Movement

Go Deeper with Movement for Actors

Movement for Actors: We don’t teach tap dancing, sorry.

 

The Movement training at Terry Knickerbocker Studio provides an intuitive and organic physical journey through self discovery and artistry. At times, there can be a misconception of what Movement classes for actors entails. Working out, yoga, and dance can come to mind. Instead, Movement for the Actor at TK Studio emphasizes personal discovery and a commitment to discovery, authenticity, and the essential pursuit of contact, both physically and emotionally.

 

What is the ultimate goal for students in Movement?

 

The Movement Faculty at TK Studio offers an arena for actors to feel free and comfortable to express their impulses, to operate at their fullest capacity, and to listen to and engage in a dialogue with their bodies. There are four levels of Movement a that are offered concurrently with the 124 Meisner Acting classes: Movement IMovement IIMovement III, and Movement IV.

 

What will I learn in Level I and Level II?

 

Levels I and II are about play, freedom, permission, and expansive motion. There’s music, improvisation, some alignment work, and a lot of contact work. It’s one thing to open up the body and be expansive on your own, but it’s very different to be vulnerable and also be in contact with another person.

Each class in the first two levels has a period of improvisation. There’s lots of feedback from the faculty and ensemble, lots of discussions about individual experiences, and we end with some alignment work – lengthening and strengthening the body. While Level I focuses on play and permission, the Level II is when we dive into the actor’s sensuality, and learn how to fully experience the world with our five senses. This is so you can be more involved moment to moment, integrating the same language as in our acting classes. The first two levels that we teach here are almost, by the book, the Williamson Technique, while Level III and Level IV move beyond that curriculum.

 

What will I learn in Level III and Level IV?

 

In Level III we concentrate less on release, although that’s always at the heart of what we do, and we start to explore creatively. Level III is about seeing the body as a creative tool and a creative instrument. Level III and Level IV incorporate a cornucopia of different work and techniques that our faculty have developed over their careers.  You start thinking about composition and how to communicate and create meaning on stage with your body. Stories that are not necessarily as linear or text driven as are typically conceived of in the Acting class.

Level IV is a performance class, and we create our own content. It culminates with an ensemble devised piece — referred to as the Performance Project. Students really get to practice what it’s like to collaborate, to make something out of nothing, and how to use all of the work from the past three levels in fully embracing physical creativity and composition.

 

Why is movement essential to actors?

Read TK Faculty Member Kana Sato‘s experience here. But if that isn’t enough, keep reading.

When fully committed to the movement work, actors truly discover the emotional and the experiential capabilities of their bodies. We think actors are so willing and ready to jump into the experiential side of the work. They become practiced at listening to what their body has to say, not only as a creative medium but also as a channel.  A channel that helps them process.  So it’s emotive and personal.  Only then is the contact that actors make with each other deep, full, personal, and authentic.

 

The work you do in Acting class is incredibly important and profound. Movement for the actor, we would argue, is just as indispensable.

MOVEMENT

Conservatory Movement

Admission is by interview only. All students are required to read Sanford Meisner’s book On Acting prior to meeting.

MOVEMENT

Summer Movement

Students are encouraged to enroll in Conservatory Essentials for comprehensive actor training.

How Good Do You Want To Be?

PROGRAM MEDIA

Movement IV Sharing 2020

“Why I Study with Terry.”

Hear From Our Students

Mac was super supportive and sweet, and gave really good constructive and specific notes for my Movement IV solo piece as I was developing it. I hope our paths cross again in the future so I get to work with him in more depth.

– Catherine W.

Alumnus

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“I developed a lot of confidence and trust in my body and my work in his movement classes….”

 

Nate demands excellence, which is a very good thing, but it can be very scary because we are being asked to step out of our comfort zones and explore that discomfort within the context of movement. He keeps an eagle eye on what’s happening in the room and will course-correct quickly if necessary. Like Kana, Nate is a Meisner-trained actor, and he’s a Meisner teacher as well, so he really knows what we’re going through, and he understands our references. He brings tremendous experience and wisdom into the movement studio, and he holds his students to high standards. He has the uncanny ability to read people’s bodies, and how they move and breathe, and whether someone is holding back. He can sense bullshit a mile away and will call us out on it. He brings accountability and honesty into the circle. Movement II was EPIC and I loved the Drunk Project.  Nate’s role in Movement III and IV was in helping us learn how to create pieces organically as an ensemble, and it was really neat to be a part of an evolution. I thought he did a great job in shepherding us and guiding us through that process. Nate is a movement master! I developed a lot of confidence and trust in my body and my work in his movement classes, which is so invaluable to me as an artist and a human being.

– Catherine W.

Alumnus

“She brings insight, wisdom, and compassion into the circle….”

 

I love Kana! She is not only a nurturing and amazing Earth Mama movement teacher, but a Meisner-trained actor who studied with Terry during her conservatory years. Her specific experience with Terry as his student, and subsequently as a teacher at his school, is an incredibly valuable asset within the safe space of the Movement studio. She brings insight, wisdom, and compassion into the circle, especially if we’re struggling with the work we’re doing in Terry’s class.  She has a warm empathetic presence which I found enormously comforting during class.  Movement I and II were foundational life-changing classes for me and my development, and Kana was a huge part of that. I’m incredibly grateful to have had her as a teacher for all of my movement classes.

– Catherine W.

Alumnus

I’m thankful for all our Movement teachers for being so supportive and encouraging throughout the program. When COVID-19 hit, they made sure to have all hands on deck and it was an incredibly special experience to navigate new territory with them. They are all a joy to work with and I hope to keep working with them in the future!

– Grace S.

Alumnus

Mac is a great observer and offers a lot of insightful feedback. Even though he was just shadowing Nate in our class at first, he ultimately invested a lot of time into being with us and offering his wisdom and creativity. I’m so glad he was there to help us with some choreography for our Movement pieces!

– Grace S.

Movement IV Student

“…..he’s a true expert in Movement…..”

 

Nate the Great has a magical way of assessing each individual’s areas of tension and what each person can work on. He has a playfulness about him that brings a lot of joy into the room, so it’s always fun working with Nate! He also knows what he’s talking about and doing- he’s a true expert in Movement!

– Grace S.

Alumnus

Grace Portrait.2

“….she really challenges us to move outside of our comfort zones….”

 

I love Kana so much. She really became like a big sister to me. When I was going through some serious struggles (having injured my foot) and was on the brink of dropping from Movement due to the lockdown, she was really there for me. Kana is a great teacher because she really challenges us to move outside of our comfort zones. She also takes the time to really listen to each individual and always has feedback tailored to each person. She also moves so beautifully, it’s an inspiration to watch her whenever she demonstrates new movements for us to try!

– Grace S.

Alumnus

Grace 3

Kana is an inspiring and brave artist. She is thoughtful and willing to push into unfamiliar territory fearlessly. Her movement work is specific, fluid, and beautiful.

– Jenny Koons

Director

 

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