Adult classes

Fall workshops

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Ibsen Scene Study with Mary Beth Fisher

Special emphasis is placed on encouraging students to make dramatically effective choices by playing provocative actions, discovering the event within the scene, and finding creative obstacles. Students will work on scenes from A Doll’s House and A Doll’s House, Part 2. Students will be offered the chance to purchase one half-price ticket to A Doll’s House, Part 2. This workshop is for students with previous acting training and/or relevant experience.

MON 6:30–9:30pm · 9/17, 9/24, 10/1 · $200

Mary Beth Fisher has appeared at Berkeley Rep in Dear Elizabeth. Her many Chicago credits include Blind Date, Vanya & Sonia & Masha & Spike, The Little Foxes, Luna Gale, and The Seagull (Goodman Theatre); Domesticated, Dead Man’s Cell Phone, and The Dresser (Steppenwolf Theatre Company); and Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner, Long Day’s Journey into Night, Three Tall Women, The Year of Magical Thinking, The Wild Duck, and Arcadia (Court Theatre). Her New York credits include Frank’s Home (Playwrights Horizons), Boy Gets Girl, and The Radical Mystique (Manhattan Theatre Club); The Night of the Iguana (Roundabout Theatre Company); and Extremities (Westside Arts). Her TV and film credits include Sense8, Chicago Fire, Chicago Justice, Without a Trace, Numb3rs, Prison Break, NYPD Blue, Profiler, and Dragonfly. Mary Beth has received two Joseph Jefferson Awards, Drama Desk and Lucille Lortel nominations, the L.A. Drama Critics’ Circle Award, Chicago’s Leading Lady Award from the Sarah Siddons Society, and is an Inaugural Lunt-Fontanne Fellow at the Ten Chimneys Foundation.

The Method Actor and The Clown

An acting class for people who hate clowns, and a clowning class for people who love acting. Two acting worlds collide in this Weekend Intensive/Master Class with award winning actor and Cirque du Soleil clown Ron Campbell. No matter whether you’re seeking a deeper understanding of your craft or just want to make people laugh, the teachings of Stanislavski and the lessons of the Clown combine through two days of gently guided exercises to give students what they need to become the best of both worlds: serious actors equipped with the tools that only inspired clowning can bring. Be prepared for serious fun.

SAT & SUN 1–4:30pm · 10/6, 10/7 · $125

In a career that has spanned three decades and four continents, Ron Campbell has performed everywhere from the streets of Paris, Rome, and Florence to the Royal Albert Hall in London and the Fuji Dome in Japan. A recipient of the Fox Fellowship for Distinguished Achievement, the “King of the Clowns” in Cirque du Soleil’s Kooza, and award-winning one-man show practitioner (R. Buckminster Fuller, The Thousandth Night, Shylock, The Dybbuk, The Boneman of Benares, Beckett’s Eh Joe among others), Ron has trained with such luminaries as Philippe Gaulier, David Shiner, Min Tanaka, and Georges Bigot, and has taught physical theatre, clowning, and mask in Japan, Europe, and North America. An associate artist at California Shakespeare Theater, Ron has played everything from Richard the Third to Sherlock Holmes to Don Quixote, for which he received both the Bay Area Critic’s Award and Theatre Bay Area’s Outstanding Principal Performance Award. Ron is the founder and CEO of Soar Feat Unlimited.

Lessons of The Mask

Expand Your Expressiveness, Heighten Your Scrutiny, and Tickle Your Funny Bone…with Masks!

Explore the insights that the mask reveals with award winning actor and Cirque du Soleil clown Ron Campbell in this Weekend Intensive/Master Class utilizing over 50 masks from around the world. Students will gather tools and techniques by working under a variety of masks from different cultures to create vivid characters and unlock hidden talents. Regardless of your mask experience, actors of all levels can gain the self awareness and understandings that can only be found in the magical world of Mask.

SAT & SUN 1–4:30pm · 11/3, 11/4 · $125

In a career that has spanned three decades and four continents, Ron Campbell has performed everywhere from the streets of Paris, Rome, and Florence to the Royal Albert Hall in London and the Fuji Dome in Japan. A recipient of the Fox Fellowship for Distinguished Achievement, the “King of the Clowns” in Cirque du Soleil’s Kooza, and award-winning one-man show practitioner (R. Buckminster Fuller, The Thousandth Night, Shylock, The Dybbuk, The Boneman of Benares, Beckett’s Eh Joe among others), Ron has trained with such luminaries as Philippe Gaulier, David Shiner, Min Tanaka, and Georges Bigot, and has taught physical theatre, clowning, and mask in Japan, Europe, and North America. An associate artist at California Shakespeare Theater, Ron has played everything from Richard the Third to Sherlock Holmes to Don Quixote, for which he received both the Bay Area Critic’s Award and Theatre Bay Area’s Outstanding Principal Performance Award. Ron is the founder and CEO of Soar Feat Unlimited.

Actor/Poet/Clown

Get inspired and be inspiring! Stretch your theatrical muscle, broaden your performance technique, and challenge your inner poet with award winning actor, published poet, and Cirque du Soleil clown Ron Campbell. Whether you’re developing your stand-up act, expanding your storytelling skills, or creating your one person version of War and Peace, the tools and techniques of the Actor and the Poet and the Clown combine in this Weekend Intensive/Master Class designed to help students create vivid, articulate characters and thoughtful, exciting performances. Through gently guided acting exercises inspired by the work of Stanislavski, Mikhail Checkhov, and clowns Phillippe Gaulier and David Shiner, and utilizing texts from poets like Neruda, Rumi, and Mary Oliver, students will write, create, and perform their own work developed in class. Paper, pencil, and spirit of adventure required. Characters welcome!

SAT & SUN 1–4:30pm · 12/1, 12/2 · $125

In a career that has spanned three decades and four continents, Ron Campbell has performed everywhere from the streets of Paris, Rome, and Florence to the Royal Albert Hall in London and the Fuji Dome in Japan. A recipient of the Fox Fellowship for Distinguished Achievement, the “King of the Clowns” in Cirque du Soleil’s Kooza, and award-winning one-man show practitioner (R. Buckminster Fuller, The Thousandth Night, Shylock, The Dybbuk, The Boneman of Benares, Beckett’s Eh Joe among others), Ron has trained with such luminaries as Philippe Gaulier, David Shiner, Min Tanaka, and Georges Bigot, and has taught physical theatre, clowning, and mask in Japan, Europe, and North America. An associate artist at California Shakespeare Theater, Ron has played everything from Richard the Third to Sherlock Holmes to Don Quixote, for which he received both the Bay Area Critic’s Award and Theatre Bay Area’s Outstanding Principal Performance Award. Ron is the founder and CEO of Soar Feat Unlimited.

Epic Theatre: Devising from Mythology for Ensemble Creation

“A hero ventures forth from the world of common day into a region of supernatural wonder: fabulous forces are there encountered and a decisive victory is won: the hero comes back from this mysterious adventure with the power to bestow boons on his fellow man.”—Joseph Campbell

This class is inspired by Joseph Campbell’s work in comparative mythology and Jung’s work in collective conscious, dreams, and symbolism. We will create a story that follows the Monomyth cycle by entering into the unknown. Using both ancient epics and personal stories, we will create our own adventures that take us out of this reality. We will cast ourselves into archetypal roles of heroes, gods and goddesses, sirens, monsters, wise fools, and other mystical beings that all myths hold in common. Structured improvisation, movement, playwriting, and music will be our tools for devising an original performance to present to friends and family.

SAT & SUN 1–4pm · 11/3, 11/4 · $110

Erica Blue is an international performance art, dance, and theatre maker. She has a BA in performance studies from Sarah Lawrence College and has done Master’s work at Dell’Arte School of Physical Theatre and Wesleyan University. After founding The Raw Material Performance Ensemble in Amsterdam, she then traveled and studied dance extensively in Southern Asia. Once arriving in the Bay Area she began teaching, directing, and performing with her ensemble, Teatro Auzzura. Her solo work has been performed at La Mama in New York, the Cleveland Performance Art Festival, and has won Best of the Fringe in San Francisco and Seattle. She also received a Goldie award in 2000 for her role as Salvador Dali’s wife, Gala. Blue’s company has received critical acclaim for their dance theatre work around the US and in Europe.

