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Frequently Asked Questions

How do I register for class?

Do I have to audition to register?

What is the minimum age requirement to register?

How soon can I get started? When does the next semester begin?

How can I pay for class?

Do you offer payment plans?

What is your policy on missed classes?

What is your refund policy?

Where is the Chicago Actors Studio located?

Is there parking nearby?

How do I get to CAS via train or bus?

How many students are in each class?

Which class should I start with?

How do I prepare for my first class?

What if I've never acted before?

I'm already a skilled actor, but I tend to struggle when auditioning. Can anyone help me with this?

Will I get a chance to perform?

Do you offer private coaching?

Do you have an internship program?

Do you have scholarship program?

Do you recommend any agents or photographers?

Do you help students prepare for pending auditions?

Do you put on productions at CAS?

Do you have a Demo Reel, Voice Over Demo services?

What is an “Actors Slate” video and do you have this service?

Can you make me a star?

 

 

How do I register for class?
Very simple. All you need to do is come into our office, fill out an application and pay a small registration fee. Then our staff will help you choose a start date and reserve a space for you in the class of your choice. The whole process only takes about 10-15 minutes. Individuals with significant prior training wishing to going directly to the “Advanced Professional” level workshop, may first be required to go through an audition process to confirm that they are ready to take on that level of training.
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Do I have to audition to register?
There is no need to audition to join our preparatory/beginners level workshops. However, new students will be required to audition/interview before joining an advanced-professional level class or any of our special- ized target workshops
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What is the minimum age requirement to register?
In general we don’t usually accept students under the age of 16 in our adult based workshops. There have been exceptions for private coaching for students registering as low as 14. An interview, accompanied by a parent or guardian, is required before registering for children considered a minor.
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How soon can I get started? When does the next semester begin?
CAS workshops are ongoing, meaning that you can jump right in any time you like, year-round. Studying the craft of acting correctly, does not involve memorizing facts and figures. For example we do not cover this an across the board topic for the whole class on one week and another for the whole class the next week. Any workshop that works that way is NOT extending to you the personalized attention that you need and de- serve. We understand that you are unique, growing at your own pace. Here at CAS, you will receive that personalized attention, allowing you to grow at your own rate. The coaches work with what you need and stay with you until you accomplish it. The workshops, however, are divided into three levels, Beginning/preparatory, Intermediate and Advanced Professional levels. You get promoted to each level when you are ready to take on the next level of training.
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How can I pay for class?
We accept cash, checks, money orders, Visa, Master Card and Discover.
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Do you offer payment plans?
Yes. If you cannot afford to pay your tuition in full at the start of your session, you can split it up into 2 pay- ments, one to be made at the start of the session, and the balance to be paid half way through the session. Other payment plans can be arranged on a case by case basis. Internships are also available as a way of paying your tuition.
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What is your policy on missed classes?
You must call the CAS office if you are going to miss class for any reason or will be late attending a class. You are allowed up to 3 excused absences which would be due certified arts related auditions, rehearsals, film/video shooting schedule etc. or a major confirmed sickness or death of a family member. There will be NO monetary REFUNDS for missed classes under these said conditions.

For on-going workshops, (continuously running workshops such as AAAC and Improvisation), your class term with be extended in an amount equal to the number of excusable classes missed.

For non-ongoing workshops, you will need to re-register in the same workshop type and level during the following class scheduling, and will be given credit in the form of the number of excusable classes missed. You will need to coordinate and set this up this with the CAS office staff.

No matter how legitimate your other excuses may be for missed classes, that are not specified above, your classes will not be excusable and cannot be made up nor any credit be given.

If you miss 3 consecutive classes without a CAS certified excusable reason, you will NOT be able to continue with your class on an active basis. However, you may be allowed to sit in (audit) and observe the remaining classes of your scheduled session. CAS cannot reimburse you for classes missed.
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What is your refund policy?
If you need to cancel or drop your workshop/class/program prior to the initial start of said class term, you must give the Chicago Actors Studio a written notice of your intentions to do so. If this notice is received by CAS at least one week prior to your scheduled first class start date, you are entitled to receive a partial refund in the amount of seventy percent (70%) of your entire tuitions paid for said given class. The remainder thirty percent (30%) portion of tuitions paid, will be held as a credit at CAS for up to 180 days (approximately 6 months), after the date of registration and may be applied to future classes/workshops/programs that you may wish to partake/register in. If you do not enroll in a workshop/class/program during this period the remaining 30% thereby held will be forfeited.

