Acting Classes For Beginners

Don't Know Where to Start? You've Come to the Right Place

How do I “get good” at acting?


No matter what we want to do with our lives, we want to be good at it, don’t we? Emerson says, “Dare to live the life you have dreamed for yourself. Go forward and make your dreams come true.”

That’s all well and good for Emerson, sitting in his cabin on Walden Pond; but what does that truly mean for us in New York and in the 21st century? We are surrounded by dreams and ambitions, but the path is crowded with obstacles: time, money, competition, and our own self-doubt.

“Getting good” at something implies action: committing, investing, and starting.

And now the question is, “Where do I start?”

Remember that “Courage starts with showing up and letting ourselves be seen.” (Brené Brown)


Oh, and one more just for good measure, “It’s not inspiration that leads to action, it’s action that leads to inspiration and motivation.”  (Benjamin Hardy)

Where do I start?


Well, you start here. You are reading this page. You may have googled “New York City Acting Classes” and are doing your research. Congratulations. You’ve already done the hard work of admitting to yourself you have a dream and you may want help. And now you want to take that step to figure out how to make those dreams a reality. The next step, as Brown says, is to show up. And let others see you — in class.


But I don’t know anything about acting. What is there for a beginner like me?


The idea of a “Studio” may seem intimidating. Surrounded by those we imagine are “professionals“. “THEY know what they’re doing, those others in my class. I’m an imposter. I don’t know anything.”

Sound familiar?

When considering an acting teacher, a studio, or a class, take into consideration the many ways you want become the best actor you can be, and what that may entail. For everyone, it starts with foundational training.

The work we do here at the Terry Knickerbocker Studio is all about foundational training rooted in this thing called the Meisner Technique. What do you learn? Well, readiness, laser-sharp listening, emotional availability, constant curiosity, and spontaneity are just a few of the hallmarks of the technique.


Can’t I just take a scene study class?


In the beginning, no matter what class or technique you chose, it is important to start with exercises, and not with scene study. Said another way, using an “as if”: you wouldn’t expect to play Moonlight Sonata without knowing how to play a C scale, right? Would you play in the NFL without knowing how to read a tackle? Well that’s what it’s like doing scene without foundational training: you’re putting the cart before the horse.


Ok. Well can’t I just take a short workshop?


Remember that desire to “get good”? Well that, unfortunately, no matter how much natural talent anyone has, takes more time and investment than just a “workshop.” It takes a bit more time than one weekend to build the artist we believe you want to be.


Now What?


Keep reading, you have found a place to start. We have listed good places to start, including our Conservatory Essentials program because, truly, there is no such thing as an “advanced Meisner class”. Everyone starts at the same place: the beginning

Students are encouraged to enroll in Conservatory Essentials for comprehensive actor training. Please see the full class list below

For more information please contact our Administration.




Conservatory Essentials

Conservatory Essentials includes Level I-IV of Movement and Voice

How Good Do You Want To Be?


No Better Time - Train Now

"We Train Actors In 2 Years"

Hear From Our Students

“Everyone from staff to students is there for the shared love and passion for acting….”


Terry Knickerbocker Studio is an excellent studio. I have pages of great things to say but most people don’t read that long so here are the bullet points. At TK Studio, you work closely and personally with Terry. He takes the time to get to know you and your work. He offers HONEST critiques of your work with advice to improve, and that, to me, is priceless. Terry invests his time with each of his students.

TK Studios is a bit off the grid in Sunset Park, Brooklyn, which for me allows more focus on the work and the craft than being in a studio in the busy city full of other acting studios that feel like desperation and competition. At TK Studios, you can relax. You work with your peers and you’re invested in their success because it is made clear everyone’s journey is their own. There isn’t any competition rather we learn from each other and are inspired by each other. The quality of students at TK Studios is also top notch. You will not run into lazy actors or someone not as enthused about the work as you are. Everyone from staff to students is there for the shared love and passion for acting. I would recommend TK Studios if you are passionate about acting, if you want to build your craft, try something new, or just keep your work fresh and honest.

– Victoria M.



“It was the most alive I’d ever felt in my life….”


I came to the Terry Knickerbocker Studio at the ripe age of 19. I had no idea what I was in for, but I am glad I came. I could never find any other words to describe my experience there other than riveting. It was the most alive I’d ever felt in my life. I’ll use a few words that wont even do it justice, but I’d say: satisfying, brilliant, healing, extraordinary and self-discovery. Not only did the Studio help me TREMENDOUSLY as an actor, but it helped me be my best self in my daily life. All of the mentors/teachers/staff at the Studio go above and beyond to make sure you are safe and doing your best work. I would take the Two-Year Program all over again if I could. I really found myself here and my artistic home and friends that I know will last a life time and training that will better my work as an actor. I could go on and on about the Studio but I suggest getting up and going there yourself to see what its really about. Or even picking up the phone. You will not regret it I promise. I am forever grateful for TK Studio.

– Daniela G.



“If you are serious about acting, then this studio is number one….”


