Beyond the Real

Have you ever watched an actor and are in awe of their ability to transform and adapt to different styles of plays? You admire their skills, their facility with language, and how they’re not only talented but having fun in their choices!

You have a solid foundation but are striving to learn more and be better, similar to those actors who can lock into a script and have an edge.

So, how do you get there? Take the first step with Beyond The Real

  • Master a range of text styles—going beyond naturalism and realism
  • Gain experience with heightened language and character work
  • Learn the research skills needed to fully immerse yourself in the world of the play
  • Work in a professional rehearsal room with a seasoned director

By the end of this course, you’ll feel expanded—more dynamic, ready to collaborate with any director, and capable of tackling any material. Most importantly, you’ll feel more confident and make exciting choices that feel authentic to both you and the script style.

Teachers: Justin Cimino and Annie McGovern

Aug 19-30
Mon, Weds, Fri, Weds, Fri 
5 four-hour rehearsals
20 hrs total 

Our exploration of different styles of performance will push you “beyond the real”—beyond the realism and naturalism common to acting training and into exploration of heightened language and character. This will include exploration of physicality and vocal production—how big is one’s physicality in a Sarah Ruhl play? How does the actor use their voice to convey the poetic language of an Aleshea Harris play?

This course will be alive, vibrant, pulsing with energy—we’ll be on our feet, playing, experimenting. 

In advance of the first class, instructors will assign partners and scenes in different styles, and students will be expected to do some dramaturgical preparation before the first class.

Students will need to act as their own dramaturg to best understand the style they’re working in—taking time outside of class to become an expert on the playwright, as well as the world of the play. What time and place is this story taking place in? What’s the culture surrounding the piece- music, politics, fashion, etc? Students’ research should include reading, watching films/documentaries, etc. 

Playwrights worked with could include:

Young Jean Lee, Robert O’Hara, Caryl Churchill, Clare Barron, Aleshea Harris, Brandon Jacobs Jenkins, Suzan Lori-Parks, Jordan E. Cooper, David Adjmi, Sarah Ruhl, James Ijames, Hansol Jung, Donja R Love, Tony Kushner, Christopher Durang, Maria Irene Fornes, Tennessee Williams