Adult classes

Acting

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Beginning Acting

Develop a basic understanding of acting fundamentals through Stanislavski-based practice. Using exercises and scene work, the class introduces students to the elements of dramatic action, text analysis, and character development, as well as the tools for releasing inhibitions and expanding vocal and physical range. May be repeated.

MON 7–9:30pm · 1/9, 1/23, 1/30, 2/6, 2/13, 2/27, 3/6, 3/13, 3/20, 3/27 · $310 (Nicolaus)
SOLD OUT—Please call 510 647–2996 for wait list
SAT 1–3:30pm · 1/21, 1/28, 2/4, 2/11, 2/25 · $180 (August)
SOLD OUT—Please call 510 647–2996 for wait list

Bobby August, Jr. is an actor, improviser, and teacher. He earned an MFA in Acting from the University of California, Davis. Some of his favorite past performances include portraying Romeo in Romeo and Juliet, Benedick in Much Ado About Nothing, Howie in Rabbit Hole, Petruchio in The Taming of the Shrew, and The Player in Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead. Bobby also devises physical theatre pieces with long-time collaborator Iu-Hui Chua. They created and performed Crawl and Ligilo at the Mondavi Center for the Performing Arts. In addition, Bobby is the owner and director of the award-winning Made Up Theatre (MUT) in Fremont, California. His theatre specializes in presenting completely improvised plays. He has performed with MUT at improv festivals throughout the country—most recently winning “Best Improv Group” at the Sacramento Comedy Festival. His improv education includes training at the world famous Second City and Annoyance Theatre in Chicago.

Jack Nicolaus is an actor, director, clown, educator, and arts advocate with ten years of experience in the professional theatre world. He has worked with organizations such as The John F. Kennedy Center for Performing Arts, American Repertory Theater, Geffen Playhouse, 59E59, Peoples Improv Theater, Berkeley Repertory Theatre, and the Department of Defense. He is the artistic director emeritus of Everybody Nose: NYC, a clown ensemble in New York. He has a Bachelor’s Degree in Acting and Directing from UCLA School of Theater, Film, and Television and a Master’s in Education from Harvard University.

Acting Shakespeare

How do we best approach the challenge of acting Shakespeare? The profound understanding of human character has set Shakespeare above all other playwrights in the English language. The most effective performers of the Bard’s plays, in Britain and America, have always understood that his language is the key to unlocking the secrets of character and action that have kept the plays vital for over 400 years. Students learn to analyze the text for its rhythms, its rhetorical flourish, its tonal colors, and apply it to their monologue work.

TUE 7–10pm · 1/10, 1/17, 1/24, 1/31, 2/7 · $220

Julian López-Morillas is well known in the Bay Area as a professional actor and director specializing in Shakespeare. He holds the rare distinction of having appeared in professional productions of all 38 of Shakespeare’s plays, and has directed some 20 of them. He had a long association with California Shakespeare Theater and served as its Associate Artistic Director for several years. Julian has taught Shakespeare as literature at Mills College and classical acting technique at UC Berkeley, San Jose State, Foothill College, Solano College, and Dominican College.

Intermediate Acting

Students analyze and perform scenes straight from dramatic literature. Special emphasis is placed on encouraging students to make dramatically effective choices by playing provocative actions, discovering the event within the scene, and finding creative obstacles. Prerequisite: prior acting experience or previous acting classes at the Berkeley Rep School of Theatre or another reputable theatre studio that stressed the fundamentals of text analysis, beat breakdown, and character objectives. May be repeated.

WED 7–10pm · 1/18, 1/25, 2/1, 2/8, 2/15, 2/22, 3/1, 3/8, 3/15 · $325

Marvin Greene is a professional actor and has performed with major regional theatres such as ACT, Aurora Theatre Company, Marin Theatre Company, Westport Country Playhouse, Long Wharf Theatre, and San Jose Rep. Marvin served as an instructor at ACT for over a decade and also teaches at the Academy of Art College and Voice One in San Francisco. Marvin has taught at the Berkeley Rep School of Theatre since 2003.

Intermediate/Advanced Acting: Active Analysis

Are you disenchanted with The Method? Studied Meisner or Lee Strasberg and subsequently found your shoulders up around your ears and your head spinning? Maybe you are seeking to bridge a perceived divide between your intellectual and your physical-emotional expression in performance. The Method developed in America focused on one aspect of the complete Stanislavski System—Intellectual Analysis, while the Moscow School was dominated by physical process—Active Analysis. Students will be exposed to a more complete spectrum of Stanislavski’s work, introducing techniques unknown to most practitioners until the fall of the Berlin Wall. Incorporating aspects of Grotowski, we will engage in “mental reconnaissance” and “active analysis,” engaging with text in the moment and on our feet, utilizing improvisation as a tool for learning text. Incorporating the previously censored “spiritual” side of Stanislavski, this class will give you a basic grounding in the complete Stanislavski System.

THU 7–10pm · 1/12, 1/19, 1/26, 2/2, 2/9, 2/16, 2/23, 3/2 · $310

Susan-Jane Harrison trained as an actor at The Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London and received an MFA in Dramatic Art from UC Davis. As an actor, Susan-Jane has performed throughout the UK. Locally, she has worked with Berkeley Rep, ACT, Aurora Theatre, Woman’s Will, Center Rep, California Shakespeare Theater, and A Traveling Jewish Theatre, among others. She was the recipient of a First Bite Award from Radio 4 where her first play, Alaska, was subsequently produced. A second radio play, The Quetzal, has been aired on the PBS Satellite Network. Her first stage play, Today I Live, has been workshopped through RADA in London. Susan-Jane has taught Laban Movement, Voice into Text, and acting in numerous acting programs throughout the Bay Area.

Advanced Acting

Advanced Acting is an intensive scene study course for students with previous acting training and/or experience. The class focuses on solidifying technique, deepening internal connection, and strengthening textual analysis skills. Scenes are drawn from a variety of styles and genres, and students should expect to spend substantial rehearsal time outside of class.

For acceptance into this class, students must submit a résumé to school@berkeleyrep.org.

Due to instructor’s high demand, class schedule can change occasionally. Total instructional hours will always be met.

MON 6:30–9:30pm · 1/9, 1/23, 1/30, 2/6, 2/13 · $220

Andrew Hurteau has been acting and teaching since graduating from ACT. He has performed with Berkeley Rep, ACT, The Magic Theatre, Marin Theatre Company, Aurora Theatre Company, and throughout the Bay Area. In addition to the Berkeley Rep School of Theatre, Andrew has taught at ACT, Academy of Art University, and the Nueva School.

On-Camera Acting—Level 1 and 2

Students will focus on creating character by thoroughly understanding the relationship between the text, situation, and the technical aspects of camera work. When these fundamental tools are genuinely understood and used correctly, only then can actors be free to work to the best of their ability in front of a camera. Areas of study will include script analysis, scene study, and character development, as well as camera technique, set discipline, and set etiquette. All scenes will be rehearsed with direction from the instructor and copies will be given to students for their reference; please bring a thumb drive. A variety of other subjects will also be discussed relating to the business side of show business including audition technique, agents, union membership, photographs, and websites. Prerequisite for Level 2: prior on-camera acting experience or previous acting classes at the Berkeley Rep School of Theatre or another reputable theatre studio. May be repeated.

