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Directing - Level 1 & 2

Sundays, beginning June 4th

What separates directors like Quentin Tarantino, Stephen Spielberg, Martin Scorcese, The Coen Brothers, and Paul Thomas Anderson from others?  For one thing, they understand how to work with actors and get a great performance out of them.  Most working directors today are glorified traffic managers who may know how to frame a nice-looking shot, but don't know anything about collaborating with a performer to get their best possible work.

If you want to be the next Alfred Hitchcock or Stanley Kubrick, you need to learn more than just the basics.  In order to stand out and get noticed for your work, you'll need to develop that same insight that the greats have when working with their actors.

In this exciting series of workshops, you'll not only learn the fundamentals of directing and working with actors, but you'll also get to put your newfound skills to the test when you direct a full production of your choice, right here in our studio.


Part 1 - Fundamentals of

This unique 10 week intensive program will focus on teaching you the essential tools that every director must know, including:

-Getting the best performance out of your actors
-Collaborating with your cast to flesh out the characters
-How to create stage pictures and how they affect the scene
-Communicating your ideas to your cast and crew to bring your vision to life
-Understanding the important role that lighting and sound play in your show
-How to fix performance problems and knowing which ones to focus on
-How to cast an entire ensemble, rather than just one character at a time

Each week, you will get to work with volunteer students from our acting workshops to help you develop your directing skill set.

Register for both parts 1 & 2 together, and get a $95.00 discount!
Directing 1
June 5th - August 14th
(No class July 3rd)
5:00pm - 8:00pm


Part 2 - Mounting a Production

Here you will learn first-hand, the entire process of putting on your own production from the first audition to the closing night performance.  In this program you will get to choose a one-act play to direct, and have mounted on our stage for a 4-week run.  With the personal guidance of the CAS artistic director, Edward Fogell, you will bring your theatrical vision to life!

This program will cover:

-Picking the right play to mount.  What script do you feel you identify with?
-The audition and casting process.
-Assembling a production crew (Stage manager, assistant director, light & sound tech, etc.) and understanding what each crew member does.
-Pre-production: rehearsal, set design, choosing music & sound effects, etc.
-Tech & dress rehearsals, and finishing touches before the show begins
-The full run of your show, from opening to closing night, including pick-up rehearsals when needed.

On the closing night, we throw a party for the cast and crew of all the shows, with music, dancing, karaoke, free food & drinks.  Plus, special awards will be given out for best show, best director, best actor & actress.

In order to take Part 2 of this program, you MUST have completed Part 1, or get direct approval from artistic director Edward Dennis Fogell.

Directing 2
August 21st - Nov. 6th
See below for info on days & times

Level 2 of this program will be the process of mounting a production from start to finish.  The first day will be a production meeting on Sunday, August 21st at 5:00pm.  After this, classes will no longer regularly meet on Sundays, and instead auditions, production meetings, rehearsals and performances will now be considered part of the class.

*Ending date is subject to be extended, depending on changes to production schedule

Mary Beth Liss

Edward Dennis Fogell
Artistic Director - Chicago Actors Studio

Received his training from such renowned institutions and acting coaches as Ted Liss School of Drama/Chicago, Victory Gardens/Chicago, CES/Los Angeles, Michael Shurtleff/New York, Geoffrey Conners and David Perry, Royal Academy of Dramatic arts/London, to name a few. Some of you out there in the industrial, audio/visual markets probably already know Ed, or at least have seen his rugged exterior in many corporate, training films & commercials for the Motorola Corps, Sears, RCA, National Safety Council , and national spots for Kellogg & Miller's Lite Beer , to name few. Some television credits include the NBC soap opera "Generations", "Lady Blue", "Crime Stories", "Unsolved Mysteries". He recreated the historic 40s-50s mob figure "Willie Bioff" in "The Projection Racket" for the BBC. Feature film credits include "Time Was"; the Chicago International Film Festival, Silver Hugo Award & LA Telly Award winner "It Takes A Lot Of Light To Make A City"; the Chicago International Film Festival, Silver Award winning "Last Days In Chicago" , the indi gem "Sitting On The Fence", Co-Starred in the action feature thriller, "Dead Air", plus countless stage productions to include "Lt Weinberg" in "A Few Good Men".

Ed has directed numerous theatre productions, features & made-for-television films, including,"Paradise Lost, Paradise Found". "In The Air Tonight" and "Detective Story", produced, directed and performed in many musical variety shows through out the United States, which includes the "Arie Crown theatre", "The Park West" and "Civic Opera House" here in Chicago and on the international set, musical show revue in Hawaii, Japan, Korea and the Republic of China. Helped co-found the "Screen Actors Academy" in La Jolla, CA. Ed frequently serves as a judge and Chairman of the judges in the "Miss Teenage Illinois", "Miss Illinois" and "Mrs. Illinois" beauty pageants.

Finally we would also like to mention that Mr. Fogell is on the board of directors at Complete Video & Film Productions as well as president of Worldwide Entertainment. Ed possesses a refreshingly honest, no nonsense approach to the method, coupled with an unequaled passionate affection for the actors he coaches and commitment to helping them fulfill their dreams.

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