If you cancel or drop your class registration within one week prior to your scheduled start date, the entire tuitions paid will be held as a credit at CAS for up to 180 days (approximately 6 months), that may be applied to future classes/workshops/programs that you may wish to partake/register in. If you do not enroll in a workshop/class/program during this period the entire tuition amount held will be forfeited.

If you cancel or drop out of a class/workshop/program once the class has begun, the full tuition that you had paid is NOT refundable, nor transferable and will not be held for you to apply to any future class/workshop/program.

There are NO refunds on registration fees, book fees or any material costs.
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Where is the Chicago Actors Studio located?
Our address is 2040 N. Elston. Chicago, IL 60614, directly on the corner of Elston, Ashland and Armitage Ave.
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Is there parking nearby?
CAS students and visitors are allowed to park for free at Best Buy, located at 2100 N. Elston, half a block northwest of us.
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How do I get to CAS via train or bus?
The #9 Ashland bus runs right across the street from us, and there is a #73 Armitage bus stop 2 blocks south of us. There is also a Metra station one block south of us that runs the UP-N and UP-NW lines.
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How many students are in each class?
It depends on the workshop. Our preparatory or beginners, “Acting As“A Craft” basic skills workshops, have 10, no more than15 students at a time. “Advanced Professional” level classes and specific target work- shops, such as “Audition Power”, “The Ear Prompter”, “Voice and Diction”, “Cold Readings”, “Monologues“ and so on, tend to be smaller, at about 6-8 students on average.
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Which class should I start with?
This depends on your experience level. If you feel you have enough prior training, you can audition to join our “Advanced Professional” workshops. Otherwise, you should start in our “Preparatory- Beginners” levels of “Acting As A Craft” (basic skills) course. It is not necessary to audition for the preparatory-beginners levels. It is also strongly recommended that you have at least some prior training before joining any of our target workshops.
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How do I prepare for my first class?
When you register, our staff will briefly go over our training manual and rehearsal process with you, and will also give you a monologue to be performed at your first class. Don’t worry, this first performance is nothing to get nervous about! Everyone has a first time. You’re not expected to be a DiCaprio, Morgan Freeman or a Meryl Streep. It’s just a way for your instructor to get to know you and what your strengths and weak- nesses are as an actor and the best approach to use to get you on your way. Absolutely bring pen and paper to take notes. You will also need to get a voice recorder. It doesn’t matter if it’s a cassette recorder or digital, and it needn’t be super-expensive pro-quality. Just make sure it’s easy for you to use and records clearly enough that you can hear yourself. Great tool to use to review later what was said in class. You will need to be able to record yourself for the voice training sections of class. Using cell phone for this purpose is not recommended. As long as your scene partner is acceptable to this, you are also allowed to video record your workshop ex- ercise as your coach is working with you. No major equipment please, those small hand-held cameras work fine. For those who do not have a video recorder, you may obtain equipment from the staff office prior to the start of your class.
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What if I've never acted before?
No need to worry, we accept students of all experience levels, from complete beginners looking for a place to start, to advanced professionals who simply want to sharpen their skills. Our instructors give each stu- dent a lot of individual and personal attention, giving you assignments based on what you need to move forward with your career.
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I'm already a skilled actor, but I tend to struggle when auditioning. Can anyone help me with this?
What many people don't realize is that auditioning is an art unto itself. Our “Audition Power” workshop is specifically designed to teach you the skills you need to master this art, such, the importance of the first 15 seconds; mastering your slate which is more than just saying your name and contact info; controlling the au- dition and not having it control you; what to wear, how to pick the right monologue; cold readings; differences in auditioning on stage and on-camera; The differences in film; commercials; industrial script readings; head- shot; resumes; putting together an eye-catching promotional package for yourself and even more! Additionally, our instructors will often take the time to work with you, outside of class, to help you prepare for an upcoming audition and give you an edge over the competition.
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Will I get a chance to perform?
Opposed to elsewhere, every student will have the opportunity to perform their assignment in class. In addi- tion, several times a year, CAS mounts theatrical productions featuring a cast made up almost entirely of the currently registered students, with the opportunity of former students, filling in the cast were needed. These are NOT black box or minimalist plays. These are full blown professionally mounted productions, with props and intricated set designs. These projects are designed specifically to give our students a taste of being in a professional show, making that import connection between what they are learning in class and how it applied to practical performance. Agents, producers, directors are often in attendance along with family and friends of cast and crew
