William Esper, student and associate of Sanford Meisner; head of acting — Mason Gross School of the Arts; director — Esper Studios N.Y.C.
You get a lot of personal attention at EMAS and that really expanded my emotional range.
Charles Michael Davis, actor — The Originals, Grey’s Anatomy
I’ve had first-hand experience with Elizabeth, in individual and group instruction, and I am constantly impressed with her uncanny ability to give both skills and confidence to her students. She’s one heck of a director too!
Ed Yeager, executive producer — 20th Century Television, CBS)
The Meisner program prepared me to take on my first lead role in a feature film. I filmed the summer after my first year of Meisner, and the technique fit perfectly with what the script demanded. It’s important to have as many acting tools as possible depending on the role. One tool that Meisner teaches that is necessary for every job, however, is truly opening up your ear to be able to hear underneath the lines. Once you learn this, it is an asset for life. If you want to inspire and be inspired by watching your peers struggle, fail, and suddenly break through, you should study here. If you want to expand and your imagination and creativity, study here. And if you want to take the unique journey of self-discovery and opening necessary to becoming a professional actor come to EMAS.
Lily Holleman, actress – Shameless, Key and Peele
I recommend EMAS because of Elizabeth. I trust that the teachers she hires match her level of insight, compassion, and ability to bring out the best in each of her students. You have to have an eye for BS as an acting teacher and she has it. She has called me on my own more than once. You also have to have an eye for the nuances of human behavior, the little itty-bitty details that take a performance from good to great. She has that ability. And I greatly appreciate that as an actor. When you look in the dictionary under really really good, high quality acting teacher, of the many faces you will see, you will no doubt see hers.
Sharif Atkins, actor – White Collar, Guardians of the Galaxy, ER
It’s imperative that TV and film actors have a solid foundation in traditional acting techniques. Elizabeth Mestnik is the person to go to for that training. She’s warm, honest, direct, and just a plain ol’ good acting teacher. You’ll love her and the supportive, safe environment she creates.
Cathy Reinking C.S.A. casting director — Arrested Development, L.A.TheatreWorks, Frasier, According to Jim
This studio has completely changed my life personally and within the craft. The summer intensive Meisner has opened my eyes in truthfully and authentically listening and taking in the other person in the craft of acting as well as personally. Elizabeth is the real deal – she is a brilliant coach and teacher who truly works on getting the best work out of you and she really cares about her students growth – her passion for the craft is so apparent in truly working on getting us to where we need to be to work truthfully every time. Jordana is just as amazing as she works with us to further our growth each time and getting us through break throughs in our craft. If you are really serious about your craft and want to grow I to a truthful and authentic actor – this is the studio for you. I look forward in continuing to grow in the craft with the conservatory program which is a must in truly becoming an authentic actor.
Leaving the comforts of home in Canada and coming to Los Angeles is a daunting task. Trying to find ‘Acting’ schools/studios that work for you, another hurdle in itself. I made the move down to L.A at the end of May, and then the challenge of finding schools began…
There are countless schools in L.A. and they’re all promising something that no other school can. Some are right to do so, others, not so much. It is tricky trying to find things that work for you because there are just so damn many to choose from. I audited a bunch of classes and began to notice a trend amongst them, there was a lot of caution (Pussy Footing) and pleasantries involved, which I understand, but there is only so much of that one can take before it drives you up a wall. I personally like when a fire is lit and hadn’t found a school that would do that, so my search continued. I was checking online everyday and this school (EMAS) kept popping up. I, like you, read the reviews and was blown away as to how many incredible evaluations there actually was. I checked the website and saw there was a summer intensive being offered. I thought to myself, there has to be something to all these great reviews, so I decided to give it a shot. After an Interview I was accepted into the intensive.
