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Westmoreland, NY Acting Lessons

Looking for private in-home or in-studio Acting classes? Our Westmoreland teachers are ready to get you started. Find your teacher today!

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Popular Acting Teachers Serving Westmoreland

About Glenda J.

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Taylor, MI
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About Glenda
After studying at Cass Tech High School and Wayne State University in MI, I have enjoyed teaching privately, in groups, and at churches, I have performed vocally and instrumentally throughout the US and in 8 foreign countries, and taught at public, charter, and private schools. It is important to tailor each lesson to a student's individual needs and ability to ensure that their experience is as rewarding as possible!

*** Lesson Details ***
You will learn to play with ease and proficiency while learning the Music Theory that supports your playing. You will also receive ear training, which will make learning more rapid, and more thorough.

*** Studio Equipment ***
Studio with pianos; parents can sit in on lessons.

*** Travel Equipment ***
When needed, I provide printed learning supplements or in e-mail. The student should hav
e his/her own instrument, so they can practice regularly.

*** Specialties ***
Gospel, Classical, Pop, Inspirational, Sacred, Wedding, etcetera
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Reviews
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Curley May 11, 2019
· Christian Gospel · In studio
First lesson was a student/teacher familiarization. Glenda is very friendly and is very knowledgeable concerning music. I look forward to future lessons with her!
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Pallavi D. April 27, 2019
· Violin · In studio
Glenda is an amazing teacher she explains everything very patiently .
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Ollie M. April 20, 2019
· Organ · Online
VERY helpful first lesson. Almost immediately, Glenda was able to listen to my playing and make useful suggestions for improvement. It was a very good lesson. I look forward to learning even more under her skillful tutelage. A GREAT choice for anyone looking to master the Hammond organ.
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Glenda J.

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(25)
starting at
$23 / 30-min

About Gabriel W.

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Tenafly, NJ

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Acting with ease is mostly about really being relaxed and at peace while fulfilling a role. The best acting comes from having passion and confidence in the choices that you have made while you have prepared. The greatest obstacle? The inner critic, the inner skeptic, the inner dragon that works hard to put on the breaks and make us question ourselves and whether it is safe or not to let go. My job is to help you feel safe enough to be able to trust your creative instincts and your natural impulses. I'm more of a kind, compassionate, understanding and forgiving coach who nurtures the talent that is already in there. We all know you've got it -- who are we kidding?

About Gabriel
Gabriel is a fiery and passionate vocal instructor proficient in the fields of acting, singing and vocal development. A professional singer, actor and teacher with a BFA in Theater Arts.

Gabriel doesn't just possess a formal college education, but more importantly a real world education based on his experiences on the stage, on the road and in the studio. His approach is direct, simple and to the core, getting straight to the heart of the matter: developing the voice from the inside out by breaking things down to the essentials.

An expert at creating vocal warm-ups, vocal exercises, and vocal cool-downs, he is also deeply passionate about psychology, he is your guy for learning to keep your voice and mindset in tip-top shape. Beyond improving technique, Gabriel can help you cultivate a healthy attitude and help you to survive and t
hrive in a career in the world of the performing arts.

With a kind and compassionate, yet stern and honest tone, Gabriel will work with you to develop the focus and dedication necessary to get your voice beyond what you even knew possible.

*** Lesson Details ***
Regardless of the genre you sing, developing your voice with Gabriel's help will improve your tone, range, power and overall ability. You can expect to become a much better singer without losing any of your personal and unique traits.

His approach isn't overly technical or mysterious. It's about re-learning the facts about how the voice functions best and the application of this updated knowledge.

Expect to clear away many confusions about how the voice works thus taking away the guesswork from the vocal development process.

If you want to improve your voice quickly, being guided by someone who understands how it all works and by someone who was where you are today and is now closer to where you want to be in the future is the best way to go. Gabriel is that guy!

Gabriel's approach is quite simple, yet very effective at developing the entire voice.

