First Year Acting Training

First Year Acting Training

At PCPA we believe every class is an acting class. We are training you to be your best contemporary actor, classical actor, singing actor, and dancing actor. In the first year, the students embrace self-use and work in small groups with their mentors to build a strong repeatable acting process.

Acting 1

  • Apply action-based theory to scene work using materials from Stanislavsky, Seylar and Hagen.
  • Focus on concentrated study of Stanislavsky’s methods applied to American Realism and Comedy.
  • Activate dramatic text by breaking down playable beats of action and physicalizing character’s wants and needs.
  • Live truthfully within the given circumstances of the play.

Singing Techniques for the Actor

  • Develop the student’s skill in basic music theory, proper warm-ups and vocal techniques.
  • Expand the actor’s musical theatre repertoire.
  • Work on proper breath support, sound placement, intonation, rhythm, release of tension and diction.


  • Barre work
  • Vocabulary
  • Alignment
  • Acquisition and retention of combinations
  • Dance Audition Techniques

Text Analysis

  • Presents the basic tools for analysis of play texts including plot, given circumstance, structure, character, relationship, language and imagery.
  • Explore how careful text analysis illuminates the choices for actors in preparation for a role.

Movement 1

  • Connects the student actor with their body as an instrument.
  • Begins with 4-5 weeks of body conditioning, strength building and increase of stamina.
  • Using impulse work, literal and abstract exploration, students create movement pieces using text and music.
  • Laban technique, animal work and physical character creation are key components.

Voice and Speech 1

  • Strengthening an actor’s vocal power, stamina and sensitivity to emotional impulses through exercise and techniques based on Rodenberg and Berry.
  • Develop understanding and command of IPA (International Phonetic Alphabet).
  • Applies voice and speech concepts to classical texts.

Shakespeare 1

  • Master the basic tools for verse-speaking and performance of Shakespearean texts including rhetorical devices, scansion, rhythm, personalization of imagery, and playing action through language.
  • Students investigate through sonnets, soliloquies, and scene work.

Musical Theatre Ensemble

  • Focuses on the importance of every actor on the stage through work on a musical theatre ensemble piece which is shared with the Conservatory at the end of the term.
  • Through projects and essays, students create fully realized characters to exist within the chosen piece.
  • Musical Director teaches melodies, harmonies and vocal dynamics which students work to maintain through their performance and characterizations.