who we are
The Actor's Establishment (TAE) was developed as a space for actors to harness their work and to freely express their own creative interpretations. TAE's mission is simple, - It's All About Returning To The Work.
TAE creates an environment for actors’ exploration of their individual training needs through sharing knowledge and insight from master teachers in the art of acting. TAE’s focus is on the fundamental core techniques integrated with a deep understanding of script and text analysis, allowing the discovery of circumstances, relationships, and intentions.
Unlike so many other instructional offerings, TAE does not teach one specific method or technique but rather offers a myriad of workshops taught by professional experts trained in a wide range of specific skills. This approach accompanied by qualified instructors allows actors to choose workshops they connect with most while giving them the opportunity to explore new disciplines and vast possibilities. TAE is continually motivated by giving each actor a platform to expand their abilities, discover new avenues of growth, and find or reconnect with the artist within.
TAE is breaking the barriers of arts education and training by helping actors take control of their careers through the return to drama’s classic roots and the calling to dig deeper.
With sessions and workshops ready for your enrollment, come see for yourself why The Actor’s Establishment was created and designed for you. It’s time to get back to the work!
“To become a working actor of great skill, one must establish what it means to work first.”
-Jason James, TAE Artistic Director
As an accomplished Actor, Producer, Director, and Acting Coach, Jason James has garnered himself a voice for the theatrical community. With multiple acting acknowledgements under his belt and a groundbreaking achievement at the Sturges Center for the Fine Arts, Mr. James is a true creative force to be studied. And for very good reason, some of his monumental performances include: Chicago, A Chorus Line, and My Fair Lady, not to mention his directing prominent musicals such as: Jekyll & Hyde: The Thriller Musical, Stephen Sondheim’s Company, and A Man of No Importance.
When it comes to cultivating his passion and love for teaching and creating artistic work, Mr. James is driven by the need for quality education that teaches aspiring artists the fundamental techniques of acting. This in turn, allows each artist and actor to build his or her skills from a solid and trustworthy foundation.
Mr. James highlights this core value when he mentions,
“Acting isn't just about technique or hitting the mark each time. It's about self: the mind, the body, and the soul. Acting is a personal endeavor; background, values, personal identity, and life circumstances all play a part when connecting a role.”
With more than twenty years of experience, Mr. James understands this important value along with integrating the key principle of "why" into the developing repertoire of an actor. Asking “why” to allow the actor to probe a deeper meaning to the text and harness a rooted connection to the material. Mr. Jason James has brought this same mindset and mastery into his current creative endeavor, The Actor’s Establishment, affectionately known as TAE. TAE doesn't just teach actors technique. An open space is created so the actor can establish who he or she is as an artist.
Mr. James’ past teaching and lecturing credits help give him a unique perspective with meeting each artist where they are, while giving them a safe atmosphere to guide and equip them along their acting journey. Mr. James incorporates what he’s taught at Institutions all across the country to harness the overall gifts of those working with him. His mantra “Keep asking, Why?" coupled with his goal of assisting actors through this difficult business, all while remaining true to their authentic selves, make Jason James both L.A.’s best kept secret and a growing force to be reckoned with in teaching actors about their ever growing industry.
“I teach because of the passion I have for instilling quality fundamentals in the technique of acting.”
Mr. James holds a BFA in Musical Theatre from AMDA, College and Conservatory of the Performing Arts and is completing his MFA in Performance Pedagogy from Loyola Marymount University.
“Your job as actors is to understand the size of what you say, to understand what's beneath the word.”
- Stella Adler
Come learn among the best at The Actor's Establishment. No matter which workshop or masterclass you choose, you’re well on your way to exceptional training that will provide you with the tools you need in order to succeed.
“Wisdom...comes not from age, but from education and learning”
- Anton Chekhov
2021 SESSION SCHEDULE
February 9 - April 29
Acting & Scene Study
Script & Text Analysis
Movement for the Actor
Movement & Analysis Intensive
The Business of Acting
July 6 - August 10
Sept. 13 - Dec. 6
Acting & Scene Study
Script & Text Analysis
Movement for the Actor
The Business of Acting
Actors will focus on effective collaboration, efficient rehearsal practices, and bringing truth to each performance through analysis, by pursuing text driven, strong, specific actions and intentions, in an approach suitable for each actor. Workshop will cover multiple scenes and/or monologue.
New Session Begins September 13
SCRIPT & TEXT
Actors will interpret and discuss analytical approaches to a given text to enhance and hone a performance on stage. Actors will identify the elements of analysis, structure and form, historical and societal conflicts, and how these analytical approaches can impact courageous and bold choices. This workshop will culminate in a reading of a full play.
New Session Begins September 13
MOVEMENT FOR THE ACTOR
This four-week course will offer experiential introductions to a selection of popular movement-for-the-actor training methods, including Laban Movement Analysis, The Viewpoints, Grotowski Technique, and Commedia dell'Arte. Through a combination of lecture, discussion, and kinesthetic exploration, learners will come away from the course with an embodied understanding of the history, theory, and potential applications in performance of each method.
