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Summer Drama Studio Intensives and Courses

The Tisch Department of Drama offers two five-week intensives in professional actor training on campus, as well as courses in theatre and performance studies. Additionally, the Department of Drama partners with several external training studios during the summer sessions.

Summer courses and intensives are open to current and visiting students, working professionals, and adult learners. There are training opportunities for actors of all levels. Please visit Albert for a full list of Drama offerings, as well as dates and meeting times for these classes.


Tisch Drama Studios

Meisner Technique: An Introduction

THEA-UT 341 | 8 units - Advanced Professional Training | Instructor: Check Albert

This intensive introduces students to The Meisner Technique. The fundamentals of the technique are introduced and engaged through exercises and scenes designed to directly connect the actor’s imagination with his feelings. Meisner’s technique is based on the principle of “The Reality of Doing”: That the actor never pretends in the imaginary world, but is caused to do the very things the character is doing. It is our belief that it is necessary for the actor to develop a skilled and truthful relationship with oneself as an instrument distinct from one’s everyday reality before transforming to serve character. To that end, exercises strengthen the actor’s connection to his partners, and deepens his connection to his feelings. In Meisner’s unique progression of exercises, the essential elements of all acting craft are actually drilled and practiced.  This provides not just a philosophy nor a directive, but strengthens muscle and mind as the actor sheds his pedestrian habits and enters the imaginary world. This practice develops a rich understanding of what it means to be present to an acting partner, to respond fully and spontaneously living through the events of the improvisation. In addition to the acting technique class, the intensive includes classes in movement, voice & speech, singing, and clown.

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Audition Guidelines

Interview required. Please contact Yvonne Winfrey, Meisner Studio Administrator, to schedule an interview. Her email is ypw219@nyu.edu.

New Studio On Broadway 2018 Music Theatre Summer Intensive

THEA-UT 330 | 8 units - Advanced Professional Training | Instructor: Check Albert

The New Studio on Broadway offers a rigorous, six-week (6 days per week), professional training program, providing the instruction needed to develop requisite skills for the music theatre actor. This intensive offers domestic and international college students the opportunity to be immersed in the core essentials of the New Studio on Broadway’s music theatre curriculum which includes: Acting (Acting Technique, Shakespeare, Contemporary Monologue Study, Voice & Speech and Mask Work), Singing (Vocal technique & performance, Vocal Book Preparation, and Sight-Singing), and Dance (Yoga, Ballet, Jazz, and Tap). Master classes are also provided by award-winning actors, directors, choreographers, and music directors. This is an outstanding opportunity to further develop and refine your music theatre skills with some of the most highly respected professionals in the field.

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About the New Studio on Broadway Intensive

Who Should Apply to the New Studio on Broadway?

How to Apply to the New Studio on Broadway

Audition Guidelines

The deadline to submit your audition is Monday, April 30, 2018. Please email lisajoseph@nyu.edu for instructions on how to submit your audition.

Acting Audition

  • Two contrasting monologues
  • One contemporary and one classical verse
  • Each monologue must be under two minutes in length
  • All monologues must be from published plays (no films or TV scripts and no original material)
  • Please choose material that is within your age range (roles you would be cast in now)
  • Please do not use an accent in your monologues
  • Both monologues should total no more than 4 minutes in length

Singing Audition

  • Please present two contrasting songs from the American Music Theater canon
  • One song should be traditional (pre-1960’s) i.e. George Gershwin, Cole Porter, Harold Arlen, Jerome Kern, Rodgers and Hart, Lerner and Lowe, Rodgers and Hammerstein
  • One song should be from Contemporary Music Theatre, 1960s to Present
  • Please choose material that is in your age range (roles you would be cast in today)
  • One song should be 32-bars and one song 16-bar cut

Dance Audition

  • Please submit a video of 1 to 2 minutes of prepared dance solo to musical accompaniment. Choose your music (Broadway, hip-hop, classical or pop music), and your choreography (ballet, jazz, folkdance, or tap). If you can think of it, you can use it. Include anything that showcases your use of the body as a creative instrument, demonstrating full body expressiveness and love of movement.
  • The video must be created specifically for the audition of New Studio on Broadway Summer Course Study. A clip from a previous performance is not recommended.

