1. Scene Study & Workshops

  2. The Text and Scene Study Classes offer students a chance to learn, develop, and perfect their craft under the focused guidance of an instructor and in the presence of their peers.  Each of our teachers brings years of professional experience and study to these ongoing classes, which are enrolled on a month-to-month basis to conform to the busy life of the professional actor.  Admission to these classes is highly selective, and each prospective student is required to meet with the teacher before enrollment.  In some cases, an audition may be required as well.

  3. Surrounding our core teacher-mentors are brilliant specialists.  Three or four times a year, these immensely gifted and experienced trainers conduct workshops that concentrate on particular aspects of the actor's craft: voice, body, language, style, comedy, the classics - including Shakespeare, song, on-camera, and audition.  Together with the core text & scene study, the specialist workshops help our actors devise their own training program.  I invite you to join us.  Take the classes you need, can afford, and that fit your schedule.


THE ACTOR / SINGER:  A Master Class with Judy Kuhn

This is a class for the singing actor that focuses on song interpretation and vocal performance.  Students work individually on material of their choice with Tony Award Nominee Judy Kuhn each class, as well as participate in group exercises.  Students who take the class should come ready to play, feel free to experiment with material and take risks.  Although this is not a vocal technique class, Judy will address individual technical concerns and make suggestions about how to approach working on them.

2:30 - 5:30 pm



Headshot/Resume submission required for consideration.



Michael Howard Studios offers these rotating workshops throughout the year.  If you see something you are specifically interested in, contact us and we will keep you posted as soon as we schedule new dates.

The Right to Speak

Speaking Shakespeare

Second Circle

with Patsy Rodenburg

Do not miss this opportunity to explore Shakespeare’s text with the Head of the Voice Department at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London.  See why Dame Judi Dench claims “The best thing you could possibly have is a class with Patsy.”  

Patsy teaches exclusively at Michael Howard Studios in New York City.

“Patsy’s guidance and the clarity and directness of her approach have been invaluable to me.”

Ralph Fiennes

“Patsy Rodenburg wants to free your voice so that you can express yourself fully and honestly.”

Sir Ian McKellan

“I am an enormous fan of her work. What is wonderful about her is the directness and clarity of her teaching and her enthusiasm.”

Dame Judi Dench

“She gives you a wondrously simple way of releasing the voice and body - which also becomes a way of life.”

Anna Massey


Saturday -  Monday, October 12 - 14

9:00am - 6:00pm, daily


This three-day workshop will guide you to rediscover your powerful and free natural voice. The focus of this workshops is attention to the actor’s craft, which will enable you to understand and correct habits that can inhibit your fundamental ability to communicate. Patsy will guide you through an intensive introduction to centered body and breath as well as her innovative Second Circle Presence work.


Tuesday - Thursday, October 15- 17

9:00am - 6:00pm, daily



This three-day workshop will introduce you to Shakespeare as spoken word. Patsy will apply her Second Circle Presence work into Shakespeare's text. This course will teach you how Shakespeare’s forms (structure and flow) serve to release meaning and content, and how this language creates character and emotional depth. Through this process, each actor can find the passion and power of speech and build this aspect of the craft within his or her own voice.


Friday - Sunday, October 18 - 20

This three-day workshop will empower your deepest connection of Presence within yourself and the Ensemble. You will develop a profound understanding of your habits concerning your body, breath, and voice, and the tensions that take you out of your natural presence. In her most advanced Workshop yet, Patsy will guide you to practically apply Second Circle presence in every stage of your process.

For Patsy’s workshops, please submit a headshot and resume for consideration.



with Olympia Dukakis

Award® Winner Olympia Dukakis will share her wisdom and passion in this three-day intensive.  The class will include monologue work and scene study.




                        with Armando Diaz

This six-week workshop will utilize improvisational scene work, group games, and basic long-form structures to help students make spontaneous decisions and feel comfortable performing without a script. Students will also practice vital aspects of improvisational performance such as openings, time dashes, and basic Harold skills, all under the expert guidance of veteran teacher, Armando Diaz. A graduate of Second City in Chicago, Armando has taught several students who have gone on to write and perform on The Daily Show, Saturday Night Live, and Late Night with Conan O’Brien.

