The best acting schools in the U.S.

acting schools improv lee strasberg Mar 01, 2022
Katherine Beck, The All American Actor’s Podcast

Episode 21: The best acting schools in the U.S.

Did you know that you can learn from some of the best acting schools in the U.S. without leaving your home?

 From Lee Strasberg to improv, I’m breaking down the top places to learn from the pro’s online.

In today’s episode I am sharing with you some of the best place to train online in a variety of different styles.

By the time you finish listening, you’ll know:

  • Why it’s so much easier to access professional training programs 
  • Why you should be training online.
  • The top acting schools in the U.S. with online training

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    You're listening to the All American actors podcast, Episode 21. In today's episode, we're going to talk about the best acting schools in the US and how you can join in on the training without leaving the comfort of your own home. That's coming up next. Ready to go behind the scenes and learn what it really takes to build a sustainable career as a working actor in the US film and TV industry? Join me Katherine Beck. You're all American accent coach, as I give you the insight and inspiration to take action on your career, learn my best tips and tricks to performing with an American accent and hear from working actors and other industry professionals, to give you a comprehensive overview of this biz we call show biz. This is the all American actors Podcast. I am so excited to jump into today's episode. But first I want to give a shout out to Brian who sent me this five star review and says look no further than Kath for her intuited transformational accent coaching, highly recommended. Wow, thank you so much, Brian, that's really great to hear and really makes my day. And if you want to be featured as our star listener of the week, just go ahead and leave us a five star review for this podcast. And I'll give you a special shout out right here on the show. All right, let's jump into today's episode. Now I have been away from the US for about 16 years now. That's a long time when I think about it. And I have to admit, as an actor, I was very spoiled, because I grew up in Chicago, which had some of the most amazing places to take classes. So for example, when I was in high school, the very first place outside of my acting training in high school, which was amazing, by the way, and gave me a great head Start. But I wanted more. So I went to the Piven Theater Workshop and that was very well known in my area growing up and if you're familiar with Jeremy Piven, the actor, well, this was owned by his parents. And this is also the home where other actors like John Key's Zach, and his sister Joan Key's Zach, Lily Taylor, they all train there as well. And Chicago was just such a great environment for learning amazing skills when it came to acting. I had the opportunity to train at second city, which has trained so many comedic actors over the years as well. And then when I moved to LA, the variety of classes over there was just off the charts. It was mind blowing! And I have to say my all time favorite class was an animation voiceover class, I took in LA by the voiceover genius of Bob Burgin, who if you're not familiar with his name, well, you have most definitely, at some point probably heard his voice in an animated TV show, or a movie or commercial. He is the voice of Porky the pig, amongst so many other voices, and so many other characters. And he truly opened my eyes to create characters with my own voice. And I am so forever grateful for the time I spent learning from him, because he truly is a genius. But when I left LA and moved to Sydney, I felt a gazillion miles away. Because the opportunities that I had there, I didn't feel like I still had those same opportunities halfway around the world. And it's not like today, I couldn't just hop on a zoom call and take a class with somebody in the US, in LA in Chicago, in New York, you would have to be local to take these classes. But now these days, well, these days, we are so fortunate because you're able to take classes and learn from experts all over the world. So I would definitely recommend and definitely take advantage of some of the great online training classes happening right now. So in this podcast episode, I wanted to share with you some of the coolest places in the US where you can take an online class, so grab a notebook and something to write with and take some notes. Let's go. Alright, so first up, let's have a look at the Lee Strasberg Institute in New York City. Now they offer a four week introduction to the Lee Strasberg method acting technique. And in each class, they include instruction on Lee Strasburg's relaxation and sense memory exercises. So if it's a method that you're really interested in, have been curious about. This is a really great resource for you to learn a little bit more with teachers at the actual studio, which is really cool. Next up is the American Academy of Dramatic Arts. And this was a school that I was actually considering auditioning for after high school. It wasn't on my shortlist of schools that I was looking at, but It's a fantastic school and the fact that they've got