Now let me just make it clear, the decision to “try” this school, was not only the correct one, after being involved, it’s one of the best decisions I’ve made. It has helped me tremendously, I’ve learnt more about myself and the craft from these 4 weeks then I have from any other class I had taken before. From day 1, I knew this was serious business. Elizabeths opening remarks hit home with with me. I take learning my craft seriously and if you do too, this is the place for you. The fact of the matter is, as a student it is as much on you as it is on the teacher, and at EMAS they recognize that. The teachers are great. Elizabeth, Jordana and Sandy are different in there approach, but they all share the same goal and that is to see you do well. They will help guide you in the right direction, you will hear what you need to hear when you need to hear it. They won’t sugar coat it at all. It’s a comfortable and safe place that will challenge you in ways you’ve never been challenged, and allow you to grow exponentially. Plus, as a bonus, it’s very affordable. This school is a no brainer.
Elizabeth Mestnik Acting Studio has given me a whole new perspective on acting and the world. I’m learning so much more about who I am and how to express myself as an individual, and more importantly that “I am enough”. I am so grateful to be working with such talented and inspiring instructors and students in a loving community environment, where I am challenged each and every class to push past my boundaries. While it is all a frustrating, exciting, moving experience, my teachers never give up on me and that makes it all worth it.
I cannot express how lucky I feel as an actor to have found a school with such amazing teachers that grasp what an actor really needs to make it in this business. I started out taking the Summer Meisner Intensive class not really sure of what I was going to get out of it and I loved it! Each class was always a learning experience whether it happened personally or by watching a classmate. I loved it so much that I enrolled and completed the 2-year Meisner program and all I can say is, “What an Amazing Ride”!
Everything I’ve done or will do professionally as an actor I owe to Elizabeth Mestnik and her amazing studio. From basic technique to scene study to a 2-year Meisner Technique program, EMAS has been my primary source of professional training since moving to LA. Elizabeth and her instructors see the unique qualities and potential in EMAS students and work to get them to tap into their truthful emotional life to bring work vividly to life. The more demanding the course of study, the deeper Elizabeth encourages you to dig. She cares greatly about your success as an actor. She’s not fluff, mind you, and she expects a lot from her students, but the rewards are great.
Awesome school! Elizabeth, Jordana and Sandy are all exceptional teachers. In just 5 weeks I grew not only as an actor, but as a person. Elizabeth requires her students to be professional and committed. If you are ready to be challenged, inspired and given the tools you need to grow as an actor, this is the place for you.
EMAS was such an intense and amazing experience. Elizabeth is so passionate about the work and constantly pushed us to give our best, to always strive for excellence. I am definitely a stronger actor having gone through the 2-year program at EMAS. The relationships I’ve made at EMAS is something I will always be grateful for. My core friendships, who I consider my close family now, have all stemmed from this program.
Elizabeth is the reason I am a working professional actor today. The rigors of her program are unmatched here in L.A., and I’ve studied at many places. If you successfully finish her Professional Training Program, you will have all the acting tools you need to make it in this business.
Christopher T. Wood
This is the real deal Meisner Technique built from the ground up. No exercises taken out of context, no cut and paste approach to developing craft. Each piece builds upon each new piece. You start simply and strive to maintain that simplicity as your exercises become more complex. EMAS is a place where you will be asked to challenge yourself continually. The instructors are very committed to the students. All of them studied Meisner Technique with Bill Esper in New York and are dedicated to imparting the power and usefulness of this approach to new actors. If you want to learn an honest approach to the craft of acting, read Sanford Meisner’s On Acting, read Bill Esper’s The Actor’s Art and Craft and set up an interview with Elizabeth and figure out if this is the right fit for you.
I value the training I received at the Elizabeth Mestnik Acting Studio more than my college degree. That is not an exaggeration. I learned more in one year of Meisner Technique than I did in my four year Bachelors program. I am a very cynical and distrustful person. I was very close to leaving Los Angeles altogether until I took the summer Meisner Intensive. That 12-week class was enough to convince me to stay in LA to study with Elizabeth and her amazing instructors. The Meisner Technique is a very difficult process because there is no hiding. Everyone works in every class, and you have to put in the hours out of class. It was one of the most challenging yet REWARDING things I have ever done.