Theatre of the Oppressed: Mindfulness, Meditation, & Liberation

“Within this fathom-long body, lies the world of suffering, its cause, and its liberation.”—Gautama Buddha

All oppression involves the body—the body holds and reflects the experience of its oppression. Fear, anxiety, and oppression bleed their way into the habits of our human expression, trapping, binding, and shutting down our natural spontaneity and aliveness, making us mechanized, divided, and imbalanced in our bodies and our minds and isolated, aggressive, or confused in our relationships and interactions. The original form of mindfulness—the mind’s capacity to observe itself, reflect, and transform—is theatre. This workshop will explore the rich, deep, powerful practices of mindfulness, dishabituation, and embodiment within the corpus of Augusto Boal’s Theatre of the Oppressed, focusing on practical techniques for transforming and finding liberation through somatic and energetic awareness in the personal, interpersonal, and political dimensions. We will use demechanization, dynamization, image theatre, forum theatre, and rainbow of desire while developing presence, focus, and a strong capacity for meditative awareness. Open to anyone with a desire to use theatre, art, and meditation to explore a powerful approach to transforming self and society. Please dress comfortably to move.

SAT & SUN 12:30–5:30pm · 8/18, 8/19 · $175 (Summer)
SAT 12:30–5:30pm · 10/27 · $90 (Fall)

Jiwon Chung is a professional actor, director, and a key theorist of Theatre of the Oppressed. He is the Artistic Director of Kairos Theater Ensemble, adjunct professor of Theater and Social Justice at Starr King School at the Graduate Theological Union, and past President of the national organization for Theatre of the Oppressed. Author of numerous books, articles, and performances, he is considered a pioneer in the integration of somatics, Theatre of the Oppressed, and socially engaged art. The focus of his work is in the application of theatre as a tool for social and political change, using Theatre of the Oppressed to challenge, resist, and transform systemic oppression and structural violence and to redress large-scale historical atrocity and injustice. His approach to performance and social change is informed by his background as veteran, martial artist, and three decades of vipassana meditation.

Acting

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Beginning Acting

Develop a basic understanding of acting fundamentals through Stanislavski-based practice. Using exercises and scene work, the class introduces students to the elements of dramatic action, text analysis, and character development, as well as the tools for releasing inhibitions and expanding vocal and physical range. May be repeated.

MON 7–9:30pm · 9/17, 9/24, 10/1, 10/8, 10/15, 10/22, 10/29, 11/5, 11/12, 11/19 · $325 (Davis)
SAT 12:30–2:30pm · 9/29, 10/6, 10/13, 10/20, 10/27, 11/3, 11/10, 11/17, 12/1, 12/8 · $290 (August)

Bobby August, Jr. is an actor, improviser, and teacher. He earned an MFA in Acting from the University of California, Davis. Some of his favorite past performances include portraying Romeo in Romeo and Juliet, Benedick in Much Ado About Nothing, Howie in Rabbit Hole, Petruchio in The Taming of the Shrew, and The Player in Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead. Bobby also devises physical theatre pieces with long-time collaborator Iu-Hui Chua. They created and performed Crawl and Ligilo at the Mondavi Center for the Performing Arts. In addition, Bobby is the owner and director of the award-winning Made Up Theatre (MUT) in Fremont, California. His theatre specializes in presenting completely improvised plays. He has performed with MUT at improv festivals throughout the country—most recently winning Best Improv Group at the Sacramento Comedy Festival. His improv education includes training at the world-famous Second City and Annoyance Theatre in Chicago.

Shannon R. Davis directs and educates in the Bay Area, across the country, and internationally. Current: Oregon Shakespeare Festival’s Killian Directing Fellow, Berkeley Rep teaching artist, company member and director at Theatre of Yugen. Directing: Oregon Shakespeare Festival, University of Wisconsin–Madison, Theatre of Yugen, Microsoft Research, Facebook Research, San Anselmo Playhouse, Musical Café, Shotgun Players, Exit Theatre, Brava Theater, others. Teaching: UW–Madison, International School of Asia Karuizawa, Beyond Acting, Bay Area Children’s Theatre, FOGG Theatre, StageWrite, others. Acting: Forward Theater Co., Renaissance Theaterworks, Theatre of Yugen, Children’s Theater of Madison, City Theatre Co., Vortex Rep, others. MFA, Directing. MFA, Acting. BA, Directing/Voice. Studied at UW–Madison and MXAT–Harvard.

Beginning/Intermediate Acting

In this six-week course, students will play with acting exercises, monologues, and scenes using The Barrow Group Approach to Acting; a set of simple, practical tools designed to get acting to look as much like real life as possible so audience members feel like they are watching real people rather than actors working. We’ll use script analysis to determine what the story we are there to tell is so that we can get busy doing stuff to tell that story. Using real behavior within the imaginary circumstances of the script encourages spontaneity and gives the feeling that we don’t know what will happen next—just like real life! (It also happens to keep those watching on the edge of their seats!)

TUE 2–4pm · 9/25, 10/2, 10/9, 10/16, 10/23, 10/30 · $185

Alyson Rutter recently moved to the Bay Area after 10 years as a union actor in NYC where she starred in the award-winning films Video, Apathy, and The Great Love Rosemary, and performed in numerous stage productions. She can also be seen in The Knick, Damages, Bored to Death, and the feature film We Only Know So Much. Directing credits include The Pavilion, called a “tantalizing revival” by the New York Times, Dying City, and Gruesome Playground Injuries, among others. She wrote and performed her one-woman show, The Goldilocks Effect, at The Barrow Group Theatre Company where she also taught acting.

Acting Shakespeare

How do we best approach the challenge of acting Shakespeare? The profound understanding of human character has set Shakespeare above all other playwrights in the English language. The most effective performers of the Bard’s plays, in Britain and America, have always understood that his language is the key to unlocking the secrets of character and action that have kept the plays vital for over 400 years. Students will learn to analyze the text for its rhythms, its rhetorical flourish, and its tonal colors, and apply it to their monologue work. All levels welcome.

MON 7–10pm · 10/22, 10/29, 11/5, 11/12, 11/19 · $230

Julian López-Morillas is well known in the Bay Area as a professional actor and director specializing in Shakespeare. He holds the rare distinction of having appeared in professional productions of all 38 of Shakespeare’s plays and has directed some 20 of them. He had a long association with California Shakespeare Theater and served as its Associate Artistic Director for several years. Julian has taught Shakespeare as literature at Mills College and classical acting technique at UC Berkeley, San Jose State, Foothill College, Solano College, and Dominican.

Inhabiting Shakespeare: Intermediate/Advanced

Have you longed to approach Shakespeare with greater ease, with a sense of joy and dynamism? How do we make the bridge from page to stage? Without the actor’s body, heart, and mind to animate the words, Shakespeare’s text remains inactive—merely words on the printed page. In a culture that values achievement and intellect over emotional connection, actors frequently experience inhibition relating to their own physicality. How do we get from reading the words to feeling the words, from feeling to emotive communication? In this class we will utilize concrete physical tools to access and express the fullest range of emotions through the medium of short Shakespearean scenes. We will address Shakespearean scenes from within the psycho-physical framework, culminating in performances of these scenes during the final class. We will also touch on the Royal Shakespeare Company’s approach to text, including the work of Kristin Linklater and Cicely Berry: decoding the structure of iambic pentameter, discovering the potential “clues” in broken meter/verse structural changes, following breath and rhythm, lifting words, and exploring emphasis.

THU 7–9:30pm · 9/20, 9/27, 10/4, 10/11, 10/18, 10/25, 11/1, 11/8, 11/15, 11/29 · $325

Susan-Jane Harrison trained as an actor at The Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London and received an MFA in Dramatic Art from UC Davis. As an actor, Susan-Jane has performed throughout the UK. Locally, she has worked with Berkeley Rep, American Conservatory Theater, Aurora Theatre, Woman’s Will, Center Rep, California Shakespeare Theater, and A Traveling Jewish Theatre, among others. She was the recipient of a First Bite Award from Radio 4 where her first play, Alaska, was subsequently produced. A second radio play, The Quetzal, has been aired on the PBS Satellite Network. Her first stage play, Today I Live, has been workshopped through RADA in London and premiered in 2016 with a subsequent play, Hunting Love, produced in the Bay Area. Susan-Jane has taught Laban Movement, Voice into Text, and acting in numerous acting programs throughout the Bay Area including The Actor’s Centre, Columbina’s Workshop, UC Davis, Jeffrey Bihr Studio, and Woman’s Will. She is a teaching artist with California Shakespeare Theater.

