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  • Want to Get a Sneak Peek of the URTA Auditions? |
    solid careers working in the arts from acting to design to directing to theatre management We re so proud of all the candidates that trust us with this important step in elevating their craft to the next level URTA is always looking for ways to nurture the next wave of theatre artists With that in mind we believe undergraduate acting students would really benefit from viewing the URTA process seeing first hand the work and preparation that goes into the MFA candidates auditions What better way to study audition technique than to watch a diverse selection of artists make their choices right there in the room For the first time ever URTA is opening her doors at all 3 audition sites to help you get a head start and put some of your classroom training to the test Welcome to the Sneak Peek A trial run last year with an acting class attending the URTA Auditions in San Francisco was met with a great response Again thank you so much for the amazing opportunity to sit in on auditions this weekend Not only did it help to clarify and prepare those students for next year but it honed their sense of judgement They spent hours afterwards critiquing the good and bad points of the material presented the attitude and energy of the students Dr Caroline Mercier Cal State Stanislaus If you or your school would be interested in taking part in the Sneak Peak program for 2016 please email Christy Ming Trent at cmingtrent urta com Space is very limited as the Sneak Peek is meant only to give students a short window of time to view the auditions We will continue to offer the best service to our applicants and recruiters while developing this vital outreach to younger artists

    Original URL path: http://urta.com/want-to-get-a-sneak-peek-of-the-urta-auditions/ (2016-04-27)
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  • CalArts’ Marissa Chibas Awarded Fox Foundation Fellowship |
    intensive research and workshops in improvisation clowning Afro Cuban dance and vocal technique In turn with the help of the grant Chibas plans to conduct similar intensive workshops at Bootleg and open the sessions free of charge to High School students from the Downtown Los Angeles area As head of the CalArts Theater School Acting Program from 2003 2010 and current head of the Bilingual initiative Duende CalArt Chibas has collaborated with innovative Latino a and Latin American artists to make adventurous theatrical work across the country Bootleg Theater is a year round inclusive art space for original boundary breaking live experience based theatre and performance born from the diverse cultural and artistic landscape of Los Angeles Bootleg fully collaborates with emerging artists who dare to create striking contemporary non traditional experiences The Second Woman will incorporate women from the local community to offer a ritual for embracing change and age Chibas has described the dynamic creative teaming as a soul stirring experience and a ritual for transformation inspired by these two great works Chibas will perform the piece along with Paula Rebelo during the fall of 2016 with original music by Juli Crockett video by Adam Flemming and choreography

    Original URL path: http://urta.com/calarts-marissa-chibas-awarded-fox-foundation-fellowship/ (2016-04-27)
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  • URTA Interview with Beth Malone: Tony Nominee and URTA Alum |
    barista In terms of preparing for auditions do you have anything you would call a routine I m a terrible auditioner This is the type of thing that you should never take my advice on I am an abhorrent auditioner I have all of these voices in my head telling me that I am terrible and I believe them and then I get really nervous and my nerves take over my personality and I become someone I have never met How do you overcome that I never really have overcome it My most successful audition was when I went in for The Unsinkable Molly Brown recently because I had a successful Off Broadway show and people were sort of aware of me That made me walk into there and say Ok They think I m this thing but I know I m this other thing and I know I have this skill set that they don t know about and it s like this great secret and I am going to walk in there and I m going to spring it on them And I did That was an unusual situation and I killed in that audition and I got Molly Brown from it You ve been with Fun Home from the beginning through all its phases of development Yes Given your self described troubles with auditions how did you There were no stakes Initially my agent called and said Will you put yourself on tape for this reading Lisa Kron saw you in a play and she liked you and she may want you to come to the Public and do this reading So I set up a camera and I was just rehearsing it because there was no pressure to be perfect and I looked at it and I was like Eh it s good enough and I sent it That s how it was I sent my rehearsal and I booked it There you go So I sent it to my agent and they sent it on Then I sent them a more cleaned up version later and they sent that on also But I had already booked it Lisa Kron said she had gone online and looked at all of my commercials I had a bunch of commercials on YouTube There s this McDonalds commercial where I think really fast from thought to thought to thought really facile now I m doing this now I m doing that now I m doing this and this these really fast thoughts and she was like anyone who can do that can do this play that I m writing Beth Malone as Alison in Fun Home at the Circle in the Square Theatre photo Joan Marcus At this point you ve gone from reading to development to Off Broadway to Broadway How much has your approach to the role grown or evolved over that course of time With a person like Alison Bechdel it s a static thing She s a person that exists I m always trying to be her But Lisa as she s been writing it the operating system of a narrator memory play it is really projected out of my mind out of this characters mind So how do you write a character that has something at stake I can t just be a narrator because a narrator is just telling something and there s no cost Right And then the story has already happened and It s already happened It s a safe place to be sitting on your little chair and telling the story But this was different This was a person who was creating a work of art in front of you I am working on trying to write a book about my father s suicide and I m trying to get to the bottom of all of these memories In theory it shouldn t really cost me anything but in actuality excavating all of these memories ends up being enormously cathartic painful and ultimately a very freeing exercise That is the arc of Big Al my character Large Alison So how do you write that There were all of these different manifestations of how that behaves and it was murky because in the book my character doesn t exist Right because it s The block captions that appear at the top of each panel You know if you look at the book the captions at the top have My father treated his children like furniture and the furniture like children So there used to be a lot of things where my character would simply tell the audience This is information that Lisa wanted them to know But then that s not dramatic That is a book That is the way a graphic novel behaves The way a play behaves is if you tell the audience what you want them to know you re a really bad playwright Right The first tenet of great playwriting is show don t tell Instead of having that line be in the play they just had Bruce come out and lovingly arrange his couch and then gruffly shoo the kids off into the corner You know show him treating his children like furniture And in that way my line went away That s another thing that happened My spoken lines went away largely In the latest iteration I barely speak It was a drag for me Initially I was like ok now I m just a thing Down at The Public I was in a proscenium house and I had to stand off to the side a lot and the action would be the star and I would be like this scarecrow stuck in the back No one would even notice I was there half the time But in the round version I am standing in the center and things are swirling around me and I am really projecting out the memories from my mind in

