Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Freehold Blog Post Index



Meisner Progression Interviews with Robin Lynn Smith - June 2013
My Meisner Journey Part Three of Three by Alexandra Gobeille - January 2013
My Meisner Journey Part Two of Three by Alexandra Gobeille - December 2012
My Meisner Journey Part One by Alexandra Gobeille - December 2012
LAMDA Week 3 by Phillip Mitchell - August 2011

My Intro to Acting Experience by David Caldwell - April 2014
"You Get It When You Get It" by Kate Gavigan - January 2014
Emerging in Freehold Classes by Laura Nelson - January 2014
My Scene Study Text Intensive Experience by Elizabeth Wu - December 2013
Exceptional Beginning Acting Classes in Seattle at Freehold Theatre - September 2013
My Freehold Experience: Taking Acting Classes to Improve my English by Bernardo Rivas - June 2013
The Perfect Place to Have a Mid-Life Crisis by Lori Stein - April 2012
"Going For It" by Noelle Mestres - March 2012
Blog Post #2: My Step II: Acting with Text Journey by Noelle Mestres - February 2012
"Doing Things I didn't think I could do" by Noelle Mestres - February 2012
The Treasures of Step III: Basic Scene Study by Josephine Hoy - July 2011
Step II: Work Ethic, Respect, Passion by Christina Bauer - December 2010
From Our Studio: Commitment, Play the Action, Make Choices by Denise Powell - September 2010

New Acting Tools by Brianna Chicha - August 2011
My Freehold Class Experience by David Hogan - June 2012

ACTING-The Business End
10 Tips for a Great Headshot by John Ulman -October 7, 2013

Overcoming My Auditioning Fears by Elizabeth Zeff - October 2011
Demystifying Auditioning at Freehold by Bart Smith - January 2014

Interview With Freehold ETI Alums: Riley Neldam and Lori Evans - April 2014
On Truth, Beauty and Color...with a dab of career counseling by Jesse Putnam - December 2010
It Takes a Village to Write a Solo by Melissa Topscher - November 2010
Hungry for It - Elizabeth's Freehold ETI Experience - October 2010

My New Creative Home by Leslie Moulton Asplund - June 2014
My Film Directing Class Experience by Andy Tribolini -September 23, 2013

My Matt Smith's Improv Intensive Experience by David Mielke - August 2014
Improving by CT Doescher - August 2012


So You Want to be Zorro by Geoff Alm - September 19, 2013
Playing with Swords by Emily Fortuna - October 2012
Biomechanics Intensive: Arming the Imagination - September 2012
My Discoveries in Movement Class by Shannon Kringen - October 2011

10 Responses to the Personal Clown Question: Why for Actors? by George Lewis - July 2014
The Wonders of Personal Clown by Laura-Beth Straight - June 2014
What Splitting My Pants Taught Me About Being Human or Lessons from Personal Clown with George by Cathleen O'Malley - December 2011

Interview with Playwriting Students Sue McNally and Caitlin Coey - September 23, 2013
Incremental Progress by Rebecca Tourino - September 2012
Finding Out What I Didn't Know by Ann Eisenberg - June 2012
"I Get No Kick From Champagne" by Tania Sung - January 2012
The New Play Lab and Showcase: Renewing My Interest and Imagination by Malika Lee - October 2011
New Play Lab Opportunities at Freehold by Kathryn Van Meter - September 2011
From Our Studio: Freehold's Summer New Play Lab Truth as Theme by Dickey Nesenger - September 2010

Rediscovering the Bard by Alyssa Keene - August 2012

Diving Into the Unknown by Valerie Mannucci - March 2013
My Solo Experience by Sarah Steinberg - August 2012

The Summer of Poetry Immersion by Daemond Arrindell - September 2010

My Voice Class Experience by Jane Anne Wilder- November 2011

A Few Thoughts About Suzuki Movement Training by Shanga Parker - December 2010

Freehold's ETI Graduates Upcoming Work -  July 2011

Freehold Theatre Acting Class Testimonials - August 2014
Moving Safely on Stage by Marie Verschueren - April 2014
Almost Magical by Archana Srikanta - September 23, 2013
Memories of Freehold: Freehold Inspires My "Little Dance" by Sharon N. Williams - December 2011
Studio Chat with John Paulsen and John Klein - September 2011
My Memories of Freehold: Fully Committing to the Task by David Friedt - December 2010
The George Lewis Experience or How I Learned to Shut Up and Throw the Damned Stone by Johnathan Nawn - December 2010
Character vs. Caricature in Performance by Kristen Alexander - November 2010

My Studio Experience by Lisa Skvarla - March 2014
My Studio Series Experience by Susan Bradford - March 2014
My Studio Series Experience: Performing Outside Your Comfort Zone by Karen Polinsky - March 2014
Meeting Nemesis by Ana Maria Capoy - March 2013
The Studio Series May Make You Wanna Jump Back and Kiss Yourself! by Amontaine Aurore Woods - December 2012
Studio Series Revisited by Kirsten McCory - October 2010