January 16 - February 20, 2019

Wednesdays, 7:00pm - 10:00pm

6 sessions





with Alister Sanderson

In 6 sessions, you will increase your awareness of how acting in film is inter-related with camera-work,sound-work, editing, lighting, sets and locations, props, costume and make-up, digital effects, and with narrative and non-narrative material.  This class invites you to think about how an actor in the present can draw on and contribute to the 120 year tradition of cinematic performance, and how the art of film shapes the way we live our lives.

You will screen one feature film in its entirety but in parts along with short films and sequences and will explore how a Hollywood-style does its work.


with Andrew Shaifer

Veteran comic performer Andrew Shaifer returns to MHS offering an 8-week workshop in contemporary comedic skills for stage, film, and television.  From stand-up to sitcom to sketch comedy to solo performance, this workshop will offer a variety of lively exercises that will enhance your ability to use comedy in live performance, during auditions, and on the set.  A perfect offering for any actor interested in creating and performing his own comedic work by writing one’s own material, telling personal stories, and collaborating with other class members on sketches.

This workshop culminates in a final group performance at Michael Howard Studios.

Andrew Shaifer is his own man.  No one can do what Shaif does.

                    Adam Sandler

Scene StudyClasses.html


An Intensive with Steven Friedman

Join veteran voiceover artist Steven Friedman for a comprehensive introduction to the vast world of voiceovers.  Actors will have the opportunity to analyze copy, identify their style and niche, learn mic technique, perform cold readings, gain information on developing a demo, and gain valuable business and marketing advice.  Actors will have the opportunity to go through rigorous “mock auditions”, covering everything from initial reads to callbacks.

Steven Friedman has recorded thousands of network & cable TV, radio, promotional and industrial spots, as well as long-form narration (for countless A&E Biography series), and animation spots. His many clients include Budweiser, McDonald’s, Head and Shoulders, Apple, Buick, IBM, T-Mobile, Maxwell House, and countless others. From 1993 to 1999, he was the corporate national spokesman for Symantec. Some of his theater, film, and television credits include Beau Jeste, The Heidi Chronicles, The Next Karate Kid, Random Hearts, Law & Order, and MTV’s You Wrote It You Watch It. Steven has also studied with Michael Howard for many years.

Saturday & Sunday

12:00 - 4:00pm



A Ten Day Immersion for Actors looking to break into the film and television market

with Christophe Averlan

For 10 days, actors will experience every essential aspect of acting on film using state of the art equipment.  Beginning with a casting day led by Gabrielle Berberich, actors will record their screen tests and gain valuable feedback on their audition technique.  Actors will then move into on-camera monologue work, culminating with a 5 day film shoot, written for the actors and shot on set.  Leading this workshop is French film director and playwright, Christophe Averlan, whose work has been seen in dozens of European film festivals.

Each actor will receive a copy of the professionally shot, fully edited short film, and Michael Howard Studios will host a film screening for the actors and invited guests.

If interested, please email your headshot/resume for consideration. 

More Details, including videos and samples of Christophe Averlan’s work can be found here.

To learn more about Christophe Averlan, click here

MEDITATION FOR ACTORS: Connecting with Self and Character

with Parlan McGaw

In this six-week course, you will work with a variety of simple yet potent techniques that will help you develop presence, concentration, receptivity, and spontaneity as well as the emotional range and availability essential to compelling acting.  You will connect with your creative core and learn a dynamic method of connecting deeply with every character you play -- and for fleshing out your character’s relationships with other characters. 

Whether you have years of experience or are new to meditation -- or even if you’ve thought you “can’t meditate” -- this class makes meditation accessible and provides practical tools that relate to your work as actors.

