword, Quarterstaff and Knife fighting