My students' success is my highest priority.
A professional actor myself, I create a safe class environment where you can take creative risks in order to grow quickly and accomplish your performance goals. I work with seasoned professionals and beginners, too.
Audition pieces: whether you are just beginning work on a new piece or want to polish and refine your current pieces, there's work to be done to stay fresh and confident in "the room."
Text analysis: finding beats, identifying objectives and operative words, exploring pacing and subtext are the daily tasks of the working actor; maintaining a keen awareness and facility with your craft is critical.
Characterization: whether you are preparing for a specific role or simply want to understand how to make choices that set you apart from the crowd and yet remain authentic to what you bring to the part, I have tools and techniques to support you.
Speaking: do you have a big presentation to prepare for? Let's get started!
Improvisation: a skill EVERYONE can enjoy and benefit from participating in. Fun for the beginner and necessary for the acting professional.
My students have performed in NYC theatres and various regional theatres as well as in TV and film. I am a member of Actors Equity, Screen Actors Guild, and American Federation of TV and Radio Artisits.
I have coached and taught students ranging from Professional to College to High School to Middle School performers.
I love working with each person, starting where that individual is and watching him/her/them GROW and become more confident and more able to reach their highest potential. Acting is hard work, but it is also the most FUN you can have!
Jo is a caring and insightful acting coach. I have worked with her on a number of projects and can confidently say she has gotten the best out of me. Her system is comprehensive; she will work with you on figuring out the beats of your script to the character's subtext to the background and motivations to the movement and vocalization. Best of all she will never give you a line reading or tell you that there's a right or wrong way to do something. She helps you to figure out the best way that you, as an individual, can express and perform a character, leaving you with a performance that is unique and meaningful to you as an artist. Jo is a demanding coach, but working with her is always playful and joyful. I can't recommend her highly enough!
First, we determine what the student's goals are. (I don't teach a "one size fits all" class.)
Once we have identified the student's goals and I have an understanding of his/her background, we determine the necessary steps and timeline.
Each session is then designed according to the student's specific needs and interests and the skills the student wants to acquire. If the student is a beginner, I teach the basic tools necessary to succeed; if the student is an experienced performer, I offer feedback and new tools/skills she or he will benefit from exploring and using.
Sessions are tailored to the student.
I have trained with the Royal Shakespeare Company and hold an MFA in Acting from the PATP program at the University of Iowa. In order to stay current on trends in the business and upgrade my own skills, I regularly attend workshops and seminars studying with teachers such as Paul Russell, Casting Director and Author ("Acting: Make it Your Business"), Amy Jo Berman, former VP of Casting, HBO, and various other instructors in the NYC area.
My fee depends upon the following:
1.) Student goals.
2.) Number of sessions.
3.) If I travel or if the student travels.
My fee averages $50 per hour.
Example #1 - If the student travels to me and we work in my apartment for 1.5 hours, I usually charge $50.00.
Example #2 - If I travel 60 minutes round trip to the student and we work in a studio, the student is responsible for booking the studio, and my fee is $75.00.
I sometimes offer a sliding scale for students who present a need. It is best to talk with me about my fees.
I first taught acting in Seattle, WA at a college program as well as at the Seattle Children's program.
I have 25+ years experience working with all age groups. It is my passion to help actors reach their highest potential...I believe in my students and love teaching!
I have worked with a wide variety of students:
Housewives, lawyers, business professionals, etc.
Teenagers who know they want a career in theatre
Teenagers who just want to try it out
Recently, I directed a piece for the New York City Fringe. It was an amazing experience involving 8 actor/dancers and 1 older actor. We created the piece with the writer. Building a team out of 12 strangers was so exciting and all of these performers remain connected to each other ... each one continuing on his/her individual journey with a memory of a time they felt safe to create beyond their idea of what was possible. The team was completely dedicated to the process and we wound up with an inspiring and touching (as well as sometimes very amusing) theatrical piece. That's the best part of theatre!
Be sure the teacher has YOUR goals and interests and well-being at heart.
Think through what you want in a teacher...
1. What kind of teacher are you looking for? (write down some words that describe the kind of person you want to work with)
2. Ask yourself: "what do I want to have at the end of this acting class that I don't have now?"
3. Think about what your DREAM is and what your goals in acting/speaking/presenting are.
4. Then think about what you are afraid of and what's holding you back. If you can articulate this to a teacher it helps him/her understand your needs.
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