aka a semester of acting classes for 38 dollars. If you live in KC and you've ever wanted to take an acting class now is the time. I'm going to teach you a lot of what I learned in 3 years of weekly acting classes, at huge expense to myself, in Los Angeles from 2010 to 2013.
I figure people who read about the class online or in the brochure will wonder who is this guy that only has a single special thanks on IMDB? In the interest of it not being some mystery what will be going on at this class, not wanting anyone to come blindly or with other expectations, the following is what everyone should know about class.
There are two parts of class and the first part is
I. Warm Up.
Warm Ups are intended to exercise physical and mental capacity while dissolving self-consciousness and encouraging growth of the imagination. They are very fun. My intent will be to create a wide sampling of what a random person living nearby might be experiencing on a given day. Warm Ups are performances for the class only, no visitors will be allowed. Warm Ups are where you are allowed to make your mistakes and have fun, to take some risks and expand your range.
An example of a normal warmup is the emotional helix where we go around in a circle and express gradually worse then gradually better, then gradually worse, then gradually better, experiences we imagine having.
Another kind of warm ups are improv exercises. Improv warmups are all Games and they are often as entertaining as stage performances can be. An example of an improv exercise is The Convince Me To Let You Work At My Gas Station Game. A game can be made out of almost any situation.
The second and last part of class is
II. Scene Work.
Scenes will be handed out on the first week and everyone will cold read them on stage. The second week, everyone will be expected to be able to perform without the paper. Third week, it should be pretty good. Fourth week, bring some props, dress the part and put on a show. Scenes suitable for month-long study are generally between 3 and 7 pages long.
Scene work is performed for the class only, visitors are invited however to the last class. Only people invited by someone in the class will be allowed, this class is not open to the public.
Part III Question and Answer
This part is not important and isn't really part of acting class, but if anyone wants to talk about acting for 15 minutes after class I guess that's ok. This is the time to talk about good acting you have recently seen and request scenes for me to transcribe for study in class.
No one gets into class without giving Rick 38 dollars. I will teach for free but I can not pay for the paper for your scenes and gasoline for my car and the Communiversity organization requires basic funds to operate.
Admission will be rolling, you can join for whatever month and leave after whatever month. I only ask that you commit to one whole month, and the work it will take, first, and to have some fun with it. If you hear about this class in March and want to come for the last month, you are totally welcome but the previous rule applies.
No dating class members or coming to class to meet someone to date, that is sleazy and insults the entire craft of acting. It really gets in the way of everything, and risks all kinds of bad situations that waste a lot of time that could be spent on acting. This rule ceases to apply at the end of the semester.
Pairs will be assigned to work on scenes at least one other time a week out of class. Groups will be encouraged to work together. To study acting, exploring characters will require daily work and deep thought about the lives of a character.
SOME GUIDELINES FOR ME
Scene work will be about acting and not me talking about acting, I won't ever talk for more than a minute at a time before running the scene again.
I'm not an authority on acting and think any discussion of who might be is silly, I simply promise to teach everything I have learned. If you have spent a few years in Los Angeles studing and going to auditions maybe you should sign up to teach your own class at communiversity next semester, but if you are going to get into some kind of acting competition with me, please save us that experience. I don't compete for anything anymore that's not a video game and don't think you should either.
I'll help you be the best you can be, unfortunately I can't promise feelings will not be hurt because we have to portray characters whose feelings are hurt and because improving at anything requires failure. A peculiar trait of failing at acting is that other people see it. Fortunately, you will not be alone in this. People glamorize acting as something people do naturally, but everyone who is good at it has had to plow through a lot of humiliations in their studies that would flatten other people. And you never hear about that because their classes, like this one, are not open to the public.
QUESTIONS YOU CAN EXPECT TO HEAR WHILE IN CHARACTER
What is your social status?
Do you respect the person you're talking with right now?
What were you doing just before you came here?
Why is this moment important in your life?
What do you stand to lose and/or gain in this situation?
Why can't you just walk away?
What don't you want to talk about?
What are you trying to hide?
Addendum: About Me
I take tech support phone calls to fix the internet for people in Lenexa. I have a bogus eviction on my record so I can't lease an apartment. I've been in 3 student films and been an assistant to a producer 2 or 3 times. I've written 7 features and a quite a few shorts. I've provided coverage for a few production companies, including Abbott's online program. I won a heat of the NYC Short competition in 2012, that script is up on in the writing section of this very website, but I don't believe in competitions anymore.
I studied with the Will Wallace acting company, Daniel Henning and Armin Shimmerman at Antaeus Academy, and those are three of my favorite people in the whole world. What they taught me is what I will teach you. I still owe Daniel Henning like 300 dollars, but he has been gracious about it.
I am a storytelling digital filmmaker, because it is the culmination of my work as a musician, comedian, editor, writer and a few other things. I'm going to make digital videos in 2015 and if you are in my acting class, you will certainly hear about the auditions.