Ibsen Scene Study with Mary Beth Fisher

Special emphasis is placed on encouraging students to make dramatically effective choices by playing provocative actions, discovering the event within the scene, and finding creative obstacles. Students will work on scenes from A Doll’s House and A Doll’s House, Part 2. Students will be offered the chance to purchase one half-price ticket to A Doll’s House, Part 2. This workshop is for students with previous acting training and/or relevant experience.

MON 6:30–9:30pm · 9/17, 9/24, 10/1 · $200

Mary Beth Fisher has appeared at Berkeley Rep in Dear Elizabeth. Her many Chicago credits include Blind Date, Vanya & Sonia & Masha & Spike, The Little Foxes, Luna Gale, and The Seagull (Goodman Theatre); Domesticated, Dead Man’s Cell Phone, and The Dresser (Steppenwolf Theatre Company); and Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner, Long Day’s Journey into Night, Three Tall Women, The Year of Magical Thinking, The Wild Duck, and Arcadia (Court Theatre). Her New York credits include Frank’s Home (Playwrights Horizons), Boy Gets Girl, and The Radical Mystique (Manhattan Theatre Club); The Night of the Iguana (Roundabout Theatre Company); and Extremities (Westside Arts). Her TV and film credits include Sense8, Chicago Fire, Chicago Justice, Without a Trace, Numb3rs, Prison Break, NYPD Blue, Profiler, and Dragonfly. Mary Beth has received two Joseph Jefferson Awards, Drama Desk and Lucille Lortel nominations, the L.A. Drama Critics’ Circle Award, Chicago’s Leading Lady Award from the Sarah Siddons Society, and is an Inaugural Lunt-Fontanne Fellow at the Ten Chimneys Foundation.

Intermediate Acting

Students will analyze and perform scenes straight from dramatic literature. Special emphasis is placed on encouraging students to make dramatically effective choices by playing provocative actions, discovering the event within the scene, and finding creative obstacles. May be repeated.

Prerequisite: Prior acting experience or previous acting classes at the Berkeley Rep School of Theatre or another reputable theatre studio that stressed the fundamentals of text analysis, beat breakdown, and character objectives.

TUE 7–10pm · 9/18, 9/25, 10/2, 10/9, 10/16, 10/23, 10/30, 11/6, 11/13, 11/20 · $350

Alyson Rutter recently moved to the Bay Area after 10 years as a union actor in NYC where she starred in the award-winning films Video, Apathy, and The Great Love Rosemary, and performed in numerous stage productions. She can also be seen in The Knick, Damages, Bored to Death, and the feature film We Only Know So Much. Directing credits include The Pavilion, called a “tantalizing revival” by the New York Times, Dying City, and Gruesome Playground Injuries, among others. She wrote and performed her one-woman show, The Goldilocks Effect, at The Barrow Group Theatre Company where she also taught acting.

Intermediate/Advanced Acting

Students will analyze and perform two- and three-person scenes that vary in style and period and that focus on honesty of interpretation and also the intentions of the playwright. Special emphasis is placed on encouraging students to make dramatically effective choices by playing provocative actions, discovering the event within the scene, and finding creative obstacles. May be repeated.

Prerequisite: Prior acting experience or previous intermediate acting classes at the Berkeley Rep School of Theatre or another reputable theatre studio that stressed the fundamentals of text analysis, beat breakdown, and character objectives.

WED 7–10pm · 9/19, 9/26, 10/3, 10/10, 10/17, 10/24, 10/31, 11/7, 11/14, 11/28 · $350

Marvin Greene is a professional actor and has performed with major regional theatres such as ACT, Aurora Theatre Company, Marin Theatre Company, Westport Country Playhouse, Long Wharf Theatre, and San Jose Rep. Marvin served as an instructor at ACT for over a decade and also teaches at the Academy of Art College and Voice One in San Francisco. Marvin has taught at the Berkeley Rep School of Theatre since 2003.

Intermediate/Advanced Acting: Meisner Technique

Actors will work on scenes and monologues, utilizing elements of the Meisner Technique in the process of bringing the text to life! Following the specific needs of each individual instrument, we will explore and integrate exercises and material that will awaken deeper levels of curiosity, broaden experience, and further mastery of the craft.

For acceptance into this class, students must submit a résumé to school@berkeleyrep.org.

MON 6:30–9:30pm · 10/8, 10/15, 10/29, 11/5, 11/12 · $255

Rachael Adler studied with Sanford Meisner at the Neighborhood Playhouse in New York, and was later designated there to teach the technique. After a career as an actor and model in New York and the Bay Area, Rachael founded two Meisner conservatories (Studio Magnetic, Waterfront Playhouse and Conservatory). In addition to studying the Meisner Technique, Rachael has also trained in other techniques with Larry Moss, Sandra Seacat, Bill Hickey, and Earle Hyman at HB Studios in New York, Loyd Williamson at the Actors Movement Studio, and many other acting, voice, and movement techniques. Rachael’s other areas of expertise include classes in scene and monologue work. She has taught at ACT, Mills College, Foothill College, and other venues in the US, and is the Master Meisner Teacher at MeisnerEspana in Barcelona, Spain.

Advanced Acting

Advanced Acting is an intensive scene study course for students with previous acting training and/or experience. The class focuses on solidifying technique, deepening internal connection, and strengthening textual analysis skills. Scenes are drawn from a variety of styles and genres, and students should expect to spend substantial rehearsal time outside of class.

For acceptance into this class, students must submit a résumé to school@berkeleyrep.org.

MON 6:30–9:30pm · 9/17, 9/24, 10/1, 10/8, 10/15, 10/22 · $275

Andrew Hurteau has been acting and teaching since graduating from American Conservatory Theater. He has performed with Berkeley Rep, ACT, the Magic Theatre, Marin Theatre Company, Aurora Theatre Company, and throughout the Bay Area. In addition to the Berkeley Rep School of Theatre, Andrew has taught at ACT, Academy of Art University, and the Nueva School.

On-Camera Acting: Level 1 & 2

Students will focus on creating character by thoroughly understanding the relationship between the text, situation, and the technical aspects of camera work. When these fundamental tools are genuinely understood and used correctly, only then can actors be free to work to the best of their ability in front of a camera. Areas of study will include script analysis, scene study, and character development, as well as camera technique, set discipline, and set etiquette. All scenes will be rehearsed with direction from the instructor, and copies will be given to students for their reference (please bring a 16GB SD card). A variety of other subjects will also be discussed relating to the business side of show business, including audition technique, agents, union membership, photographs, and websites. May be repeated.

Prerequisite for Level 2: Prior on-camera acting experience or previous acting classes at the Berkeley Rep School of Theatre or another reputable theatre studio.

MON 7–10pm · 9/17, 9/24, 10/1, 10/8, 10/15, 10/22, 10/29, 11/5, 11/12, 11/19 · $350 (Level 2)
SAT 10:30am–1pm · 9/29, 10/13, 10/20, 10/27, 11/3, 11/10, 11/17, 12/1, 12/8 · $315 (Level 1)

Rolf Saxon (AEA, BAE, SAG/AFTRA) trained with ACT’s first Young Conservatory class and the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London. Working extensively in film, television, and theatre, including the Royal Shakespeare Company and Theatre Complicte as well as West End and regional productions, his film and television credits include over 25 films and being a regular on three television series. Among others, he has worked with Tom Cruise, Brian De Palma, Vin Diesel, Tom Hanks, Daryl Hannah, Helen Mirren, Trevor Nunn, Ryan Reynolds, and Steven Spielberg. A director in both theatre and film, he has also been a private tutor and coach for over 20 years teaching including the Drama Lab (London) and the Guildhall School of Music and Drama (London). Currently, he is an Adjunct Professor of Drama at Ohlone College, teaches at the Berkeley Rep School of Theatre, SFAA, and the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama in London.