If only it was easy to articulate why this studio deserves 5 stars!! My experience here was life-changing to say the least. If you are serious about acting, then this studio is number one. Terry, the staff and the students thrive here, exemplifying excellence at it’s best. It can be intimidating choosing to train professionally as an actor, especially with many studio options in NYC, but Terry’s studio is like no other, helping each individual reach their full potential by creating a safe space to do so. Terry’s attention to detail, his undivided attention and love for his work are what sets this studio apart from the others. There is so much passion in, not only Terry’s teaching, but in all the staff there. Because of this passion, I was influenced immensely to be the best actor I can be. I was influenced to love, work hard and enjoy the process. The teachers, the staff, and the students care about you and your potential. I was pushed to take risks and to let go just like everyone else here. I am a better actor because of this training here, and an even better empathetic human. I am eternally grateful for this beautiful experience.

– Deonna D.


“Be prepared to work hard, and transform!”


Besides a thorough, specific, all-encompassing, caring, & passionate training in the craft of acting, my time at the Terry Knickerbocker Studio has given me self-empowerment, a way of working and breaking through my own blocks, and a commitment to pursuing my work always with love and joy. Terry and his INCREDIBLE staff and faculty have “taught me how to fish,” so to speak, so that I can always keep improving and moving forward for myself. At the Studio, I learned how to seek inside of myself and inside of a script to create an authentic, personal, dynamic performance. But I have also learned how to recognize and move through the road blocks I put in my way, and that has changed my life, not just in my acting. It was not a cake walk, and I would not have wanted it to be. Be prepared to work hard, and transform! I can’t imagine a better place to have gone on this journey – the environment, the people, the literal beautiful rooms, and the passion that permeates the Studio are unmatched, in my opinion. Forever a TK ambassador!!

– Emma W.



I think about when I’m 50 and I just got nominated for my Third Oscar and the guy asks “Where’d you find your voice?”

And I say, “I had this burning desire to find my voice when I was young and Terry Knickerbocker summoned it from this grave in me where I buried all my feelings.” That was the start. That everything I felt was OK and needed to be heard. That’s what we found.

– Braxton M.


“This is life-changing training….”


This is life-changing training — both as an artist and human being. Unlike some graduate programs, Terry is interested in an individual’s quirks and nurtures your uniqueness. You come out of the program with both his standard of acting excellence and your individuality better understood by yourself and your colleagues. That kind of confidence to be “you” in the real world while knowing how to arrange yourself to serve character and a story is invaluable.

– Jenna C.



“I 100% recommend Terry Knickerbocker Studio for any actor – from beginner to seasoned vet….”


I worked with Terry Knickerbocker prior to his development of this new studio. After a visit, I was inspired to jump right back and study here!

Terry is the most incredible teacher. His commitment and dedication to each individual artist is invaluable. And he has filled his studio with plenty of teachers who are just as excellent.

The space is clean, well-lit, and spacious; a gem in the area. The wide array of classes offered is eclectic and enriching, and the front desk service is incredibly friendly and organized.

I 100% recommend Terry Knickerbocker Studio for any actor – from beginner to seasoned vet.

– Megan M.



“….he has given me an artistic vocabulary from which to craft wherever I go….”


Working with Terry has been invaluable to me as an artist. His special gift for seeing actors’ true selves, often before they do, alongside his standard of excellence, precision, compassion and patience has all helped me become the artist I am today. My time with Terry in the Studio never leaves me when I am working “in the real world,” and he has given me an artistic vocabulary from which to craft wherever I go. I could not be more filled with joy to see the artistic home Terry has created for his students. The Studio is a reflection of the space that he creates in all the lives he touches: a safe, joyous place in which each student can take the exhilarating risk to emancipate their imagination while staying connected.

– Samantha L.

Master Class Student

Samantha L copy

“His pursuit of excellence, and ability to treat people as humans make him a teacher every actor needs…..”


Terry’s approach to teaching can be summed up in two words: authentic and compassionate. Never having studied with Terry, I went through many anxieties and fears leading up to class. Within the first few minutes of class, I could tell he was kind, invested in us, and was on a mission to help us grow. The whole studio has an aura of growth. The plants, the kindness of everyone you meet, the work ethic of the students, and of course, Terry… they all suggest a place where growth and learning will happen. I was so blown away by the confidence of the actors in the room. People were 100% committed to dive in and do the work…. fearlessly. As Terry coached us, it was so evident that his priority was to the truth. His pursuit of excellence, and ability to treat people as humans make him a teacher every actor needs. He treated everyone with respect and care, but also treated each actor differently: as he coached, he would tweak what he was doing to meet the need of the actor with whom he was working. There wasn’t a one-size-fits-all approach. When my character was painting a picture in a dream-like fantasy, he would coach me using the same point of view. When my character became violent and threatening, he matched me and challenged me to raise to an even higher threat with my scene partner. He enabled me to flourish within the scene. After a short time, I became aware that I could let my guard down here – that it was safe to do the work as fully as I possibly could – that I could even voice my feelings to Terry. It was beautiful to have such a safe artistic space. I also LOVED Terry’s “solutions-oriented” approach. “Don’t suffer,” he would say. In art and in life: it’s true!  Terry stoked a flame in me to be obsessed with finding solutions. In short, it was an incredible Master Class. I am filled with passion and thanksgiving and joy and hope as an actor. That is a very wonderful place to be.

– Julia B.

Master Class Student


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