Registration Now Open
April 6 - April 27, 2021
Matthew Simpson (Understanding Shakespeare)
Associate Artistic Director, Texas Shakespeare Festival
Matthew is the Associate Artistic Director for the Texas Shakespeare Festival where his directing credits include: As You Like It, Love’s Labour’s Lost, It’s A Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play, A Christmas Carol Radio Play, and assistant director to the late great Stephen Terrell on Rodgers and Hammerstein's Carousel. For the TSF Roadshow he has directed productions of Hamlet, Julius Caesar, Macbeth, A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Romeo & Juliet, The Taming of the Shrew, and three adaptations of Shakespeare’s Greatest Hits. Other directing credits include: The Black Box Theater in Minnesota, Theatre Longview, and numerous productions at Kilgore College where he serves as a member of the Theatre Faculty. As an actor Matthew has performed in over a dozen plays for TSF as well as productions with the Guthrie Theater in Minneapolis, Denver Center Theatre Company, Chamber Theater Productions of Boston, the Richmond Shepard Theater in NYC, and multiple seasons with the Shakespeare Theatre of NJ and the Delaware REP. Matthew serves regularly as a panelist for the Texas Commission on the Arts to evaluate projects that enhance education and economic development through the arts. He holds a M.F.A degree in acting from the University of Delaware and is a graduate of the American Musical and Dramatic Academy in New York City.
All Workshops, MasterClasses, and Coachings will be virtual/online until further notice. Zoom links are sent out the day before your workshop or session via email.
100% Private. No Spam!
Rachel McLaughlan is a triple threat performer who loves to run marathons and bake cookies. Originally from Santa Rosa, California, she has traveled the country and the world as part of two National Tours, Sesame Street Live (Six Seasons) and Nebraska Theatre Caravan’s A Christmas Carol (Two seasons). Some of Rachel’s other credits include: Man of La Mancha (McCoy Rigby Ent, directed by Glenn Casale), Man of La Mancha (Riverside Repertory Theatre), A Little House Christmas (Sierra Madre Playhouse), Oklahoma! (Cabrillo Music Theatre), The Secret Garden (The Chance Theatre), Thoroughly Modern Millie (The Norris Theatre), Curtains (Performance Riverside), Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, Brigadoon, and Damn Yankees (Glendale Centre Theatre), Into The Woods (Broadway at the Gardens), Hello, Dolly! (OBCT Theater), CATS (Candlelight Pavilion Dinner Theatre), and Cinderella (Cape Fear Regional Theatre). Rachels TV/FILM credits include: The Lies We Keep, #Candidly Nicole for VH1, The Absent Mother, and was seen on The Ellen Degeneres Show as a backup singer for Paul Potts. Rachel has done commercials for GlobalVCard and the Real Estate Guys, and was a co-star on the hit web series Co-Workers.
Sarah Ayotte is a born and raised Southern California native who recently made her Off-Broadway Debut at The Player’s Theater (NYC) in Revelation the Musical.Singing in front of live audiences by the age of five, she spent her formative years performing on stage in over 500 shows including venues such as Disneyland and Anaheim Stadium. Sarah has toured with More Than These Productions (Revelation, Noah with Prod. Dustin Ceithamer, 2007-2019) and most recently with Piercing Word (A Time For Christmas, Ruth, The One Story, with Prod. Caleb Hughes, 2019-2020).Favorite past credits include Jesus Christ Superstar (Dir. John Lalonde, Candlelight Pavilion) Ragtime (Dir. Bill Risinger, The Grove) and A Christmas Carol (Dir Jason James, RCP).An award winning vocalist and voice actor, Sarah’s voice is featured on many studio recordings and audio dramas, including the critically acclaimed “Hiding In Plain Sight” and “The Count of Monte Cristo.” When she’s not performing, Sarah offers private vocal coaching and performance consulting. She holds an undying love in her heart for Trader Joe’s, matcha lattes, and unforgettable live performances. SDG
Randy Wade Kelley
Randy Wade Kelley is an actor, singer, writer, and poet (for real) in New York City. Originally from Houston, Randy has been performing his entire life, originating the role of Baby Jesus in the Sagemont Baptist Church production of “The Christmas Play” (to RAVE reviews). Though he was double-cast, splitting performances with his twin sister, everyone knew he was the better Jesus. Other notable theatre credits include The Laramie Project (ATX), Lifelines (ATX), Jekyll & Hyde (LA), Working (LA), LOST: The Musical (LA), and One Night Stands (NYC). He toured with Game of Thrones: The Musical in Los Angeles, San Diego, and then made his Off-Broadway debut in New York City. He’s also been in a few movies (Red, Explode For Me), some TV shows (My Crazy Ex), and a number of goofy internet videos (Fun/Serious, Alley Way, Buzzfeed).
In the Old World, Randy would sometimes do standup, sing lots of karaoke, and was a Renegade Tour Guide at the Metropolitan Museum of Art. In the backwards year that shall not be mentioned, Randy has become a bit of a poet. It’s weird, but it’s true: @randsomnotes. He also sometimes appears on online gameshows, creates puzzles, and is one of those jerks who rides his scooter on the sidewalks of NYC.
"Acting is the ability to live truthfully under the given imaginary circumstances."
“Your main task as an actor is technique…technique…and more technique”
“One cannot demand of art that it pay you in any other way than in the satisfaction of the work itself.”