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The Theatre Program at SOTA aims to be an innovative, “safer” space for students to take risks and discover the power of their own voice and deep humanity in relation to others and the world around them. Combining the craft of acting and the artistry of theatre-making within an educational and applied theatre framework, the Theatre Program utilizes both conservatory style training and educational theatre pedagogy.

Practitioners and methodologies explored include, but are not limited to: Augusto Boal, Cecily O’Neill, Dorothy Heathcote, Paulo Freire and moment work. Acting and performance methods include, but are not limited to: Sanford Meisner, Stella Adler, Uta Hagen, Lee Strasberg, Stanislavski, and various improvisation and voice and speech technique.

Children’s Theatre Classes

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Storytelling through Theatre (Ages 4-7)

Students will journey into the world of playmaking through storytelling and educational theatre activities.  Using engaging children’s literature and other playful writings as inspiration, classes will focus on social emotional learning to develop skills such as empathy, communication, and collaboration. Several acting techniques and exercises will be introduced, including Stanislavksi’s “Magic If”, creating a tableau, and working as an ensemble to bring an original piece of theatre to life.

The Play’s the Thing! (Ages 8-12)

In this class, students will discover both their individual artistic voice and the joy of collaborative theatre making by devising an original play. Working as an ensemble, students will learn improvisation, character development, and various acting techniques, including those of groundbreaking practitioners Cecily O’Neil, Dorothy Heathcote, and Augusto Boal.

Playmaking through Improv (Ages 8-12)

Using various acting, improv, and theatre making techniques, students will work in small groups to build structured improvised scenes. By exploring different aspects of their own physicality and vocal capacity, students will learn how to create characters and find “the game of the scene” using aspects of Upright Citizen Brigade’s method for improvisation and building a “Harold”.

Teen Theatre Classes

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Musical Theatre Dance (Ages 13-19)

Dance is an essential art form for every aspiring musical theatre performer. In this class, students will explore dances from a variety of Broadway shows and hit movie musicals as they develop skills as dancers and performers. Embracing the collaborative nature of musical theatre, equal focus is placed on supporting both individual growth and ensemble work, making this class the perfect fit for students of all levels and abilities with an interest in theatre and dance.

This class is geared to the beginner, but all levels are welcomed.

Acting the Song (Ages 13-19)

Musicals are stories, songs are stories – the role of a musical theater performer is to tell the story! In this class, students will learn a range of tools and techniques to enhance their musical theater performance skills. Students will be given a method for basic song preparation, tips for choosing material, and receive guidance on integrating body and voice. Students will learn how to interpret music, lyrics, and song structure in order to find a specific, connected interpretation of their own. Each student will work on a song of their choosing from the musical theater repertoire, receive one-on-one coaching in a group setting, and leave with a song that is ready to share with an audience! Open to all levels.

Acting Technique for Teens (Ages 13-19)

An introductory course in acting designed for all who are interested in the performing arts. This course provides a basic orientation to the dynamics of acting within a supportive environment. The class will focus on performance exploration, stage presence and movement, and leave space to explore the work through scene study, monologue, and audition technique.

Adult Theatre Classes

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Scene Study for Adult Actors (Ages 18+)

This class is intended for all levels, beginning through experienced actors.  During the course, students will practice character creation and development through traditional acting techniques (including Stanislavsky, Hagen, Meisner, Laban, and Strasberg) and learn how to approach a scene.  With a partner, actors will be assigned scenes from contemporary and classic texts to practice and perform in class.  This class culminates in an informal sharing of scene work for invited guests. 

Adult Improv (Ages 18+)

Using positivity, agreement, specificity, and teamwork, students will learn the fundamentals of improvised theater. They will think on their feet, creating characters, relationships, and scenes all from a single word. Students will explore different aspects of their own physicality, imagination, and vocal capacity through a wide variety of short-form games and exercises commonly performed in Comedy Sportz and Theater Sports show formats.

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