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Do you offer private coaching?
We certainly do! Our artistic director, Edward Dennis Fogell offers private one on one coaching for students who are unable to schedule time in the group workshops, and also for advanced students hoping to focus on one particular area of their training. Free coaching sessions are sometimes afforded students registered in our workshops, when special attention is requested on any given subject or when a student may need to prepare for an up and coming audition. Our Artistic Director, also quite often takes his own personal time to work on audition scripts or accent reduction with students that are registered in our group workshops.
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Do you have an internship program?
Yes we have. Students that apply and are accepted, may be required to commit to two days or evenings a week to work in the staff office doing normal office duties or around the theatre areas. In turn, the student will receive free training.
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Do you have scholarship program?
Absolutely. Scholarships are award to individuals with special circumstances. Theses scholarship Re offered by Complete Video Services and Film productions.Just stop by and ask for an applications.
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Do you recommend any agents or photographers?
Yes, but this is done on a case by case basis. Our recommendation depends on many different factors, such as your skill and experience level, or your current goals (Do you want to work in commercials, films, on stage, etc.)
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Do you help students prepare for pending auditions?
Coaches here at CAS often take their valuable free time to help registered student prepare for an outside pending audition for commercials, film, stage or whatever. We also offer this service for non-registered students at our private coaching rates. It is becoming more and more popular for out of town producers, agents, etc to provide sides of scripts for actors to videotape and email the clip back to them for registration or to be considered for a role. A serious professional actor would also have an edge over the competition to have these clips uploaded to their Ac- torAccess or Casting Network sites, even now required for registration by Agents. We experienced in pro- ducing these types of clips, knowing exactly what is required in the industry and are able to provide this service to you in our facilities along with a qualified director. For further questions and rates just call our staff office they will be most helpfull in getting you started. Major discounts are given to registered and former students.
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Do you put on productions at CAS?
3-4 times a years we put on student based productions to showcase the students skills and help them make that connection between the classrooms and practical application of the skills they had learned. Agents, pro- ducers, general casting people are invited as long as family and friends of cast and crews.
Beside these CAS productions, directors, producers etc are constantly using our facilities to audition for commercials, stage and film productions. Students are normally invite to attend these casting calls.
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Do you have a Demo Reel, Voice Over Demo services?
Yes. Actor’s Demo Reel, Voice-Over Demo can be produced inexpensively for you as a separate service at the Chicago Actors Studio. For further questions and rates just call our staff office.
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What is an “Actors Slate” video and do you have this service?
An “Actors’ Slate” video is one of the most important tools a serious professional actors must have in their marketing arsenel. This is especially applicable, if you are promoting yourself across the US. The subject of an “Actors’ Slate” video and what it should contain is covered both in our marketing seminars along within our““Audition Power” workshops. CAS can also produce one for you as a separate service. For further questions and rates just call our staff office they will be most helpfull in getting you started.
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Can you make me a star?
No one can guarantee that you will become a movie star. If they do, you are studying at the wrong school. Probably, some scam shop, of which there are many of will tell you that. These schools and sometime called agencies or management companies, are just interested in your bank account, not your best interest to teach you skills necessary to become that movie star. They hold theses seminars of all kinds of hype tactics, telling you are you are a natural, etc. Try selling you photo sessions. Useless classes that cost $500 to $1000 plus for 8-10 weeks that meet one day/night, once a week or every other week for 2-3 hours. By the ed of the day, you will have shelled out thousands and thousands of dollars on some so-called special audi- tion event before major casting people that may not even be real and you will go home with nothing to show for it. You do this because you are new, hungry for this business and know, no better how it all works the right way. We, here at the Chicago Actors Studio, will in fact teach you skills that you need. How to market those skills, lead you to the right places. Guide you through the necessary steps. Support you even after you graduate into the market place. The rest is up to you.
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