AUDITION TO PRODUCTION
For first-time attendees, this curriculum introduces students to the art of screen acting, providing courses in its many genres, from the audition phase to production phase. In this semester, students will learn how to best adapt their previous acting training for use on the screen.
Stonestreet I is offered in Fall, Spring, Summer I, and Summer II for 8 Credit Hours.
DIRECTING THE ACTOR
Instructors: Jennifer McCabe, Guest Professionals
This course is designed to give theater-trained actors a chance to experience what they need to do to reach a professional level screen performance. Students learn the peculiarities of screen acting by working on scripts in a single camera setting, alternately in medium two shots and close-ups. While inviting any and all previously learned techniques, this class helps students widen their tools and techniques and think creatively outside of the box when it comes to creating a compelling, believable and moving character on screen. Students work only on material that is unfamiliar to them, strengthening their skills for creating characters and performances that can tell a story, illuminate something hidden, and develop material without a previously drawn road map. Additionally, this course pays particular attention to the director-actor relationship and helps to strengthen skills in communicating on set, building a respectful work ethic, taking direction, and creating a positive working relationship on set.
SCREEN ACTING & CHARACTER
Instructor: Gary Bennett
This class focuses on the physical, vocal and emotional aspects of character: how exploring, defining, and executing these are tantamount to screen acting. Students work on developing characters in an organic way on physical, vocal, and psychological levels. Development of an actor's sense of truthful subtext is explored before jumping into text. Students work on screen on structured improvisation, from non-verbal situations to scripted material. All work is centered on material that the actor knows and is compelled to work on, which can range from Shakespeare to modern classics to obscure and lesser-known material. When actors become comfortable with their character's essence and vulnerability, in combination with their character's POV, armor, or outward veneers, their work is finalized by shooting their characters and material in different situations and with different directions.
SCREEN PRODUCTION & ACTING
Instructor: Chris Modoono
Students experience all aspects of working on a set, from pre-production to production, as actors, directors, and producers. Un-produced screenplays are chosen each semester, and all students are cast in roles they develop and shoot over the course of the semester. Students also learn about and work on all positions on set, while honing their screen acting skills, including important preparation skills, making strong dramatic, personal choices, character choices, and the ability to be surprising, fresh and organic while using their technique.
SCREEN ANALYSIS, MULTI-CAMERA & RAPID SHOOTING
Instructors: Valerie Kingston
This class addresses the particular demands of working with multiple cameras live, such as in sit-coms and some dramatic series. The first half of the semester is devoted to script analysis and camera technique – students learn the vocabulary and body language needed to be successful in the daytime world. During the second half of the semester, students tape actual soap opera episodes in an environment that simulates a typical day’s work on a real soap opera set. This is achieved using Stonestreet’s professional soundstage, with multiple cameras, sound, lights, and control room.
SCREEN AUDITION TECHNIQUE
Instructor: Zach Galligan
This class provides a forum for students to learn how the camera and industry professionals perceive them, both in the commercial and legit audition setting. With instructor guidance, students choose and prepare commercial sides and dynamic 1-2 minute monologues. This class is also a warm-up and preparation for students’ auditions in front of commercial and legit agents, casting directors, and managers who attend Stonestreet’s Showcases each week.
ACTING AS A BUSINESS & THE ART OF AUDITIONING
Instructor: Ted Sluberski
This course is designed to give students a complete overview of how the business of show business functions, to understand how the art and craft of acting compliment the film and television industry. Each week, we discuss facets of the business as they pertain to film, television, commercials, and industrials. Classes include mock auditions in these areas, including interviews, cold readings, and prepared auditions. Topics covered include: the role and function of the casting director, the manager, and the agent; SAG, AFTRA and EQUITY as they pertain to professional work; the climate of the business in its most employable cities (New York, Los Angeles, and others); the headshot’s importance; show business periodicals and websites; alternative sources to seek employment, representation, career management and continued education.
MASTER CLASSES & VOICE-OVERS
Instructors: Guest Instructors
Guests from the industry work with students in a master class situation from Voice-overs to Auditions, Sit-coms to how to maintain a healthy and creative life with guests from our Behind the Scenes at Stonestreet Seriessuch as Susan Sarandon, Kevin Bacon, Edie Falco, James Earl Jones et al. Some of these previous interviews can be seen on our Behind the Scenes at Stonestreet page.
AUDITION & SHOWCASE
Instructors: Guest Talent Agents, Casting Directors, Managers
This class begins midway through the semester, once students have had a chance to work on audition material in and outside of their other classes. It is an opportunity to showcase their work and talent to visiting agents in a group setting, and then receive industry and peer feedback. This showcase is highly regarded by the industry because of Stonestreet’s reputable training program, the impact it has on the students’ work and auditioning skills, and its use as a casting tool. This class is monitored by Ted Sluberski and Zach Galligan, connecting what is learned in their respective classes to the real environment of an audition and vice versa.