aspects of pursuing a career in the arts are discussed both in and out of
class, and our senior Career Preparation seminar course help students
prepare for their initial career move after graduation. We discuss
important topics such as resumes, headshots, websites, demos, finding an
agent, joining the unions, etc.
While the UM
faculty encourages your artistic development, we also help define your
post-college career goals and plan the start of your career. Our
Full-Time Theatre Faculty members
have worked around the country, and often provide career advice to theatre
alums long after graduation.
leave UM with a plan and have the necessary training and skills needed to
pursue their dreams.
We also bring
in several Guest Artists from New York, Los Angeles and regional
theatres each year to teach workshops with UM theatre students, and also
discuss various aspects of pursuing a professional career in theatre, film
workshops have included the following artists and wide variety of topics;
our guests at UM Theatre are highly experienced professionals with
impressive credits in their respective areas.
In Spring 2012, UM
students once again participated in a wide variety of Guest Artist
Workshops as follows:
•January 2012 NYC Musical
Theatre Intensive, Amy Murphy Studio. For the 3rd year, UM musical
theatre majors participated in this invited 3-day workshop in NYC.
Workshops and audition panels included guest artists such as Dave
Clemmons, Parker Esse, Craig d’Amico, Rob Evan, Jenn Collela and various
agents and representatives from casting offices, including UM alumni
Jason Styres from the staff of Jay Binder Casting. UM alumni Rebecca
Luker was also a participant on one audition panel, and UM alum Brad
Holland, a long term cast member of STOMP, conducted a performance
Click here for more details
•March, 2012. Dance
workshop with with NYC based Choreographer Parker Esse.
Esse has been an Associate Choreographer on Broadway and FOLLIES at the
Kennedy Center in DC; with numerous NYC and regional choreography
credits including the recent acclaimed productions of OKLAHOMA! And THE
MUSIC MAN at Arena Stage in Washington, DC, as well as CAROUSEL at the
Goodspeed Opera House in CT.
•March, 2012. Acting for
the Camera workshop with noted Los Angeles based actor Robert “Bob”
Clendenin. Clendenin is a recurring character as "Tom the neighbor" on "Cougartown"
starring Courtney Cox, and was a series regular on "Six Items or Less."
He has also starred in numerous national commercials and guest starred
on many TV shows including "Scrubs" and "My Friend Named Earl," as well
as acted in films such as LA CONFIDENTIAL. Bob is also a co-founder of
the Circle X Theatre Company in LA.
While at UM, Bob conducted a
seminar on "pursuing a career in TV/Film" with a focus on LA, as well as
one with our student playwriting group, the WCC, based on his
experiences with play development at Circle X theatre. Bob also
conducted two acting on camera workshops for upper class BFA majors in
Audition Techniques for episodic television and commercials.
Click here for Bob Clendenin’s IMDB page
~ Click here for photos of his UM
•April, 2012. NYC based
actor Hunter Ryan Herdlicka, who recently performed the role of
Frederick in A LITTLE NIGHT MUSIC on Broadway, conducted a musical
theatre audition/song interpretation workshop for BFA majors in Musical
here for full Bio
•April, 2012. Designer
and Owner Natalie Chanin of Alabama Chanin (Florence, Alabama) visited
UM as a joint guest of Theatre Costume Design and Fashion Merchandising
to lead a workshop in recycled fashion using her trademark hand sewing
techniques. Theatre design students were invited to participate in the 6
hour workshop, followed by a lecture on business models and ecologically
responsible production sponsored by the UM Sustainability Committee
through a Green Fund Grant.
•Also in April 2012,
Students from our Costume Design II class were allowed to access the
library of rare materials and a private tour of the facilities at the
Center for Puppetry Arts in Atlanta, GA. This trip was funded by an
ILlUMinate Grant awarded by the campus QEP intiative. While onsite, the
students conducted research to support a group design project to design
character puppets in several different genres for William S.
Yellowrobe’s play for children, The Council.