"There are two basic levels that every singer must address. The first one is addressing the condition of the body and voice and the second one is addressing the functioning of the voice and body."

I - Silent Foundation

The silent foundation refers to the condition of your instrument as it is silent. If we are looking at the body as an instrument that sings, we first have to make sure that our instrument is in good condition. How healthy is your instrument? Is it well rested, well hydrated and loose? Or is it tired, dehydrated and tense? As you could guess, the condition of your instrument will have a significant impact on the quality of the sounds you make. So the first thing to be addressed is how your instrument is before it starts making sound.

II - Conditioning of Singing Behaviors

This is when we get busy. Once we have a well rested, healthy, hydrated and relaxed instrument we can start working it out. The goal is to condition our singing behaviors to be reflexive, reliable and strong. The way to do this is through a series of vocal exercises that will condition your voice to respond to the desires of your heart. Whatever it is that you want to express will be possible once your instrument is conditioned to the point where there is no gap between what you want to express and your ability to do so. Learning to sing is all about learning how to express yourself without barriers. You should be able to develop enough range, power, control and skill so that you can express your heart without feeling like you'™re incapable of achieving what you pursue. To achieve these abilities training is often necessary.

*** Specialties ***
ALL CONTEMPORARY GENRES!
Confidence Building, Warming-Up, Releasing Tension and Strain, Eliminating Stage Fright, Expanding Range, Improving Tone, Developing Vocal Power and Presence, Eliminating Doubt, Simplifying Singing, Strengthening The Voice, Improving Pitch, Building Stamina, Increasing Creativity, Performance Tips, Artist Development, Acting and Songwriting.

Once we have a good foundation any contemporary genre or style can be improved.
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Reviews
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Karen L. April 10, 2019
· Singing · In studio
Gabriel is an excellent teacher. I thought he immediately had insight into how to help improve my singing voice with varies exercises. He acted most professionally. I think I really benefited in only my very first lesson with him.
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John April 1, 2019
· Vocal Training · In studio
Gabriel is very patient and understanding, helping to guide you into the areas that you need to work on and improve. He is fantastic at explaining things in ways you can understand them to help you better reach your goals. Additionally, he is all about being yourself and feeling comfortable which makes the experience all the more enriching!
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Lucy G. March 21, 2019
· Singing · In home
Great teacher! Makes you feel confident and comfortable !! His lessons go above and beyond the expectations!
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Gabriel W.

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(45)
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$70 / 30-min

About Annalise S.

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Arcadia, CA

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Acting for stage and screen will focus on choosing appropriate material, audition coaching, developing vocal ease and endurance, speaking with confidence, and textual interpretation.

About Annalise
I am a very positive and patient teacher. I focus 50% of my lessons on physical and vocal warm-ups and 50% on the student's chosen singing and/or acting repertoire. I look forward to working with students of all levels and find joy in helping people find their voice.

I earned my bachelor of music in vocal performance from the University of Redlands and my MFA in Acting from UCLA School of Theater, Film, and Television.
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Amanda H. June 17, 2015
· Singing · In studio
Annalise has a very impressive background in music and education, and it really reflects through her lessons with my daughter. She has instilled a lot of confidence in my daughter, to the point that she tried out for, and made, Advanced Choir at her school. I very highly recommend Annalise!
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Ezekiel S. May 31, 2015
· Child Acting · In home
He found the lesson enjoyable and wanted to continue practicing the drills he learned
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Ezekiel S. May 31, 2015
· Child Acting · In home
He found the lesson enjoyable and wanted to continue practicing the drills he learned
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Annalise S.

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(9)
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$50 / 30-min

About Dominic S.

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New York, NY
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Monologue and Scene work

About Dominic
Dominic is a graduate of the Boston Conservatory of Music, currently teaching as Assistant Professor of Voice at Berklee College of Music. Dominic has years of experience teaching people of all ages, and in all styles of music. Professionally, he has performed in National Tours, Off Broadway, and in major films.

