The Purpose of the Workout

For the past several years I have had the privilege of working with many of the extraordinary actors who have chosen to live and work in the Twin Cities.  In that time I have come to see a need for and heard many actors express a desire to have ongoing training. Training that specifically addresses the growth actors who are not beginners, but those who are on a professional career path by virtue of training and or experience.

Ideally, once we have finished initial training our growth and development usually comes from working — having the opportunity to do a range of different roles, working with other actors and directors of varied backgrounds, ages, and experience.  For a fortunate few this happens.  For most however, the course of a career is far more uncertain:  there are the inevitable periods when there is no work; sometimes the work that does come along affords limited opportunity for growth or exploration; one’s casting can wind-up being so narrow that it begins to limit even the actor’s own ability to see beyond their “type.”  Sometimes the very success an actor has achieved in a particular role, or kind of role, compromises their ability or their desire to challenge themselves.  Inevitably a kind of artistic atrophy sets in.

As a remedy, I created, with the cooperation of the education department of the Guthrie Theater, The Actors Workout. The aim is to have a safe, supportive and challenging training environment for the professionally oriented actor that will encourage and allow them to extend, expand and deepen their craft. The instruction is intended to be highly individual, focusing on each actor’s needs and dealing with issues relevant to their particular creative process and working circumstances.  The goal is to nurture and free the individual actor’s creative spirit, so that he or she becomes a more creative, open and courageous artist.