MON 7–10pm · 1/9, 1/23, 1/30, 2/6, 2/13, 2/27, 3/6, 3/13, 3/20, 3/27 · $340 (Level 2)
SOLD OUT—Please call 510 647–2996 for wait list
SAT 10am–12:30pm · 1/21, 1/28, 2/4, 2/11, 2/25, 3/4, 3/11, 3/18 · $275 (Level 1)
SOLD OUT—Please call 510 647–2996 for wait list

Rolf Saxon (AEA, BAE, SAG/AFTRA) was in the first class of ACT’s Young Conservatory and went on to train at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London where he made his home for over 30 years working extensively in film, television, and theatre including seasons at the Royal Shakespeare Company and the Royal Court. He has also acted in regional and West End productions, working with directors Trevor Nunn, Simon Curtis, Matthew Warchus, and Adrian Noble, and actors David Suchet, Daryl Hannah, and Gene Wilder. His film and television credits include working with directors Steven Spielberg, Brian De Palma, and Tom Twkyer and actors Tom Hanks, Tom Cruise, Vin Diesel, Sir Alec Guinness, Dame Helen Mirren, Sir John Gielgud, Sir Ralph Richardson, Ryan Reynolds, and Jonathan Pryce, among others. As a director in both film and theatre, he has been a private tutor and coach for over 20 years and has taught at the Drama Lab in London, the Guildhall School of Music and Drama as a final year tutor, and is presently a director at The Royal Central School of Speech and Drama in London.

Beginning/Intermediate Voice-Over Acting

This voice-over class introduces and establishes the skills required to perform different genres of voice acting. Beginning and professional actors learn the techniques and artistry of reading commercial, narration, and character copy. Students also learn professional microphone techniques and how to read authentically. Voice-over lessons will be recorded for students to keep for their records.

MON 7–10pm · 1/9, 1/23, 1/30, 2/6, 2/13, 2/27, 3/6, 3/13, 3/20, 3/27 · $390

Sally Clawson is a SAG-AFTRA/AEA actor in voice over, film, and theatre. She has been voicing commercials, industrials, and video games for over 15 years. A partial list of her clients include Clorox, Yoplait, Old Navy, Target, Apple, Google, Wells Fargo, EA Games, Telltale Games, and Lucas Arts. She is currently in her sixth year of teaching at the Berkeley Rep School of Theatre, has taught at Cal Shakes Conservatory, and is currently on the faculty of Voice One. Sally has an MFA in Performance from Mills College.

Intermediate/Advanced Voice-Over Acting

This voice-over class studies and practices multiple styles of voice acting, introduces more advanced techniques, and will deepen the students choices and confidence on the mic. In addition, students will learn about recording equipment and how to set up a home studio. Prerequisite: Beginning Voice-Over Acting class.

WED 7–10pm · 1/11, 1/18, 1/25, 2/1, 2/8 · $290
SOLD OUT—Please call 510 647–2996 for wait list

Sally Clawson is a SAG-AFTRA/AEA actor in voice over, film, and theatre. She has been voicing commercials, industrials, and video games for over 15 years. A partial list of her clients include Clorox, Yoplait, Old Navy, Target, Apple, Google, Wells Fargo, EA Games, Telltale Games, and Lucas Arts. She is currently in her sixth year of teaching at the Berkeley Rep School of Theatre, has taught at Cal Shakes Conservatory, and is currently on the faculty of Voice One. Sally has an MFA in Performance from Mills College.

The Art of Auditioning

The audition is at the heart of every interaction between actor and director. It is the three minutes when you reveal who you are and what you can achieve. It is the moment when you prove yourself to the prospective employer. Students will learn techniques to hone skills when preparing and auditioning for the stage, such as choosing the appropriate monologue, treating the monologue as a scene, and using the three minutes to their greatest advantage. Participants should prepare one monologue prior to the start of class.

WED 7–9:30pm · 1/25, 2/1, 2/8, 2/15, 2/22 · $200

Lauren English is a founding member and artistic associate at San Francisco Playhouse where she serves as Casting Director, casting all Mainstage and Sandbox productions. Most recently she directed the world premiere of 1 2 3 by Lila Rose Kaplan in SF Playhouse’s Sandbox Series. Some of her favorite Playhouse onstage roles include: Kate in Seminar (TBA Award nomination), Pilot in Grounded, Steph in reasons to be pretty, Sally in Cabaret, Emily in Our Town, and Lisa in The Glory of Living. Other recent performance credits include: Sally in Talley’s Folly directed by Joy Carlin at Aurora Theatre and Helena in A Midsummer Night’s Dream at California Shakespeare Theater. Selected New York theatre performance credits: TACT’s Off Broadway production of The Cocktail Party, Hamlet at The Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey, and The Idealist at The New York Times Theatre. She has also worked at the Public Theater, Ensemble Studio Theatre, Lark Theatre, and Playwrights Realm. Locally, she has worked with California Shakespeare Theater, Word for Word, Marin Theatre Company, Marin Shakespeare Company, PlayGround, and Magic Theatre among others. She is a two-time BATCC award winner and three-time Dean Goodman award recipient. Lauren teaches acting at San Francisco State University, City College of San Francisco, San Jose State University, and coaches privately. Training: Foothill Theatre Conservatory, MFA from NYU’s Graduate Acting Program.

Theatre of the Oppressed/Playback Theatre

Playback Theatre is a form of interactive theatre where audience members are invited to tell stories. A group of trained actors then skillfully re-enact the stories on the spot using sound, spoken word, and movement to empathically and aesthetically reflect back on the experience. Theatre of the Oppressed is a direct, dynamic, theatrical approach to challenging oppression and injustice, using the theatrical space as a laboratory for problem-posing, analysis, testing, and involving direct audience participation, group solidarity, and critical political analysis. Together, they correspond to Mayakovsky’s “mirror of art” that reflects human experience and “the hammer” of engaged action that shapes, transforms, and advances human society. Participants will learn basic physical vocabulary and techniques of Playback Theatre and Theatre of the Oppressed and how to integrate and move fluidly between these two forms while highlighting the synergies, contrasts, complementarities, and contradictions. Participants will learn how to transition from Playback Theatre to Theatre of the Oppressed and back again, and also develop the skilled listening, energetic acuity, skillful characterization, story-telling, theatrical aesthetics, ritualization, and containment necessary to create rich, complex, and satisfying aesthetic representations to transform oppression and build community. This intensive class should be of interest to actors, performers, playwrights, therapists, activists, educators, and anyone with an interest in exploring the skills of empathy, awareness, community-building, problem-solving, and social transformation through art and theatre.

THU 7–10pm · 1/12, 1/19, 1/26, 2/2, 2/9, 2/16, 2/23, 3/2, 3/9, 3/16 · $340

Jiwon Chung is a professional actor, director, and a key theorist of Theatre of the Oppressed. He is the Artistic Director of Kairos Theater Ensemble, adjunct professor of Theater and Social Justice at Starr King School at the Graduate Theological Union, and past President of the national organization for Theatre of the Oppressed. Author of numerous books, articles, and performances, he is considered a pioneer in the integration of somatics, theatre of the oppressed, and socially engaged art. The focus of his work is in the application of theatre as a tool for social and political change, using Theatre of the Oppressed to challenge, resist, and transform systemic oppression and structural violence and to redress large scale historical atrocity and injustice. His approach to performance and social change is informed by his background as veteran, martial artist, and three decades of vipassana meditation.

Theatre of the Oppressed: Mindfulness, Meditation, & Liberation

“Within this fathom-long body, lies the world of suffering, its cause, and its liberation.”—Gautama Buddha

All oppression involves the body—the body holds and reflects the experience of its oppression. Fear, anxiety, and oppression bleed their way into the habits of our human expression, trapping, binding, and shutting down our natural spontaneity and aliveness, making us mechanized, divided, and imbalanced in our bodies and our minds and isolated, aggressive, or confused in our relationships and interactions. The original form of mindfulness—the mind’s capacity to observe itself, reflect, and transform—is theatre. This workshop will explore the rich, deep, powerful practices of mindfulness, dishabituation, and embodiment within the corpus of Augusto Boal’s Theatre of the Oppressed, focusing on practical techniques for transforming and finding liberation through somatic and energetic awareness in the personal, interpersonal, and political dimensions. We will use demechanization, dynamization, image theatre, forum theatre, and rainbow of desire while developing presence, focus, and a strong capacity for meditative awareness. Open to anyone with a desire to use theatre, art, and meditation to explore a powerful approach to transforming self and society. Please dress comfortably to move.