Script Analysis

This is a class for an actor, audience member, director, or student. You’ll learn how to look for the information in the text supplied by the author regarding character, situation, and theme. We’ll start with Frankie and Johnny in the Clair de Lune by Terrence McNally. The only prerequisites for this course are to have read the play before the first class and to bring your copy along.

WED 2–4pm · 10/17, 10/24, 10/31, 11/7, 11/14 · $170

Rolf Saxon (AEA, BAE, SAG/AFTRA) trained with ACT’s first Young Conservatory class and the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London. Working extensively in film, television, and theatre, including the Royal Shakespeare Company and Theatre Complicte as well as West End and regional productions, his film and television credits include over 25 films and being a regular on three television series. Among others, he has worked with Tom Cruise, Brian De Palma, Vin Diesel, Tom Hanks, Daryl Hannah, Helen Mirren, Trevor Nunn, Ryan Reynolds, and Steven Spielberg. A director in both theatre and film, he has also been a private tutor and coach for over 20 years teaching including the Drama Lab (London) and the Guildhall School of Music and Drama (London). Currently, he is an Adjunct Professor of Drama at Ohlone College, teaches at the Berkeley Rep School of Theatre, SFAA, and the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama in London.

Beginning Voice-Over Acting

This voice-over class introduces and establishes the skills required to perform different genres of voice acting. Beginning and professional actors learn the techniques and artistry of reading commercial, narration, and character copy. Students also learn professional microphone techniques, home-recording tips, and how to read authentically, as well as how to launch a freelance voice-over career. Students will also get to work with a professional sound engineer who will attend most classes. Lessons will be recorded for students to keep for their records.

MON 7–10pm · 9/17, 9/24, 10/1, 10/8, 10/15, 10/22, 10/29, 11/5, 11/12, 11/19 · $410

Sally Clawson is a SAG-AFTRA/AEA actor in voice over, film, and theatre. She has been voicing commercials, industrials, and video games for over 15 years. A partial list of her clients include Clorox, Yoplait, Old Navy, Target, Apple, Google, Wells Fargo, EA Games, Telltale Games, and Lucas Arts. She is currently in her sixth year of teaching at the Berkeley Rep School of Theatre, has taught at Cal Shakes Conservatory, and is currently on the faculty of Voice One. Sally has an MFA in Performance from Mills College.

Professional Voice-Over Acting

This voice-over class is for students with established home recording studios who are interested in, or have already, launched a freelance voice-over acting career. The class will focus on all aspects of the business—acting, engineering, copywriting, directing, marketing, and live recording. Students will be required to record assignments outside of class. Class size is limited to 10.

Prerequisite: Advanced Voice-Over Acting and a home recording studio.

WED 7–10pm · 9/19, 9/26, 10/3, 10/10, 10/17, 10/24 · $340

Sally Clawson is a SAG-AFTRA/AEA actor in voice over, film, and theatre. She has been voicing commercials, industrials, and video games for over 15 years. A partial list of her clients include Clorox, Yoplait, Old Navy, Target, Apple, Google, Wells Fargo, EA Games, Telltale Games, and Lucas Arts. She is currently in her sixth year of teaching at the Berkeley Rep School of Theatre, has taught at Cal Shakes Conservatory, and is currently on the faculty of Voice One. Sally has an MFA in Performance from Mills College.

Voice Over for Cartoons, Games, and Toys: Creating Characters

Learn to create character voices for video games, animation, and toys! This four-class intensive will teach you how to alter your voice, physicalize a script, and animate a fictional character. The technical aspects of microphone use and recording will also be covered.

WED 7–10pm · 10/31, 11/7, 11/14, 11/28 · $240

Sally Clawson is a SAG-AFTRA/AEA actor in voice over, film, and theatre. She has been voicing commercials, industrials, and video games for over 15 years. A partial list of her clients include Clorox, Yoplait, Old Navy, Target, Apple, Google, Wells Fargo, EA Games, Telltale Games, and Lucas Arts. She is currently in her sixth year of teaching at the Berkeley Rep School of Theatre, has taught at Cal Shakes Conservatory, and is currently on the faculty of Voice One. Sally has an MFA in Performance from Mills College.

Theatre of the Oppressed

Theatre of the Oppressed, conceived by Augusto Boal, is a collection of games, techniques, and exercises for using theatre as a vehicle for personal and social transformation. It uses the dynamized human body and the charged theatrical space as laboratories for exploring power, transforming oppression, and finding solutions to the fundamental problems of conflict, inequality, injustice, and human suffering. This workshop will introduce basic techniques (demechanization, dynamization, image theatre, forum theatre) from the Theatre of the Oppressed, with an end to understanding their application as practical and essential tools for artistic development, creative expression, social engagement, and personal transformation. This class is open to both experienced and beginning performers, as well as anyone interested in exploring art as a method for social and personal change, while developing spontaneity, fluidity, presence, creativity, and critical intelligence.

THU 7–9:30pm · 9/20, 9/27, 10/4, 10/11, 10/18, 10/25, 11/1, 11/8, 11/15, 11/29 · $325

Jiwon Chung is a professional actor, director, and a key theorist of Theatre of the Oppressed. He is the Artistic Director of Kairos Theater Ensemble, adjunct professor of Theater and Social Justice at Starr King School at the Graduate Theological Union, and past President of the national organization for Theatre of the Oppressed. Author of numerous books, articles, and performances, he is considered a pioneer in the integration of somatics, Theatre of the Oppressed, and socially engaged art. The focus of his work is in the application of theatre as a tool for social and political change, using Theatre of the Oppressed to challenge, resist, and transform systemic oppression and structural violence and to redress large-scale historical atrocity and injustice. His approach to performance and social change is informed by his background as veteran, martial artist, and three decades of vipassana meditation.

Theatre of the Oppressed: Mindfulness, Meditation, & Liberation

“Within this fathom-long body, lies the world of suffering, its cause, and its liberation.”—Gautama Buddha

All oppression involves the body—the body holds and reflects the experience of its oppression. Fear, anxiety, and oppression bleed their way into the habits of our human expression, trapping, binding, and shutting down our natural spontaneity and aliveness, making us mechanized, divided, and imbalanced in our bodies and our minds and isolated, aggressive, or confused in our relationships and interactions. The original form of mindfulness—the mind’s capacity to observe itself, reflect, and transform—is theatre. This workshop will explore the rich, deep, powerful practices of mindfulness, dishabituation, and embodiment within the corpus of Augusto Boal’s Theatre of the Oppressed, focusing on practical techniques for transforming and finding liberation through somatic and energetic awareness in the personal, interpersonal, and political dimensions. We will use demechanization, dynamization, image theatre, forum theatre, and rainbow of desire while developing presence, focus, and a strong capacity for meditative awareness. Open to anyone with a desire to use theatre, art, and meditation to explore a powerful approach to transforming self and society. Please dress comfortably to move.

SAT & SUN 12:30–5:30pm · 8/18, 8/19 · $175 (Summer)
SAT 12:30–5:30pm · 10/27 · $90 (Fall)

Jiwon Chung is a professional actor, director, and a key theorist of Theatre of the Oppressed. He is the Artistic Director of Kairos Theater Ensemble, adjunct professor of Theater and Social Justice at Starr King School at the Graduate Theological Union, and past President of the national organization for Theatre of the Oppressed. Author of numerous books, articles, and performances, he is considered a pioneer in the integration of somatics, Theatre of the Oppressed, and socially engaged art. The focus of his work is in the application of theatre as a tool for social and political change, using Theatre of the Oppressed to challenge, resist, and transform systemic oppression and structural violence and to redress large-scale historical atrocity and injustice. His approach to performance and social change is informed by his background as veteran, martial artist, and three decades of vipassana meditation.

