The theatre program at PMD runs year-round, offering acting instruction, drama workshops, and performance opportunities. September thru June we offer Acting I for the younger student and Acting II for the older student. Each summer we also offer three 2-week “Summer Spotlight Theatre” camps for 7-14 year olds who are interested in all aspects of performing including: singing, dancing, acting, and more.
Acting I – Theatre Basics
The goal of Acting I is to introduce basic theatre skills with an emphasis on character development and scene building.
The instructor’s progressive approach is light-hearted and fun, with the use of modern and classic theatre exercises. These exercises are designed to encourage each student to draw on his or her own personal experiences, and to heighten their observational skills, fostering self-confidence both on and off the stage.
The class begins with basic stage direction and movement. Then, using basic pantomime techniques, the students are taught to emote without speech. This focuses their efforts on facial expression and on hand and body language.
Exercises using random vocalization are then introduced, engaging the students to express themselves fully without use of language.
After completing exercises in diction and projection, full verbalization is allowed, and more sophisticated improvisational scenes are developed.
Each year, one evening is dedicated to teaching auditioning techniques. The instructor will explain not only what to wear and how to behave, but also what to expect and what will be expected of them at an audition.
This class is for students of ALL AGES. All new students are required to take ACTING I for four weeks. Each student will then be evaluated as to his or her level of skill and experience. Students displaying exceptional skills will be moved to Acting II – Advanced Acting, which is held one hour later on the same evening each week. A new student may enroll in the advanced class by audition, arranged by request at the convenience of the instructor.
Acting II – Advanced Acting
In Acting II, students explore more sophisticated acting techniques. More challenging exercises are introduced, as well as many similar to those used in Acting I.
Having acquired proper stage technique, the students now focus on in-depth character development through improvisation.
Through script analysis, students are encouraged to discover a given character’s emotional state and motivation for action. Versatility and flexibility onstage are stressed.
This class will prepare the experienced student for the ardent task of researching and developing a stage-worthy character.
Acting II is an advanced acting class reserved for those students twelve and over who have completed the requirements of Acting I. All new students must attend four weeks of Acting I. All students will then be evaluated as to their level of skill and experience. Students displaying exceptional skills will then be moved to Acting II, which is held one hour later on the same evening each week. A new student may enroll in the advanced class by audition, arranged by request at the convenience of the instructor.
Although both Acting I & II classes are not performance based in the traditional sense, there will be a year-end presentation held by both classes on the same evening, at the studio. The students will perform scenes that they themselves write, direct, and produce, showcasing their newly developed skills.