The Story Behind the Poster: Interview With Annya Uslontseva - July 2014
My Henry IV Journey by Grace Carmack - June 2014
Our Road Trip to Freehold and Henry IV by Tony Pasqualini - June 2014
Power to Heal by Kristin Alexander  - April 2014
Power of Art in Action: WCCW Residency by Eva Abram - September 23, 2013
My Engaged Theatre Experience by Lucinda Stroud - June 2013
Sisu by Rebecca Tourino - March 2013
"Say What?" by Jessica Robinson - January 2013
Unknown Endings by Christine Marie Brown - August 2012
A Very Human Communion by Joshua Holguin - August 2012
Working with Freehold on King Lear by Annett Mateo - July 2012
Freehold Touring Shakespeare's King Lear - June 2012
Facing Up to Things by Kevin McKeon - June 2012
My Experience with Freehold's Engaged Theatre Program by Eric Ray Anderson - March 2012
"Breaking Through" at Monroe Correctional Center for Men by Jose Gonzales - February 2012
Interview with Tony Pasqualini - January 2012
My Story of My Work by Taryn Collins - December 2010
Interview with Sharon Williams, Engaged Theatre's Teaching Artist - December 2010
From Our Theatre Lab: Embrace by Vanessa Skantze - September 2010
Freehold's Engaged Theatre Program at Prison by Trina Harris - July 2010
Thanking the God's for Julius Caesar - June 2010

Interview with Freehold Faculty Member Andrew McGinn - June 2013
Getting to Know Christine Marie Brown - January 2013
Interview with Freehold's Associate Partners - January 2013
A Few Things I've Learned from My Step I Students by Meg McLynn - February 2012
A Chat with Faculty Member Paul Budraitis - December 2011
Interview with John Billingsley and George Lewis - September 2011

Having Fun in Comic Text Scene Study by Andrew McGinn - March 2014
The Exercise and The Show by Andrew McGinn - November 2013
Backstage at "The Trial" with Amy Thone - April 2013
Oh My God, Robin Smith and John Jacobsen Teaching in the Same Room? by John Jacobsen  - November 2012
The Secret to Working with Teenagers by Daemond Arrindell - December 2011
Responding to a Calling by Joel Benjamin - December 2010
You Have to Keep Doing Your Show by Darragh Kennan - November 2010

Freehold Faculty Upcoming Work - August 2013
Freehold Faculty Members' Upcoming Work - May 2013

Freehold Awarded a 2012 Mayor's Arts Award - September 2012

Sandbox Radio Worth the Wait by Paul Mullin -  September 2011
Interview with Sandbox Artists Collective Member Amy Love on SOAP Fest - January 2014

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Exceptional Beginning Acting Classes in Seattle at Freehold Theatre beginning November 3rd

Freehold has been offering acting classes in Seattle since the summer of 1991. We offer introductory courses for the absolute beginner as well as master classes for working professionals. All Freehold faculty are working professional actors, playwrights and directors whose credentials include recognized work on and off Broadway, in major motion pictures, on television, and in regional and international theatre venues.

Step I: Intro to Acting with Christine Marie Brown

At Freehold, we believe that acting is a process that can be learned and practiced by anyone at any age. In the Intro class, you develop fundamental acting tools: playing an action, living truthfully in imaginary circumstances, and working with a partner. No matter your experience, you learn acting in an exciting and safe environment. This is the first class in our three-step acting progression, introducing you to a vocabulary and approach that will be the basis of Step II: Acting with Text and Step III: Basic Scene Study.

November 3 – December 15
Sundays, 12:00 pm – 4:00 pm
$390 Discounted
$470 Full Price
Tuition is based on household income
Note:  An additional class is added on Thursday, December 5, 6:00 - 10:00 pm

Christine Marie Brown made her Broadway debut in the Tony-award winning production of both parts of William Shakespeare's Henry IV. She has also appeared Off-Broadway at Playwrights Horizons and in an awardwinning NYC Fringe Festival production of Harold Pinter’s Ashes to Ashes. Nationally, Christine's theatre work includes leading roles at The Guthrie, The Old Globe, South Coast Rep, Baltimore Centerstage, Shakespeare & Company, Buffalo Studio Arena, Alabama Shakespeare Festival, American Shakespeare Center, Kansas City Rep and TUTA (Chicago). Locally, her work has been seen at Seattle Rep, ACT, Seattle Shakespeare Company.

Explore the You You Don’t Know

Freehold Theatre Lab/Studio
2222 2nd Avenue, Suite 200
Seattle, WA  98121
(206) 323-7499

Monday, October 7, 2013

10 Tips for a Great Headshot by John Ulman

A great headshot is not just a pretty picture—it communicates a side of who you truly are. It’s an incredibly important marketing tool for any actor. While everyone knows you need a great headshot, not everyone knows how to get one.

As a veteran headshot photographer, here are my top ten tips to get a great shot:

1.  Know When to Update Your Headshots
Most headshots will last you 12-24 months—if it’s been more than 2 years since your last headshot session, it really is time for a new one.

You should also update your headshot any time you lose or gain a fair amount of weight or change your hairstyle or color.  You want to look like your headshot when you walk into the audition.  The best compliment I get relayed back to me from a client is when a casting director tells them “this is a great shot, it looks just like you.”

