Acting 2: Contemporary Scene Study with Lorraine Serabian written by a former student
The class met once a week per term. As I recall, the terms were ongoing and after placement you can keep renewing your tuition for that particular class as you need.
Really great place to start! I started taking classes here fresh out of college and fresh to the city. After researching all kinds of studios online, this seemed to be the most approachable, affordable, and a flexible commitment. I discovered Lorraine after auditing several classes which I highly recommend. All the faculty there is extremely knowledgeable and are at the top of the field, but we all respond differently to different ideologies and approaches. So, do yourself a favor and sit in on several different teachers to find the best fit for you. This is studio is a great place for beginners and advanced actors and they offer an array of classes other than scene study. This class required an audition, but some do not - and other times a teacher will sit down with you and just have a conversation about your background and what you are working on, want to achieve, etc... and place you that way. Like I said before, all teachers are different.
Class sizes are a bit smaller when I took there so there was a good amount of individual attention which was nice. One thing to mention about HB Studios is that it is based on Uta Hagen's technique - specifically her book A Challenge for the Actor. In the book are exercises for the individual actor to prepare and put up in class. This is a great way to get that individual attention - but also with the scenes that are assigned to you. You also have the option to put up monologues. So it's a pretty open forum for what each individual wants to put up; however, the focus is definitely on the scenes and the exercises. So, before even thinking about taking at this studio, I would read the book and see if that's the approach you wanna take with your training. Lorraine, like I said, great with individual critique - in your scenes and your exercises. She can be tough - but honest and completely constructive. If she frustrates you, that's good because she's making you work harder. She definitely made me work harder than I had at that point and I'm very appreciative.
Worst part? I don't know if I would say this is the worst thing, but sometimes planning a rehearsal schedule with your assigned scene partner can be challenging. All rehearsal time is scheduled outside of class and on your own time, so trying to figure a productive rehearsal schedule to serve both partners was a hard from time to time. Not with everyone - but with some. Also, though class sizes are on the smaller side - typically, you only have one chance per class to present your work. That's due to the amount of critique and working the actual scene that takes place. So, it can feel like there is a lot of down time and waiting for your turn.
Recommended? I would. Like I said, I think it's a great class for people first coming to city and have an acting background and just need a place to exercise those scene study skills. I can't speak for beginners or advanced actors bc that wasn't my experience, but I'm sure it's beneficial in those levels as well. It's also a studio where you can take a class - take a break for a while - and then come back for some refreshers.
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