Stage Combat/Acting Violence: Single Rapier

Ages 16 and up · Release your inner Swashbuckler! This course will cover the basic skills of theatrical swordplay, stressing safety and partnership. Participants will learn footwork, cuts, parries, thrusts, wounds, kills, and many other skills allowing them to create the illusion of violence. It will be fast-paced, fun, and a pretty good workout, too. As an added bonus, students will receive additional training in rapier and buckler—a small shield popular in the Renaissance. All students will have the opportunity to rehearse and perform scenes that include stage combat and take a skills proficiency test for recognition as a Theatrical Combatant with Dueling Arts International. Class size is limited to 12.

Class is held at Berkeley Rep’s rehearsal studio at 999 Harrison St, Berkeley, CA 94710.

MON 7–10pm · 9/17, 9/24, 10/1, 10/8, 10/15 · $230

Dave Maier is the resident fight director at San Francisco Opera, California Shakespeare Theater, and a company member with Shotgun Players. He has won several awards for Fight Direction and has choreographed violence for several Berkeley Rep productions, including Pericles, Prince of Tyre and Troublemaker, or the Freakin Kick-A Adventures of Bradley Boatright. His work has been seen at ACT, La Jolla Playhouse, San Jose Rep, Magic Theatre, and Aurora Theatre Company, among others. He is a Full Instructor of Theatrical Combat with Dueling Arts.

One-on-One Audition Coaching

Don’t be caught unprepared for an upcoming audition. Berkeley Rep faculty members are available to work with actors on contemporary and classical monologues. Make choices that you feel confident about. Be directed by and collaborate with working professionals.

Dates/Times: to be scheduled with the instructor · $80/hour
Please call 510 647–2996 to schedule a coaching session

Audition

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Art of Auditioning: Prepare for Summer Shakespeare Auditions

This class covers all aspects of the audition process but focuses on the commitment to strong, imaginatively chosen actions. Actors should prepare a classical monologue for the first day of the workshop, and on the second day the focus will shift to working with sides and a reader. Learn how to show your full range as an actor and to bring any scene to dramatic life, ready to make any adjustments that the director might give you. Each actor will receive individual attention on their monologue, and we will recreate the audition situation with a reader or a scene partner, a director, and several sides from one or two plays.

WED 7–10pm · 10/17, 10/24, 10/31, 11/7, 11/14 · $255

Jonathan Moscone serves as Chief of Civic Engagement for Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, envisioning and implementing strategies to fulfill YBCA’s role as a citizen institution in the city’s neighborhoods, schools, and throughout the civic realm. Prior to YBCA, Jonathan served for 16 years as Artistic Director of California Shakespeare Theater, where he directed nearly 20 productions. He has directed at theatres across the country including Berkeley Repertory Theatre, Alley Theatre in Houston, American Conservatory Theater, Magic Theatre, Campo Santo, Milwaukee Repertory Theater, and Huntington Theatre in Boston. A graduate of the Yale School of Drama with an MFA in Directing, he received the inaugural Zelda Fichandler Award by the Stage Directors and Choreographers Foundation in 2009, for “exceptional contribution to the national arts landscape through regional theatre work.” His teaching credits include: Berkeley Rep School of Theatre, ACT’s MFA Program, and the Yale School of Drama. He has served on the national board of Theatre Communications Group in New York City and currently serves on the boards of the San Francisco Film Commission, Alice Waters’ Edible Schoolyard Project, and the Homeless Prenatal Program.

One-on-One Audition Coaching

Don’t be caught unprepared for an upcoming audition. Berkeley Rep faculty members are available to work with actors on contemporary and classical monologues. Make choices that you feel confident about. Be directed by and collaborate with working professionals.

Dates/Times: to be scheduled with the instructor · $80/hour
Please call 510 647–2996 to schedule a coaching session

Improvisation

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Beginning/Intermediate Improvisation

Gain experience and understanding of the philosophies and fundamentals of improvisational theatre via a Keith Johnstone (IMPRO)-based practice in this beginning/intermediate class. Through playful interactive theatre games and storytelling, students are introduced to the elements of spontaneity, listening, accepting, and responding. This methodology helps students access their imagination, free their inhibitions, and increase their confidence. This class, taught by a professional improviser, focuses on skills that enhance the student’s creative path. Principles explored include being present in the moment, letting go of the inner critic, and strengthening creative impulses. May be repeated.

TUE 7–10pm · 9/18, 9/25, 10/2, 10/9, 10/16, 10/23, 10/30, 11/6, 11/13, 11/20 · $350 (Simpson)
SAT 2:30–4:30pm · 9/29, 10/6, 10/13, 10/20, 10/27, 11/3, 11/10, 11/17, 12/1, 12/8 · $290 (August)

Bobby August, Jr. is an actor, improviser, and teacher. He earned an MFA in Acting from the University of California, Davis. Some of his favorite past performances include portraying Romeo in Romeo and Juliet, Benedick in Much Ado About Nothing, Howie in Rabbit Hole, Petruchio in The Taming of the Shrew, and The Player in Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead. Bobby also devises physical theatre pieces with long-time collaborator Iu-Hui Chua. They created and performed Crawl and Ligilo at the Mondavi Center for the Performing Arts. In addition, Bobby is the owner and director of the award-winning Made Up Theatre (MUT) in Fremont, California. His theatre specializes in presenting completely improvised plays. He has performed with MUT at improv festivals throughout the country—most recently winning Best Improv Group at the Sacramento Comedy Festival. His improv education includes training at the world-famous Second City and Annoyance Theatre in Chicago.

Joyful Simpson is an actress, writer, and creativity educator who combines improv theatre, behavioral sciences, and mindfulness to create dynamic trainings for businesses and institutions. She studied theatre and psychology at Sarah Lawrence College in New York and earned an MFA in Dramatic Art from UC Davis. While at Davis, she spearheaded an applied improv-based training program for the Graduate School of Management. In 2013 she founded Pro-CreativeArts—an applied theatre organization—and is hired throughout the United States to lead trainings that foster creativity, collaboration, and communication for teams and leaders. Born into an iconic theatre family, she brings to her classes a unique body of experience gained from creating and performing theatre professionally since childhood. Her solo comedy recently won Best of Fringe at the 2016 San Francisco Fringe Festival. Her theatre credits include lead actor and co-author of four plays for “Prize of Hope”-winning company Human Nature and co-founder of the ensemble-driven theatre company Rococo Risqué, winner of SF Weekly Best Theater Ensemble 2005. Joyful has also appeared as an actor in many projects on stage and film, including Odyssey Works, an immersive theatre project; The Pursuit of Happiness, with Will Smith; and Spring Awakening, directed by Broadway and West End director Stafford Arima.

Advanced Improvisation

Open your mind to the infinite possibilities of improvised theatre. Delve into the more potent possibilities of improv, while exploring the nuances of style in storytelling, long form, genre work, and continued development of spontaneity and dynamic play. You will receive direct, tailored, and supportive feedback. This class will be geared toward performance-level improv, getting you ready to hit the stage or giving you a tune-up wherever you are as an improviser. No matter what, we will have fun and laugh. A lot.

THU 7–10pm · 10/4, 10/11, 10/18, 10/25, 11/1, 11/8, 11/15, 11/29 · $310

Kasey Klemm is a professional improviser with 20+ years of experience. He is the former artistic director of BATS Improv, San Francisco’s longest running and most-acclaimed improvised theatre company, and cites Keith Johnstone as one of his biggest influences. Kasey’s easy going nature and passion for improvisation helps create a playful space for students of all levels to explore their inherent creativity and take risks in a positive and supportive environment.

Improvisation Performance Lab

One of the joys of improvisation is sharing the creativity and spontaneity with an audience. This class introduces the skill of performing improvisational games and stories in a light and generous atmosphere. Students explore the philosophy of “giving” rather than “shining,” and practice interaction techniques that demystify the perceived barriers between performers and an audience. There will be two scheduled performances during class time.

Prerequisite: Intermediate Improvisation at the Berkeley Rep School of Theatre or special permission from the instructor.

WED 7–10pm · 9/19, 9/26, 10/3, 10/10, 10/17 (performance), 10/24, 10/31, 11/7, 11/14, 11/16 (performance) · $330

Kasey Klemm is a professional improviser with 20+ years of experience. He is the former artistic director of BATS Improv, San Francisco’s longest running and most-acclaimed improvised theatre company, and cites Keith Johnstone as one of his biggest influences. Kasey’s easy going nature and passion for improvisation helps create a playful space for students of all levels to explore their inherent creativity and take risks in a positive and supportive environment.