2. Find the Right Photographer For You
To reveal a genuine side of yourself to the camera, you’ve got to be comfortable with your photographer. When you’re choosing a photographer, don’t just focus on their portfolio—be sure to contact them to get a feel for their vibe and information about their process. This extra step can ensure a good experience and productive session.

3. Set Yourself Up for Success
Give yourself plenty of time to get to the session, have the session, and get to your next appointment. You don’t want to worry about rushing in or out. If your head is full of stressful thoughts, you will get physically tense and the camera will capture all of that. 

In addition to giving yourself plenty of time for the session, get rest the night before, stay hydrated, pack a snack in case your blood sugar dips, bring your favorite music to help set the right mood, and bring whatever wardrobe, makeup, and hair products you need.  It’s just like preparing for a performance—you want to be relaxed, focused, and open, with “energy all the way to the finger tips.”

4. Come In With Ideas for What Shots You Need
I get the most requests for these four looks:

1.            Commercial (bright, casual, smiling, "I can sell toothpaste")
2.            Theatre/Film (slightly dressier, non-smiling "I'm comfortable in my own skin and I'm going to let you look at my face")
3.            Corporate/industrial (business look, dress shirt, jacket, smiling and non-smiling "Hello and welcome to Microsoft")
4.            Character/Type (whatever you tend to or want to get cast as—Soccer Mom, CSI Detective, Friendly Neighbor, etc.)

Before you walk into your session, know how you want to market yourself.  Think about the roles you typically get cast in—talk to your agent, colleagues, directors, and teachers to figure out your Type.

5. Bring the Right Wardrobe
Here are some general guidelines for wardrobe success:

OPTIONS: Bringing bad clothing options is the #1 preparation problem I encounter with clients. If you are going for a corporate look, bring appropriate clothing, like a button-up shirt and blazer. There is no way to capture that corporate feel if you’re wearing a tank top.  If you don’t own the right clothes, buy them or borrow them. It really does make a world of difference. Also, bring a few options for each look you want to capture. Some things look great in-person, but don't photograph well and vice versa.

STYLE: Boat-neck and scoopy collars tend to look weird in headshots. Button-up shirts, v-necks, and tank tops are all good choices. Bottom line: whatever you wear should fit well and not distract from your face. 

COLOR: Solid colors work best. Textures and bright colors are fine, just avoid busy prints, patterns, and logos.  The color should not match your skin tone—otherwise, you and the shirt will blend together in the shot.  Contrast between your clothes and your skin makes your face and eyes pop. 

6. Women: Get Your Hair and Makeup Done Professionally
Professional Makeup Artists have the tools and the skills to apply makeup that reads perfectly on camera.  Hiring a professional MUA will ensure your hair and makeup look good, so you can focus on the shoot.  It’s worth the investment.

However, it’s usually better for men not to wear makeup—you run the risk of looking “too Model-y.” If you have an issue like blotchy skin and would feel more confident with makeup, hire a professional who is good at male natural looks for HD cameras.

7.  Act for the Camera, Don’t Pose for It
The camera basically captures your thoughts. If you’re thinking, “Ugh, I hate this… I’m not a model I’m an actor… I hate the way my nose looks in every photo I’ve ever taken… I don’t know what to do with my hands…” it will read in the shot.  Figure out what kind of shot you’re going for, set up the internal monologue of that “character,” and give it to the camera.  If you’re going for happy commercial shot, think of things that genuinely make you happy so the smile is honest and not just saying “cheese”  for the camera with dead eyes.

8. Show Your Teeth in Commercial Shots
While it’s not necessary for film and theater shots, showing your teeth in a genuine smile is great for commercial headshots. Casting directors will see a friendly person who looks fun to work with and can sell toothpaste. Even if your teeth aren’t perfect or brilliantly white, commercial casting directors will want to see them in the shot. 

For theater and film headshots, it’s still a good idea to cover your bases with both non-smiling and smiling shots. If you only print one, choose the image that represents your personality most accurately. 

9. Know That You Are Enough
In a headshot session, your main job is to show the camera who you are in that exact moment.  You’re not trying to be everything at once or like any other actor or some unrealistic vision of perfection from a magazine ad. Realize that you are enough. Everything you may see in yourself as a “flaw” is actually a unique quality that you have to sell.  Own those “flaws.” Embrace them. Celebrate them. They are what make you YOU and may very well get you a job.

10.  Breathe and Have Fun

There can be a lot of pressure going into a headshot session—“wow, this is a huge investment for a broke actor like me… my last headshot experience was a disaster… how do I show everything I can do in one shot….”—breathe through those pressures. Remember, the headshot session is your time.  You paid for it, so own it.  You’ve done the prep, you’ve set yourself up for success, now is your chance to act for the camera in a role you were literally born to play. Have fun with it. 

John Ulman is a Seattle-based headshot photographer. Contact him at john@johnulmanphoto.com or check out his work at www.johnulmanphoto.com.

Wanting to take an Auditioning class?  Freehold is offering several Auditioning classes this quarter.  More information here: