Theater Arts: Acting

This course builds the foundation for the actor’s approach and process. It is designed to welcome students into a safe environment to test and develop a reliable process. Students participate in ensemble-forming exercises that develop concentration, relax the actor, explore the meaning of truth, encourage spontaneity, foster real human behavior, and help the actor become more sensitive, imaginative, responsive, and alive on the stage. The process involved in this course allows students to discover themselves as artists and broaden their personal perspectives of social and human behaviors. Continued work aims to fully develop emotional and intellectual resources and bring more freedom to the work of the actor. In addition, students learn and establish a working vocabulary of terms used in the professional acting field. Participants are given the opportunity to stage Green Room productions.

The course is comprised of 3 mods: 1) Acting Techniques, 2) Developing Imagination and Truth, and 3) Working with a Script. The focus in the first mod– which draws on the work of acting teachers including Sanford Meisner, Uta Hagen, Lee Strasberg, and Patsy Rodenburg–is on integrating practical analysis with a systematic, intuitive approach to acting. The second mod develops the student’s ability to make bold choices “in the moment,” developing a facility for abandoning intellectual control of their performances and responding to impulses. Students learn to approach improvisation as a rehearsal technique as well as a tool for character development. In the final mod of the sequence, students begin to analyze text and the actor’s role in storytelling, including connecting the specifics of text analysis to the emotional and physical portrayal of a role. Emphasis is on finding clear, compelling objectives, playing those objectives truthfully, and learning to live under the “imaginary circumstances” required in a script.

After completing the sequence in order once, students may repeat any or all of the mods in any order and will be challenged with more advanced exercises if they do so.

Min-Max Credit Hours: 3.0-3.0