The Art of Business Improv

Improv is no longer just for actors! “The Master of Fine Arts is the new MBA,” so argued author Daniel Pink in his seminal New York Times story about the new creative economy. While this is an extreme statement, its implications are powerful: you cannot excel in business without creativity. In our competitive and evolving economy, being logical and analytical is no longer enough; the modern executive must be nimble and inventive to face the constant change. Theatre artists possess many of the skills regularly sought after in today’s economy—creativity, resiliency, agility, courage, collaborative awareness, and high levels of emotional intelligence. This class is specifically designed for professionals from any field, at any level, who want to reap the benefits of this training and develop their leadership skills. In this playful and unpretentious atmosphere, even the most reserved student will learn to harness their creativity, enhance their public speaking, trust their instincts, deepen their listening skills, read nonverbal body language, master their emotions, quiet their inner critic, and gain confidence in front of an audience.

THU 7–9pm · 10/25, 11/1, 11/8, 11/15, 11/29 · $210

Joyful Simpson is an actress, writer, and creativity educator who combines improv theatre, behavioral sciences, and mindfulness to create dynamic trainings for businesses and institutions. She studied theatre and psychology at Sarah Lawrence College in New York and earned an MFA in Dramatic Art from UC Davis. While at Davis, she spearheaded an applied improv-based training program for the Graduate School of Management. In 2013 she founded Pro-CreativeArts—an applied theatre organization—and is hired throughout the United States to lead trainings that foster creativity, collaboration, and communication for teams and leaders. Born into an iconic theatre family, she brings to her classes a unique body of experience gained from creating and performing theatre professionally since childhood. Her solo comedy recently won Best of Fringe at the 2016 San Francisco Fringe Festival. Her theatre credits include lead actor and co-author of four plays for “Prize of Hope”-winning company Human Nature and co-founder of the ensemble-driven theatre company Rococo Risqué, winner of SF Weekly Best Theater Ensemble 2005. Joyful has also appeared as an actor in many projects on stage and film, including Odyssey Works, an immersive theatre project; The Pursuit of Happiness, with Will Smith; and Spring Awakening, directed by Broadway and West End director Stafford Arima.

Directing / Devising

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Directing: Full Production Conceptualization

When directing, everything matters! This class offers a hands-on approach to understanding the art of stage direction led by one of the nation’s most innovative directors. In this introduction to a stage director’s craft, we’ll explore how the director crafts every event that occurs onstage from the beginning to the end of the play. Prepare the text, the space, the elements of design, and the actors to tell a story. Students will direct a scene within the course of this workshop and receive critiques of their work. This class will also cover the process of textual analysis, design, rehearsal process, and, most importantly, working with actors. Directors will use the other directing students in the class as their acting pool, and will meet on Thursday “lab” nights at the School of Theatre to complete assignments.

TUE 7–10pm · 9/18, 9/25, 10/2, 10/9, 10/16, 10/23, 10/30 (final presentations) · $340
Lab space for directors on THU evenings · 9/20, 9/27, 10/4, 10/11, 10/18, 10/25

M. Graham Smith is a San Francisco-based director, educator, and producer. He is an O’Neill National Directing Fellow and an Oregon Shakespeare Festival FAIR Fellow. He’s directed at HERE in New York City and venues in San Francisco, including American Conservatory Theater, Aurora Theatre, Crowded Fire, Central Works, EXIT Theatre, PlayGround, Brava, The Playwright’s Foundation, Cutting Ball Theater, Ray of Light, Berkeley Playhouse, Golden Thread, San Francisco Opera, New Conservatory, and The Ground Floor: Berkeley Rep’s Center for the Creation and Development of New Work. He directed the West Coast premiere of Jerry Springer: The Opera in San Francisco and Truffaldino Says No at Shotgun Players, winning a Best Director award from the Bay Area Critic’s Circle. Recent credits include The Lady Onstage at Profile Theatre in Portland, Oregon; The Liar, adapted by David Ives at Occidental College in Los Angeles as an Edgerton Foundation Fellow; and Deal with the Dragon at Edinburgh Fringe Festival.

Solo Performance

Devise original material for solo theatre in a supportive and fun environment. Students explore characters, imagery, objects, and different narrative voices and investigate the potential of rhythm and its effect on voice, physical expression, thought, and emotion. Experiment, fail, laugh, and surprise yourself. The class outcome is for each student to have a 5–7 minute solo performance piece from imagination to performance, and often the beginnings of a longer piece. All levels welcome. Joe has performed his original solo shows in theatres in the US and Europe.

THU 7–10pm · 9/20, 9/27, 10/4, 10/11, 10/18 · $230

Joe Orrach is an actor, choreographer, dancer, and story-teller in live theatre and film. Joe started as a boxer, Welterweight Champion of the US Air Force, before turning his athleticism to dance, especially tap. Joe has performed with the Smothers Brothers, Lilianne Montevecchi, Melissa Manchester, Michael Davis, Bill Irwin, Joan Baez, and others; tap-danced with Gregory Hines, Savion Glover, Nicholas Brothers, and Michelle Dorrance; and has been directed by Woody Allen, James Mangold, Tim Boxell, Jeremiah Chechik, Stefan Haves, and David Shiner. During 2013–18, Joe conceived, directed, choreographed, and performed his original works 147, In My Corner, The Boxer, Roughing It Up, and STReeT/FeaT in US and European theatres. Joe choreographed and was guest artist and boxing consultant in Terrence Blanchard’s opera Champion at SFJazz and reprised his featured role in 2017 at the Kennedy Center in DC. He recently choreographed The Royale at Aurora Theatre, Berkeley. Joe has an MFA from USC’s School of Dramatic Arts. When not on stage, Joe can be found in the classroom, community center, or boxing gym. Through Joe Orrach Performance Project, he reaches hundreds of students with programs that help them tell their own stories through rhythm, movement, and voice. He is the recipient of Dance Studio Life’s Generous Heart Award for his teaching.

Epic Theatre: Devising from Mythology for Ensemble Creation

“A hero ventures forth from the world of common day into a region of supernatural wonder: fabulous forces are there encountered and a decisive victory is won: the hero comes back from this mysterious adventure with the power to bestow boons on his fellow man.”—Joseph Campbell

This class is inspired by Joseph Campbell’s work in comparative mythology and Jung’s work in collective conscious, dreams, and symbolism. We will create a story that follows the Monomyth cycle by entering into the unknown. Using both ancient epics and personal stories, we will create our own adventures that take us out of this reality. We will cast ourselves into archetypal roles of heroes, gods and goddesses, sirens, monsters, wise fools, and other mystical beings that all myths hold in common. Structured improvisation, movement, playwriting, and music will be our tools for devising an original performance to present to friends and family.

SAT & SUN 1–4pm · 11/3, 11/4 · $110

Erica Blue is an international performance art, dance, and theatre maker. She has a BA in performance studies from Sarah Lawrence College and has done Master’s work at Dell’Arte School of Physical Theatre and Wesleyan University. After founding The Raw Material Performance Ensemble in Amsterdam, she then traveled and studied dance extensively in Southern Asia. Once arriving in the Bay Area she began teaching, directing, and performing with her ensemble, Teatro Auzzura. Her solo work has been performed at La Mama in New York, the Cleveland Performance Art Festival, and has won Best of the Fringe in San Francisco and Seattle. She also received a Goldie award in 2000 for her role as Salvador Dali’s wife, Gala. Blue’s company has received critical acclaim for their dance theatre work around the US and in Europe.

Movement

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Alexander Technique and Re-embody Method

Balance Your Left and Right Sides

Do you ever feel like two actors are living inside your body? You have your dominant side—strong, sturdy, and reliable—and your non-dominant side—receptive, fluid, and unstable. What if the relaxation, vocal power, and good posture you crave was as simple as bringing each side of your body up to competency? What if this easily and quickly cured your neck tension, knee pain, and tight hips? In this unique class you will learn the Re-embody Method—a cutting-edge system to balance your left and right sides. You will also learn the Alexander Technique—a time-honored method used by actors to improve posture, breath, and movement. Find yourself moving, breathing, and living with a power and ease you never imagined possible. Embody your acting and your life! Open to all levels.