"Music has always been my absolute favorite thing in the world.
As far as I know, I am the only teacher in New York City who teaches Voice, Piano, Guitar, Bass and Trumpet."

Currently Dominic's studio consists of -
An Academy Award winner
A Tony Award nominee
Four students are currently performing on Broadway

BFA The Boston Conservatory of Music
Lyric Baritone

Notable Quotes about Dominic:

Ken Nelson (Coldplay) - "Fantastic voice"
Kenneth 'Babyface' Edmonds - "Really cool songs"
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Reviews
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Simon August 16, 2017
· Singing · In studio
Dominic gave me great advice to start learning how to sing !
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Ariel B. October 11, 2016
· Trumpet · In home
He is great Trumpet teacher. He is professional and friendly. My son enjoyed his first lesson. Thank you
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Marla H. March 22, 2016
· Piano · In home
Dominic is fabulous. if you have a chance to work with him, do yourself a favor and do it!
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Dominic S.

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(19)
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$60 / 30-min

About Danielle L.

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Oakland, CA

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As the creator and producer of San Diego IndieFest and Say It Records, I have a unique understanding of the industry, and love to share that with my students.

It's paramount to me that each student's lesson be customized to her / his specific goals and needs. Whether those are for personal enrichment or for professional aspirations, your lesson will be personalized according to what's important to you.

I LOVE to teach, and appreciate my wee ones just as much as my elders...those who consider themselves "tone deaf" as much as my advanced students. As far as Special Needs go - I feel we *ALL* have special needs....every child and every adult! ;)

About Danielle
Hello Students / Parents!

I specialize in providing a safe, fun and empowering space for each student to reach their goals - whether that be for the novice whose been wrongfully told they shouldn't pursue their passion, the more experienced musician/actor/poet/speaker looking to do more, or the budding artist looking to develop the talent and vision within them. I'm fluent in English and Spanish and have experience singing and recording in many languages.

I always remember the inspiration and patience I received from my best teachers, so I strive to provide exactly that to my own students. I sing and teach most vocal styles, with the exception of opera and screamo, and utilize my studio to create a supportive, non-judgemental experience singing, acting, speaking, writing and recording. I absolutely love teaching both children and ad
ults and look forward to learning how to best support each one of my students in their individual path toward realizing their potential.

Here's a bit about my background and musical experience:

Bachelors of Fine Arts degree (Theatre/Voice) from United States International University Graduated Valedictorian
Chula Vista School of Creative and Performing Arts Graduated Valedictorian
Workshops and studies with Directors, Voice and Acting Teachers Bill Doyle, Roy Mote, Andrew Barnicle, Jack Tygett, Leanne Summers, Anne Farnsworth, among others.

"After seeing Danielle, I was impressed with her intensity as a performer. Her ability to get behind a lyric was stunning, she lives every line. As an artistic performer, I've yet to see better."
-Tony Ferguson / Interscope Records: No Doubt, Bush, Fisher

My original band, Danielle and The Masses, has been recording and performing since 2001. We are endorsed by Justin Tranter, Ani Difranco, The Black Eyed Peas, The Bruce Hornsby Band, among others, and have shared the stage with Jamie Foxx, CAKE, Metric, En Vogue, David Byrne, Berlin, Margaret Cho, Cyndi Lauper, Jonatha Brooke, Beth Hart, Semi Precious Weapons and more.

I have written and performed music and voice over for Ace Ventura, Nutty Professor, VH1, various TV shows and independent documentaries, Eveoke Dance Theatre, among others, and have recorded eight professional CDs of various styles on various record labels.

For over fifteen years, my record / production company, Say It Records has been producing socially conscious music events throughout San Diego and Southern California that promote independent music, film, art, community, human and environmental rights. I also co-own Durga Sound, a teaching and production studio, with producer Alicia Champion. The two of us created and produced San Diego IndieFest for over ten years, a powerful community event promoting and supporting independent music, film, art and civic engagement.

