Stage West education courses are a fun and creativity-enhancing way to learn the arts of theater, improvisation, and public speaking! We infuse all of our classes with acting techniques from a variety of sources. Come get hooked on drama!
We are offering TWO rounds of classes this semester.
Round 1, Winter Courses
Jan 13-Feb 10 | 6:30pm-8pm
Acting for Adults, Foundation 2, Part 1: Playing the Action
For beginners as well as actors with experience | Utilizing his decades of experience as an actor, director and teacher, Douglas Davidson will teach how to play the ‘action of a scene.’ He will utilize approaches from Michael Chekhov, Stella Adler, and the concept of action taught by Paul Mann, Lloyd Richards and Earle Gister (Yale School of Drama) to help you create dynamic acting in scenes and monologues.
Taught by Douglas Davidson
Jan 14-Feb 4 | 6:30pm-8pm
The Art of Auditioning, Cold Reads & Monologues
Garret Storms, Associate Producer at Stage West, will lead a 4-week course for actors to work on crafting bold auditions with finesse and clarity. During the course, students will workshop monologues and practice cold reads from various genres of plays. This class is a laboratory for actors to explore techniques for creating choices in auditions.
Taught by Garret Storms
"Let’s just admit it…auditioning is weird.
But it can also be a blast!
This intimate intensive will be a fun and quick course for those interested in honing and polishing the skills you need to up your game in a professional setting and get more comfortable and confident creating a dynamic audition in ‘the room where it happens’.
I can’t wait to work with you!" - Garret
Jan 15-Feb 12 | 6:30pm – 8pm
The Uta Hagen Approach, Advanced Acting
This class is designed for students who have at least one-year previous experience in acting. | Based on the acting exercises and philosophy of Uta Hagen, this five-week course taught by Stage West’s Executive Producer Dana Schultes, will focus on intention and exploration of character. All students will be asked to bring their own 1-2 minute monologue (sourced from a published play from anytime in theatre history) to the first class. Students will also be paired up to do scene work using selections from plays in Stage West’s 2019-20 season.
Taught by Dana Schultes
Since she was just six years old, Stage West’s Executive Producer, Dana Schultes, has loved the theatre and studied the craft of acting. Her philosophy for stage work tends towards presentational – bringing oneself to the character. She especially loves realism, heightened or slice of life. All this makes a perfect fit for her upcoming class for actors with at least one year of experience to study with Dana through the use of acting master Uta Hagan’s teachings and exercises.
Jan 11 – Feb 1 | 2pm – 5pm | Performance on February 1, 4pm – 5pm
The Improv Intensive
For new and advanced students | Allison Connor will guide us through traditional Improv exercises and games, focusing on scene work and character development. Learn to think on your feet in a supportive, creative “troupe” environment. This intensive course will culminate in a laughter-filled, totally unscripted Stage West Improv Performance on the last class. Come join the fun!
Taught by Allison Connor
Round 2, Spring Courses
Mar 16 – Apr 6 | 6:30pm – 8pm
Acting for Adults, Foundation 2, Part 2: How to Apply Technique
In this class, Douglas Davidson focuses on ‘practical acting’. Students will learn how to apply a variety of techniques-- from Michael Chekhov, Sanford Meisner and Earle Gister (Yale School of Drama) -- in rehearsal and performance.
Taught by Douglas Davidson
Mar 17 – Apr 7
To Be Announced! We have several exciting contenders for this class slot!! The winning course will be announced in February!
Taught by TBA
Mar 18 – Apr 8 | 6:30pm – 8pm
“Let’s Talk Better, Y’all”: Improve Voice, Diction & Public Speaking Skills
A four week exploration into all elements that create better speaking!
Week 1: Accent Reduction, Taught by Maggie Crawford
In this class, we focus on fine-tuning our ear and learning correct vowel sounds and placements.
Week 2: Secrets to Better Diction, Taught by Joanne Zipay
Give your articulation muscles a workout, with fun, energizing exercises designed to stretch, make clearer sounds and improve your diction.
Week 3: How to Be a Better Speaker, Taught by Beth Bando Bontley
Learn a variety of techniques to lessen nervousness, connect with your audience and enhance your public speaking abilities— from wedding toasts to professional presentations.
Week 4: How to Craft a Speech, Taught by Kim Titus
Learn how to prepare a presentation from an engaging introduction to a powerful conclusion; develop techniques to remain calm and confident; and discover how to practice your speech for maximum effectiveness.