some really cool online classes, I would definitely check it out there, you can select a combination of programs that really suit and tailor what you're looking for. They've got a two week program and a five week program. And you can do intensive classes on camera acting for film and TV. You can do musical theater, you can do audition technique. You can do scene study, you can do voice for the actor, you can do Alexander Technique. They've got so many classes there and you can kind of create your own program too, which is really cool. Then there is the Stella Adler school. And gosh, this is you know, you never have regrets in life. But this is one place that I definitely wish I had studied. And I think I've told this story on the podcast if I haven't, I actually was accepted into NYU. And when you get accepted into Tisch, their acting conservatory program over there, they put you in a specific program. And you're going to learn that technique when you first start at Tisch and I was selected to be in the Stella Adler program. Now, looking back at it, I think, gosh, was I crazy? Gosh, I should have gone to that school. But I believe everything happens for a reason. And there was a reason a specific reason why I didn't end up going to Tisch, but I've always been curious to study at Stella Adler, and they have got online classes, which is really cool. Maybe I need to go over there online and take one of their classes. So they've got actors workshops that are for, you know, 18 Plus, where you can learn anything from the foundations to advanced master classes. They also have teen classes, and even young artists classes. So you can start training there as young as eight years old, which is really incredible. And something else that's really cool and I would definitely look into is their online summer Conservatory. It's a 10 week program, 22 hours of class per week. So it's very intensive, and it's really their foundation building course. So you're learning the program, and you're exploring all the core elements of the conservatory program training, so you can really get a good taste of what it's like to work at a conservatory. So I would highly recommend that if you can do it. Next up, you definitely need to learn You're funny. So if you've never taken an improv class, there's two places I highly recommend I have trained at both of them. The first is the Groundlings, which is located in Los Angeles. Online they've got beginner, intermediate and advanced improv classes as well as sketch writing classes. So I would definitely look into that even if you don't want to be an improv actor, I do highly recommend every actor taking at least one improv class, you will notice it is so helpful, especially in auditioning. And then my other favorite place to learn and train in improv is Second City, which is based in Chicago, that's the main home the main hub of Second City and their online classesare sort of similar. They've got improv classes, both beginner and advanced improv, they also have a stand up drop in class online, which I think is pretty cool. And they also have comedy writing classes as well. And then finally, my last recommendation is the Scott Sadita acting school. And this is a school that I've noticed a lot of Australians have mentioned to me that they're studying and taking online classes there. And I have to say, even though I have never taken a class over there, it seems like a really great place to get some fantastic training. Not only do they do dramatic classes, but they do online sitcom technique classes, where they break down the script, identify the comedic beats, and really teach you a formula of sitcom acting, which I think is unbelievable and really cool. So there you have it, there are some truly incredible training facilities in the US. And it doesn't mean you have to hop on a plane to learn from them, you can learn from the comfort of your own home, and that is truly amazing. So make sure to check out these places online. Keep learning, keep building your skill set so you're ready for that next audition that comes your way. And if you're feeling like you need to keep practicing your self taping skills and keep working on your American Accent skills at the same time, you can join me for a free workshop I'm running on Monday 29th of March at 9:30am and 7pm Sydney time, all you need to do to sign up for this free training is head over to to save your spot. And if you ever have a question you'd like to ask me, join me on Instagram @katherine_beck_ . You can find me there, send me a DM and let's chat. I would love to hear from you. Or if you ever have any questions or topics you want to hear me talk about on the podcast, go ahead, send me a DM and let me know. And coming up next week on the show, I'm going to be talking with Mike Nelson. He's an actor based in LA who has booked more commercials than you can count. He's going to be sharing his experience and insight into the commercial world of acting. Now make sure to share the show with all your actor friends, let them know what's coming up next week, and invite them to tune in with you to learn how to become the all American Actor so you can be the working actor you dream to be. Until then go practice your American Accent and I'll see you back here next time.