explore & enjoy.

#1 me, watching an actor work.
photo: Geoffrey Wade

#2 Matisse's "workroom" The Red Studio, where there are no hands on the clock & most everything is unreal but the art.

#3 A letter from Tennessee Williams a few weeks after he cast me in his Vieux Carre at the theater bearing his name in Key West. He died about one week before we started rehearsals.
photo: my iphone

#4 The cast of La Ronde, performed by my students in Antaeus' A2 company, directed by Young Ji.
photo: Geoffrey Wade

#5 The artist's studio from my production of Cousin Bette by Jeffery Hatcher, set design by Tom Buderwitz.
photo: Michele K. Short

#6 Click on the image to visit my WORKROOM board on Pinterest. &/or create one of your own!

POST IMAGES
are credited at the end of each blog post.


 

 

THE WORKROOM = my space for          
all things acting + creative process + theater art  
I AM = an actor, director, author, teacher, artistic director  
THE GOAL = to live in our full potential as artists  

       I do not seek, I find.   PICASSO                            
           
 find: start / finish / exhilaration / collaboration / expanse      
why / mastery / oh, just play around.                  
 

 
 

 

 

Sunday
Oct122014

INSIDE THE WORKROOM: ACTING CLASS

Scene Study & Audition Technique
Special industry guest every month

To audit / audition, use link above
CD Jennifer Brooks & Jane Kaczmarek
October Workroom guests

 

THE WORKROOM + THE PASADENA PLAYHOUSE 

FIELD TRIP!
Fri. Nov. 14 ~ 8:00 
Join us for this terrific play, followed by art-party event:
WR actors + LA Female Playwrights Initiative in "Microreads" (quick reads of 1-page plays) w/ wine & snacks.
this link = Workroom $28 tkts
Box Office

THE WORKROOM + LA THEATRE WORKS  

PROFESSIONAL COMPS
Actors in any acting class -- not just mine -- here's your chance to see, no charge, LATW at UCLA. Each month on the day before the first Thurs. performance, LATW makes 30 free tickets available to actors curently studying at any acting studio in LA. Call the box office between 2 - 6, use code #WORKROOM to claim your free ticket.

The experience of watching great actors bring the work of great playwrights to vivid, unforgettable life, is an essential part of any actors’ training. At LATW actors & audience participate in the art of theatre making at its most sublime -- no pesky sets, costumes or lighting to distract -- just the words & their pitch perfect interpretation.
LATW Artistic Director SUSAN LOWENBERG 
  

 


The Workroom Salon

my new FB group for purists, performance events, what you're doing, what I'm doing, the journey we share as artists! JOIN!

 

Wednesday
Oct012014

the man in the role / 10.12.14

  

   

Back when I was a struggling student in New York I kept a black & white photo of James Dean taped to the wall above my dresser. He is relaxing on the set of Giant and at the bottom of the picture, there's a quote: “Being a good actor isn’t easy. Being a man is even harder. I want to be both before I’m done.” Me, too.

The summer before last, I was cast in a production of The Last Days of Judas Iscariot at the Hudson Theatre in Hollywood. I was excited — the play’s pretty remarkable, with lots of meaty parts. However, given the short rehearsal schedule & the fact that I hadn’t done a play for a while —  I got anxious. Looking to hold my own in a cast stacked with heavy hitters, I went looking for help. Through a stroke of blind luck I found Jeanie via her website & I asked if she’d work with me. She agreed. 

At our first meeting I was inspired by Jeanie’s passion. We worked together for maybe 7 to 10 sessions, going from breaking down text, to the character's physicality & vocal quality to what Jeanie always considers the most important question: "Why do you want to play this role?" We worked hard together & I worked a lot on my own. I was glad I prepared as much as I did. I felt good about my work. The play was well received & even won some awards. 

A few months later, when Jeanie told me she was starting a new scene study class I jumped at the chance to take part. Her résumé speaks for itself, but I have to say Jeanie is one of the finest teachers I’ve ever worked with. Her passion is contagious, she’s insightful & when something in a scene isn’t working, she always seems to pull something out of her back pocket that steers me in exactly the right direction. 