•Musical theatre Audition Techniques with Amy Murphy;
vocal consultant with Disney Theatricals, NYC and Birmingham/NYC
based voice teacher
•Musical Theatre Audition Techniques with Tina Libby;
NYC based Casting Director with Networks Tours
(casting non-union national musical tours)
Shakespeare Performance with professional actor Paul
Hebron; guest artist in DRACULA at AL Shakespeare Festival with
acting credits in NYC and all major regional theatres around the US.
•Dance and audition techniques with NYC based
Choreographer Parker Esse. Esse has been an Associate Choreographer
on Broadway; FOLLIES at the Kennedy Center in DC; and numerous
productions inlcuding the recent nationally acclaimed OHLAHOMA! at
Arena Stage in Washinton, DC. Esse, a former Broadway performer in
FOSSE and A CHORUS LINE, spent a weekend with UM musical
theatre students teaching a dance workshop including a number from
FOSSE. He then conducted a mock audition for the musical A CHORUS
LINE including a dance call, vocals and a reading from the script,
giving feedback to each student. The session concluded with a
"question and answer" session about the industry in NYC and musical
•A dance workshop with Birmingham based
director/choreographer Abe Reybold, who has taught as an adjunct at
UM and holds extensive national tour and B'way credits, especially
with legendary performer/choreographer Tommy Tune. As part of his
workshop, Reybold taught the students two routines from Tune's
musical GRAND HOTEL, which he performed in on B'way and on tour.
Fall 2010: Amy Murphy,
NYC/Birmingham based Voice Teacher and Consultant/Disney Theatricals, NYC:
Musical Theatre Auditioning Master Class and individual musical theatre
Dean, Professional Director/Choreographer and Artistic Director of Magic
City Actors Theatre, Birmingham. Guest choreographer, BABY, UM theatre fall
Dave Clemmons, NYC based
Casting Director/Dave Clemmons Casting: Musical Theatre Auditioning; Master
Class at the Virginia Samford Theatre, Birmingham (sponsored by the Amy
Spring 2011: NYC, January
2011; Various guest artist workshops and audition panels through the Amy
Murphy Studio 3-Day Musical Theatre Intensive. Guests included
Choreographers Parker Esse, Jacob Toth and Carlos Encinias; Performer/Acting
Coach Craig D'Amico and Jenn Collela; Performers Ryan Hunter Herdicka and
Christopher Jackson; Casting Director Dave Clemmons; Tina Libby, Associate
Casting director Networks Tours and Chan Harris, Director (click
here for details)
Abe Reybold, Professional
Director/Choreographer, AEA/SDC: Dance Styles workshop
Murphy, NYC/Birmingham based Voice Teacher and Consultant/Disney
Theatricals, NYC: Pop/Rock vocal stylings Master Class and individual
musical theatre repertory coaching.
McCool, MFA Dance, NYU: Jazz Dance Workshop
D' Amico, NYC based performer and acting coach: Acting/Scene Study Workshop
Arnold Mungioli, NYC based
Casting Director: Audition Techniques workshop (monologues and songs)
Murphy, NYC and Birmingham based voice teacher/consultant Disney
Theatricals. Musical Theatre Auditioning Workshop (Fall 2009) and Individual
Musical Theatre Audition and Repertory Coaching (Fall 2009 and Spring 2010)
Dean, Guest Choreographer and Michael King, Guest Musical Director. Co-production
between UM Theatre and Magic City Actors Theatre of Birmingham of Jason
Robert Brown's musical PARADE at the Virginia Samford Theatre, November
2009 (click here for more details). Guest lead performers: Chris Sams, Los Angeles (BFA Acting/Directing
UM, 2005) and Kristin Bowden Sharp, Birmingham ("Mary Phagan" in the NYC
National Tour Production of PARADE, 1999).
Click here to read Alec
Harvey's review in THE BIRMINGHAM NEWS
(4 out of 5 Stars)
Zacapa (SAG), Los Angeles based TV and Film actor and Chris Sams, LA based
UM alumni: "Pursuing a Career in LA and Film/TV" seminars.
artists for 3 day Musical Theatre Invited Intensive workshop in Manhattan,
NYC, including B.A. Huffman, Musical Director for Disney Theatricals; Sean
McKnight, Dance Captain on various Broadway musicals; Chan Harris, Director;
and Tina Libby, Associate Casting Director for Networks Tours. January 2010
in conjunction with the Amy Murphy Studio, NYC/Birmingham
(click link for more details).
