Madison Smith

Madison S.

Chicago, IL

Lesson Details



Madison delivers an exceptional lesson experience and ranks in the top 15% of our teachers nationwide.
Teaches students:
Ages 8+ and special needs

Teaching since:

Hello! My name is Madison, I'm currently a working director and serving as the Artistic Director and co-founder of a small store-front theater company called Death & Pretzels (check us out at we make our permanent home at Nox Arca Theatre in Ravenswood, also the home of my acting studio. I am a graduate of the Johnny Carson School of Theater and Film, where I received double degree emphasis in Directing & Management and Performance, as well as a specialization in Play-writing. I've also taken a year of specialty classes at Second City. I specialize in training for auditions, monologue and scene performance, as well as movement tutoring, speech and spoken word training, improv short form and sketch writing and performing. I had previously been working as a nanny and am more than comfortable working with actors from the ages of 8 and older. I'd love to meet with you to work on some pieces! Directing Resume available upon request.

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Artistic Director
Apr 2014 - Present
Death & Pretzels

Jun 2016 - Aug 2016
Team StarKid

Directed for the second StarKid Summer Season '16

Jan 2016 - May 2016
Beverly Theater Guild

The Beverly Theater Guild is the oldest community theater in Chicago, operating for more than 50 years. This past winter into spring, I helped close out their 54th season by directing a production of The Graduate.

Jun 2014 - Aug 2014
Team StarKid

Directed for the first StarKid Summer Season '14


Directing & Management
Aug 2008 - May 2012
Johnny Carson School of Theater and Film
Aug 2008 - May 2012
Johnny Carson School of Theater and Film


Fluent / Native Proficiency


Nominated - Best Stage Director
Jun 2017
Chicago Reader
Dec 2015
Women's Theater Alliance
Most Improved Scene
Jan 2012
Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival
Honorable Mention
Jan 2011
Kennedy Center American College Theater Festival
Best Playwright
Apr 2010
Johnny Carson School Theatrix Council

Photos & Videos

D&P Company Logo


3 Reviews

Write a Review
Jill Mar 7, 2016
Speaking Voice · In home

Madison is Terrific

Lexi Aug 11, 2015
Acting · In home

I cannot praise Madison Smith enough for being a wonderful acting coach. I was lucky enough to get the chance to act in a play she was directing, and also sought out her help for monologues for various auditions I had coming up at the time. She not only was over the moon thrilled to help me with my pieces, but she also was extremely approachable, listened to my concerns and questions, and truly helped me work my pieces until I felt comfortable and confident in them. As a young performer myself, it is really important to have a solid level of trust with the person coaching you, and Madison gave me exactly that. She has my highest recommendation!

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Laura Aug 5, 2015
Theater Acting · In studio

Madison directed me in a play called The Dybbuk last year and had the very difficult job of teaching me to act possessed. I was having trouble inhabiting the idea of possession physically while also reciting very heightened language in unison with another actor. Madison coached me by allowing me to explore creatively and making adjustments based on what she saw. Her ability to communicate what she wanted while also making sure I was comfortable was really amazing, considering it could have been frustrating for all of us if anyone got impatient. I ended up being very proud of my performance in that play, and without Madison's coaching I don't think I would have been.

During that play she was also able to direct a large cast and overcome many of the obstacles fledgling theatre companies face with good humor and quick thinking. I would recommend her as a teacher and director to anyone.

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