Monthly Archives November 2016

What is… EMASLA in a Jeopardy Question!

Well, you’ve got to take pleasure in life’s little surprises and, last night, we had an excellent little surprise: Seeing the Elizabeth Mestnik Acting Studio pop up in the answer to a Jeopardy question!

A list of all of last night’s Jeopardy Questions: (hint) “Take the ‘A’ Training” for $600, Alex”

Here’s the clip in all of it’s glory:

 

If YOU’d like to “Take the ‘A’ Training” at the Elizabeth Mestnik Acting Studio, view more here.

 

Now Enrolling: The Character; a beginning Technique Class

Beginner Acting Class
This New Year get into another person’s shoes, try out their voice, feel their pain and their joy by developing THE CHARACTER.  Learn to quickly bring life to a script through a set of tools that help you to grow into and fill out your character.

This 11 week course is not only about books and text, it’s about developing a personality. THE CHARACTER class at The Elizabeth Mestnik Acting Studio in Los Angeles (EMASLA) will provide you with a foundation in creating truthful, dynamic characters and expressing the way that you will be heard. Doesn’t matter if it’s a movie, television or audition, beginner class will help you find a technique to develop character’s psychology including voice and body language. Through exercises, improvisations, monologue and scene work, students acquire a comprehensive set of “acting tools” to draw upon when approaching a role. At the end of the course you will know how to bring a character to life and apply their techniques in scene work.

Up for the adventure? Then register and start your New Year with THE CHARACTER!

Find more information about our philosophy and  the beginning technique class here.


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Time: Wednesdays at 1:30pm or Thursdays at 7pm
Date: January 11 – March 23 2017
Place: 11423 Moorpark Street, North Hollywood
Price: $510 for 11 weeks – 50% due at registration

 

Upcoming: SPIKE HEELS Staged Reading

The second in our four-part play play reading series at the Elizabeth Mestnik Acting Studio (EMAS), a cast of EMAS students will stage a reading of Spike Heels, by Theresa Rebeck.

spike heelsPygmalion goes awry in this contemporary comedy of manners which explores sexual harassment, misplaced amour, and the possibility of a four sided love triangle. The combatants are a sexy, volatile young woman and three Back Bay types a writer, a lawyer and a fiancee in sensible shoes.

Featuring EMAS students:
Jeremiah Hahn
Jessica Nielson
Cassidy Schiltz
Steve Suh

Directed by Andrew Rodgers

The Acting Studio stages these events for our acting students, our faculty, and the larger artistic community. Admission is open to the public but any donations are appreciated and help us to continue staging these and other events that benefit the community.

If you would like to attend, Reservations are required due to limited space. Please RSVP to director@emasla.com

When: Sunday December 4th, 2016

Time: doors open at 6:30 for wine and cheese mixer and reading begins at 7:15

Where: EMAS 11423 Moorpark St. Los Angeles Map and Contact

To read a detailed account of our last play reading and what this particular form has to offer,  please click here.

We hope to see you there!


 

About the Elizabeth Mestnik Acting Studio:  Located in Studio City, Los Angles,The Elizabeth Mestnik Acting Studio (EMAS), our mission is to empower actors and acting students with a strong foundation in acting technique and a discipline that will last a lifetime. From our core Meisner classes, to acting workshops and seminars, each class aims to help students gain the “acting tools” that support successful acting careers.

 

Play Reading Series at The Elizabeth Mestnik Acting Studio

4 Actors, 4 Music Stands, 4 Chairs and an audience. No props, no costumes, no lights.  
Just the actors with their scripts  – and the audience.

emasla faculty reading the play Dinner with Friends

On October 29th EMAS presented the first play of the 2016-2017 Play Reading Series with Dinner with Friends by Donald Margulies.  EMAS took this opportunity to allow  the acting studio’s faculty members Diana Jelinek, Jordana Oberman, Ken Weiler and Michael Yurchak to star in this Pulitzer Prize winning drama – a rare opportunity for our students to see their teachers practicing the craft.  “It was wonderful to see our instructors in action! Seeing them putting on such a great performance without any props, blocking, or anything that can help create a “scene” made me appreciate their skills even more (and really solidified my trust in them as instructors) because they were only able to use their instrument and the power of relationship to tell the story.” said EMAS alum Tessa Brennan. She added, “I love that I can continue to stay connected to the community through events like these staged readings. I’m always so grateful that I found the EMAS Meisner program when I did, not only for the foundation it has laid in terms of my craft as an actor, but for the support and connections I have garnered through the studio.”

So what exactly is a Play Reading? It almost sounds academic…but trust me it’s not! A good play reading can be full of magic. Like a great radio play or audio book, it takes you on the journey – unencumbered by complicated production values. It’s the story, the actors and the audience. That is it. With minimal rehearsals the actors work with script in hand and can really commit to their craft as storytellers and revealers of the human experience. . Believe it or not, when actors do their job well…the audience actually stops seeing the actors flip pages, they stop see the bare set, and become transported to the world of the play. As EMAS student Stephanie Hoston shared “This reading taught me just what a good actor can add to a script. The script is nothing but words on paper until the actors make choices to bring it to life. If I had simply read this play, I may have dismissed some of the more controversial characters, however because of the actors I was able to see the human sides of each character. I left the reading feeling enlightened about circumstances in my own life as a child of divorce, and inspired as an actor. As an audience member, this is all I can ask for.”

I decided to develop this program because being exposed to great writers, having knowledge of genres and styles is an important part of being a fully trained actor. It’s inspiring to see the great breadth of material that has been produced by our master playwrights. If an actor is not familiar with the work of our great playwrights, they are taking advantage of the creative inspiration they offer; the juicy roles, the imaginative circumstances. They won’t know entirely what is demanded of the actor. Remember – plays are the actors medium, movies the director’s. Many of the today’s directors ground their vision in their knowledge of theatre, Kenneth Lonergan and David Hare to name a few. Actors might mmiss important references by directors (like the idea of a scene being “Pinter-esque” or a reference to Mamet’s rhythm) and they certainly are not grounding themselves in the rich history of acting that allows them to understand the roots of the craft itself.

So we decided to offer monthly play readings to whet the appetite and help our students develop a deeper understanding and love for the best plays our western cannon offers.

We will be focusing on reading plays of the 20th and 21st centuries, giving our students an opportunity to use the training they are receiving here to approach some of the most coveted acting roles of our times. It’s a great work out for the students who are cast in these readings, as there is really minimal rehearsal. They have to do the work themselves and call upon everything they have learned here. But it is also an amazing time for the entire studio to come together as an artistic community and hear some of the greatest plays of our times.

 

Upcoming Plays in our Play Reading Series are:

December 4th, 2016  – Spike Heels by Theresa Rebeck

January 29th 2017 – All My Son’s by Arthur Miller

March 26th 2017 – Topdog/Underdog by Suzan-Lori Parks

Admission is free – but requires an RSVP, and donations are gratefully appreciated to help us continue this program.  All readings end with a post-performance discussion that always inspires and leaves us wanting more!

Hope you come and join us for one of these events in the next few months.

~Elizabeth


Elizabeth MestnikThe founder of EMAS, Elizabeth Mestnik is an acclaimed actress, director, and acting coach . Having spent her formative years in New York City studying under William Esper, her commitment is to bringing the best of the Meisner technique and New York Acting to hollywood and the craft of acting more generally.