Helpful Hints for a Summer Intensive Digital Audition:

  • Make sure that your background is unencumbered and does not distract from the focus being on you.
  • When slating or introducing yourself and the pieces you are going to perform please shoot a 3/4 shot (from the waist up)
  • When performing your songs, monologues and dance, please shoot as a full body shot.
  • When performing song selections, live accompaniment is preferred, or pre-recorded track. But in all cases make sure the microphone is closer to the actor than the accompanist or pre-recorded track so that we hear the voice over the accompaniment. A cappella is permitted if need be.
  • Props and costumes are not necessary or encouraged
  • During Singing Audition do not accompany yourself.
  • Please wear clothing and shoes that allow you to move comfortably in your audition.
  • You do not need fancy equipment to shoot your audition. An iPhone is perfectly acceptable. It’s about you rather than production values. Here’s a link to a sample video to show you just how easy it is. The link has the singing and dancing elements – you simply need to remember to also include your monologues.

Off-Campus Tisch Drama Partner Intensives

Atlantic Summer I - Half Day

THEA-UT 210, Class #4158 | 4 units | Instructor: Mary McCann

Founded by playwright David Mamet and actor William H. Macy in 1983, the Atlantic Acting School is dedicated to training in the Practical Aesthetics Technique. Outlined in the book A Practical Handbook for the Actor, Practical Aesthetics is both a philosophy of theatre and a technique of acting. The simple objective of the technique is to provide the student-actor with a set of clearly defined and repeatable acting principles and skills. We seek to demystify the process of acting with an approach that aims at objectivity, clarity, and practical habits. This intensive program offers an introduction to Practical Aesthetics through three main elements of the technique: Script Analysis, Performance Technique, and Moment Lab. In addition to these technique classes, students will receive training in Vocal Production.

Atlantic Summer I is a half-day program worth 4 units. No audition/interview required. After registering at NYU, please call the Atlantic Acting School for orientation at (212) 691-5919, ext.1171. All students are required to read the book A Practical Handbook for the Actor before starting classes.

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Atlantic Summer II - Full Day

THEA-UT 210, Class #4159 | 8 units | Instructor: Mary McCann

Founded by playwright David Mamet and actor William H. Macy in 1983, the Atlantic Acting School is dedicated to training in the Practical Aesthetics Technique. Outlined in the book A Practical Handbook for the Actor, Practical Aesthetics is both a philosophy of theatre and a technique of acting. The simple objective of the technique is to provide the student-actor with a set of clearly defined and repeatable acting principles and skills. We seek to demystify the process of acting with an approach that aims at objectivity, clarity, and practical habits. During this intensive six-week workshop students acquire a foundation in the Practical Aesthetics technique, as well as professional habits created by the challenging work environment. Classes meet six days per week and include Script Analysis, Performance Technique, Moment Lab, Movement or Improvisation, and Voice and Speech, as well as lectures by working professionals. 

Atlantic Summer II is a full-time, 8-unit program. No audition or interview required. After registering at NYU, please call the Atlantic Acting School for orientation at (212) 691-5919, ext.1171. All students are required to read the book, A Practical Handbook for the Actor before starting classes. 

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Atlantic Summer in Vermont

THEA-UT 210, Class #4160 | 4 units | Instructor: Check Albert

The Atlantic Acting School's Summer program in Vermont is three weeks of intensive, advanced acting training designed for the actor with well-developed professional habits who seeks a rigorous and rewarding experience working with a master teacher of Practical Aesthetics. Students who have completed at least one year of studio training at Atlantic are eligible to audition for this intimate ensemble. While in Burlington, students dorm on the scenic University of Vermont campus and train in their studio facilities. For more information, contact Brandi-Lea Harris (bharris@atlantictheater.org).

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Stella Adler Chekhov Intensive

THEA-UT 200, Class #4155 | 6 units | Instructor: Check Albert

Stella Adler once said, “He who masters Chekhov masters all of modern realism.” In accordance with her words, the Stella Adler Studio has created an advanced-level intensive which endeavors to illuminate modern realism through the lens of its greatest practitioner, Anton Chekhov. Stella Adler loved and valued actors versed in modern realism, who could deliver rich text often in opposition to that was intended. The course is centered on Chekhov Scene Study, supplemented by daily physical and vocal work. This is a five-week, 30-hour per week intensive designed for the advanced actor with classes in Scene Study, Voice & Speech, Physical Styles, and Physical Acting.

Notes: Audition Required. Chekhov Intensive is designed for actors with prior training. Please call the Stella Adler Studio of Acting at 212-689-0087 for an audition appointment before submitting the registration materials. Classes held at 31 West 27th St.

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Stella Adler Physical Theatre Intensive

THEA-UT 200, Class #4156 | 6 units | Instructors: Adler Faculty


The Physical Theatre Intensive is part of the Harold Clurman Center for New Works in Movement and Dance Theatre, designed especially for the physically creative actor. Taught by a world-class movement faculty, the program offers seven different courses plus private tutorials that give actors the tools to create their own physical theatre. The five-week, 30+ hour-per-week program culminates in a performance of original, ensemble, physical theatre projects. Classes include Modern Dance, Image Work, Impulse and Structure, Voice and Speech, Mime, Tutorial, Autonomy, and Sourcework.