    Original URL path: http://urta.com/urta-interview-with-beth-malone-tony-nominee-and-urta-alum/ (2016-04-27)
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  • Indiana University Professor and Students Play Key Role in Prague Quadrennial |
    USITT and another from a private donor in Bloomington allowed for eight IU students to work with Bruner on the install and staffing of the exhibit in Prague Aside from the obvious learning opportunity provided to the students it also allowed them to gain experience in areas they may not have been comfortable in beforehand The complete National Exhibition was 80 percent sculptural which pushed the Indiana team to develop an overall creative product Brunner writes that a painter was operating a welder and a costume designer built platforms giving the students a holistic advantage USITT USA National Exhibition photo Karen Gruenhagan USITT Attending the Prague Quadrennial is an immersive experience that allowed the students to be exposed to all artistic and cultural design benefits during one major event The opportunity for these students to attend the PQ and be exposed to the world of design and performance during a significant period in their artistic development is an immeasurable benefit wrote Brunner URTA is very excited to share some of the excitement with the staff and students of Indiana University an URTA member school Posted by URTA Posted on 06 Apr Post Comments 0 Search Recent Posts Want to Get

    Original URL path: http://urta.com/indiana-university-professor-and-students-play-key-role-in-prague-quadrennial/ (2016-04-27)
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  • URTA at USITT |
    technology at the undergraduate and graduate levels The panel will include distinguished faculty and attendees will be fully involved in the conversation about topics including What type of education and skills undergraduates should seek to acquire on campus and off and how faculty can help The significant challenges in undergraduate instruction Mentoring for graduate training internships and career transition Time off if any between undergraduate and graduate enrollment and most importantly an open forum for Q As This session hopes to further networking between undergraduate and graduate faculty on topics relevant to BAs BFAs and MFAs Participants include Holly Poe Durbin Head of Costume Design University of California Irvine Jon Gottlieb Head of Sound Design CalArts Tracy Nunnally Technical Director and Head of Design and Technology Northern Illinois University Mark Halpin Assistant Professor of Design at University of Cincinnati CCM and Sean Savoie Resident Lighting Designer at Washington University of St Louis USITT Conference Thursday March 17 1 00PM Salt Palace Convention Center Level 1 Room 155A Posted by URTA Posted on 06 Apr Post Comments 0 Search Recent Posts Want to Get a Sneak Peek of the URTA Auditions CalArts Marissa Chibas Awarded Fox Foundation Fellowship URTA Interview with

    Original URL path: http://urta.com/urta-at-usitt/ (2016-04-27)
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  • The URTA Q&A with Holly Poe Durbin |
    essential to over prepare for every project You just never know what you re going to need Learn everything in the world about the world of the show For instance in designing Death of a Salesman I had to think long and hard about two characters who appear in the Act 2 restaurant scene the two ladies Hap and Biff Loman pick up We are given the exact location of the restaurant in the dialogue just off Times Square One lady is at a table and she calls a friend to join them Why is Miss Forsyth alone at a table off Times Square in a time when ladies didn t generally dine alone And how did her friend Letta get there so fast when called They couldn t be hookers because a decent restaurant wouldn t allow the trade in their dining room And Letta mentions having jury duty in the morning she has no criminal record then Years ago I d read a fascinating book about Gypsy Rose Lee and I suddenly remembered Times Square had been surrounded by burlesque houses in the late 1940s 1950s These gals probably just finished the day shift So I did more research and I decided Miss Forsyth was meeting a married lover in this restaurant and he d stood her up She decides to go off with the Loman brothers out of revenge Figuring all this out helped me to decide what the two women were wearing and how they would move and behave so I can tell a story with the actors for a fascinating glimpse into Holly s research for this project check out her Pinterest board for Death of a Salesman here How has your own training served to shape your career Everyone has a different story in this business I was already in the design union when I decided to return to graduate school So I did it backwards My work experience taught me the intangible methodology that just cannot be learned in a class room how to build costumes in professional shops how to behave with different kinds of producers directors and actors How to implement complex projects how to produce quality work vs amateurish work how to really fit costumes well How to lead creative teams so we meet forbidding deadlines regardless of challenges encountered every day But I also discovered that when you re working all the time you don t have much time to invest in yourself the time to grow as an artist Eventually I took that time I stepped away from work to nourish the essential foundations of design I m still working on those but I have a much stronger foundation and much more confidence Can you offer any advice to prospective MFA designers who might be preparing their portfolios and presentations for the URTA interviews right now I can suggest four essential things good attitude experience in theater or film outside of school a love for narrative and visual