Elizabeth Mestnik Acting Studio is an incredible learning experience for those who are ready to learn how to make your acting more visceral. These classes so far have been a crash-course in life. It is based on truth and it forces you to look at yourself, get to know your own core truths and accept yourself for who you are. I’m making great leaps and bounds in my personal and creative life thanks to the Meisner Method & the EMAS Family. EMAS is for serious actors who want to make a quantum leap in their performance skills. All classes require hard work because well, that’s what it takes to be good at the craft of acting.
I truly can’t say anything bad about this place. I have learned SO MUCH at this school, and that is coming from someone who spent 4 years studying theater in college. Elizabeth’s studio is, by far, the best bang for your buck too, as her classes cost the same OR less as other Meisner programs and are 8 hours a week.
Since starting this program (I’m in my 2nd year) my acting has matured immensely and grown deeper than I thought possible – auditions are no longer intimidating, but a real joy. I have booked a lot of work since starting here, and I am certain it is because I am confident and prepared to do the work to get the part. Elizabeth’s studio is, by far, the best bang for your buck too, as her classes cost the same OR less as other Meisner programs and are 8 hours a week. I respect the teachers here completely, and there is no lying from the teachers – they only want you to get better, and praise is earned truthfully,. They themselves are working actors and all have masters degrees in Meisner, so they are more than qualified to guide us.
If you are serious and focused and committed to training as an actor, go here! I promise you it is SO WORTH IT!
Elizabeth, along with the other instructors at the studio, will leave you with one “aha” moment after another. To call them insightful is an understatement. They are truly spectacular teachers who hold nothing back. The instruction is straight forward, challenging and compassionate. They expect a full and consistent commitment from their students, and they give every bit of it back in every single class.
To me, the biggest difference between EMAS and most other acting classes is that EMAS actually teaches you how to act – the fundamentals of the craft. Other acting classes, often give you a scene and just direct you for that scene. Admittedly, taking direction is a necessary skill, but it is a far cry from knowing how to act. If you are serious about learning how to really act, then you must look into EMAS.
I was looking for an acting studio where the teachers have a genuine interest in helping you become a better actor. I looked at a lot of different places and I knew EMAS was right for me when I interviewed with Elizabeth. The studio is a high energy place where I am challenged and and always given the oppertunity to work in class. I love this place. I feel supported feel like it’s my creative home.
Marisa Van Den Borre
I have had formal acting training all my life and when I came to The Elizabeth Mestnik Studio (EMAS), I had no idea what to expect. I came specifically to study the Meisner Technique with Elizabeth. I had heard great things about her.
The Meisner Technique is such a powerful tool for your craft and at EMAS, I blossomed into the artist I had always wanted to be. For so long I found myself only being inspired by actors on the big screen and on TV, but not knowing how to be real, genuine, and authentic.
After the two year Meisner program I found that inspiration within myself. EMAS pushed me, which is what every actor [in Hollywood] needs in order to be successful and to be their most true self. This town (and industry) is hard and cut-throat and EMAS not only prepares you for that, but also gives you the guidance and tool belt you need. Jordana and Elizabeth are powerful teachers and not only will believe in you, but will have you believe in yourself, if you don’t already.
EMAS has offered me the most fufilling, most cohesive, structured and fully realized acting program I’ve ever had. Coming into the program, I was unsure about acting. I had been doing it for so long, it seemed like just going through the motions. EMAS completely changed my feelings about acting, film, and theatre. This is a group of passionate, dedicated people, who want to make you just as fully invested in your work as they are in you.
I adore the teachers. And I know I’m not alone. Each one of them offers a unique perspective, nurturing you where you need to be nurtured, and coming down strict when you need a wake-up call. I just finished the two year program, and I know that this class not only made me a better actor — I believe it helped me grow a lot as a person, as well. Many of my classmates echo this sentiment. Before I took this class, I wasn’t using my voice; now, I can use my voice, and I come across with full confidence no matter what room I’m in. Before, I would always choose the “obvious” way to read a scene; now, I see whole new unique sets of choices.
No other training has come close to what I’ve learned in the first year of the Meisner Program. While the technique itself can be at times, frustrating, Elizabeth and Michael have always been supportive, honest, nurturing, tough, and kind. I have the highest level of respect for these two professionals in the world. And the technique works. I am a completely different actor from when I first set foot in class