Note: Interview Required. Physical Theatre Intensive is designed for actors with prior training. Please call the Stella Adler Studio of Acting at (212) 689-0087 for an interview appointment before submitting the registration materials.


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Stella Adler Shakespeare Intensive

THEA-UT 200, Class #4154 | 6 units | Instructor: James Tripp

The Adler Shakespeare Intensive is led by James Tripp, our Head of Acting, whom Stella Adler personally selected to teach Shakespeare. Teaching alongside Mr. Tripp is J. Steven White, one of the country’s leading stage combat instructors and Andrew Wade, former head of voice at the Royal Shakespeare Company. Verse is taught by Angela Vitale, veteran actress of over 30 Off-Broadway classical productions. This is a five-week, 30-hour per week intensive designed for the advanced actor to further develop his/her sense of the epic size of theatre with classes in Scene Study, Voice & Speech, Movement Technique, and Stage Combat.

Note: Audition Required. The Shakespeare Intensive is designed for actors with prior training. Please call the Stella Adler Studio of Acting at (212) 689-0087 for an audition appointment before submitting the registration materials. 

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Stella Adler Summer Conservatory

THEA-UT 200, Class #4153 | 8 units | Instructor: Thomas Oppenheim

The Summer Conservatory is a foundation-building course which approximates a full term of our NYU Tisch School of the Arts program. It is officially approved by the National Association of Schools of Theatre as a summer training program. Classes include Acting Technique, Improvisation, Scene Study, Shakespeare, Movement, and Voice & Speech. Master Classes in Character and Acting for Film & Television are given to supplement the training.

The program begins with an orientation and ends with a presentation of contemporary and classical scene work. We find the growth demonstrated by the end of the ten weeks palpable, deeply encouraging and an affirmation of our mission. 

Interview Required. Please call the Stella Adler Studio of Acting at (212) 689-0087 for an interview appointment before submitting the registration materials. 

More About the Stella Adler Studio

Stonestreet Film & TV Intensive I

THEA-UT 421 | 8 units | Instructor: Check Albert

The Stonestreet Screen Acting Workshop offers a professional environment in which to continue and broaden training, adapt theater skills and embrace the art of film acting and directing, and experience the film and television mediums, from the audition phase through to the production and post-production phases, completing their first or early professional work before they graduate. Students experience the unique challenges of acting on sets for all size screens, from three camera set-ups and the big screen arena to the iPod, by continuing to build on and surmount their previous training by playing challenging and varied roles in original films, sit-coms, dramatic series, and PSAs. Students learn to embrace both naturalism and character work that is both believable and interesting on camera and work on a variety of material from original unproduced film & TV material to film classics as well as adaptations of modern classic and classical material. Stonestreet's multi-tiered audition class allows students to become practiced, professional auditioners while making industry contacts with agents and casting directors on a weekly basis for the entire semester. All student work is recorded, editors help students compile actor reels after Stonestreet I or during Stonestreet II and final projects are showcased on Stonestreet's movie website.

Note: This advanced studio is open to all Drama Majors. Call (212) 229-0020 for Stonestreet orientation.

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Stonestreet Film & TV Intensive II

THEA-UT 422 | 8 units | Instructor: Check Albert

Prerequisite: THEA-UT 421 Stonestreet I

Stonestreet II includes a special collaboration with the NYU Tisch School of the Arts Goldberg Dept. of Dramatic Writing in our Annual Film Festival that creates feature & short screenplays, TV pilots and series, specifically for our advanced returning Stonestreet students along with advanced coursework. Many of our shorts and features continue to be presented in film festivals and win awards, opening new doors for actors to the industry, directors, producers and writers.

Students shoot professionally lit, directed and edited films of original material which can include classical adaptations as well. Participating in Stonestreet's new web series allows students to work on detailed characters that are specifically designed for them, participate in full-blown production from the start of the semester, and have an accessible, professional way to showcase their work. Student involvement is from preproduction to production as well as from the editing process where a good deal more about acting is learned.

Notes: Specialized programs for directing, producing, and writing are set up on an individual basis with students each semester. An interview with the program director and/or managing director is necessary. 

