About the Instructor

Photo of Founder/Instructor Harry Barandes
Harry Barandes (Founder/Instructor) is a native New Yorker and began his professional acting career as a child. He has appeared at MTC, The Public, and with the Steppenwolf Theatre Company on Broadway. He has a BA in Theatre Arts from Brown University and an MFA in Acting from the Graduate Acting Program at NYU's Tisch School of the Arts, where he studied Chekhov with Joanna Merlin, Ron Van Lieu, and Zelda Fichandler. He is currently a Guest Director at the American Academy of Dramatic Arts and has been an Adjunct Teacher at NYU. Most recently, he directed a production of August Strindberg's Creditors  for Studio Tisch, an Alumni Summer Play Festival sponsored by the Grad Acting Alumni Association.

For more on Harry and his past projects,
visit his LinkedIn page.

Teaching Philosophy

"My approach to theatre and to actor training is holistic and deeply rooted in the belief that what connects us all as humans is our capacity for empathy and our fascination with stories. I draw inspiration from the work of many theatre practitioners, from Stanislavsky and Stella Adler to Michael Chekhov ('Psychological Gesture') and David Mamet; Edith Skinner and Kristen Linklater; the Alexander Technique; Carl Stough’s Breathing Coordination; and recent trends in Structuralist and New Historicist criticism. Like the parable of the blind men and the elephant, in which each man feels a different part and thus has a different conception of the very same animal, I see each school of thought as simply a different aspect of the same elephant, a different means of investigating the same fundamental question: What, specifically, is my character's story and how can I have an experience of it that is human, personal, fully embodied, released, spontaneous, alive?  By introducing various ideas and images that encourage the intellect, imagination and body to work in concert, my aim is to empower students and actors with the analytic, empathetic and psycho-physical skills necessary to guide themselves through the process of bringing a character, a scene and a play fully to life."

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