Maureen West

Arts DepartmentDepartment Head, Faculty
Acting is truth-seeking for Mo, and George School is the right place for the search.

Why did you choose to teach at George School?

After leaving both the professional arena and a tenured position at a local college, I found a home at George School, where the Quaker philosophy, sense of community, and support and legacy of excellence in the arts align with the powerful impact I believe arts education can have. The freedom to make artistic choices and statements with my art has kept me here.

Is there a moment in a class that stands out?

Any moment in which I witness true honesty in a student actor, who feels sufficiently free and trusting to expose their vulnerabilities and innermost feelings, is rewarding. Seeking those moments of truth are what acting is about, and it is in perfect harmony with Quaker philosophy.

Describe your teaching style.

I teach the Meisner Technique, adhering to Sanford Meisner’s definition that acting is living truthfully under imaginary circumstances. The truth starts with me. I use it to help students feel safe enough to step outside of their natural comfort zone. My students know me very well. In turn, they share their journey of self-discovery and truth-seeking under my guidance. I try to always be “present” to them when teaching, reading their emotions and actions in each moment.

What would you tell prospective families about George School?

George School will ask you to dig down deep inside yourself to find the very best of who you can, and want, to be. The faculty, staff, and your peers will help you answer that question and will support you as you challenge yourself to achieve your goals.

More about Mo:

When she isn’t busy teaching theater arts, serving as Arts Department head, and directing George School productions, Mo sees as much theater as possible. She holds a BA from the University of Cincinnati and an MTA from Rutgers University’s Mason Gross School of the Arts.