I have a great time utilizing my contacts in the industry to help my students get work/ press / entrance into the schools, agencies and studios of their choice. For example, we were able to book many musicians on the TV show GLEE, among others, as well as help students get their music placed in commercials, film and the like.

*** Lesson Details ***
I start on the first lesson by becoming clear about what the new student's goals and desires are from there, we start developing technique to achieve those goals along with having fun right away doing what they came for - singing, writing, voice over, acting or using a combination of these things be it for professional purposes or personal fulfillment. Every lesson is personally customized to meet the specific goals of each student. As a teacher, I'm encouraging and fun, passionate and positive. While I'm definitely not "strict", I do appreciate focus and drive. However, I often work with people who have special needs and are working on developing those very things. I'm especially good at helping people through progress plateaus, roadblocks, stage fright, loss/ stress. Using music as a means of release and healing - for both kids and adults - is something I do a lot of and am very comfortable with.

As far as technique is concerned, I focus on utilizing posture, correct breathing and developing relaxed, strong support, so that the muscles are developed properly. We want the voice to develop without stress, enabling the student to constantly grow while steering clear of any injury that can happen as a result of straining, not to mention other habits that manifest when we sing without proper technique.

I strongly encourage students to record their lessons on a mobile device so they can practice easily on their own, and so they eventually have a record of how far they've grown.
We mostly use tracks to develop repertoire, prepare for auditioning and performances, and to have fun singing the music that excites each student the most.

*** Studio Equipment ***
Apple Mac Pro Quad Core running OS 10.8.3
Avid Pro Tools 10 HDX
Propellor Reason 4.0
UA 2-610 Microphone Pre-amp
UA LA-610 Microphone Pre-amp and Compressor
UA Teletronix LA2A Compressor/ Limiter
Behringer ADA 8000
more...

*** Specialties ***
Using music, writing and voice as a means of expressing yourself, growing as a performance artist, coping in challenging times, as well as a means of going professional and earning income are all areas I specialize in. Utilizing proper technique and learning how to sing / speak safely is also an area I focus on a great deal.

Learning precisely what each student wants is the key factor in my decision on how to achieve their goals. For example, using Speech Level Singing is definitely entrenched in my teaching, but I may not highlight it as much for those who want a more classical sound.

I excel with the following: first timers, very young kids, students working through stage fright, artists looking to develop their own original project, those seeking growth in their process of writing / recording / performing, those who are interested in using music and / or writing as therapy as well as with amateurs who've always wanted to do something musical but who think they are "too old" or too "untalented/short/tall/ fill in the blank" to try. I believe we all have something to say with our lives - finding the voice within you can be an incredibly powerful and transformative experience!
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Reviews
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Elizabeth March 12, 2019
· Vocal Training · In studio
Ms. Danielle is a wonderful / excellent instructor. I booked 10 sessions with Ms. Danielle for vocal training and it was worth every dollar. I am singing this week at a big event, and because of Ms. Danielle vocal training, I am prepared to sing three back to back songs with the strongest voice ever!!!! Ms. Danielle doesn't know it yet, but I do plan to make her my life vocal coach.
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Rob March 7, 2019
· Singing · In home
The rating says it all. Best. Instructor. Ever. Danielle is amazing. She's so patient and kind and loving. Half the reason I take lessons from her is because she makes me feel so good about myself. She's so much more than a singing teacher. She's a creative guide. She will help you move beyond self doubt and explore your creativity. And of course, my rhythm and pitch are improving rapidly. Can't recommend her enough!
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Liz T. November 10, 2018
· Singing · In studio
I enjoy my first lesson with Ms. Danielle. She is a great singing coach. I am looking forward to learning great singing skills from this instructor.
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Danielle L.

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(39)
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$85 / 30-min
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About Tyler S.

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San Diego, CA

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I have been a performing artist since the age of 9. Over the years, I have worked under dozens of production companies for film and stage. As world-renowned author, Malcolm Gladwell, states in his book: "Outliers," it takes 10,000 hours of experience to be considered an expert of any field. After hitting that mark around Christmas 2012, I began to write a curriculum and had my first student a few weeks later.

