The Art of Acting

Drama as a Path of Inner Development

A One-Year Course Led by
Laurie Portocarrero
with David Anderson, Laura Geilen
and Jennifer Kleinbach

“The basis for any true art is our ability to live . . . in the World of Imaginations.”

— Michael Chekhov, To the Actor

In ten weekend workshops from October to June, Laurie Portocarrero leads The Art of Acting on a journey into the essence of human self-expression through movement, gesture and speech.

Famed acting teacher Michael Chekhov plumbed the human soul, and discovered how our consciously directed physical movements can create an inner space for the soul to express authentic human feeling. The result: We make ourselves permeable and transparent to the impulses and imaginations that flow from our higher selves. As actors, we create art that is fresh and full of life, ease, and spontaneity. As people, we acquire a stronger connection with our true selves, and grow a deep, living understanding of human being and expressing — in ourselves and in the people around us. We learn to sense and express the invisible currents and forces that lie behind the visible world.

Each workshop in The Art of Acting blends Chekhov's exercises with movement, gesture and speech work drawn from a variety of supportive techniques. Most classes include instruction from speech artist Jennifer Kleinbach. In addition, special workshops on clowning and improvisation are brought by Laura Geilen of Nose to Nose of North America and David Anderson of Walking the dog Theater.

The earliest actors, in ancient Greece, took the stage to portray truths about humanity and the gods, reminding audiences of who we are, where we came from, and how we can begin to take responsibility for our own destiny. Today, by studying the actor's art, we can learn to direct and express our feeling life by inviting our body, voice and soul to move in ways chosen by our higher self.

Through this work, which is based on objective observation of human beings and higher worlds, the art of acting reveals the highest in the human being, and theater becomes a healing force in world culture.

Whether acting is your avocation or your vocation, this course is a challenging, supportive, playful, soul-stretching opportunity to pursue deeper self-awareness through art. You need only bring a desire and willingness to play and explore!

Course Faculty

Laurie Portocarrero

Laurie Portocarrero trained in the Chekhov method under Ted Pugh and Fern Sloan, and has studied and taught movement, drama and speech in the US and abroad. A member of The Actors’ Ensemble, Walking the dog Theater, Shakespeare Alive!, and Threefold Mystery Drama Group, Laurie has recently been seen in The Mystery Journey of Johannes and Maria, The Little Prince, Under Milk Wood, Touch of the Celtic, and Thornton Wilder’s 3-minute pieces. With the Threefold Mystery Drama Group, she has played Maria in Rudolf Steiner’s four mystery dramas. Laurie tours the US, Canada and the UK in The Refugees’ Tale (based on Goethe’s fairy tale), Aeschylus Unbound, and The Gospel of John. Her one-woman pieces include The Power of Imagination: The Life and Poetry of Christy MacKaye Barnes; Miriam, a haunting piece on Mary Magdalene; and her seasonal Timeless Tales. Laurie directs a summer children’s program, and teaches drama and storytelling to special needs adults. Waldorf-educated, Laurie holds a BA in Theater Arts, and also trained at Sunbridge College and Rudolf Steiner College.

David Anderson

David Anderson is a founder and Executive Director of Walking the dog Theater ( He holds a post-graduate degree in Waldorf Education from Emerson College, England. He studied Speech and Drama at Threshold Theater in Christchurch, New Zealand, and has performed throughout North America, Europe, Australia, and New Zealand.

Laura Geilen

Laura Geilen trained in dance at the Boston Conservatory of Music, has a BA in Human Services from Lesley University, and is a graduate of the Spacial Dynamics Institute and the Camphill Social Therapy Training. She is a member of Walking the dog Theater’s OFF LEASH! Improv Theater Ensemble, and a Clowning Facilitator with Nose To Nose of North America.

Jennifer Kleinbach

Jennifer Kleinbach, a trained eurythmist, toured with Eurythmy Spring Valley’s stage ensemble in 2000–2005, and currently teaches speech at the School of Eurythmy. She has appeared in Threefold Mystery Drama Group productions and community theater productions. She holds a diploma in Speech Formation from the Speech School of North America and a Masters in Medieval Studies from the University of Notre Dame.


Join the Art of Acting!

The course consists of ten full-day Saturday workshops plus two half-day Sunday workshops beginning in October 2014 and ending in June 2015. The Saturday workshops run from 9:00am to 8:00pm, with generous breaks for meals and snacks. The two Sunday morning sessions end at noon. At every meeting, we will practice Chekhov's basic exercises, review material from previous classes, and introduce new material.

The cost of the course is $1,395, plus a $25 non-refundable application fee. Installment payment plans and some tuition assistance is available.

Enrollment for the 2016-17 course will open in April 2016.