Theatre 105 Intro to Acting I
Instructor: Jeff Whitt E-mail: email@example.com
Class description: This class is designed to present the fundamentals of the acting process to
students with little or no acting experience. Focus will be on relaxation, observation and
characterization. Students will be introduced to methods for approaching dramatic text thus
understand subtext and discover contrasts within a character. Students will analyze and interpret
theatre productions (musical and dramatic). Students will also learn to convincingly live in
imaginary circumstances, conveying to the audience a sense of emotional truth. An introduction
to the Sanford Meisner Technique will help students to engage in focused, concentrated and
active listening with fellow performers. The class will be taught through lectures, games and
improvisations and culminate in production of scenes from plays.
Text: The Sanford Meisner Approach: An Actors Workbook (Book 1) By: Larry Silverberg
Grading: Final grade will be determined by the following:
Participation: 50 points since this is practicum class participation is the bulk of your work.
You will not be graded on talent or compared to any other student. Participation grade is
based on effort put forth and willingness to learn, not simply showing up. This grade will also
be affected by arriving to class late or leaving early. Since much of the class is active, it is
also part of your participation to be focused and attentive when necessary. Since you cannot
participate when you are not here, this grade will drop 2 points for each absence beyond 2.
Final Scene: 20 points. Culmination of the class will be the performance of a 3 to 5 minute
scene with a partner. Scenes will be chosen half way through the semester and will be
memorized. You will be graded on your input into the scene in terms of preparation, energy,
focus and character as well as applying other skills learned in class. Even though you perform
with a partner, you will be graded individually. Critique criteria will be handed out. Finals are
scheduled for August 3rd. No make ups will be allowed. Please be there!
Mid-Term: Monologues 10 points. Each student will be required to pick out a 30-second to
one minute monologue, research their character and perform it for class. Mid-terms are
scheduled for July 6th. No make ups will be allowed. Please be there!
Report: 10 points. You will be required to give a 10 minute research report to the class on
some aspect of acting. It can pertain to any aspect of acting including stage or screen, but
must be about the acting, not say, a biography on some actor. A written outline must
accompany the report including all research references. All students must schedule a day when
you will present your reports. There will be three reports scheduled per class each week.
All reports must be completed by July 27th or you will receive a 0.
Critiques: 10 points. You will be required to attend two theatrical performances and turn in a
500 word critique/synopsis on each show. If you cannot see a show, another assignment will be
substituted. Don’t worry, it will be fun. Here is a list of some of the shows out there this semester:
(ANGRY HOUSEWIVES, It’s All Greek to Me, Chicago, Twelfth Night, Dixie Swimclub, Tahoe Improv
Players, Improv - The Muscial, etc…)
Enjoyment: you will be required to enjoy at least 80% of all class work.
100-90pts. = A, 79-70pts. = C, Below 60 = Try Again
89-80pts. = B, 69-60pts. = D
Student Learning Outcomes:
1. The student will demonstrate a firm foundation in the basic fundamentals of acting.
2. The student will use developed techniques for coping with instrumental blocks, fear
of exposure, socially obligated behaviors and outer-directed self-image.
3. The student will utilize individual relaxation techniques and concentration skills as
tools in preparation for studying the actor’s craft.
4. The student will demonstrate the principles of dramatic structure in light of plot,
theme, character, dramatic action and environment.
5. The student will begin to evaluate their emotional, behavioral, sensory, and cognitive
I. Warm ups VI. Physicalization
II. Ground rules VII. Text analysis
III. Risk VIII. Objectives, obstacles, tactics
IV. Ensemble work IX. Rehearsal process
V. Sensory work X. Performance element
Final class is Wednesday August 3rd, 2011, from 7 – 9:45 pm.
I will not drop you from this class unless you ask me. If you signed up, you can drop.
If you have a disability for which you will need to request accommodations, please
contact the Disability Support Services office (Bristlecone building, Room 103) at 445-
3266 or 445-3275 as soon as possible to arrange for appropriate accommodations.
Last day to drop with no refund for full-term classes; Classes dropped receive a "W" is
July 29th, 2011; Unpaid students may be removed from class rosters
In order to maintain an effective learning environment, all wireless devices must be
deactivated from sound during class. Any device discovered making enough noise to
disrupt the class will be thoroughly cursed so that it may never work correctly again .
***** If you go on from this class and win a Tony, Oscar, Golden Globe or Emmy, you
are requested to mention my name in your acceptance speech. ******