TUE 7–9:30pm · 9/18, 9/25, 10/2, 10/9, 10/16 · $185

Elyse Shafarman holds a Master’s degree in Physiological Psychology and Alexander Technique Teacher Certification from Frank Ottiwell (2003). Elyse is on the faculty of American Conservatory Theater’s MFA program and maintains a private Alexander Technique practice in San Francisco and Berkeley. Her background as a modern dancer and training in psychology, yoga, and Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction influence her approach to teaching.

Tap Dance

Tap classes are great for spirit, mind, and body, and a terrific way to get in tiptop shape and enjoy yourself. Learn how to tap in the tradition of the old masters and break ground with some of the new contemporary styles. Ear training, weight transfer, balance, stamina, style, and a chance to experiment with choreography are just a few benefits of the tap class. Whether you are a professional dancer or just starting out, come study with a world-renowned tapper who has danced with Gregory Hines, Savion Glover, Nicholas Brothers, and Michelle Dorrance! Open to all levels.

THU 7–9pm · 10/25, 11/1, 11/8, 11/15, 11/29 · $150

Joe Orrach is an actor, choreographer, dancer, and story-teller in live theatre and film. Joe started as a boxer, Welterweight Champion of the US Air Force, before turning his athleticism to dance, especially tap. Joe has performed with the Smothers Brothers, Lilianne Montevecchi, Melissa Manchester, Michael Davis, Bill Irwin, Joan Baez, and others; tap-danced with Gregory Hines, Savion Glover, Nicholas Brothers, and Michelle Dorrance; and has been directed by Woody Allen, James Mangold, Tim Boxell, Jeremiah Chechik, Stefan Haves, and David Shiner. During 2013–18, Joe conceived, directed, choreographed, and performed his original works 147, In My Corner, The Boxer, Roughing It Up, and STReeT/FeaT in US and European theatres. Joe choreographed and was guest artist and boxing consultant in Terrence Blanchard’s opera Champion at SFJazz and reprised his featured role in 2017 at the Kennedy Center in DC. He recently choreographed The Royale at Aurora Theatre, Berkeley. Joe has an MFA from USC’s School of Dramatic Arts. When not on stage, Joe can be found in the classroom, community center, or boxing gym. Through Joe Orrach Performance Project, he reaches hundreds of students with programs that help them tell their own stories through rhythm, movement, and voice. He is the recipient of Dance Studio Life’s Generous Heart Award for his teaching.

Physical Theatre: The Funny Bone Series

Dedicate a couple of hours a week to your Funny Bone. Learn the joy and power that play and movement will bring to your performance. Whether you are a beginner ready to start the journey or a seasoned professional player, come and explore the key components to physical expression. Taste test mime and masks, improvise with words and movement, be sure to send in the clowns, and exit as an actor/artist with newfound perspective. You will find your stupid silly side, win…or fail…magnificently, and always continue to move on!

THU 1:30–3:30pm · 10/4, 10/11, 10/18, 10/25, 11/1, 11/2 (evening presentation) · $170

Nancy Gold is a multifaceted performing artist, director, teacher, and author of Finding Your Funny Bone! The Actor’s Guide to Physical Comedy and Characters. She has studied physical theatre in Paris with Jacques LeCoq, mime with Claude Kipnis, and clowning with Ctibor Turba. She has a BFA from the University of Illinois and a Master’s equivalence. She teaches at Berkeley Rep School of Theatre, ACT Young Conservatory, Academy of Art University, California Shakespeare Theater, Marin Theatre, UCLA, and public and private schools throughout the country. Directing credits include A Servant of Two Masters, Pippi Longstocking, Madeline and the Gypsies, The Caucasian Chalk Circle, as well as numerous original plays about empowering women for young audiences and adaptations based on literature. Nancy performs comedy and vaudeville with her partner, Lol Levy.

Theatre of the Oppressed: Mindfulness, Meditation, & Liberation

“Within this fathom-long body, lies the world of suffering, its cause, and its liberation.”—Gautama Buddha

All oppression involves the body—the body holds and reflects the experience of its oppression. Fear, anxiety, and oppression bleed their way into the habits of our human expression, trapping, binding, and shutting down our natural spontaneity and aliveness, making us mechanized, divided, and imbalanced in our bodies and our minds and isolated, aggressive, or confused in our relationships and interactions. The original form of mindfulness—the mind’s capacity to observe itself, reflect, and transform—is theatre. This workshop will explore the rich, deep, powerful practices of mindfulness, dishabituation, and embodiment within the corpus of Augusto Boal’s Theatre of the Oppressed, focusing on practical techniques for transforming and finding liberation through somatic and energetic awareness in the personal, interpersonal, and political dimensions. We will use demechanization, dynamization, image theatre, forum theatre, and rainbow of desire while developing presence, focus, and a strong capacity for meditative awareness. Open to anyone with a desire to use theatre, art, and meditation to explore a powerful approach to transforming self and society. Please dress comfortably to move.

SAT & SUN 12:30–5:30pm · 8/18, 8/19 · $175 (Summer)
SAT 12:30–5:30pm · 10/27 · $90 (Fall)

Jiwon Chung is a professional actor, director, and a key theorist of Theatre of the Oppressed. He is the Artistic Director of Kairos Theater Ensemble, adjunct professor of Theater and Social Justice at Starr King School at the Graduate Theological Union, and past President of the national organization for Theatre of the Oppressed. Author of numerous books, articles, and performances, he is considered a pioneer in the integration of somatics, Theatre of the Oppressed, and socially engaged art. The focus of his work is in the application of theatre as a tool for social and political change, using Theatre of the Oppressed to challenge, resist, and transform systemic oppression and structural violence and to redress large-scale historical atrocity and injustice. His approach to performance and social change is informed by his background as veteran, martial artist, and three decades of vipassana meditation.

Stage Combat/Acting Violence: Single Rapier

Ages 16 and up · Release your inner Swashbuckler! This course will cover the basic skills of theatrical swordplay, stressing safety and partnership. Participants will learn footwork, cuts, parries, thrusts, wounds, kills, and many other skills allowing them to create the illusion of violence. It will be fast-paced, fun, and a pretty good workout, too. As an added bonus, students will receive additional training in rapier and buckler—a small shield popular in the Renaissance. All students will have the opportunity to rehearse and perform scenes that include stage combat and take a skills proficiency test for recognition as a Theatrical Combatant with Dueling Arts International. Class size is limited to 12.

Class is held at Berkeley Rep’s rehearsal studio at 999 Harrison St, Berkeley, CA 94710.

MON 7–10pm · 9/17, 9/24, 10/1, 10/8, 10/15 · $230

Dave Maier is the resident fight director at San Francisco Opera, California Shakespeare Theater, and a company member with Shotgun Players. He has won several awards for Fight Direction and has choreographed violence for several Berkeley Rep productions, including Pericles, Prince of Tyre and Troublemaker, or the Freakin Kick-A Adventures of Bradley Boatright. His work has been seen at ACT, La Jolla Playhouse, San Jose Rep, Magic Theatre, and Aurora Theatre Company, among others. He is a Full Instructor of Theatrical Combat with Dueling Arts.

Voice / Dialects

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Voice for Performance: On the Stage and in Daily Life

Free your natural speaking voice! This class will enable students to gradually and safely build vocal strength while continually aiming to reach full vocal potential. Through a series of exercises designed to eliminate the blocks that inhibit vocal freedom, students will sustain strength and creative vocal range. Classes will begin with extensive warm-ups, which will be incorporated into relevant texts specifically chosen to best embody and express the true unique vocal life of each student. Students will be given the opportunity to apply techniques learned to a piece of their choice.