SAT 12:30–5:30pm · 3/4 · $85

Jiwon Chung is a professional actor, director, and a key theorist of Theatre of the Oppressed. He is the Artistic Director of Kairos Theater Ensemble, adjunct professor of Theater and Social Justice at Starr King School at the Graduate Theological Union, and past President of the national organization for Theatre of the Oppressed. Author of numerous books, articles, and performances, he is considered a pioneer in the integration of somatics, theatre of the oppressed, and socially engaged art. The focus of his work is in the application of theatre as a tool for social and political change, using Theatre of the Oppressed to challenge, resist, and transform systemic oppression and structural violence and to redress large scale historical atrocity and injustice. His approach to performance and social change is informed by his background as veteran, martial artist, and three decades of vipassana meditation.

Viewpoints and Presence

This class focuses on developing Viewpoints and presence for actors, improvisers, and directors. Based on Mary Overlie’s Six Viewpoints, we will work kinesthetically with space, time, shape, emotion, movement, and story to develop each individual’s and the ensemble’s creative potential. Students learn how to apply and explore these tools and techniques while learning how to make compelling, dynamic, and intelligent choices that illuminate the relationship between character and action, the theatrical space and the audience. In addition, there will be a focus on stage presence in connection with the Viewpoints work. We will bring energetic and somatic awareness to filling space, shaping energetic flow, and infusing character with energy to make your performance engaging and authentic to an audience.

WED 7–9pm · 1/11, 1/18, 1/25, 2/1, 2/8 · $150

Iu-Hui Chua is a director, choreographer, and movement artist with an MFA in Dramatic Arts with an emphasis in Choreography. She has danced with Anna Halprin, Ledoh, Dandelion Dancetheater, Headmistress, and Disneyland as well as devised original work with long-time collaborator Bobby August Jr. Her work aims to illuminate the human experience, encouraging connection and transformation. An artist in residence at Djerassi and the Peñasco Theatre Co., she has been supported by the Puffin Foundation Ltd., Theatre Bay Area’s CA$H Grant, Creative Capacity Fund’s Quick Grant Award, and the Consortium for Women and Research, and is a recipient of the Cass Calder Smith Artful Harvest Fellowship. Recently she directed Gruesome Playground Injuries starring Bobby August Jr. and Maria Candelaria which was nominated for a Theatre Bay Area Outstanding Production of a Play award in 2015.

Yoga & Pilates Warmup for Artists: Preparation for class

Come warm up early before class! As a preparation to your primary class you will be introduced to Iyengar based alignment postures, Pilates core power work, and the flow and breath of modern dance. This 30 minute prep is perfect for strengthening the body and mind, creating a more confident and expressive actor, improviser, director…artist. You will enter your class with a vibrant combination of energy, commitment, and awareness. Please bring a mat if you have one; a few mats will be available. Comfortable clothes are encouraged. Registration for another Berkeley Rep School of Theatre class not required. Due to the cost of this class, no discounting is possible.

MON 6:30–7pm · 1/9, 1/23, 1/30, 2/6, 2/13, 2/27, 3/6, 3/13, 3/20, 3/27 · $70 pass for all 10 sessions or $8 drop-in pay at the door

Erica Blue has a background in modern dance and physical theatre and has taught Iyengar Yoga for 15 years with a certification in Power Pilates Core Mat I and II. She teaches at the Berkeley YMCA and is a founding member of MAY Fest, NY the Music Art and Yoga Festival in Garrison NY.

Stage Combat Certification: Unarmed—Level 2

Ages 16 and up · Go beyond taking a punch! Learn to apply unarmed techniques to classical and contemporary scenes. This scene study class will prepare you for roles by great playwrights both contemporary and classical and incorporate theatrical violence. Students will review standard unarmed moves, learn advanced techniques, and rehearse and perform choreography specific to the needs of an assigned scene. Additionally, students will have the opportunity to take a “Skills Proficiency Test” for recognition as an Intermediate Theatrical Combatant with Dueling Arts International. Prerequisite: Level 1 Unarmed or permission from the instructor.

MON 7–10pm · 1/9, 1/23, 1/30, 2/6, 2/13 · $220

Dave Maier is the resident fight director at San Francisco Opera, California Shakespeare Theatre, and a company member with Shotgun Players. He has won several awards for Fight Direction and has choreographed violence for several Berkeley Rep productions including Pericles, Prince of Tyre, and Troublemaker, or the Freakin Kick-A Adventures of Bradley Boatright. His work has been seen at ACT, La Jolla Playhouse, San Jose Rep, Magic Theatre, and Aurora Theatre Company, among others. He is a Full Instructor of Theatrical Combat with Dueling Arts International.

Stage Combat Certification: Broadsword—Level 1

Ages 16 and up · Broadsword: weapon of choice in the Middle Ages. This certification course will prepare you for great steel slinging roles like Richard III, Macbeth, Beowulf, Robin Hood, and Joan of Arc. This class will stress safety, partnership, and telling the story of the fight while covering basic sword fighting history and terminology. Additionally, students will learn the skills necessary to perform realistic broadsword fights. All students will have the opportunity to rehearse and perform scenes that include stage combat and take a “Skills Proficiency Test” for recognition as a Theatrical Combatant with Dueling Arts International. Full fingered gloves are required. Class size is limited to 10.

MON 7–10pm · 2/27, 3/6, 3/13, 3/20, 3/27 · $220

Dave Maier is the resident fight director at San Francisco Opera, California Shakespeare Theatre, and a company member with Shotgun Players. He has won several awards for Fight Direction and has choreographed violence for several Berkeley Rep productions including Pericles, Prince of Tyre, and Troublemaker, or the Freakin Kick-A Adventures of Bradley Boatright. His work has been seen at ACT, La Jolla Playhouse, San Jose Rep, Magic Theatre, and Aurora Theatre Company, among others. He is a Full Instructor of Theatrical Combat with Dueling Arts International.

One-on-One Audition Coaching

Don’t be caught unprepared for an upcoming audition. Berkeley Rep faculty members are available to work with actors on contemporary and classical monologues. Make choices that you feel confident about. Be directed by and collaborate with working professionals.

Dates/Times: to be scheduled with the instructor · $80/hour
Please call 510 647–2996 to schedule a coaching session

Audition

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The Art of Auditioning

The audition is at the heart of every interaction between actor and director. It is the three minutes when you reveal who you are and what you can achieve. It is the moment when you prove yourself to the prospective employer. Students will learn techniques to hone skills when preparing and auditioning for the stage, such as choosing the appropriate monologue, treating the monologue as a scene, and using the three minutes to their greatest advantage. Participants should prepare one monologue prior to the start of class.