Saturday, Feb 15, 12:00 pm – 2:00 pm
Beyond Borders: An Introduction to International Theatre-Making; An Exploration into Post-Dramatic Theatre.
Participants will take part in exercises geared towards post-dramatic theatre: a type of theatre that operates outside of the lines of Aristotelian, plot-driven, drama-based work. It uses spectacle (movement, voice, design, puppets, ritual, pageantry, combinations thereof) to create environment, shift mood, get at the emotional truth of a piece of theatre. It’s a way of maximizing theatricality to elevate stakes and create dynamic, unforgettable visual moments on stage. We will be exploring versatile tools to create large poetic gestures and unlock a more forceful theatricality.
Julie Paucker and Brian Bell met while working together at the German National Theater in Weimar and have been working closely together since. With over thirty-five years of combined experience making theatre in Germany, Switzerland, France, and America, Julie Paucker and Brian Bell will be introducing students to new methods of theatre-making and new theatre forms being created in German-speaking Europe. Julie Paucker will introduce her work as the artistic director of the KULA Compagnie and Brian Bell will discuss the challenges/rewards of being an American stage director in Germany.
Taught by Julie Paucker and Brian Bell
All Courses have an additional $15 Registration Fee.
There is a $25 drop fee, plus fee for classes attended, in the first two weeks. After that time, no refunds are allowed.
- Acting for Adults, Foundation 2, Part 1: Playing the Action
$125, or $62.50 per month
- The Art of Auditioning, Cold Reads & Monologues
$120, or $60 per month
- The Uta Hagen Approach, Advanced Acting
$175, or $87.50 per month
- The Improv Intensive
$180, or $90 per month
- Acting for Adults, Foundation 2, Part 2: How to Apply Technique
$100, or $50 per month
- “Let’s Talk Better, Y’all”: Improving Voice, Diction & Public Speaking Skills
$100, or $50 per month
- Beyond Borders: An Introduction to International Theatre-Making; An Exploration into Post-Dramatic Theatre.
For further info, email: Beth [at] stagewest.org or call 817-554-3613
Beth Bando Bontley, Education Director
Beth has honed her skills over the decades in all areas of theater. She has acted extensively in NYC and in Boston, where she established her first acting studio. Locally she has performed with Echo, Theater 3, Circle, Runway and Artisan Theaters. She has taught at TCU, TCC, STAGE, Dallas Summer Musicals, Dallas Children’s Theater and Kids Who Care.
Beth earned her BA in Speech and Drama at Trinity University; completed the two year conservatory at Circle in the Square in NYC; and earned her MFA in Interdisciplinary Arts from Goddard College.
Her original one woman show, ‘Acet-o-philous or Vinegar Love’ has been performed at Arts 5th Ave, the United Solo Festival in NYC and the Ft. Worth Fringe. She is also an author and a speaker, devoted to personal and artistic growth.
Allison has been performing and teaching Improv for over 20 years. She has performed and trained with The Groundlings in L.A., The Second City in Chicago and Gotham City Improv in NYC. She has taught Improv at The Comedy Store in L.A. and led numerous improvisational workshops for corporations, schools and universities. She has appeared in many national television commercials and on HBO's improvised hit comedy "Curb Your Enthusiasm."
Allison teaches Improv within the Keller ISD and currently directs the Keller High School Indian Improv Troupe and the all-kid Minor Trouble Improv Co.
She is delighted to be working at Stage West!
Joanne Zipay founded NYC’s Judith Shakespeare Company in 1995 and served as its Artistic Director for 20 years. She has taught, directed, dramaturged, and performed in the professional theatre coast-to-coast for over 40 years. Joanne studied Shakespeare at the Old Globe Theatre/University of San Diego MFA program, and has also studied with John Barton of the RSC. She has taught students of all ages at institutions including Pace University, City College of NY, Stella Adler Conservatory, Children’s Shakespeare Theatre, Brooklyn Academy of Music, National Shakespeare Conservatory, and Collin College. This season, she will direct Stage West’s production of Into the Breeches!
Douglas Davidson has studied in New York City, LA and London. He currently teaches acting at TCC. He graduated from New York University, Tisch School for the arts, BFA in 1987 and MFA in 1992. His professional training includes The Drama Studio, Actor Training Course, London; Practical Aesthetics with William H. Macy and David Mamet; Judith Weston, Directing Actors for Film, LA; and directing seminars with Martin Scorsese, Costa-Gavras and Spike Lee.