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Misconceptions About Professional Actor Training

The Maggie Flanigan Studio is considered by many to be the best acting studio in New York and the United States for actors who want to study the Meisner Technique. In this blog post actors from the studio discuss what they thought it meant to train as a professional actor before the came to the studio.

I thought that acting was just a workshop that you could do over the weekend, or over a six week summer and just by doing that, and if you were bubbly and you could read people, then you could be an actor. – Sofia Riba

Before I started the program at Maggie Flanigan Studio, I had no idea what I was in for. I never would have thought that I would be the person that I am or where I am now. I thought I had read some books, taken classes and workshops and thought that was what you have to do to be an actor. – Gigi Rippolone

I thought acting training was mostly to do with scene study. That is pretty much the kind of class that I think I have taken before. I had a little awareness of Meisner but I think I just thought you get in there, you get a scene, and you just work it. Whatever that was and somehow something might happen. – Ashley Versher

All I have to do really is memorize my lines, be really clever, make certain moments really pop and I’ll be interesting on stage and get that really good job at the end of the day. – Kirk Koczanowski

To be totally honest, I think that before I started at the Maggie Flanigan Studio, I had no idea that acting training was real. I had been studying acting or thought myself to be studying acting for about ten years at the time that I started here. I just did not have any foundation or technique. I believed that I could memorize the lines and have an idea that at this part I am furious and at this part, I am really happy, and then just show up and do it, and then whatever happened was left to chance. – Jes Tom

I didn’t know anything about acting before I started the Meisner Summer Intensive. I thought going into it I was just going to go right into scenes and I was going to come out a super star and that’s just not it at all. – Victoria Dmitriev

I realized that I had no idea what acting was whatsoever or even acting classes. I’ve taken so many random classes and all they give you are lines and “work on this, work on that”. Really I had no foundation. I didn’t know where to begin, I didn’t know how to approach it, I didn’t know what I was supposed to do or feel. Where do I get these emotions from? – Carolina Solorzano

Some people were telling me, “Oh yeah this is how you work on a script, you plan stuff and you do this” and I’m like, “alright”. And that’s what I thought acting was, you just pick up a script, do a background story, plan a line, and you’re in. – Eddie Mata

I had no idea what acting was, what it took to be an actor. I didn’t event think I knew. Meisner teaches you first and foremost to be vulnerable, to really listen and to really be in the moment and that is everything that I wasn’t. Before coming here I didn’t think I was capable of much. I didn’t have much confidence, I thought I did but I really didn’t and I wasn’t as open as I should be. Not only am I leaning how to be an actor and an artist, but how to be a better human being, a better man, a better friend. – Jeremies Rodriguez

I looked out at New York City at all the classes that were being offered. It was scene study classes, monologue classes, on camera commercial workshops, which I had tried a number of them, and it had all seemed like one trick pony, “we are going to make you and actor bit by bit. We are going to give you this scene and you are going to keep doing it each week and eventually we will be like, “good job now you have finished the scene”. Very external. “Work on the monologue until you have finished it”. Great. That is what all actors have. They have this one scene. This one monologue.

So really it has nothing to do with figuring where you come from personally, what turns you on personally, emotionally. It really had to do with carrying around the scenes, these monologues, like cards. That is what an actor is. It did not push you to figure out anything personal. – Cornelius McMoyler

I didn’t really believe that actors needed much training. I read a lot of books. I watched a lot of movies, so I figured this should be it. You go in and you do your lines, the other person does his thing, and when they are done you go on and do your thing. I would take classes. I would take workshops and stuff like that and nothing about it was ever organized. You just go in and show off yourself. There was no technique. There was no beginning, middle and end. You do it for some exercise to knock some rust off. That is what I thought training meant. It is something you do between jobs to knock some rust off and then you go back to your next job and then when you are not working so much you go back and take an improvisation class. That is what I thought training really was.

What I always believed was, what separates me from everyone else? What makes me unique? Why would I be looked at differently than everyone else? That is why I stayed away from training in the beginning, not knowing that here at the Maggie Flanigan studio and with the Meisner Technique, it is all really about finding out who you are because that is what you are going to using for your art. That is all you really have. You don’t have guitar. You don’t have a piano. You don’t have any kind of instrument. This is it. So I came here and I started to really know what my instrument was and then by each class, going deeper and deeper. You were forced to go deep into yourself and really start to figure out who you are as a person first, and then with that you can start applying it to your craft. That completely changed my life. – Sam Yazbeck

The Two Year Acting Program: Begins January 4th, 2017

For more information about the Meisner Technique and the two year professional actor training program that the studio provides, contact the studio directly by calling (917) 794-3878.

You can also start the application process online by clicking here: Apply Online – Two Year Acting Program

Leading Meisner Training Program In NYC Now Interviewing Actors For The Two Year Program


CONTACT: Maggie Flanigan Studio
(917) 794-3878
info [at]

New York City’s Top Meisner Training Program For Actors Now Interviewing For Two Year Acting Program

Maggie Flanigan Studio, New York’s top Meisner training program, is accepting applications for its 2-Year Conservatory.
Classes begin January 4th, 2017. Few spaces remain.

two year acting program begins january 4 2017

The Maggie Flanigan Studio was established in 2001. At that time, the curriculum was limited to Meisner Technique classes only. Now going into its 16th year, students are able to enroll in three different programs, designed and tailored to fit their specific training needs. Along with new program options, the Maggie Flanigan Studio is proud to announce the addition of new faculty members and those on the rise.

This fall marks Charlie Sandlan’s 11th year at MFS. Charlie has been teaching First-Year classes, Second-Year Technique, Cold Reading, Monologue and Film/TV at the Studio for the past 11 years, while also serving as Executive Director. Charlie is the recipient of numerous teaching awards most notably Best Cold Reading Teacher and Best Monologue Coach from Backstage Readers Choice Awards. This year Charlie will take on all Second-Year Technique classes, making room for new faculty member, Karen Chamberlain, to teach January’s First-Year class. Karen will also teach all Second-Year workshops and auxiliary classes. Both Charlie Sandlan and Karen Chamberlain received their Masters of Fine Arts in Acting from Mason Gross School of the Arts at Rutgers University under the tutelage of Maggie Flanigan and William Esper.

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