WED 7–9:30pm · 1/25, 2/1, 2/8, 2/15, 2/22 · $200

Lauren English is a founding member and artistic associate at San Francisco Playhouse where she serves as Casting Director, casting all Mainstage and Sandbox productions. Most recently she directed the world premiere of 1 2 3 by Lila Rose Kaplan in SF Playhouse’s Sandbox Series. Some of her favorite Playhouse onstage roles include: Kate in Seminar (TBA Award nomination), Pilot in Grounded, Steph in reasons to be pretty, Sally in Cabaret, Emily in Our Town, and Lisa in The Glory of Living. Other recent performance credits include: Sally in Talley’s Folly directed by Joy Carlin at Aurora Theatre and Helena in A Midsummer Night’s Dream at California Shakespeare Theater. Selected New York theatre performance credits: TACT’s Off Broadway production of The Cocktail Party, Hamlet at The Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey, and The Idealist at The New York Times Theatre. She has also worked at the Public Theater, Ensemble Studio Theatre, Lark Theatre, and Playwrights Realm. Locally, she has worked with California Shakespeare Theater, Word for Word, Marin Theatre Company, Marin Shakespeare Company, PlayGround, and Magic Theatre among others. She is a two-time BATCC award winner and three-time Dean Goodman award recipient. Lauren teaches acting at San Francisco State University, City College of San Francisco, San Jose State University, and coaches privately. Training: Foothill Theatre Conservatory, MFA from NYU’s Graduate Acting Program.

One-on-One Audition Coaching

Don’t be caught unprepared for an upcoming audition. Berkeley Rep faculty members are available to work with actors on contemporary and classical monologues. Make choices that you feel confident about. Be directed by and collaborate with working professionals.

Dates/Times: to be scheduled with the instructor · $80/hour
Please call 510 647–2996 to schedule a coaching session

Improvisation

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Beginning Improvisation

Gain experience and understanding of the philosophies and fundamentals of improvisational theatre via a Keith Johnstone (IMPRO)-based practice in this beginning class. Through playful, interactive theatre games and storytelling, students are introduced to the elements of spontaneity, listening, accepting, and responding. This methodology helps students access their imagination, free their inhibitions, and increase their confidence. This class, taught by a professional improviser, focuses on skills that enhance the student’s creative path. Principles explored include being present in the moment, letting go of the inner critic, and strengthening creative impulses. May be repeated.

THU 7–10pm · 1/12, 1/19, 1/26, 2/2, 2/9 · $220 (Derry)
SOLD OUT—Please call 510 647–2996 for wait list
SAT 1–3:30pm · 3/4, 3/11, 3/18, 3/25, 4/1 · $180 (August)

Bobby August, Jr. is an actor, improviser, and teacher. He earned an MFA in Acting from the University of California, Davis. Some of his favorite past performances include portraying Romeo in Romeo and Juliet, Benedick in Much Ado About Nothing, Howie in Rabbit Hole, Petruchio in The Taming of the Shrew, and The Player in Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead. Bobby also devises physical theatre pieces with long-time collaborator Iu-Hui Chua. They created and performed Crawl and Ligilo at the Mondavi Center for the Performing Arts. In addition, Bobby is the owner and director of the award-winning Made Up Theatre (MUT) in Fremont, California. His theatre specializes in presenting completely improvised plays. He has performed with MUT at improv festivals throughout the country—most recently winning “Best Improv Group” at the Sacramento Comedy Festival. His improv education includes training at the world famous Second City and Annoyance Theatre in Chicago.

Laura Derry was a scripted actor terrified of improv, but after her first class, it was so much fun that she hasn’t stopped doing it. She has a BA in Theatre Arts from UCSC and trained at ACT, Berkley Rep, and BATS Improv. Laura performs improv all over the Bay Area, was on TLC’s reality show Four Weddings, and recently starred in the short film Displacement, which won an award at the Monaco International Film Festival. Laura is a guest artist who teaches in the K–12 school system, applying improv and getting students ready for performances. She works with beginning adult improvisers, more advanced classes geared towards performances involving short form or long form, and local businesses doing leadership and communication trainings with applied improv. Laura is a walking testament to the power of improv—she was once very shy, highly self-critical of her creativity, and terrified of improv. Now she is a professional improviser and teacher who creates a safe, fun space to laugh with a wonderful group of people.

Intermediate/Advanced Improvisation

Open your mind to the infinite possibilities of improvised theatre. Delve into the more potent possibilities of improv, while exploring the nuances of style in storytelling, long form, genre work, and continued development of spontaneity and dynamic play. You will receive direct, tailored, and supportive feedback. This class will be geared towards performance level improv—getting you ready to hit the stage or giving you a tune-up wherever you are as an improviser. No matter what, we will have fun and laugh. A lot.

TUE 7–10pm · 1/10, 1/17, 1/24, 1/31, 2/7, 2/14, 2/21, 2/28, 3/7, 3/14 · $340

Diane Rachel has been performing and teaching at BATS Improv since 1989. She created a specialty long-form program with a focus on intimate acting and stage combat, which has attracted an international following. She has led workshops in Melbourne, Paris, Amsterdam, and Helsinki, and has taught at ACT and Stanford. Diane is a founding member of San Francisco improv group True Fiction Magazine.

Improvisation Performance Lab

One of the joys of improvisation is sharing the creativity and spontaneity with an audience. This class introduces the skill of performing improvisational games and stories in a light and generous atmosphere. Students explore the philosophy of “giving” rather than “shining” and practice interaction techniques that demystify the perceived barriers between performers and an audience. There will be two scheduled performances during class time. Prerequisite: Intermediate Improvisation at Berkeley Rep or special permission from the instructor.

WED 7–10pm · 1/11, 1/18, 1/25, 2/1, 2/8 (performance), 2/15, 2/22, 3/1, 3/8, 3/10 (performance) · $330

Diane Rachel has been performing and teaching at BATS Improv since 1989. She created a specialty long-form program with a focus on intimate acting and stage combat, which has attracted an international following. She has led workshops in Melbourne, Paris, Amsterdam, and Helsinki, and has taught at ACT and Stanford. Diane is a founding member of San Francisco improv group True Fiction Magazine.

Improv for the Professional

We’ve all heard the buzz: Improv is no longer just for actors. Theatre artists possess many of the skills regularly sought after in today’s economy—creativity, resiliency, agility, courage, collaborative awareness, and high levels of emotional intelligence. “The Master of Fine Arts is the new MBA.” So argued author Daniel Pink in his seminal New York Times story about the new creative economy. While this is an extreme statement, its implications are powerful; you cannot excel in business without creativity. It is clear that a paradigm shift is taking place and more of a premium is being placed on right brain behavior, as evidenced by the rising popularity of improv theatre training within top MBA programs; such as Duke, UCLA, MIT, and Stanford. In our competitive and evolving economy, being logical and analytical is no longer enough, the modern executive must be nimble and inventive to face the constant change he/she faces. Because we live in an exciting time of cross pollinations, over the last decade and a half, improv theatre training has proven itself to be a highly effective method for teaching 21st century soft skills to the modern executive. This class is specifically designed for professionals from any field, who want to reap the benefits of this training and develop their leadership skills. In this playful and unpretentious atmosphere, you will learn to harness your creativity, enhance your public speaking, trust your instincts, deepen your listening skills, read non-verbal body language, master your emotions, quiet your inner critic, and gain confidence in front of an audience.

TUE 7–10pm · 2/21, 2/28, 3/7, 3/14, 3/21 · $250

Joyful Simpson is an actress, writer, and creativity educator who combines improv theatre, behavioral sciences, and mindfulness to create dynamic trainings for businesses and institutions. She studied theatre and psychology at Sarah Lawrence College in New York and earned an MFA in Dramatic Art from UC Davis. While at Davis, Simpson spearheaded an applied improv-based training program for the Graduate School of Management. In 2013 she founded Pro-CreativeArts—an applied theatre organization—and is hired throughout the United States to lead trainings that foster creativity, collaboration, and communication for teams and leaders. Born into an iconic theatre family, she brings to her classes a unique body of experience gained from creating and performing theatre professionally since childhood. Her solo comedy recently won “Best of Fringe” at the 2016 San Francisco Fringe Festival. Her theatre credits include lead actor and co-author of four plays for “Prize of Hope”-winning company Human Nature and co-founder of the ensemble-driven theatre company Rococo Risqué, winner of SF Weekly “Best Theater Ensemble” 2005. Joyful has also appeared as an actor in many projects on stage and film including Odyssey Works, an immersive theatre project; The Pursuit of Happiness, with Will Smith; and Spring Awakening, directed by Broadway and West End director Stafford Arima.