“Parlan McGaw’s leadership in meditation practice is extraordinarily useful in strengthening core elements of the actor’s craft:  concentration, awareness, and relaxation.” -        Michael Howard

Thursdays, 2:30 - 4:30

November 1 - December 13


Being Present - Breathing Life into your Audition Monologue

with Polina Klimovitksaya

Join world-renowned master teacher Polina Klimovitskaya in this two-day intensive. Very often monologue sound too staged and too technical, this workshop will focus on how we make our audition monologues more spontaneous and alive. Through exercises, improvisations, and working with your chosen text, students will work on: awareness, body language, voice, and text analysis.

Fundamentals of Acting

with Adam Swartz

This workshop goes to the roots of acting, and gives each actor the tools to build his or her own creative process. The mastery of acting is a lifelong pursuit and can be overwhelming in scope. Learn how to break it down in manageable components, and chart your path for artistic growth. Beginners are introduced to basic ideas, vocabulary, and skills. Experienced actors can also find ways to reinvigorate their process with a fresh approach.


with Greg Chwerchak

This is a crash course in film school and distribution, specially tailored to actors -- from the most flattering lenses, lights, and angles to in-depth discussions of what material best attracts festivals, viral audiences, and promotes your acting career.  This workshop tackles the Dos and Don’ts of shooting your own material.  Whether it’s scenes for your reel, a spec commercial to go viral, or a short film to screen at film festivals, we will address all of the nuances that go into a successful DIY shoot.  This course gives you the tools to be proactive and create your own work, from concept to final cut.


with Brett Goldstein and Corey Parker

This intensive two-day workshop introduces a set of clear, practical steps for actors seeking to develop an effective and consistent audition technique. Throughout, Brett and Corey create a safe and supportive space for actors to maximize strengths and to overcome weaknesses. Brett and Corey bring years of experience on opposite sides of the camera to the workshop, addressing a range of issues like:


Audition-room decorum

Working with the reader

Cold readings

Applying adjustments

Actors receive personalized notes.

Actors are assigned audition sides from recent film, episodic television and pilot scripts BEFORE the first class. Actors are expected to rehearse and make choices, then encouraged to take risks while presenting in front of the class.

On the second day, each actor gets in front of the camera in a true-to-life audition setting and is coached on how to flourish in that setting, developing their own relationship with the camera and audition process.


with Polina Klimovitskaya

Animals, animals, animals.  They will lead the actor to the most natural birth of a dramatic character.  Through “animal work” the actor’s innate nature is awakened and stimulated toward harmonious transformation into another being. Eventually each “animal” will find its human equivalent and transform into a dramatic character of the student’s choice (chosen from a play or short story). 


with Jennifer Smith DeCastroverde

Do you lose parts because of your accent?  This innovative class combines group instruction and individual drill to develop a neutral “General American” accent.  Suitable for foreign actors who want to work in America and for American actors who want to increase their castability.  This class mixes group work with one-on-one sessions.

One-on-One sessions

including: 1 hour diagnostic session with written feedback


Long-Form Improv

with Armando Diaz

This six-week workshop will utilize improvisational scene work, group games, and basic long-form structures to help students make spontaneous decisions and feel comfortable performing without a script.  Students will also practice vital aspects of improvisational performance such as openings, time dashes, and basic Harold skills, all under the expert guidance of veteran teacher Armando Diaz.  A graduate of Second City in Chicago, Armando has taught several students who have gone on to write and perform on The Daily Show, Saturday Night Live, and Late Night with Conan O’Brien



with Gabrielle Berberich

This popular intensive guides actors through the casting process as well as what happens before and after auditioning for on-camera roles. Actors work on-camera in every class with sides from television studio and independent films, including scripts from:

The Americans, Billions, The Blacklist, Blindspot, Blue Bloods, Bull, Chicago Fire, The Good Wife, Homeland, L&O: SVU, Madam Secretary, Orange Is The New Black, Person of Interest, Unforgettable, White Collar, The Beguiled, Call Me By Your Name, 20th Century Women, Downsizing, I, Tonya, Ladybird, The Meddler, The Hollars, La La Land, Silence, and several NEW Pilots.

This intensive also covers the business of acting, how to get an agent and manager, finding the right headshot and more!

August 2 - 4, 2019

Friday: 7:00pm - 10:00pm

Saturday & Sunday: 12:00pm - 7:00pm