TUE–FRI 7–10pm · 8/14, 8/15, 8/16, 8/17 · $200 (Adaire—Summer)
WED 7–10pm · 9/19, 9/26, 10/3, 10/10, 10/17 · $230 (Harrison—Fall)

Christine Adaire is a Designated Master Linklater voice teacher, trained by the world renowned voice teacher Kristin Linklater. She is currently the Head of Voice at American Conservatory Theater in San Francisco. She has worked as an actor, voice coach, and director in many American regional theatres, including Oregon Shakespeare Festival, The Old Globe, Milwaukee Repertory Theater, Guthrie Theater, Chicago Shakespeare, Goodman Theatre, Lyric Opera, Steppenwolf, Shakespeare Santa Cruz, and Shakespeare & Company. She has taught workshops in Shanghai, Barcelona, London, Australia, and New Zealand. Her current area of research and writing is transgender voice. She works with transgender individuals so that they can modify their voice to more fully express their gender identity.

Susan-Jane Harrison trained as an actor at The Royal Academy of Dramatic Art in London and received an MFA in Dramatic Art from UC Davis. As an actor, Susan-Jane has performed throughout the UK. Locally, she has worked with Berkeley Rep, American Conservatory Theater, Aurora Theatre, Woman’s Will, Center Rep, California Shakespeare Theater, and A Traveling Jewish Theatre, among others. She was the recipient of a First Bite Award from Radio 4 where her first play, Alaska, was subsequently produced. A second radio play, The Quetzal, has been aired on the PBS Satellite Network. Her first stage play, Today I Live, has been workshopped through RADA in London and premiered in 2016 with a subsequent play, Hunting Love, produced in the Bay Area. Susan-Jane has taught Laban Movement, Voice into Text, and acting in numerous acting programs throughout the Bay Area including The Actor’s Centre, Columbina’s Workshop, UC Davis, Jeffrey Bihr Studio, and Woman’s Will. She is a teaching artist with California Shakespeare Theater.

Dialects and Accents for Improvisers and Actors

Standard British, Italian, and New York

Learn how to use physical triggers to help you quickly find the placement, melody, and general sound changes for various dialects. We will study these dialects in a multi-sensorial way, with a focus on the physical changes, the phonetic sound changes, and with immersion (listening to primary sources of the dialect). We’ll also get the dialects up on their feet in improv games and scenes.

TUE 7–10pm · 10/23, 10/30, 11/6, 11/13, 11/27 · $230

Rebecca Castelli holds a BA in voice and theatre and an MFA in acting. Previously from Seattle, she won a Seattle Times Footlight Award for her role of Mabel in The Pirates of Penzance, and also had the honor of acting with Tony award-winning actress Judy Kaye in Gypsy at 5th Avenue Musical Theatre Company. She was a company member of the Marin-based Porchlight Theatre Company for five years and had leads in many of their mainstage productions, including Chekhov’s Three Sisters and Oscar Wilde’s An Ideal Husband. Locally, Rebecca has also acted with Shotgun Players and Cinnabar Theater Company. She dialect coaches for various Bay Area theatres, including Shotgun Players, Theatre Rhinoceros, Town Hall Theatre Company, Mendocino Theatre Company, Virago Theatre Company, and Ross Valley Players. She is a founding member of The Incidentalists, a long-form improvisational group based in Oakland.

Beginning Voice-Over Acting

This voice-over class introduces and establishes the skills required to perform different genres of voice acting. Beginning and professional actors learn the techniques and artistry of reading commercial, narration, and character copy. Students also learn professional microphone techniques, home-recording tips, and how to read authentically, as well as how to launch a freelance voice-over career. Students will also get to work with a professional sound engineer who will attend most classes. Lessons will be recorded for students to keep for their records.

MON 7–10pm · 9/17, 9/24, 10/1, 10/8, 10/15, 10/22, 10/29, 11/5, 11/12, 11/19 · $410

Sally Clawson is a SAG-AFTRA/AEA actor in voice over, film, and theatre. She has been voicing commercials, industrials, and video games for over 15 years. A partial list of her clients include Clorox, Yoplait, Old Navy, Target, Apple, Google, Wells Fargo, EA Games, Telltale Games, and Lucas Arts. She is currently in her sixth year of teaching at the Berkeley Rep School of Theatre, has taught at Cal Shakes Conservatory, and is currently on the faculty of Voice One. Sally has an MFA in Performance from Mills College.

Professional Voice-Over Acting

This voice-over class is for students with established home recording studios who are interested in, or have already, launched a freelance voice-over acting career. The class will focus on all aspects of the business—acting, engineering, copywriting, directing, marketing, and live recording. Students will be required to record assignments outside of class. Class size is limited to 10.

Prerequisite: Advanced Voice-Over Acting and a home recording studio.

WED 7–10pm · 9/19, 9/26, 10/3, 10/10, 10/17, 10/24 · $340

Sally Clawson is a SAG-AFTRA/AEA actor in voice over, film, and theatre. She has been voicing commercials, industrials, and video games for over 15 years. A partial list of her clients include Clorox, Yoplait, Old Navy, Target, Apple, Google, Wells Fargo, EA Games, Telltale Games, and Lucas Arts. She is currently in her sixth year of teaching at the Berkeley Rep School of Theatre, has taught at Cal Shakes Conservatory, and is currently on the faculty of Voice One. Sally has an MFA in Performance from Mills College.

Voice Over for Cartoons, Games, and Toys: Creating Characters

Learn to create character voices for video games, animation, and toys! This four-class intensive will teach you how to alter your voice, physicalize a script, and animate a fictional character. The technical aspects of microphone use and recording will also be covered.

WED 7–10pm · 10/31, 11/7, 11/14, 11/28 · $240

Sally Clawson is a SAG-AFTRA/AEA actor in voice over, film, and theatre. She has been voicing commercials, industrials, and video games for over 15 years. A partial list of her clients include Clorox, Yoplait, Old Navy, Target, Apple, Google, Wells Fargo, EA Games, Telltale Games, and Lucas Arts. She is currently in her sixth year of teaching at the Berkeley Rep School of Theatre, has taught at Cal Shakes Conservatory, and is currently on the faculty of Voice One. Sally has an MFA in Performance from Mills College.

Private Voice

Learn to sing with ease and confidence, eliminating vocal pain and fatigue while improving your range and breath control. Each session includes breathing and relaxation exercises, vocal exercises and technique, and vocal coaching on songs, including how to act a song and how to prepare a musical theatre audition.

MON between 10am–noon · $80/hour
To schedule a voice session email rcastelli@berkeleyrep.org

Rebecca Castelli holds a BA in voice and theatre and an MFA in acting. Previously from Seattle, she won a Seattle Times Footlight Award for her role of Mabel in The Pirates of Penzance, and also had the honor of acting with Tony award-winning actress Judy Kaye in Gypsy at 5th Avenue Musical Theatre Company. She was a company member of the Marin-based Porchlight Theatre Company for five years and had leads in many of their mainstage productions, including Chekhov’s Three Sisters and Oscar Wilde’s An Ideal Husband. Locally, Rebecca has also acted with Shotgun Players and Cinnabar Theater Company. She dialect coaches for various Bay Area theatres, including Shotgun Players, Theatre Rhinoceros, Town Hall Theatre Company, Mendocino Theatre Company, Virago Theatre Company, and Ross Valley Players. She is a founding member of The Incidentalists, a long-form improvisational group based in Oakland.

Writing

Playwriting

This class is for anyone who has ever wanted to write a play, and those who have already written one and want to develop it further with a writers group. Areas of focus include character development, dramatic structure, writing dialogue, and effective exposition. The course provides a structured writing program, deadlines for presenting work, and a supportive group of writers with which to share and discuss projects. Students present portions of the developing work to the class and submit a draft of the final project to the instructor for written feedback at the end of the course.

TUE 7–10pm · 9/18, 9/25, 10/2, 10/9, 10/16, 10/23, 10/30, 11/6, 11/13, 11/20 · $350

Gary Graves is a company co-director of Central Works Theater Ensemble in Berkeley. Now in its 12th season, Central Works is dedicated to the development of new works for the theatre. He has written and directed numerous productions with Central Works, UC Berkeley, Hardback Theater, and American Theater Arts in Los Angeles. He holds an MFA in Playwriting from Southern Illinois University and a PhD in directing from UC Berkeley.

 

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2025 Addison St, Berkeley CA 94704

Roda Theatre
2015 Addison St, Berkeley CA 94704

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Our programs are published by Encore Arts Programs.

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