Directing

Directing with Precision

Are you the kind of artist who has a grand vision and can see the big picture? In this introduction to a stage director’s craft, we’ll explore how the director shapes every event that occurs onstage between the start and finish of the play. The director prepares the text, the space, the elements of design, and the actors to tell a clear and compelling story. We’ll cover three major topics throughout the course: a director’s script analysis, the basics of stagecraft and mis-en-scene, and strategies for communicating with actors to draw out their best performances. The course builds toward the presentation of a directed scene using actors from the Berkeley Rep School of Theatre’s acting classes. Students will leave the class with a clear process for preparing and rehearsing a scene from start to finish.

MON 7–10pm · 1/30, 2/6, 2/13, 2/27, 3/6, 3/13 · $260

M. Graham Smith is a San Francisco-based director, educator, and producer. He is an O’Neill National Directing Fellow and an Oregon Shakespeare Festival FAIR Fellow. He’s directed at HERE in New York City and venues in San Francisco, including ACT, Aurora Theatre, Crowded Fire, Central Works, EXIT Theatre, PlayGround, Brava, The Playwright’s Foundation, Cutting Ball Theater, Ray of Light, Berkeley Playhouse, Golden Thread, San Francisco Opera, New Conservatory, and The Ground Floor: Berkeley Rep’s Center for the Creation and Development of New Work. He directed the West Coast premiere of Jerry Springer: The Opera in San Francisco and Truffaldino Says No at Shotgun Players, winning Best Director for the Bay Area Critics Circle. Recent credits include The Lady Onstage at Profile Theatre in Portland, Oregon, The Liar adapted by David Ives at Occidental College in Los Angeles as an Edgarton Foundation Fellow, and Deal with the Dragon at Edinburgh Fringe Festival.

Movement

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Yoga & Pilates Warmup for Artists: Preparation for class

Come warm up early before class! As a preparation to your primary class you will be introduced to Iyengar based alignment postures, Pilates core power work, and the flow and breath of modern dance. This 30 minute prep is perfect for strengthening the body and mind, creating a more confident and expressive actor, improviser, director…artist. You will enter your class with a vibrant combination of energy, commitment, and awareness. Please bring a mat if you have one; a few mats will be available. Comfortable clothes are encouraged. Registration for another Berkeley Rep School of Theatre class not required. Due to the cost of this class, no discounting is possible.

MON 6:30–7pm · 1/9, 1/23, 1/30, 2/6, 2/13, 2/27, 3/6, 3/13, 3/20, 3/27 · $70 pass for all 10 sessions or $8 drop-in pay at the door

Erica Blue has a background in modern dance and physical theatre and has taught Iyengar Yoga for 15 years with a certification in Power Pilates Core Mat I and II. She teaches at the Berkeley YMCA and is a founding member of MAY Fest, NY the Music Art and Yoga Festival in Garrison NY.

Viewpoints and Presence

This class focuses on developing Viewpoints and presence for actors, improvisers, and directors. Based on Mary Overlie’s Six Viewpoints, we will work kinesthetically with space, time, shape, emotion, movement, and story to develop each individual’s and the ensemble’s creative potential. Students learn how to apply and explore these tools and techniques while learning how to make compelling, dynamic, and intelligent choices that illuminate the relationship between character and action, the theatrical space and the audience. In addition, there will be a focus on stage presence in connection with the Viewpoints work. We will bring energetic and somatic awareness to filling space, shaping energetic flow, and infusing character with energy to make your performance engaging and authentic to an audience.

WED 7–9pm · 1/11, 1/18, 1/25, 2/1, 2/8 · $150

Iu-Hui Chua is a director, choreographer, and movement artist with an MFA in Dramatic Arts with an emphasis in Choreography. She has danced with Anna Halprin, Ledoh, Dandelion Dancetheater, Headmistress, and Disneyland as well as devised original work with long-time collaborator Bobby August Jr. Her work aims to illuminate the human experience, encouraging connection and transformation. An artist in residence at Djerassi and the Peñasco Theatre Co., she has been supported by the Puffin Foundation Ltd., Theatre Bay Area’s CA$H Grant, Creative Capacity Fund’s Quick Grant Award, and the Consortium for Women and Research, and is a recipient of the Cass Calder Smith Artful Harvest Fellowship. Recently she directed Gruesome Playground Injuries starring Bobby August Jr. and Maria Candelaria which was nominated for a Theatre Bay Area Outstanding Production of a Play award in 2015.

Alexander Technique for Mind/Body Balance

Alexander Technique is a time-honored method used by actors to improve posture, breath, and movement. Effective movement liberates your acting skills and enriches your life. As you stop responding to the world in a habitual manner, new avenues of physical ease and creativity open up. Discover the Alexander Technique for body-mind balance. Let your body’s physical genius emerge!

WED 7–9pm · 2/15, 2/22, 3/1, 3/8, 3/15 · $150

Elyse Shafarman holds a Master’s Degree in Physiological Psychology and Alexander Technique Teacher Certification from Frank Ottiwell (2003). Elyse is on the faculty of American Conservatory Theater’s MFA program and maintains a private Alexander Technique practice in San Francisco and Berkeley. Her background as a modern dancer and training in psychology, yoga, and Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction influence her approach to teaching.

Stage Combat Certification: Unarmed—Level 2

Ages 16 and up · Go beyond taking a punch! Learn to apply unarmed techniques to classical and contemporary scenes. This scene study class will prepare you for roles by great playwrights both contemporary and classical and incorporate theatrical violence. Students will review standard unarmed moves, learn advanced techniques, and rehearse and perform choreography specific to the needs of an assigned scene. Additionally, students will have the opportunity to take a “Skills Proficiency Test” for recognition as an Intermediate Theatrical Combatant with Dueling Arts International. Prerequisite: Level 1 Unarmed or permission from the instructor.

MON 7–10pm · 1/9, 1/23, 1/30, 2/6, 2/13 · $220

Dave Maier is the resident fight director at San Francisco Opera, California Shakespeare Theatre, and a company member with Shotgun Players. He has won several awards for Fight Direction and has choreographed violence for several Berkeley Rep productions including Pericles, Prince of Tyre, and Troublemaker, or the Freakin Kick-A Adventures of Bradley Boatright. His work has been seen at ACT, La Jolla Playhouse, San Jose Rep, Magic Theatre, and Aurora Theatre Company, among others. He is a Full Instructor of Theatrical Combat with Dueling Arts International.

Stage Combat Certification: Broadsword—Level 1

Ages 16 and up · Broadsword: weapon of choice in the Middle Ages. This certification course will prepare you for great steel slinging roles like Richard III, Macbeth, Beowulf, Robin Hood, and Joan of Arc. This class will stress safety, partnership, and telling the story of the fight while covering basic sword fighting history and terminology. Additionally, students will learn the skills necessary to perform realistic broadsword fights. All students will have the opportunity to rehearse and perform scenes that include stage combat and take a “Skills Proficiency Test” for recognition as a Theatrical Combatant with Dueling Arts International. Full fingered gloves are required. Class size is limited to 10.