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Strasberg Summer Intensive

THEA-UT 260 | 8 units | Instructor: Anne Strasberg

The Lee Strasberg Theatre & Film Institute offers students an introductory course to Lee Strasberg’s Method, an acting technique in which personal experiences are used to create truth in imaginary circumstances. Students are required to take two four-hour Method Acting classes with two different teachers in order to gain varying perspectives on their work. The first half of each Acting class is devoted to a sequence of sensory exercises; the second half of class consists of scene and monologue work, during which time students apply what they have learned in their exercises to the roles on which they are working.

Improvisation is used to help create the habit of living through real experience. This approach gives the acting student a conscious craft, while helping to prevent the inconsistencies that can plague the untrained actor. In addition to the two four-hour acting classes, students choose from electives, which include Acting for Film and TV, Acting on Camera, Audition, Singing, Speech, Dialects, Vocal Production, Movement, Tai Chi, Physical Technique, Basic Dance, Jazz, Tap, Ballet, Script Analysis, Shakespeare at the Globe, Theatre History and others. Studio classes encompass the full range of today’s acting medium, including on-camera work in a state-of-the-art digital film studio, and electives are consistently updated, as well as added, in order to stay cutting edge and relevant in the evolving professional landscape of theatrical arts.

Notes: No Audition Required. Once you have registered, please call Strasberg at (212) 533-5500 to arrange your schedule. Please be sure to mention you are coming for the NYU Summer session to the receptionist. 

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Theatre Studies

African-American Drama: Harlem Renaissance

THEA-UT 708 | 4 units | Theatre Studies C | Instructor: Stefanie Jones

This course explores one of the richest artistic, social, and intellectual milieus in US history: the Harlem Renaissance. The class will cover the texts and contexts of black drama, performance, and cultural production from the end of the 19th century up to the second world war. While we will look at popular culture, art, and political theatre influencing and influenced by this movement, the course will center on the artists who were positioned as part of the Harlem Renaissance movement itself, from its roots in the work of Georgia Douglas Johnson and W.E.B. DuBois, to contributors such as Zora Neale Hurston and Langston Hughes. Taking advantage of our proximity to Harlem, we will also visit historical sites and review original papers from these artists, practicing hands-on techniques of theatre research and bringing this vibrant period to life. 

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American Burlesque

THEA-UT 650 | 4 units | Theatre Studies B | Instructor: Kalle Westerling

Coined in the 16th century as a literary or theatrical form that inverts form and content, burlesque is a subset of parody that either elevates the mundane or vulgarizes the lofty. When Lydia Thompson and the British Blondes brought their unique brand of burlesque to New York City in 1868, the public understanding of burlesque transformed from a literary form to a performance style, and the worlds of “leg shows” and burlesque became largely synonymous in the public imagination. These early burlesque shows were evening-length parodies of classical texts or myths and focused on women “putting on” the other gender (rather than its later association with “taking off” via striptease).

This course will cover some of the major historical shifts in American burlesque traditions including Thompsonian burlesque (and those that followed), female minstrel shows, hootchy cootchie dance, burlesque wheels, the emergence of striptease, queens of burlesque, exotic dancing, and the neo-burlesque movement. Rather than codify the defining characteristics and time periods of these historical moments, we will seek to understand and trace how the definitions, conceptual preoccupations, and performance techniques of burlesque have adapted and changed over time. Special consideration will be given to understanding burlesque in relationship to other entertainment genres such as vaudeville, minstrelsy, early film, melodrama, musical theatre, world’s fairs, and to the larger social, cultural, and historical contexts in which burlesque has taken place. We will watch films that document burlesque; read biographies of major figures and scholarly work about burlesque, theatre, and popular culture; attend neo-burlesque performances, and discuss the neo-burlesque and performance art movements with guest artists.

Video: Kalle Westerling on American Burlesque

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Devised Theatre: Monologues & Their Discontents

THEA-UT 665 | 4 units | Theatre Studies B | Instructor: Laura Levine

From Spalding Gray to Colm Toibin’s The Testament of Mary, on Broadway, one of the most powerful trends in theatre has been the cultivation of the extended monologue for the purposes of solo performance. At the same time Elevator Repair Service has pushed the limits of genre with performances like Gatz, which takes a novel and rather than adapting it or cutting it for the stage, seeks to present the novel itself word for word onstage. What can we learn from fiction, memoir and poems that will help us develop material for the stage?

This course seeks to help students produce both a series of “monologues” and the many pages of “raw’ material often necessary to generate these monologues. We approach the task through two different strategies: the imitation of monologues by writers from Robert Browning to Toibin and the cultivation of a significant body of “raw” autobiographical and fictional material from which to draw in shaping these monologues.  We will leave no stone unturned in looking for ways to stimulate memory and imagination, mining lived life for material and working from photographs, paintings, myth and biblical material, dream and family archive.  The class will culminate in a performance to be scheduled in lieu of the Memorial Day class on either the final Wednesday or Friday night of the course.

