Teen classes

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Musical Theatre Scene Study: Rent

Grades 9–12 · Come live La Vie Bohème! It’s 1989 in Manhattan’s East Village, and a group of starving artists are struggling with their love lives and their careers, as well as the devastation that the AIDS epidemic is bringing to their community. Loosely based on Puccini’s opera La Bohème, this rock musical by Jonathan Larson won the Tony Award for Best Musical and is the 10th longest-running Broadway show. In this scene study class, students will work on a group musical scene as an ensemble. Individually, students will work on the singing and acting of a 16-bar selection from the award-winning score, which include hits such as “Take Me or Leave Me,” “One Song Glory,” and “Seasons of Love.” In addition, students will be paired with scene partners and taught the acting process for developing a scene. The final performance will include their 16-bar singing solos, ensemble musical number, and prepared scenes.

THU 4–6:30pm · 1/11, 1/18, 1/25, 2/1, 2/8, 2/15, 2/22, 3/1, 3/8, 3/15 (performance) · $310

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 and Performing Raps for the Stage

Grades 9–12 · In this class each student will learn to use rap and Hip-Hop techniques to create theatrical performances. Using music, videos, and existing texts we will look at the history and roots of the Hip-Hop theatre aesthetic and its potential as a theatrical art form. We will develop freestyle techniques, write monologues, scenes, and short plays entirely in rap and verse, and present our work during an informal showcase at our final class.

TUE 4:30–6:30pm · 1/9, 1/16, 1/23, 1/30, 2/6, 2/13 · $190

Dan Wolf is an actor, rapper, playwright, director, producer, and educator. His work crosses artistic and cultural borders to combine conventional theatre styles with the themes, language, music, history, politics, and aesthetics of the Hip-Hop generation. Dan is a founding member of the critically acclaimed Hip-Hop music and theatre collective Felonious. Dan is currently developing Curren$y, an all female Hip-Hop adaptation of Shakespeare’s Merchant of Venice. His play Daylighting was produced by Shotgun Players in 2014. His play Stateless, a Hip-Hop and beatbox-infused theatrical collaboration with Tommy Shepherd, balancing German and Jewish history with the problems of racism and the African American experience, has been produced in San Francisco, Hamburg, and New York. His play Angry Black White Boy, based on the novel by Adam Mansbach, premiered at Intersection for the Arts in October 2008, ran for 12 sold-out weeks, and was named Top Ten Best Theater Plays by the San Francisco Chronicle and San Francisco Examiner. His play Beatbox: A Raparetta (co-authored with Tommy Shepherd) has been produced in San Francisco, Oakland, Petaluma, Germany, and at the New York Hip-Hop Theater Festival.

Acting Intensive

Grades 9–12 · This class is designed for serious young actors who want to take their performance to the next level and are interested in searching for ways to make authentic work. Grapple with and examine the same techniques professionals use: learn to analyze scripts, play an action in a scene, identify your objective, overcome your obstacles, and focus your energy. Work with other serious young actors who want to hone their craft!

Prerequisite for Level 2: Previous acting classes at the Berkeley Rep School of Theatre or another reputable theatre studio.

MON 4:30–6pm · 1/8, 1/22, 1/29, 2/5, 2/12, 2/26 · $150 (Level 1)
SAT 6:30–8pm · 1/13, 1/20, 1/27, 2/3, 2/24 · $145 (Level 2)

William Thomas Hodgson is an artist, an activist, and an educator. He has appeared locally at Berkeley Rep, Cal Shakes, TheatreWorks, Shotgun Players, and Berkeley Playhouse. He has led training for all ages in acting, movement, public speaking, imaginative play, and more at Berkeley Playhouse, UCSD, ACT, PCPA, and recently Park Day School. Acting credits include An Octoroon (Mixed Blood), Ragtime (PCPA), The Hunchback of Notre Dame (La Jolla), El Henry (San Diego Rep), and I Am My Own Wife (Ubuntu). He trained at PCPA, Santa Fe University, and UCSD. William is the Co-Artistic Director of Ubuntu Theater Project in Oakland, CA. Peace.

On-Camera Acting

Grades 9–12 · Learn how to give truthful and authentic performances on camera. This class gives beginning and experienced students a professional approach to acting that covers cold reading, scene study, and on-camera acting skills. Scenes will be recorded using digital cameras and will be available for students to keep for their records.