MON 7–10pm · 2/27, 3/6, 3/13, 3/20, 3/27 · $220

Dave Maier is the resident fight director at San Francisco Opera, California Shakespeare Theatre, and a company member with Shotgun Players. He has won several awards for Fight Direction and has choreographed violence for several Berkeley Rep productions including Pericles, Prince of Tyre, and Troublemaker, or the Freakin Kick-A Adventures of Bradley Boatright. His work has been seen at ACT, La Jolla Playhouse, San Jose Rep, Magic Theatre, and Aurora Theatre Company, among others. He is a Full Instructor of Theatrical Combat with Dueling Arts International.

Voice / Dialects

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Singing for Improvisers and Actors

Do you hide behind a fellow ensemble member any time a musical theatre scene is called for in an improv show? Do you find yourself avoiding auditions that require any type of singing? Do you just want to feel more comfortable and at home with your own voice? If so, this is the class for you! In this class, we will focus on tangible techniques that you can use in rehearsals and performance to ground and release your voice. We’ll also look at singing in improv games and scenes, and identify various factors that might be inhibiting you individually as a singer.

TUE 7–10pm · 1/10, 1/17, 1/24, 1/31 · $210

Rebecca Castelli holds a BA in voice and theatre and an MFA in acting. Previously from Seattle, she won a Seattle Times Footlight Award for her role of Mabel in The Pirates of Penzance, and also had the honor of acting with Tony award-winning actress Judy Kaye in Gypsy at Fifth Avenue Musical Theatre Company. She was a company member of the Marin-based Porchlight Theatre Company for five years and had leads in many of their mainstage productions including Chekhov’s Three Sisters and Oscar Wilde’s An Ideal Husband. Locally, Rebecca has also acted with Shotgun Players and Cinnabar Theater Company. She dialect coaches for various Bay Area theatres including Shotgun Players, Theatre Rhinoceros, Town Hall Theatre Company, Mendocino Theatre Company, Virago Theatre Company, and Ross Valley Players. She is a founding member of The Incidentalists, a long-form improvisational group based in Oakland.

Dialects and Accents for Improvisers and Actors

Don’t want to break out in a cold sweat every time you are endowed as a British dowager in a period romance or a cowboy from Texas in a Western genre?  Learn physical triggers that will help you quickly find the placement, melody, and general sound changes for commonly called for dialects in improvisation—from New York, Plantation Southern, rural Southern, and Texas, to foreign accents such as British, Irish, French, German, and Russian. We will study the dialects in a multi-sensorial way, with a focus on the physical changes, the phonetic sound changes, and with immersion (listening to primary sources of the dialect). We’ll also get the dialects up on their feet in improv games and scenes.

TUE 7–10pm · 2/7, 2/14, 2/21, 2/28, 3/7, 3/14 · $265

Rebecca Castelli holds a BA in voice and theatre and an MFA in acting. Previously from Seattle, she won a Seattle Times Footlight Award for her role of Mabel in The Pirates of Penzance, and also had the honor of acting with Tony award-winning actress Judy Kaye in Gypsy at Fifth Avenue Musical Theatre Company. She was a company member of the Marin-based Porchlight Theatre Company for five years and had leads in many of their mainstage productions including Chekhov’s Three Sisters and Oscar Wilde’s An Ideal Husband. Locally, Rebecca has also acted with Shotgun Players and Cinnabar Theater Company. She dialect coaches for various Bay Area theatres including Shotgun Players, Theatre Rhinoceros, Town Hall Theatre Company, Mendocino Theatre Company, Virago Theatre Company, and Ross Valley Players. She is a founding member of The Incidentalists, a long-form improvisational group based in Oakland.

Voice for Performance

Free your natural voice using the techniques developed by Kristen Linklater. This class will enable students to gradually and safely build vocal strength, while continually aiming to reach full vocal potential. Through a series of exercises designed to eliminate the blocks that inhibit vocal freedom, students will sustain strength and creative vocal range. Classes will begin with extensive warm-ups, which will be incorporated into relevant texts specifically chosen to best embody and express the true unique vocal life of each student. Students will be given the opportunity to work on a passion piece, which they can choose themselves.

TUE 7–10pm · 1/10, 1/17, 1/24, 1/31, 2/7 · $220

Deborah Eubanks is in her twelfth year teaching at the School of Theatre. She is currently serving on the faculty at the Academy of Art University where she created two MFA classes in dialect reduction and audition. She also teaches acting technique for Art Experience High School students at SF Academy. Deborah completed her training at Harold Pinter Studios in the U.K. She has served on the faculty at the University of San Francisco, was Director in Residence at Sonoma State University, Head of Curriculum Design of the Theater Arts program at St. Vincent’s High School, and has taught at American Conservatory Theater and San Francisco Shakespeare. Her work in the U.K. includes directing at Libra Theater Company under Stephen Hawking, as well as teaching and performing at Covent Garden Arts Center Cambridge and Age Exchange Theater in London. Deb was previously an RN Tutor and voted SF Divafest Playwright for Crystal Daze.

Beginning/Intermediate Voice-Over Acting

This voice-over class introduces and establishes the skills required to perform different genres of voice acting. Beginning and professional actors learn the techniques and artistry of reading commercial, narration, and character copy. Students also learn professional microphone techniques and how to read authentically. Voice-over lessons will be recorded for students to keep for their records.

MON 7–10pm · 1/9, 1/23, 1/30, 2/6, 2/13, 2/27, 3/6, 3/13, 3/20, 3/27 · $390

Sally Clawson is a SAG-AFTRA/AEA actor in voice over, film, and theatre. She has been voicing commercials, industrials, and video games for over 15 years. A partial list of her clients include Clorox, Yoplait, Old Navy, Target, Apple, Google, Wells Fargo, EA Games, Telltale Games, and Lucas Arts. She is currently in her sixth year of teaching at the Berkeley Rep School of Theatre, has taught at Cal Shakes Conservatory, and is currently on the faculty of Voice One. Sally has an MFA in Performance from Mills College.

Intermediate/Advanced Voice-Over Acting

This voice-over class studies and practices multiple styles of voice acting, introduces more advanced techniques, and will deepen the students choices and confidence on the mic. In addition, students will learn about recording equipment and how to set up a home studio. Prerequisite: Beginning Voice-Over Acting class.

WED 7–10pm · 1/11, 1/18, 1/25, 2/1, 2/8 · $290
SOLD OUT—Please call 510 647–2996 for wait list

Sally Clawson is a SAG-AFTRA/AEA actor in voice over, film, and theatre. She has been voicing commercials, industrials, and video games for over 15 years. A partial list of her clients include Clorox, Yoplait, Old Navy, Target, Apple, Google, Wells Fargo, EA Games, Telltale Games, and Lucas Arts. She is currently in her sixth year of teaching at the Berkeley Rep School of Theatre, has taught at Cal Shakes Conservatory, and is currently on the faculty of Voice One. Sally has an MFA in Performance from Mills College.

Private Voice

Learn to sing with ease and confidence, eliminating vocal pain and fatigue while improving your range and breath control. Each session includes breathing and relaxation exercises, vocal exercises and technique, and vocal coaching on songs, including how to act a song and how to prepare a musical theatre audition.