    Original URL path: http://urta.com/the-urta-qa-with-holly-poe-durbin/ (2016-04-27)
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  • The URTA Q&A with Greg Leaming |
    investigated the kinds of programs available to them and have put some effort into considering what they want out of training before they step into an audition with us we want pro active students not ones who passively participate in their training How would you describe your own time in graduate school And how has your training benefitted you in your own career I studied to be a director and because of that I decided that I needed to be in a program that allowed me to understand the other creative disciplines that I would be working alongside of in my professional life I needed to consider at least as an outsider the craft of acting of design of playwriting and dramaturgy because I expected to need to collaborate with artists in each of these fields The most important part of my training was not provided for me by my graduate school I actually needed to go out and find it for myself that was a full year working in a professional theatre I left graduate school and immediately interned at Hartford Stage Company for a year That year of working in a professional environment was invaluable and gave me a leg up in the profession It s exactly the kind of training that we re trying to incorporate into our program here rather than expecting our students to fend for themselves after graduation as my program did What do you feel an actor should look for in a prospective MFA program A faculty of working artists training that has a guiding principle but one that also offers some insight into more than one approach to the discipline a rounded approach to actor training that incorporates voice speech and movement into the training as well as one that provides a variety material in ancillary workshops In other words training that will give you a well rounded resume What are some of the guiding principles of actor training at the Asolo Conservatory Our work is grounded in later Stanislavski Vahktangov It is an action based approach very much concerned with releasing the actor s spontaneity and partnering fully on stage It s also geared towards the professional development of the actor as much as the creative development Because our students work on the Asolo Rep mainstage as part of their training we need to develop the actor s craft and the actor s professionalism The faculty works very closely to help foster application from one classroom to the next the students are expected to demonstrate a mastery of movement voice speech and acting technique in every situation they encounter TWO GENTLEMEN OF VERONA dir Greg Leaming at FSU Asolo Repertory photo Gary Sweetman What do you find to be the most rewarding aspect of working with student actors I m always thrilled with the ways in which graduate students are willing to run with ideas to embrace direction there s rarely any hesitancy or questioning or resistance Sometimes this commitment is

    Original URL path: http://urta.com/the-urta-qa-with-greg-leaming/ (2016-04-27)
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  • Actor/Director Jason Heil Talks with URTA |
    in THE LION IN WINTER at Moonlight Stages Photo credit Ken Jacques Photography You ve had a thriving career for many years having played great roles at theaters all over the country How have you drawn on the training you received at UC Irvine s MFA Acting program over the years UCI gave me a wonderful skill set as well as connections and opportunities early in my career Founding Chair Robert Cohen also gave us a wonderful class on Professionalism which had a big impact on my career and one that I now teach to many of my students One thing I ve been fortunate with is that I am frequently asked to return to a company once I have worked there I think that is one of the building blocks to any career What drove you to go to graduate school as opposed to simply diving into pursuing work or studying at an acting studio The skill set and the ability to teach A casting director once said to me I have to have a cut off somewhere when I m looking at resumes If I see a MFA from a good program I know before the audition that actor will be able to vocally fill our 700 seat house do stage combat assume dialects etc Then I will call them in and see if they are a good actor As a young actor I felt I had some talent but not a whole package After grad school I felt I had a great skill set Since then I feel like I m constantly learning as an actor I still take acting classes We have some great directors here in San Diego and I try to be open to new ways of thinking I also now teach at Cal State San Marcos where it is a big asset that I am a working actor But I wouldn t have been able to step in the door without the MFA A common issue our members see with their graduates just coming out of school is learning what their casting type is They ve just come from an academic setting where playing outside of their type is part of their training but as they enter the professional world they may not have a firm grasp on what roles they re best suited to Did you have a similar learning curve coming out of school How did you move through it I had a pretty standard type so that wasn t a huge issue for me The biggest struggle for me was the transition to Equity I went from the top of the non union types in my category to the bottom of the AEA pile suddenly auditioning against guys with Broadway and major regional credits After a few years it evened out as I got more and more work But it definitely showed me that I had to raise my game and not assume anything You play Henry a character that

    Original URL path: http://urta.com/actordirector-jason-heil-talks-with-urta/ (2016-04-27)
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