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

The earliest actors, in ancient Greece, took the stage to portray truths about humanity and the gods, to remind audiences who we are and where we come from. As spiritual beings, with one foot in the forgotten spiritual world, we must understand and forge anew our relationship to the gods if we are to take responsibility for our own destinies.

Michael Chekhov

In the twentieth century, famed acting teacher Michael Chekhov explored how consciously directed physical movements can create a free inner space for the soul to express authentic human feeling. By studying the actor’s art, he said, 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 the lawful nature of higher worlds working into us, we forge a stronger connection with our true selves. We can acquire a deeper, more living understanding of human existence. We may find that we can sense and express the invisible currents and forces that lie behind the visible world.

This work can serve as a path toward self-mastery, as we discover that the art of acting has the potential to reveal the highest in the human being, and theater to become a healing force in world culture.

The Art of Acting 2016-17

Over ten weekend workshops from October 2016 to June 2017, Laurie Portocarrero will lead The Art of Acting on a journey into the essence of human self-expression. Each session blends Michael 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.

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!

Enrollment for the 2016-17 course is now open. To apply, click here.

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, Shakespeare on the Green, 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.

Enrollment for the 2016-17 course is now open. To apply, click here.


Join the Art of Acting!

The course consists of ten full-day Saturday workshops plus two half-day Sunday workshops beginning in October 2016 and ending in June 2017. 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 is now open. To apply, click here.