Why Austin Actors Should Take Dustin Hoffman’s Masterclass

What’s an Austin actor to do?

If you are an Austin actor and interested in taking a masterclass with Dustin Hoffman, then you are in luck. There is one such class that came out a few years ago. I took the class whenever it first came out. It’s an awesome class and one Austin actors should consider taking.

It’s The Real Deal

I started acting as a student at The University of Texas and this was the first place I was exposed to a real acting coach. As an Austin actor, I can honestly tell you there are no instructors in the Austin area as good as Dustin Hoffman.

Class Organization

The class is organized in about 30 different videos. They are divided into videos where Hoffman covers need to know information about acting. This information applies to Austin actors as well as actors located in other cities. There are also two different sections of the course where actors get their chance to work through a scene with Hoffman working as the director. They work through the actor’s problems and eventually get to a place where the scene is very real to the audience. They document this for the students who take the class and it’s incredibly helpful.

What You Learn

Austin Actors should take the class. That’s all I have to say about it. If you are an Austin actor or an actor anywhere, then you should take this class. Dustin Hoffman and his class will give you a place to build off of as an actor and a place of reference for when you find yourself losing your way. You can also find a list of credits for films I’ve made on IMDb.

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Why Read Eric Morris’ Book ‘No Acting Please’

If It Works, Use It

‘No Acting Please’ is one of the best acting books. In the forward of the book, Jack Nicholson wrote, “The Method is ‘If it works, use it.’” For those of you who don’t know, Eric Morris is a revered acting instructor based in Los Angeles, California. His approach is to take realism, which was originally brought to the forefront in acting by Constantin Stanislavski in the early 20th century and create acting exercises to get actors from point A to point B. Point B being realism as seen in good performances, or what most consider a good performance. Eric Morris calls it BEING.

Eric Morris and His Books

This book is one of 7 books he’s written on the subject of acting. This is indefinably one of the best acting books out there. It’s divided into four different sections titled Being, Getting Ready to Get Ready, Common Sensory Acting, and Preparation. It’s written in a very user-friendly format with a lot of opportunities to learn what Eric Morris has learned in the time he has been studying and practicing acting.

BEING and not BEING

There is a distinction between BEING and not BEING made in this book. Morris starts his book by saying this, “No matter what the material, the actor’s fundamental question is: ‘What is the reality and how can I make it real to me?’” When an actor is BEING, he’s bringing a real performance to the scene. It’s when they decide to operate on a natural level where all the human emotions, mannerisms, intents and thoughts are as real as you would see if that character were standing before you under those same circumstances of the story. That’s the number one reason you should read this book. It’s one of the best acting books and it gives readers the opportunity to explore this principle more fully. That is what all acting classes, self-help books, and so-called professional ‘experience’ are aimed to do.

What Jack Nicholson Said

To go back quickly to what Jack Nicholson said when he said, “The Method is ‘If it works, use it.’” I have never been in an acting class or on a film set where I didn’t see my performance had so much to do with my preparation before. The most important thing I have seen – and Jack Nicholson can attest to this – is don’t limit yourself, or your acting, to things others have told you or showed you. Throw everything and the kitchen sink at your performance. Know your lines inside and out. Read every book and online articles about acting you can get your hands on. Sign up for film acting workshops. Try to get out to every audition you can. Most importantly, if it works, then use it.

Why I Study

I study acting and make films in Austin, Texas. I’ve taken film acting workshops, film acting classes, and improvisation courses at The University of Texas. I can tell you doing it is important. Study is just as important, but if you aren’t out there working you are limiting yourself as an artist, immensely. If you aren’t working, consider taking a workshop or class in acting.