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Summer Acting Programs – Sam Willett Interview

The NYC summer acting program at the Maggie Flanigan Studio focuses on the Meisner Summer Intensive and the Meisner Technique. During this interview Katie discusses with Sam Willett how the acting program changed her thoughts about professional actor training.

Summer Acting Programs NYC - Sam Willet 06 - Maggie Flanigan Studio 06

Summer Acting Programs NYC – Sam Willett Interview – Maggie Flanigan Studio

Meisner Summer Intensive – Summer Acting Programs NYC

Q: What did you think it meant to train as an actor before you started the six-week Meisner summer intensive?

A: Well, I had already graduated college with a degree in theater and I’ve been in the city for a couple years working and taking classes and I guess I thought that that was enough, not that was enough but I gave myself a time when I wanted to be working more and I thought that I would be farther than I really am. I learned that I need to take my time and actually work on my technique.


After graduating college with a degree in theater, taking acting classes and working in NYC for a few years, I expected to be farther than I was. In the summer program I learned that I need to take my time and actually work on my technique.

Sam WillettMeisner Intensive, Summer Acting Programs

Q: What happened to you during the six-week summer intensive that changed your perspective on acting in training?

A: One of the main things is being able to see moments more clearly especially when you watch films or television or plays or even watching people in class, there are so many things from the beginning of the six weeks that I didn’t see that I was missing and now at the end it’s so much more clear and even in everyday lives you see so many things that happen when people are interacting with each other and you see how people try to not let it affect them.

Also, I didn’t realize how important voice and speech and movement was, even in college I didn’t really care about those classes because I didn’t really understand what they were for, but when you’re in these classes it’s so apparent. The physical and the vocal problems that arise when you are working with this technique you can really see how voice and speech and movement can really help you to be free.

NYC Meisner Summer Acting Program Begins

Meisner Summer Acting Program Begins

Q: What did you learn about yourself during this six-week intensive that was a surprise about yourself that change you?

A: I really just learned to trust myself and believe in myself more and that if I let myself just be that I’m still able to work off of someone and to allow things to happen to me, I used to think that I had to work harder to build up an emotion or to make something happen. I guess, I just learned to trust myself more and that things will happen if I just have confidence.

Q: How do you describe Charlie Sandlan as an acting teacher?

A: Charlie is really intense but in a good way where he helps to break you down so that you can finally just be human and be open and honest, but I do feel like he is there to support you when you are just open and scared and not know and you’re out there and vulnerable and you don’t know what’s going on and he has a nice balance I guess.

Q: How are the acting classes here; movement, voice, and on-camera different from other studios where you have studied?

A: It’s so different here. Movement, I think a lot of other movement classes I’ve taken has been more about alignment or putting movement to text and with this class what’s nice about it is the fact that it’s just exploring yourself through movement and exploring just your emotions and your emotional life and it really translates into acting class, it really helps over there.

For voice and speech, one of the main things that I love about voice and speech here is whenever our teacher talks about having an intention and what holds us back, why we might be scared to say something if we are scared of what people might think of our opinions or just holding back what we think and not only is the technical side of this is how I free up my voice, but it’s also like, “This is why I want to speak and this is why I have something to say.” It just adds a whole other layer to it. I think it’s a beautiful way to learn how to free up your voice.

Q: What would you say to somebody who was unsure about professional training at the studio because they have taken classes at other studios and really do not have the time or money for more acting classes?

A: I would say just do it. Don’t give yourself a time limit, if you’re actually serious about becoming a good actor and creating a good technique and a good foundation for yourself to stand on to be proud of your work, then do the classes. Then learn the Meisner technique because it’ll give you what you want. It’ll give you a technique. It’s never too late. Even I thought that “Oh I should be doing more shows or why am I not getting cast? or I should just be working harder” whatever. But if you actually care about learning how to act and learning how to be a human. Then you really need to learn how to create a technique to work on that.

students during moves t class in the summer acting program at maggie flanigan studio

Summer Acting Program – Maggie Flanigan Studio

Learn More About the Summer Acting Programs at Maggie Flanigan Studio

Learn more about the summer acting program in NYC, as well as the other individual acting classes included in the summer acting programs at the Maggie Flanigan Studio by visiting the acting programs page on the website ( or by calling the studio directly at (917) 794-3878.

Acting Classes NYC

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