To give you an idea of my general class structure, it is typically a balance of the following:

Craft Foundation,
Monologue Techniques,
Performance Development,
Arts Business Analysis,
Further Character Development,
and Method Discovery

I pull from a wide array of past learning experiences, (from the academy, to the set/stage/studio, to my personal library), to produce the best exercise technique for each individual student's uniquely-structured learning path in the art and craft of Acting.

We will study personal development, (how to prepare your

About Tyler
Tyler is an award-winning acting coach and entertainment producer with credits in both Los Angeles and San Diego. He currently works in large-scale venue management and oversees the production of entertainment for up to 10,000 audience members on a regular basis. Tyler's background in performing arts spans over a decade of intensive training and experience, (see add. info below). His greatest career drive is the enrichment of industry talent through his development of performing arts and entertainment business professionals.
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Tyler June 20, 2017
· Film and TV Acting · Online
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Zachary H. March 21, 2016
· Child Acting · In studio
My 11 year old son is already a working actor, but we needed someone to iron out the "rough spots" and give him some extra coaching. Since we don't live near LA, we first started working with Tyler because he was local. He is fantastic! My son just loves him, and they connect really well. When he had an audition for a lead part in a movie, Tyler took the time outside of our normal schedule for some one on one time at the last minute. He is always friendly, professional, and always flexible with our schedule. My son did not get that part, but he auditioned for a tv pilot a few weeks later. He didn't get the part he auditioned for, but he made such an impression on the director, they actually created a special rolel for just for him. We owe some of this to Tyler, he really knows how to bring out the best in your kid. Also, his fees are reasonable. You won't be disappointed!
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Javon S. February 22, 2016
· Acting · Online
The first lesson was a great experience!!! 👍👍
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Tyler S.

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$25 / 25-min

About Randy S.

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Mount Prospect, IL

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Classes will be tailored to the student's level of expertise. However, we will work primarily on monologue work, scene work, if possible and historical overviews.

About Randy
I have always been an actor first, it is the craft and discipline in which I hold my advanced degrees; it is my first and eternal love. There really isn't much more one could add to such a claim. Simultaneously I have believed a teacher is born, not bred; and I was born to be in theatre, and now, with a few years behind me; I'm ready to pass on what I have learned. At the risk of tooting my own horn; I am well trained, professionally, both as an actor and a teacher with more than a few credentials to support those claims. I invite you to please peruse my background on the site and feel free to ask any questions you desire.

Regarding Texas Hold 'em (poker), I have been playing and teaching the game, and working for online casinos for over thirty years. My approach is simple, requires extreme discipline, but I can show you how to win mo
re than you lose. And this is true of all subjects I teach whether literal or figurative.

My undergraduate Bachelors is in Acting & Directing I was taught by the same professors who launched the students that formed the now famous Steppenwolf Theatre in Chicago (Illinois State University); I also have a Masters degree in Theatre History and Criticism (Theatrical Critical Theory). I have teaching experience both as a GA and in the private sector. I have been exposed to many different types of teaching styles and locales, (i.e. classroom, studio et.al). I hope that gives you a thumbnail concurrently I hope I didn't bore you to death.

Peace and Kindest Regards,
Randy
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Reviews
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kobe W. September 16, 2019
· Film and TV Acting · Online
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Sampath August 15, 2019
· Poker · Online
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Enrique July 2, 2019
· Poker · Online
Randy is a first rate coach. He is knowledgeable, experienced, and with an easy going natural style. Was very adaptable to my level of experience and was patient - no question was too dumb. I highly recommend him without any reservation. I have already booked my next session.
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Randy S.

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(23)
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$25 / 30-min

About Ellysa R.