THU 3–3:50pm · $80/session
Please call 510 647–2996 to schedule a voice session

Rebecca Castelli holds a BA in voice and theatre and an MFA in acting. Previously from Seattle, she won a Seattle Times Footlight Award for her role of Mabel in The Pirates of Penzance, and also had the honor of acting with Tony award-winning actress Judy Kaye in Gypsy at Fifth Avenue Musical Theatre Company. She was a company member of the Marin-based Porchlight Theatre Company for five years and had leads in many of their mainstage productions including Chekhov’s Three Sisters and Oscar Wilde’s An Ideal Husband. Locally, Rebecca has also acted with Shotgun Players and Cinnabar Theater Company. She dialect coaches for various Bay Area theatres including Shotgun Players, Theatre Rhinoceros, Town Hall Theatre Company, Mendocino Theatre Company, Virago Theatre Company, and Ross Valley Players. She is a founding member of The Incidentalists, a long-form improvisational group based in Oakland.

Writing

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Playwriting

This class is for anyone who has ever wanted to write a play, and those who have already written one and want to develop it further with a writers group. Areas of focus include character development, dramatic structure, writing dialogue, and effective exposition. The course provides a structured writing program, deadlines for presenting work, and a supportive group of writers with which to share and discuss projects. Students present portions of the developing work to the class and submit a draft of the final project to the instructor for written feedback at the end of the course.

WED 7–10pm · 2/15, 2/22, 3/1, 3/8, 3/15 · $220

Cleavon Smith graduated from Mills College and US Naval Academy. He is the writer of Vs., produced by TheatreFIRST in their 2016–17 season. His short plays have been featured in the 2012 PlayGround and the 2015 Ohlone College Playwrights Festivals. He lives in Oakland and teaches in the English department at Berkeley City College.

Writing for Television

This is a hands-on intensive workshop over two days aimed at professionals who are interested in trying to make the leap into starting to write for television. We’ll explore how to get started, what happens in a writers’ room, and how to begin breaking down a season, individual episodes within a season, and diving into the writing process. We will examine structure, inspiration, writing style, what your job is as a staff writer, and how to begin to hopefully break in to working in television.

SAT & SUN 12:30–5:30pm · 1/28, 1/29 · $150

Daniel Talbott is currently a staff writer for the Weinstein Company and Spike TV on The Mist, based on the Stephen King novella, and in development with Jim Parsons’ company That’s Wonderful Productions for a feature film, Tuolumne. His hour-long drama pilot Summer has been optioned and is in development with Sonar Entertainment and Killer Films. He is a writer, director, and actor, as well as an artistic associate of Rattlestick Playwrights Theater, associate artistic director of {Your Name Here}, and artistic director of the Lucille Lortel and NYIT Award-winning Rising Phoenix Rep. His plays include Slipping (Rattlestick, The Side Project), Yosemite (Rattlestick), Afghanistan, Zimbabwe, America, Kuwait (Rattlestick/piece by piece, Encore), What Happened When (Rattlestick, Your Name Here, Rising Phoenix Rep/HERE), Someone Brought Me (Quince Productions), Mike and Seth (Quince, Encore, The Side Project), Extraordinary Things (RPR), and Gray (Your Name Here). Recent directing work includes Ugly Little Sister (NYU/Strasberg), First Born (The Actors Studio), Selkie (RPR/Weathervane), Thieves (Weathervane/RPR/ Rattlestick), F**king Immaculate (RPR), A Fable (piece by piece/RPR/Rattlestick), Gin Baby (IRT), Scarcity (Rattlestick/Hill Town Plays—OBIE Award), Lake Water (Neighborhood Productions), Eightythree Down (Hard Sparks), Much Ado About Nothing (Boomerang), Squealer (Lesser America), and The Umbrella Plays (the teacup company/FringeNYC—Overall Excellence Award: Outstanding Play). He received a 2011 Theater Hall of Fame Fellowship, a 2007 New York Innovative Theatre Award for directing, a Drama-Logue Award, two Dean Goodman Choice Awards, and a Judy Award for acting, and was also named one of the 15 People of the Year by nytheatre.com. He is a graduate of Juilliard and teaches at NYU/Strasberg and Primary Stages/ESPA. He is a proud member of Lesser America and a member of the Actors Studio.

Playwriting: Inspired by Space

This is a fun, dynamic, and hands-on intensive workshop taking place over two days in and around Berkeley Rep. Over the course of the workshop, we’ll write a 10-minute play inspired by a site-specific location. This is a workshop about finding inspiration from the outside and putting into action, building on the idea that all the world’s a stage. We’ll talk about independent production, theatre of poverty, and explore the idea that every theatre artist is only constrained by the limits they place on themselves. We’ll look at playwriting structure, unique ways to conjure inspiration, and how to face a blank page actively and dynamically. This class is for all theatre artists wanting to dive openly and courageously into work, and for folks who are wanting to spend the weekend making something that will hopefully open the flood gates to a larger and more fully realized play down the road.

SAT & SUN 12:30–5:30pm · 2/4, 2/5 · $150

Daniel Talbott is currently a staff writer for the Weinstein Company and Spike TV on The Mist, based on the Stephen King novella, and in development with Jim Parsons’ company That’s Wonderful Productions for a feature film, Tuolumne. His hour-long drama pilot Summer has been optioned and is in development with Sonar Entertainment and Killer Films. He is a writer, director, and actor, as well as an artistic associate of Rattlestick Playwrights Theater, associate artistic director of {Your Name Here}, and artistic director of the Lucille Lortel and NYIT Award-winning Rising Phoenix Rep. His plays include Slipping (Rattlestick, The Side Project), Yosemite (Rattlestick), Afghanistan, Zimbabwe, America, Kuwait (Rattlestick/piece by piece, Encore), What Happened When (Rattlestick, Your Name Here, Rising Phoenix Rep/HERE), Someone Brought Me (Quince Productions), Mike and Seth (Quince, Encore, The Side Project), Extraordinary Things (RPR), and Gray (Your Name Here). Recent directing work includes Ugly Little Sister (NYU/Strasberg), First Born (The Actors Studio), Selkie (RPR/Weathervane), Thieves (Weathervane/RPR/ Rattlestick), F**king Immaculate (RPR), A Fable (piece by piece/RPR/Rattlestick), Gin Baby (IRT), Scarcity (Rattlestick/Hill Town Plays—OBIE Award), Lake Water (Neighborhood Productions), Eightythree Down (Hard Sparks), Much Ado About Nothing (Boomerang), Squealer (Lesser America), and The Umbrella Plays (the teacup company/FringeNYC—Overall Excellence Award: Outstanding Play). He received a 2011 Theater Hall of Fame Fellowship, a 2007 New York Innovative Theatre Award for directing, a Drama-Logue Award, two Dean Goodman Choice Awards, and a Judy Award for acting, and was also named one of the 15 People of the Year by nytheatre.com. He is a graduate of Juilliard and teaches at NYU/Strasberg and Primary Stages/ESPA. He is a proud member of Lesser America and a member of the Actors Studio.

Workshops

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Actor’s Retreat: The Year of Albee

The window between Christmas and New Year’s is a short respite; you probably want to use it to rest, rejuvenate, and envision a wonderful year to come. This retreat is intended to help you do all three. You will renew your craft, nurture your creative spirit, and envision your 2017 artistic goals. We will start each day with a variety of practical spiritual techniques adapted especially for actors and drawn from master acting teachers. We will work physically, vocally, emotionally, and interpersonally. Once we feel free and rooted in our authentic selves, then we will move on to afternoon scene work. This year we will focus on scenes from Edward Albee plays, to honor his passing and to deeply explore his towering contribution to the American Theatre. Finally, each day will finish with a writing process that culminates in your having a step-by-step plan for how you will achieve specific professional and artistic goals in 2017. Note: there may also be one or two theatre professionals joining us for a question and answer session during the week.

