Past Master Classes

“The Unconventional Artist’s Career” with David Diamond

An artist’s career can go in many directions. How can you learn about and engage all the possibilities of your artist path? This interactive workshop will open you up to possibilities and help you explore the unexpected. Engage in a series of exercises that allow you to open up to your true desires and explore new ways to exist as an artist in the community. How do you make money and have a satisfying lifestyle while you are fully expressing your creative spirit? Where does real satisfaction come from for you?

The workshop is interactive and full participation is expected. We will use physical exercises as well as deep conversation. Please come ready to be open to new ways of thinking.

“Suzuki & Viewpoints” with Kelly Maurer of SITI Company

It is through the dialogue between Suzuki and Viewpoints, two very distinct yet complementary approaches to the art of acting, that the philosophy and technique of SITI Company is continually explored, revitalized, and articulated. Intended for artists who have never trained with SITI before and alumni who have been away from the training for a while.

“Performing Monsters Motion Theater” with Jay Scheib
A two-day composition Master Class
Jay Scheib & Natalie Thomas

Motion Theater, developed by Scheib and his collaborators, combines Viewpoints with Forsythe’s Improvisation Technologies and a pinch of Brecht’s Epic Theater, resulting in an improvisation-based approach to physical action, motion, and movement events in performance. This two-day intensive introduces nine modalities of Motion Theater as a basis for improvisation. Sessions focus on incongruity, shearing, folding, duration, architecture and other movement concepts to be used as compositional tools. The best monsters defy logic, commit the unthinkable as though it were normal and generally favor the incongruous— the second half of the training is dedicated to Performing Monsters. Participants will develop compositional studies and short performance works made in groups or alone. Mr. Scheib will be joined by longtime collaborator and member of his ensemble, Natalie Thomas.

Who should register: Actors, Directors, Choreographers, Theatre Ensemble Groups, Performance Artists, Installation Artists.

“The Art of Creating Meaning on Stage: the interface between the real and the imaginary” with Kevin Kuhlke 
Instructor: Kevin Kuhlke of NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts

Utilizing the theoretical writings of Erving Goffman, Bertolt Brecht and Francis Hodges, the workshop will focus on teaching concrete fundamental staging “tools” while exposing participants to ways to energize the creative relationship between Dramatic Action, Sub-textual Behavior, Theatrical Frame and Visual Storytelling.

Who should register: Actors, Directors, Dancers, Choreographers, and Theatre Ensemble Groups.

“The Inner Work of the Viewpoints: A Source for Authentic Actionwith Wendell Beavers
Instructor: Wendell Beavers of Naropa University

Mr. Beavers will lead participants through an intensive focused on the process aspect of viewpoint technique and practice—the inner work of the performer. The essential activity in working with the viewpoints is a dynamic pairing of deepened, articulated somatic presence of the body, and heightened perception of the environment. This is the basis for not only appropriate (authentic) response, but also offers the possibility of a piercing, truthful, virtuosic response. The workshop will include Developmental Technique™ as warm up and physical vocabulary and exercises for cultivating and sharpening mindfulness and awareness as the basis for individual and ensemble creation. This work forms the physical foundation for training in Naropa University’s MFA Theater, Contemporary Performance Program.

Who should register: Actors, Physical Actors, Dancers and other Performers; Ensemble Groups; Teachers interested in dance/theater integration; Directors and Choreographers interested in theory and pedagogy.

“Elevator Repair Service and Choreography: Translating source material to movement”
Instructors: John Collins (ERS Artistic Director), Mike Iveson, Katherine Profeta, Ben Williams and Victoria Vazquez of Elevator Repair Service

The Master Class will begin with a lecture/video demonstration about the company’s work led by Artistic Director John Collins. ERS Choreographer Katherine Profeta will then speak about the company’s use of dance, source material (mostly found video) and different working methods used to create choreography. After showing a dance’s “sources” the performers will demonstrate a finished dance from one of the company’s works: The Sound and The Fury, (April 7, 1928). Using new, untapped source material, participants will work alongside company members to create phrases of choreography with assistance from the Choreographer and Director.

The second day of the workshop will focus on shaping the choreography and applying music and sound design to it, ending in a final presentation of the material, with possible revisions and a wrap-up discussion

Who should register: Actors, Directors, Dancers, Choreographers, and Theatre Ensemble Groups.

“The Realm of Metaphor” with Double Edge Theatre
Instructors: Stacy Klein, Carlos Uriona & Matthew Glassman of Double Edge Theatre

Klein, Uriona and Glassman will guide participants to devise work from the point of departure of vigorous physical training with the body and objects, the development of metaphor through physical improvisation, and the creation of a ten-minute group etude. The paintings of Marc Chagall will be a source of exploration and a unifying theme. Participants should bring an object to work with (for example, a puppet, an image (painting), a small piece of text or poem, possibly fabric, etc.), and ideally have a story, archetype, or idea for the work. The work is vigorous, while also geared to each participant.