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Burbank, CA
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As an actress of 19 years, I love teaching my students the art of telling a story. I started my training in the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Arts program, following on to Interlochen Arts Academy and eventually private training in Los Angeles. I have credits in regional theater, television (Netflix's Dear White People, The CW's Worst Birthday Ever, TruTV's Adam Ruins Everything), countless national commercials, and more. Together, we will explore several different methods including Meisner, Stanislavsky, Boleslavsky, imagining, and more, to create your own unique method. I can't wait to start this journey with you. In your first few lessons, we'll assess your goals, learn how to break down a script, and choose an acting method to start with. As we go on, we will build a repetoire of monologues and scenes for you to use, develop career trajectory targets, and develop your own personal approach to the art of storytelling. I can't wait to start this journey with you!

About Ellysa
Hello! My name is Ellysa and I am so excited to meet you! I've been teaching private lessons since 2012 and have loved helping my students realize their potential, gain confidence, and find their own voice. I have been trained in the LAMDA system, as well attending Interlochen Arts Academy. I'm an energetic and empathetic person; my strong perceptive skills allow me to adapt to each of my student's individual needs. While we'll definitely cover the technical aspects of what you're learning, my teaching is very much rooted in who you are and letting your own voice out, whether it be through singing, songwriting, acting, or playing an instrument. I can't wait to start this journey with you!
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Daryl C. September 3, 2019
· Singing · Online
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Yazmine A. April 30, 2019
· Singing · In studio
Thank you. See you next week.
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Ciara February 6, 2019
· Songwriting · Online
Ellysa is extremely knowledgeable and practical - her lesson with me was amazing. As a first lesson, we went through my existing equipment and goals for writing/producing my own work, and she gave me an online review of what we discussed next steps were for me. I’m so thankful for her clear and focused guidance!
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Ellysa R.

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(17)
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$40 / 30-min

About Blake W.

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Before I begin, you must know that there is no "one way of acting". Each person has their own methods that work for them, and they are discovered along the way. With that being said, one must find the right teacher that is the best fit for them. The Meisner Technique has been taken apart and put back together over the years, I teach it the way that he originally began it... one could also call it The Montes Method. Also, I tap into Strasbourg Technique. As a professional actor and acting coach, you have to keep training to stay on top. To teach acting is not only a pleasure for me, but it's also a must, as acting is my biggest addiction.

About Blake
Today we have access to a mega-powerful tool that can bring our ideas from text to the big screen in a matter of weeks. To go from a photo to a billboard. A group chats to a leading production team. A voice memo to a hit song. Today, everyone can be heard in high definition, seen in 4k, and shared on any Online Platform or Big Screen, thanks to an incredible technological advance called the smartphone. You wanna be part of the success stories? Then let me show you all the right tools to use today and how to use them to their maximum potential. Whether you are an aspiring filmmaker (short, feature, documentary), Vlogger, content provider or even business owner. Let me show you how easy it is to turn your smartphone from a simple communication tool to an intergalactic spacecraft that can transport your dreams into reality on the go.
To be mobile. Film in Cinematic quality anywhere. Forget the office, you have a whole factory in your pocket.