WED 4:30–6:30pm · 2/7, 2/14, 2/21, 2/28, 3/7, 3/14 · $190

Anthony Jackson is a professional actor, filmmaker, theatre administrator, and teaching artist. At Berkeley Rep he serves as the Program Manager, Training and Community Programs. Previously he was at Arena Stage in Washington, DC. There, he taught in all of the Community Engagement department’s programming while also serving as the Training Programs Manager and previously as the Partnership Manager. He has taught for several summers at the State Theatre of Georgia’s Springer Theatre Academy, Camp Arena Stage, and has also taught numerous workshops for students around the country as a member of the National Players. Anthony has traveled to India and Croatia as a guest artist with the U.S. Department of State, devising original plays with Arena Stage’s Voices of Now program. As an actor he has toured the U.S. and has performed with the Shakespeare Theatre Company, Olney Theatre, Arena Stage, and other regional theatres. Anthony has acted in several short films as well as training videos for branches of the United States Military. He has also directed and produced training videos for hotels and beverage companies.

Improvisation

Grades 9–12 · Students will develop skills that are essential for creating improvised stories. Through games, scene work, and interactive play, we will encourage spontaneity and creative impulses, while doing away with the need to be clever or funny. Topics of particular interest include the role of listening, honesty, and accepting offers as the foundation for collaborative work. Our emphasis will be on creating a safe environment for students to take risks, make mistakes, and learn through doing. We will also explore developing a performance troupe that could eventually put on shows for the public.

SAT 11am–12:30pm · 1/20, 1/27, 2/3, 2/10, 2/17, 2/24 · $150

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.

Breakdance and Contemporary Movement Fusion

Grades 9–12 · This course is open to all levels of thinkers, expressers, movers, and explorers. Develop embodied movement and learn improvisational movement fundamentals in order to hone your natural impulses and intuition. We will begin by exploring the qualities of contemporary hip hop, Laban, and dance/physical theatre. Gain a greater understanding of self, presence, rootedness, and connectedness to the external: time, spatial relationships, the environment, and the frequencies of other beings. Movers will navigate their abilities to adapt, shift, improvise, and derive creative impulses from varying sources of stimuli: sound, breath, music, text, spoken word, and visual images. Ultimately, we will uncover pathways to imbue movement with intention, expression, and storytelling.

SAT 11:30am–1pm · 3/3, 3/10, 3/17, 3/24, 3/31 · $145

Hien Huynh is a movement artist, performer, choreographer, and dancer. Hien began as a self-taught free form mover with exposure to break dance, contemporary, and hip hop. He holds a BA in Dramatic Arts: Dance and Theater and also a BA in Communication. Hien has performed professionally in the works of Kim Epifano, Robert Moses’ Kin, Raissa Simpson, Kinetech Arts, Angela Dice Nguyen, John Jasperse, Bob McGrath, and Qudus Onikeku. He is also a member of Axis Connect 2016 in Los Angeles. Hien is a 2017 solo artist recipient of the Bay Area CA$H Grant. Using movement as a medium to communicate the unspoken, he hopes to closer link the human to human-heart to heart connection.

Stage Combat: Small Sword

Ages 16 and up · Small sword is the most elegant and deadly of the personal combat weapons. Students will explore this juxtaposition of grace and violence by studying period movement in conjunction with swordplay. This course will cover the basic skills of theatrical small sword, stressing safety and partnership. Participants will also learn footwork, parries, thrusts, deceptions, wounds, kills, and many other skills allowing them to create the illusion of violence. It will be fast-paced, fun, and a good workout, too! All students will have the opportunity to rehearse and perform scenes that include stage combat and take a skills proficiency test for recognition as an Actor Combatant with Dueling Arts International. Class size is limited to 12. Full-fingered gloves are required. Open to all levels.

MON 7–10pm · 2/26, 3/5, 3/12, 3/19, 3/26 · $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.

Private Voice

Grades 9–12 · 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.

Dates/Times: to be scheduled with the instructor · $75/hour
Please call 510 647–2996 to schedule a voice session

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.

One-on-One Audition Coaching

Grades 9–12 · Don’t be caught unprepared for an upcoming high school or college 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 · $75/hour
Please call 510 647–2996 to schedule a coaching session