Who should register: Actors, Directors, Designers, Visual Artists, Writers, Musicians, Theatre Ensemble Groups and anyone interested in exploring body-imagination connection. Open to all experience levels.

“Ensemble Play Making” with Pig Iron Theater Company
Instructors: Quinn Bauriedel and Dito van Reigersberg, Co-Artistic Directors of Pig Iron Theatre Company

The Ensemble Play Making Master Class will focus on Pig Iron’s tried-and-true playmaking methods. Participants will be given performance assignments, themes, stories, characters, and a piece of music, which must be solved as an ensemble. The playwriting and directing duties will be shared among the ensemble, and decisions are made collaboratively. This workshop emphasizes the generating of original material, the physicalization of characters and theatrical ideas, the structuring of group improvisations into finished pieces and the role music and rhythm play in theatrical creation. Participants will work on taking material developed through improvisation and turning this into finished pieces: precise, full, exuberant and moving.

Who should register: Actors, Performers, Directors, Ensembles, and other artists interested in collaborative work.

“Life with UNIVERSES: creating work through ensembles”
Instructors: Steven Sapp and Mildred Ruiz-Sapp of UNIVERSES

Through their series of “Life…” workshops, Universes will guide and engage participants in writing, spoken word and performance exercises to generate materials based on personal experience, and provide tools for incorporating these personal pieces into ensemble performance works.

Who should register: Actors, Performers, Poets, Ensembles, and other artists interested in collaborative devised work.

“Present Body”
Instructor: Pavel Zuštiak of Palissimo Company

This master class incorporates a deep exploration of body systems, and then uses that exploration to introduce composition, integrating Rudolph Laban’s theories and terminology. References will be made to simple movement realities such as flow, pause and exit. Through simple exercises and tasks we will learn how to be present on stage and simultaneously aware of the overall stage picture that we create together as a group. How to be free from the past and future? How to handle what was set in rehearsal, and yet stay open to what is happening in the given moment? How to be aware of what I am doing as an individual and my place within the group at the same time?

“Introduction to Graham Technique”
Instructor: Miki Orihara of the Martha Graham Dance Company

In this one-day master class, Ms. Orihara will introduce a basic level of Martha Graham technique, in which participants will experiment to find alignment of the body, use of muscles, energy directions and awareness of body and space. The class will also learn small sections of Graham’s repertory and explore the possibility of expression using body language.

Who should register: Actors and Performers interested in movement and the body, Performance Artists, Dancers and aspiring Dancers!

“Conscious Movement/Open Movement”
Instructor: Barney O’Hanlon of SITI Company  

In my recent experience working on “American Document” with the incredible Martha Graham Dance Company, I came to the harsh reality that I am not a dancer, at least in the traditional sense, with years of technique and years of experience dancing on stage. But I AM a dancer in the non-traditional sense. More specifically I’m a mover, a PASSIONATE mover, a student of movement with my body as teacher.  

Who should register: Artists of any discipline who are interested in Movement as a language and Moving as a subject.

“Greek Drama Now” – a composition workshop
Instructor: Anne Bogart

Open to actors, directors, choreographers, designers and playwrights (we will attempt to balance the group) who are interested in looking at the major Greek tragedies (Antigone, Trojan Women, Agamemnon, Electra, Orestes, Oedipus) to create short compositions that feel both contemporary and timeless. Participants are encouraged to bring a point of view and ideas about material to work on. Also please prepare a speech from one of the plays, a speech you feel should be heard in the world today because it is particularly relevant. Keep the entire weekend free and available to rehearse, specifically Saturday morning, Saturday evening and Sunday morning.

Who should apply: actors, directors, choreographers, designers and playwrights

“Impulse is Born from Intention” – A workshop by the Workcenter of Jerzy Grotowski and Thomas Richards

Thomas Richards, Artistic Director & Mario Biagini, Associate Director of the Workcenter

This workshop for actors and directors will focus on acting and singing skills, and the discovery of intention as the source of impulse. In theater we can understand behavior as a complex and dynamic relationship between impulses, physical actions, tempo-rhythm, contacts, intentions, vibration of the voice, spoken words, associations, and details. These elements take place within a structure, in which the relationship between them is articulated. From outside one can read this organic manifestation of mind and body processes as something that carries a meaning, and to some extent this can be seen as the core of theatrical practices. But, what is it? How to approach it? How to let this stream of behavior develop, grow, expand?  

Who Should register: Actors and Directors