I have been nominated over 20 times and have won 5 awards internationally, and I have been recognized by the ACS (Australian Cinematographer Society) for my skills in filmmaking. I have also been recognized by AFI and AACTA for being one of the leading filmmakers who has been using mobile technology to its full potential.
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Silvana July 5, 2019
· Filmmaking · In studio
Blake is an incredible and inspiring teacher. His classes on filmmaking give you practical tips on how to become a filmmaker and most important on how to start TODAY. He motivates you to get active while giving you the right tools to turn your plans into actions.
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Lorenzo VJAIRONE July 4, 2019
· Filmmaking · Online
Passion.
Incredible passion and many, many tricks from a professional actor and sound designer with experience in directing, editing and color grading.
From the script untill the post production and special effects Blake can help in every phase of filmmaking, anything that you must follow to create a movie.
Recommended.
No doubt: 5 stars.
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Arthur L.C. July 4, 2019
· Filmmaking · In home
Blake is a very dedicated filmmaker, he has experimented a lot...and you can feel it because he's teaching is simple and clear. He's very prepared, ofcourse, but you know: many pro out there are also well "prepared".. you could go to cinema schools and find some teachers and they are probably prepared. NOW fact is Blake is not a normal teacher who is teaching you what he knows just because he's prepared to do that. Blake is an hyper-active and truly passionate filmmaker who's able to transfer enthusiasm together with notions..studying filmmaking with him has been more like diving into the deep waters of filmmaking and storytelling...not just fontal lesson on theory and technical stuff..he didn't fed students with tons of notions "do this, do that, shutter speed, iso, how to slo-mo, fps and blabla" ... we went out, hands on, we started to shoot...also people who never shot before. I got inspired to do more.. to go out and try and make mistakes and shoot and shoot more..believing in my vision, in my ideas.. so much that I started to get my sh..t done! After few months I started to get my first payed video-jobs too..now I don't want to say that this happened like magically after his course, of course you need to push yourself, but lemme say: if there is one person I owe my motivation to is absolutely Blake. He shared his knowledge with me, he inspired me to realize my own experience. Also after the course, he has been available for questions when I needed back-up on things I was not sure about..and this is really nice ((and in my experience not common at all ;)) Thumb up!!
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Blake W.

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$19 / 30-min

About Michael D.

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Bloomfield, NJ
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I am a professionally-trained actor specializing in teaching the Meisner Technique to students of all ages and ability levels. I am passionate about this work and seeing my students grow both personally and professionally. I have extensive physical theater experience in movement, mask, and clown which has shaped me into a well-rounded actor that is prepared to meet the demands of any project -- from Shakespeare to one-act shows.

I have been fortunate enough to have trained with some of today's most influential and highly sought after acting instructors and am eager to share what I have learned with my students. I don't believe that there is one "right" way of approaching acting. There are several ways in to this craft and as an instructor, it is my responsibility to customize the instruction for each individual student.

What distinguishes me from other instructors is my unique background. Not only am I an actor but I'm also a trial lawyer. Not surprisingly, I also teach public ...

About Michael
My name is Mike. I am a professionally-trained actor who has experience in a number of different acting techniques. My passion lies in theater and I have performed in a number of on-stage productions ranging from classical to contemporary. I am passionate about this work and seeing my students grow both personally and professionally.

I get to know my students on a personal level so that I can custom-tailor a training program that will help maximize their potential and their growth as artists.

My teaching philosophy consists of two parts:

First: Your life is inspiring. Your experiences are unique. And your perspective is unlike anyone else's on this planet. As actors, we tend to get audition material and generalize it immediately and create an idea of what our character should be. And then we advance a general idea of that prototy
pe. This is a travesty. In truth, your life has given you experiences and emotions that are real and that you can draw from to justify and anchor any choice at all. You may not believe it, but this is true. My first job as a teacher is to validate you as a person.

Second: Your emotions must be real, but you’re not allowed to show them in a way that is artificial or pretentious. Most actors make the same mistake when they get a scene. They get too excited. “This scene is great! So much good emotion! It’s been so long since I’ve really sunk my teeth into good material. I can’t wait to kill it!” And believe me, I get it. As an actor, sometimes the bait is too attempting not to take. But be weary of falling into this trap. If you show the audience your cards the entire time, they will know exactly where you’re heading.

And if they know where you're heading, they won't remain interested for long. The other thing to recognize is that in real life, which we as actors are always trying to re-create, we tend to cover up our emotions and play it cool.

All of this to say that the craft of the scene lies in what you cover up and what you decide to show.

I teach it as a two-part process. In the first part, you over-act. You blow it out of the water. You yell, you cry, you laugh, you improvise, you go nuts and do all the things you know you can’t do in front of a casting director. This is done not to teach you "bad habits" but instead, so you can get a sense of what you wish you could do but can't.

In the second part, you cover it up by not showing anything. And from there, we see what needs to come out. As the great Sanford Meisner once said, "Don't do anything until something happens to make you do it." This requires enormous self-restraint and patience. But ironically, something always does happen.
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Michael D.

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