NEW YORK CITY — Even if you never plan to see your name in lights, an acting class can be just the thing for amateur drama-seekers. And thanks to the Great White Way, world-class training is just around the corner.
Many city acting studios were founded by the country’s master acting teachers, like Stella Adler, who taught Marlon Brando, and Sanford Meisner, who trained Robert Duvall. Some of these pro studios cater to rookie actors as well.
Stella Adler Studio offers beginner night classes in 8-week terms. A summer term of Acting Technique I classes, Tuesday evenings from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. starting June 16, costs $585.
Ted Bardy Studio, voted best acting class by Backstage magazine readers last year, has an introduction to Meisner’s methods for $320 a month, which covers two classes a week.
T. Schreiber studio, another pro favorite endorsed by Edward Norton, runs scene study classes, where students work on scenes from plays, for beginners and charges by the month, $325 for four classes.
A more affordable option is Broadway actress Uta Hagen’s studio HB in Greenwich Village, which offers a selection of weekly beginner’s classes for $445 total for a three-month term. HB’s illustrious alums include F. Murray Abraham, Al Pacino and Matthew Broderick.
And the Atlantic Acting School, founded by playwright David Mamet and actor William H. Macy, teaches a no-experience-necessary introduction to Mamet’s “practical aesthetics” technique in an 8 week Beginner’s Acting Lab that costs $395.
Those with more free time this summer can also enroll in summer intensives offered by some of the city’s full-time conservatory programs.
Circle in the Square, where Philip Seymour Hoffman earned his chops, runs a full-time summer intensive for $3500.
Michael Howard Studios, where "Scandal" star Kerry Washington trained, offers a 6-week summer crash course.
FOR BUDDING COMEDIANS
If you'd love to get some laughs, Manhattan is home to a slew of top-grade improv classes.
Upright Citizen’s Brigade, co-founded by Amy Poehler, is so popular that many classes are sold out until June.