Fast forward to a few days ago. I found myself in her office catching up over coffee. I hadn’t seen Jeanie for a few months. I had taken a break from class for the summer after close to a year of studying with her. We talked about what I’m looking to get out of class going forward.

As we sipped our Starbucks I told Jeanie I wanted to push myself. What I didn't say right then was that I wanted to be more courageous in the work  — enough to use the unfinished parts of myself, the parts I'm afraid or ashamed of. I want more access to my power, too — the part of me that steps up when I'm up against something that matters. (I realize this sounds fucking pretentious, but it's what I want.) I want to bring all of myself to my acting. & I want to have fun doing it. If I'm going to spend time doing this shit, I wanna to do it right.

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Saturday
Aug232014

The Art of Seeing / 8.25.14

   Mastery is in the reaching, not the arriving. It's in constantly
wanting to close that gap between where you are & where you
want to be. Mastery is about sacrificing for your craft & not for
the sake of crafting your career.
SARAH LEWIS 
TED talk: Embracing The Near Win

The pursuit of mastery is the event of an artist’s lifetime. Teaching is an integral part of my own personal drive toward mastery: through engagement with the process of other actors I come to better understand my own. This is the privilege & the gift of the work I get to do. Its value to me is inestimable.

BEST PICS FROM THE '13/'14 WORKROOM CLASS SESSIONS

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Monday
Jul142014

The Process Journal ~ ongoing


I ask actors who study with me to commit at some point or another to writing a Workroom post about their journey in class. i.e. what they struggle with, what they're aiming for & who they're becoming via the work. The Process Journel focuses on craft. (I've got another ongoing format, called The Art-Biz Diaries, for career-focus ideas.) I think it's important for actors to try to articulate some of the intangibles about what we do -- & have access to others' thoughts, feelings, instincts, insights, etc. We build comradery, we act as cheerleaders & mentors for each other, as we celebrate our successes & even our failures. It's all part of belonging to a creative collective. Ideally, The Workroom exists as a space we each create & own: a home-base & a laboratory to nurture spirit, craft & talent.                      
                                                        subscribe to THE WORKROOM!

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Friday
Jan242014

Thoughts for the Journey, 2014

My still center & constant touchstone remains my ongoing work with actors — coaching one-on-one in my studio & the various classes I teach in The Workroom, at the SAG-AFTRA Conservatory & other places in LA; at Williamstown & other colleges & universities across the country. This is the daily practice that feeds everything else I do. 

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Saturday
Nov232013

Processing Joy / 11.23.13

Joy. The topic du jour for me, in the few months since I got married. After living together for 9 years, I don’t think either of us expected it to feel this different. We married without a lot of hoopla, we live in the same house, with the same cat, & after a brief honeymoon, not that much changed. But to our surprise, ordinary life now seems to be unfolding on another plane entirely. 

I recognize this — aloft — feeling I’ve been waking up with every day. It’s the same elation that comes when I connect to the work in a meaningful way. (For me, stage acting delivers the ‘art-high’ in its most concentrated form, that’s the arm-drip.)

subscribe to The Workroom!

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Sunday
Sep222013

Room for Everybody / 9.22.13

The Workroom is just about one year old! Since I launched, it seems like new resource sites for actors are cropping up everywhere. A dizzying array of teachers & coaches & casting director workshops, blogs, branding experts &  social media consultants -- dispensing good, sometimes great, & sometimes just plain bad advice at every turn. 

 subscribe to THE WORKROOM!

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Monday
Jul012013

Previous Posts

 

Owning The Role / 5.20.13

 

 

4.16.13 / It's Called Show Art  

 

 

Where To Start / 3.3.13 

 

1.20.13 / Be Famous 

  


Chaos, Order & All Things New
 / 1.3.13

                      


12.12.12 / 
50 Shades of Auditioning 

 


RSS & The Meaning of Life
 / 11.26.12

 

                          11.8.12 / Embrace the Crisis 



To Compete or To Create
 / 10.27.12
 


                        10.19.12 / Bad Material / Good Audition 



Talent & Personality
 / 10.12.12
                                                         


10.1.12 /
 15 Minutes a Day 


Mastery & Optimism
 / 9.18.12 


             
   
9.7.12 / Survival of the Creative-est 
 



The Art/Biz Diaries
 / Ongoing
 

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