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Disaster Plays: Representing Catastrophe on the Modern Stage

THEA-UT 632.002 | 4 units | Theatre Studies B | Instructor: Jason Fitzgerald

This course will consider theatrical attempts to reckon with the variety of human-caused disasters that have given shape and meaning to the twentieth and twenty-first century, including totalitarianism/fascism, genocide, nuclear holocaust, and global warming. With the exception of a brief detour to Japan, our texts will focus on twentieth and twenty-first century European and U.S. dramatists such as Georg Kaiser, Karl Kraus, Bertolt Brecht, Caryl Churchill, Maria Fornes, Wallace Shawn, Sarah Kane, and Anne Washburn. Questions we will ask include: How do these artists understand the role of theatre in the face of such dire threats, and how can it help us to live with those these threats? What techniques does catastrophe demand from designers, actors, directors, writers, and even publishers of playtexts? What sorts of political claims do these plays make, and how do they make them? Who or what do these plays blame? What does the source of the disaster being represented (bomb, climate change, dictatorship) determine about theatrical form, theme, and plot? How has the age of disaster forced theatremakers to reconsider their understandings of the future, history, war, the body politic, human nature, the role of the intellectual in the public sphere, science, art, and other topics?    

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Producing: Ecology of the New York Theatre

THEA-UT 678 | 4 units | Theatre Studies B | Instructor: Elizabeth Bradley

All who aspire to work in the field must understand the systems and structures that underpin the profession. Learn about the commercial, not-for-profit and presenting sectors and how these interact. Become familiar with influential leaders both on the stage and behind the scenes who are moving the art form forward. Learn how to navigate the theatre scene as a “plugged in” professional. The class will include seeing productions and invited professional guests.

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Studies in Shakespeare: In Film

THEA-UT 700 | 4 units | Theatre Studies C | Instructor: John Osburn

Focused each time by genre (comedies, tragedies, romances, histories), or by theme or topic (theatricality, gender, race, politics, religion, etc.), this course explores the works of Shakespeare as text and performance - on stage or on film. Various critical methodologies, including biographical and cultural analysis, are used to reveal the continuing vitality of these plays and their relevance to the theatre of our time.

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Theatre of Latin America: The Drama and Theatricality of Tango

THEA-UT 748 | 4 units | Theatre Studies C | Instructor: John Osburn

An abundance of theatrical forms and traditions have embraced the dance, music and song of Argentine tango. The “tango show” is a distinct genre of musical theater, with its own structures and conventions, ranging from virtuosic tourist productions to serious dramas that use tango as a vehicle or a backdrop to tell human and political stories. Tango is performed on the street, in restaurants and bars, at competitions, during breaks at social dances, and on television, film, and radio. Even the social dance is meant to be watched, displaying personal styles and cultural values. Social and stage dancers draw on each other’s innovations, while tango singers are influenced by theatrical genres such as zarzuela, sainete, cuplé, cabaret, and Italian opera. The course will look at how this happens, survey the complex history of tango, its African and European origins, and gender relations. In-class discussions and demos by tango artists, video showings, and a chance or two to “get on our feet” will enliven our understanding of this deeply theatrical tradition.

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Audition and Voiceover Techniques

Audition Technique in Practice

THEA-UT 170 | 2 units | Instructor: Darci Picoult

This course is devoted to the practical presentation of auditions. Students will present auditions of rehearsed monologues and assigned scenes for the theatre, as well as perform auditions for film, television and commercials using script sides They will develop and hone audition skills to begin to prepare to market themselves to industry professionals. The class will cover both on-camera auditions and stage auditions. The course is also designed to help the performer understand the technique of auditioning by discussing the business of acting and will cover pictures/resumes and an introduction to the world of those that work in casting, ie. casting directors, agents, and managers. The goal is for the performer to learn to present his/herself in a professional manner showing individual strengths and abilities in a very short presentation. The class will provide a technique for performers to hone and use to meet the demands of any audition situation; the beginning of a process that will continue with every future audition.

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Spoken Word: Voiceover Techniques

THEA-UT 149 | 2 units | Instructor: Andy Roth

Taught by one of the busiest casting directors in New York, this class will give you the skills you need and the industry insight to start your journey into the voice over world. Everyone works in every class as we explore the many forms of voice over; from Commercials and Promos, to Animation, Video Games and Audiobooks. This class is designed to give you the tools you need to quickly and easily assess and execute any voice over script in any situation. Students get to keep all of their class recordings.

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