AD: Atlantic Advanced Acting Class | Tennessee Williams and Practical Aesthetics

AD: Atlantic Advanced Acting Class | Tennessee Williams and Practical Aesthetics

CATEGORY: Classes/Schools

The Art and the Audition with Karen Kohlhaas
New York, NY 10011


Karen Kohlhaas

Job Details


I'm thrilled to teach this class on Zoom for Atlantic Acting School in December:


I'll be teaching the class live from Clarksdale, Mississippi, where Williams lived, and which is a location for some of his most famous plays. I'll teach at least one of the classes from the Tennessee Williams Rectory Museum which is in the house where Williams lived with his grandparents.

I'll teach the Practical Aesthetics acting technique and you'll apply it to a substantial (approx 15 minute) Tennessee Williams scene. You do not need previous experience with Practical Aesthetics, but you must have previous acting training and scene study.

Scenes will work in class 4 times, culminating in a final presentation; see below for class breakdown and how to apply.

There are currently 4 spots open and men are especially encouraged to apply. It's also possible to enroll as an auditor.

Karen Kohlhaas

Tuesdays & Thursdays
December 1, 3, 8, 10, 15, 17
11am-2pm Eastern time

Tuition $325
Auditor $150


Go to this link to apply and schedule an interview as a full participant:

Go to this link to enroll as an auditor:

Questions? Reply to this post


In this unique class, you will learn and apply the Practical Aesthetics acting technique to a substantial (12-15 minute) scene from a play by Tennessee Williams, and learn a lot about Williams and his work. No prior experience with Practical Aesthetics is required for this class, but all active participants must have previous acting training / scene study experience. It is also possible to enroll in this class as an auditor.

PRACTICAL AESTHETICS  is the acting technique developed by David Mamet and William H. Macy and taught to the founders of the Atlantic Theater Company in the mid 1980s. Prominent grads of the Atlantiic Acting School include Kristen Johnston, DeWanda Wise, Simon Helberg, Clark Gregg, Jason Ritter, Edwina Findley, Rose Byrne, Anna Chlumsky, Ronald Peet, Elizabeth Olsen, Zoe Lister-Jones, Marianna Palka, Jarrod Spector, Maggie Kiley and many more.

TENNESSEE WILLIAMS remains one of the most loved and most often produced playwrights of all time, with multiple productions of his plays occurring at any given moment, all over the world. His roles have been played by the greatest actors of each generation since they were written. Williams’ work is ideal for learning and exploring the Practical Aesthetics technique because of the vividness and depth of his characters, the brilliance of his plots, and the poetry of his language.

Interspersed between the scenes will be readings from Williams essays on theater, and biographical details that relate to each play. Scenes will be cast based on the group. Thanks to Williams, there are many roles to choose from and everyone will have a great part. Registering for the class signifies that you will accept any role in which you are cast. Please only enroll in this class if you will prepare thoroughly, be a generous, communicative scene partner, and give your whole heart to the work!

Class 1: Practical Aesthetics Script Analysis & Table Work on all scenes
Class 2: Work scenes 1, 2, 3 for specific script breakdown and analysis choices
Class 3: Work scenes 4, 5, 6 for specific script breakdown and analysis choices
Class 4: Work scenes 1, 2, 3 for moment to moment work and blocking
Class 5: Work scenes 4, 5, 6 for moment to moment work and blocking
Class 6: Final performance run of all scenes with feedback

KAREN KOHLHAAS is an Atlantic Theater Company founding ensemble member, director, and senior teacher. Director |For Atlantic, Karen has directed mainstage and Stage 2 productions of plays by Harold Pinter, David Mamet, Annie Baker, Keith Reddin, Kia Corthron, Shel Silverstein, Hilary Bell, Joe Penhall, and Kate Moira Ryan. She has also directed for Primary Stages, the New York Shakespeare Festival/Public Theater, Naked Angels, Ars Nova, Ensemble Studio Theatre, New York Live Arts, 24 Hour Plays on Broadway, the Alley Theatre, Houston, New Dramatists, Menagerie Theatre in Cambridge, UK, The Culture Project, the Practical Theater Co. in Sydney and others. Teacher | Karen is a master teacher of the Practical Aesthetics acting technique with over 30 years in the classroom, and is a senior teacher at the Atlantic Acting School. She teaches her own NYC and online classes in acting, directing, monologues, and audition technique. She has guest taught for the USC, Florida International University, Kenyon College, Rose Bruford College for the Performing Arts in London, University of Central Oklahoma, Oklahoma City University, Baldwin Wallace University, University of the South at Sewanee, Colorado College, Texas State University, Seattle University, Drama, Inc. in Atlanta, Theater Educators of Texas Association, ATHE, the Metodi Festival in Tuscany, Italy, Zach Theatre, Austin; Ah Um theater, Vancouver, Menagerie Theatre in Cambridge, UK, Practical Aesthetics Australia, the Flynn Theatre in Burlington, VT, and Austin Shakespeare. Corporate workshops have included AdaCore and Bloomberg Beta. Author | Karen is the author of The Monologue Audition: A Practical Guide for Actors (foreword by David Mamet), a Backstage must-read; How to Choose a Monologue for Any Audition; and The Monologue Audition Teacher’s Manual, and director of a 120 minute DVD on her monologue techniques. Filmmaker | Two films with acclaimed performer/playwright Taylor Mac; several short documentaries; and the instructional film Roots & Branches 5 Element Qi Gong for the T'ai Chi Foundation. Tennessee Williams Scholar & Filmmaker | Karen is currently editing a full length documentary and accompanying book on Tennessee Williams' Mississippi Delta roots. She is a regular panelist and presenter at the New Orleans and Mississippi Delta Tennessee Williams Festivals, and has curated and co-founded, with St. George's Episcopal Church, the Tennessee Williams Rectory Museum in the former residence of Williams and his family in Clarksdale, Mississippi. She teaches Tennessee Williams advanced scene classes and weekends in New York City and guest workshops, and in January 2020 conducted, with playwright Craig Lucas, the first annual week-long residential training for actors and playwrights in Clarksdale, Mississippi. 


December 1, 2020 - December 17, 2020