WED, THU, FRI 10am–5pm · 12/28, 12/29, 12/30 · Full participation $290 (including scene work and individual feedback) · Partial participation $145 (including participation only in exercises)

James Wagner is a Los Angeles based actor who has taught acting workshops in the Bay Area for over 10 years. As a teacher he explores cutting edge acting techniques—believing that we live in an evolving universe and that acting must have its own evolutionary trajectory. He has pursued integrative techniques that connect body, mind, emotion, and spirit to the various aspects of spatial and interpersonal relationships on stage. James also believes the creative process can be more than just a craft and a profession but also a sacred process and a transformative practice. He is an MFA graduate of American Conservatory Theatre and has a PhD in Transformative Studies from California Institute of Integral Studies.

Writing for Television

This is a hands-on intensive workshop over two days aimed at professionals who are interested in trying to make the leap into starting to write for television. We’ll explore how to get started, what happens in a writers’ room, and how to begin breaking down a season, individual episodes within a season, and diving into the writing process. We will examine structure, inspiration, writing style, what your job is as a staff writer, and how to begin to hopefully break in to working in television.

SAT & SUN 12:30–5:30pm · 1/28, 1/29 · $150

Daniel Talbott is currently a staff writer for the Weinstein Company and Spike TV on The Mist, based on the Stephen King novella, and in development with Jim Parsons’ company That’s Wonderful Productions for a feature film, Tuolumne. His hour-long drama pilot Summer has been optioned and is in development with Sonar Entertainment and Killer Films. He is a writer, director, and actor, as well as an artistic associate of Rattlestick Playwrights Theater, associate artistic director of {Your Name Here}, and artistic director of the Lucille Lortel and NYIT Award-winning Rising Phoenix Rep. His plays include Slipping (Rattlestick, The Side Project), Yosemite (Rattlestick), Afghanistan, Zimbabwe, America, Kuwait (Rattlestick/piece by piece, Encore), What Happened When (Rattlestick, Your Name Here, Rising Phoenix Rep/HERE), Someone Brought Me (Quince Productions), Mike and Seth (Quince, Encore, The Side Project), Extraordinary Things (RPR), and Gray (Your Name Here). Recent directing work includes Ugly Little Sister (NYU/Strasberg), First Born (The Actors Studio), Selkie (RPR/Weathervane), Thieves (Weathervane/RPR/ Rattlestick), F**king Immaculate (RPR), A Fable (piece by piece/RPR/Rattlestick), Gin Baby (IRT), Scarcity (Rattlestick/Hill Town Plays—OBIE Award), Lake Water (Neighborhood Productions), Eightythree Down (Hard Sparks), Much Ado About Nothing (Boomerang), Squealer (Lesser America), and The Umbrella Plays (the teacup company/FringeNYC—Overall Excellence Award: Outstanding Play). He received a 2011 Theater Hall of Fame Fellowship, a 2007 New York Innovative Theatre Award for directing, a Drama-Logue Award, two Dean Goodman Choice Awards, and a Judy Award for acting, and was also named one of the 15 People of the Year by nytheatre.com. He is a graduate of Juilliard and teaches at NYU/Strasberg and Primary Stages/ESPA. He is a proud member of Lesser America and a member of the Actors Studio.

Playwriting: Inspired by Space

This is a fun, dynamic, and hands-on intensive workshop taking place over two days in and around Berkeley Rep. Over the course of the workshop, we’ll write a 10-minute play inspired by a site-specific location. This is a workshop about finding inspiration from the outside and putting into action, building on the idea that all the world’s a stage. We’ll talk about independent production, theatre of poverty, and explore the idea that every theatre artist is only constrained by the limits they place on themselves. We’ll look at playwriting structure, unique ways to conjure inspiration, and how to face a blank page actively and dynamically. This class is for all theatre artists wanting to dive openly and courageously into work, and for folks who are wanting to spend the weekend making something that will hopefully open the flood gates to a larger and more fully realized play down the road.

SAT & SUN 12:30–5:30pm · 2/4, 2/5 · $150

Daniel Talbott is currently a staff writer for the Weinstein Company and Spike TV on The Mist, based on the Stephen King novella, and in development with Jim Parsons’ company That’s Wonderful Productions for a feature film, Tuolumne. His hour-long drama pilot Summer has been optioned and is in development with Sonar Entertainment and Killer Films. He is a writer, director, and actor, as well as an artistic associate of Rattlestick Playwrights Theater, associate artistic director of {Your Name Here}, and artistic director of the Lucille Lortel and NYIT Award-winning Rising Phoenix Rep. His plays include Slipping (Rattlestick, The Side Project), Yosemite (Rattlestick), Afghanistan, Zimbabwe, America, Kuwait (Rattlestick/piece by piece, Encore), What Happened When (Rattlestick, Your Name Here, Rising Phoenix Rep/HERE), Someone Brought Me (Quince Productions), Mike and Seth (Quince, Encore, The Side Project), Extraordinary Things (RPR), and Gray (Your Name Here). Recent directing work includes Ugly Little Sister (NYU/Strasberg), First Born (The Actors Studio), Selkie (RPR/Weathervane), Thieves (Weathervane/RPR/ Rattlestick), F**king Immaculate (RPR), A Fable (piece by piece/RPR/Rattlestick), Gin Baby (IRT), Scarcity (Rattlestick/Hill Town Plays—OBIE Award), Lake Water (Neighborhood Productions), Eightythree Down (Hard Sparks), Much Ado About Nothing (Boomerang), Squealer (Lesser America), and The Umbrella Plays (the teacup company/FringeNYC—Overall Excellence Award: Outstanding Play). He received a 2011 Theater Hall of Fame Fellowship, a 2007 New York Innovative Theatre Award for directing, a Drama-Logue Award, two Dean Goodman Choice Awards, and a Judy Award for acting, and was also named one of the 15 People of the Year by nytheatre.com. He is a graduate of Juilliard and teaches at NYU/Strasberg and Primary Stages/ESPA. He is a proud member of Lesser America and a member of the Actors Studio.

Theatre of the Oppressed: Mindfulness, Meditation, & Liberation

“Within this fathom-long body, lies the world of suffering, its cause, and its liberation.”—Gautama Buddha

All oppression involves the body—the body holds and reflects the experience of its oppression. Fear, anxiety, and oppression bleed their way into the habits of our human expression, trapping, binding, and shutting down our natural spontaneity and aliveness, making us mechanized, divided, and imbalanced in our bodies and our minds and isolated, aggressive, or confused in our relationships and interactions. The original form of mindfulness—the mind’s capacity to observe itself, reflect, and transform—is theatre. This workshop will explore the rich, deep, powerful practices of mindfulness, dishabituation, and embodiment within the corpus of Augusto Boal’s Theatre of the Oppressed, focusing on practical techniques for transforming and finding liberation through somatic and energetic awareness in the personal, interpersonal, and political dimensions. We will use demechanization, dynamization, image theatre, forum theatre, and rainbow of desire while developing presence, focus, and a strong capacity for meditative awareness. Open to anyone with a desire to use theatre, art, and meditation to explore a powerful approach to transforming self and society. Please dress comfortably to move.

SAT 12:30–5:30pm · 3/4 · $85

Jiwon Chung is a professional actor, director, and a key theorist of Theatre of the Oppressed. He is the Artistic Director of Kairos Theater Ensemble, adjunct professor of Theater and Social Justice at Starr King School at the Graduate Theological Union, and past President of the national organization for Theatre of the Oppressed. Author of numerous books, articles, and performances, he is considered a pioneer in the integration of somatics, theatre of the oppressed, and socially engaged art. The focus of his work is in the application of theatre as a tool for social and political change, using Theatre of the Oppressed to challenge, resist, and transform systemic oppression and structural violence and to redress large scale historical atrocity and injustice. His approach to performance and social change is informed by his background as veteran, martial artist, and three decades of vipassana meditation.