Salute Your Solution
Using theatrical devices and writing techniques, students will explore social issues of their choosing while writing their own scenes to be performed. Exploring these ideas through theater helps to develop community in a classroom, empower young people, build their confidence and educate them in theatrical fundamentals, such as spatial awareness, dramatic structure in the development of conflict and resolution, dramatic genres, and the balance of expressing individuality while working within an ensemble. This is a six session residency which culminates in a classroom performance.
Participants: 25 students
Target Grades: 6-12
Duration: 45 minutes
THOUGHT METHOD TECHNIQUE
Dennis Staroselsky has been a professional actor since the age 13, appearing in dozens of television shows, movies and professional stage productions. A few years ago, he found he was battling a severe case of stage fright during auditions. He realized his own insecurities were dominating his thoughts and blocking his ability to focus on the thoughts of the characters he was playing. This is a common issue with actors…having thoughts like, Am I doing this right?,” “Do they like me?”. What helped was when he was introduced to the Thought Method — in which an actor breaks down a character’s thoughts from moment to moment, allowing the actor to start thinking like their character rather than thinking about his/her acting.
“We are always thinking,” Dennis notes. “Our thoughts inform how we speak. Try and say ‘Hello’, when your thought is “I hate you!” Now say it with the thought ‘I love you.’ They sound different, don’t they?”
The Thought Method is particularly helpful for those in high school wishing to study more intensively. Students are often asked to prepare two monologues for college and other professional training institutes, and this can be a nerve-racking, high pressure experience. Pressure can be alleviated by focusing on character. But Dennis’s coaching is not only for students wishing to pursue acting. Redirecting focus from externals to goals is relevant for any student who dreads an oral presentation in front of the whole class, or for the college applicant dreading the interview. It works across the board.
Dennis Staroselsky began teaching and coaching Thought Method technique in Los Angeles. Some of his clients include Jaimie Ray Newman (Bates Motel A&E), Noah Bean (Damages F/X), Katie Lowes (Scandal ABC), and Claire van der Boom (The Pacific HBO). As an actor His credits include the Off-Broadway run of An Early History of Fire, the world premiere of David Rabe’s latest play as well as appearances at regional theatres such as the A.R.T. The Huntington Theatre Co., Geva Theatre Center, Dallas Theater Center, The Paper Mill Playhouse . TV & Film credits include Nurse Jackie, All My Children, It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia, Jericho, The Michael J. Fox Show, Ghostwriter, Law & Order, White Colllar , How to Make A Dollarbill in Brooklyn and the feature films Rubberneck a upcoming We Don’t Beong Here and The Untitled Kathryn Bigelow Project. As a playwright his first full length play Just About Cured was produced by the Stella Adler Studio of Acting in New York City in the fall of 2014. He holds a BFA from Boston University and an MA in theater education from NYU.
Travel fee based upon mileage (calculate below).
- Minimum of six contacts per group with a final performance.
- Schools must schedule at least three workshops in a single day.
- For all residencies, a one-time planning session of $125 will apply.
- Note: pricing may vary on weekends or during after-school time.
CALCULATE MILEAGE FOR TRAVEL
Mileage Rates Note: Double mileage calculated below to account for initial and return trips