Lambert, Company Member and Director of Outreach, Alabama Shakespeare
Festival. Acting workshop on Shakespearean text, April 2010.
Dance Company, NYC, Workshop in modern dance techniques influenced by Asian
theatre and Martial Arts forms (www.chendancecenter.org),
Gilman, nationally recognized playwright of BOY GETS GIRLS and SPINNING INTO
BUTTER, Playwriting, Spring 2009
Dean, Professional Director/Choreographer and Artistic Director of Magic
City Actors Theatre, Birmingham, Dance Master Class: Jazz, Hip-Hop and Tap,
Katona Bennett, NYC based performer, Musical Theatre Performance (see
www.raissa.info; For the most up to date information,
www.raissakatonabennett.blogspot.com), Fall 2009
Murphy, NYC and Birmingham based voice teacher/consultant, Musical Theatre
Auditioning Workshop (Fall 2009) and Individual Musical Theatre Audition
Repertory Coaching (Fall 2008 and Spring 2009)
Wood, Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey: Scenic Painting and all-Majors
session on pursuing career in regional theatres
playwright and Co-Founder of 13P Theatre, NYC. Rob was a guest teacher in
several theatre classes and conducted a playwriting workshop; theatre majors
also participated in a reading of his “work in progress” play BEESON EARWIG.
NYC based actor and Playwright. Steve conducted a playwriting workshop with
our students and theatre majors participated in a reading of his new play
URBAN RABBIT CHRONICLES.
Artistic Director of Magic City Actors Theatre, Birmingham (UM
Alumnus1996): Choreographed UM’s spring 2008 musical, COMPANY.
Watson, Los Angeles based film, theatre and TV director/actor; production
company GADA films (UM alumnus 1982): Cameron taught workshops in acting
on-camera using sides from his various projects in LA and conducted an
all-majors session on pursuing careers in NYC and LA. Cameron also screened
his award winning film OUR VERY OWN starring Emmy winning actress Allison
Mungioli, NYC based casting director (credits include RAGTIME. TITANIC and
numerous Off-Broadway and regional theatres): Arnold taught 2 days of
monologue and musical theatre auditioning workshops and conducted an
all-majors session on working in NYC as an actor or casting director.
• John O’
Keefe, NYC based Performance Artist and Playwright: John conducted an
all-day workshop on creating solo performance pieces.
Bradley, screenwriter and former NYC based film producer; currently Artistic
Director of Muse of Fire Theatre Company at Sloss Furnaces,
Birmingham: Elizabeth taught a screenwriting workshop and conducted an
all-majors session on producing independent projects for film and theatre
(she also taught a semester long playwriting course at UM).
• Linn Hixson,
actor/writer, Goat Island Theatre Company, Chicago: acting, writing and
improvisation workshops in creating ensemble theatre and original material.
Luker, Tony award winning, NYC based actress (MARY POPPINS, THE MUSIC MAN,
THE SECRET GARDEN, etc) and an alumni of UM’s Vocal Performance program: and
Danny Burstein, Tony award nominated, NYC based actor (SOUTH PACIFIC, THE
DROWSY CHAPERONE, A CLASS ACT). Rebecca and Danny taught a monologue and
musical theatre auditions workshop for voice and theatre majors.
• Mark Amitin,
NYC based actor, director, personal manager and teacher (extensive
international work in Israel, USSR and China and association with legendary
experimental theatres artists such as Joseph Chaikin, Jean Claude Van-Itallie,
Judith Malina, Julian Beck and The Open Theatre): Mark conducted acting
workshops in ensemble and avant-garde performance and discussed the past and
future of avant-garde and international theatre at an all-majors session.
Clendenin, Los Angeles based TV and film actor with numerous commercial and
guest star credits; currently a series regular on 10 Items or Less:
Bob taught 2 days of on-camera auditioning workshops and conducted on
all-majors session on pursuing a career in LA.
actor and mask builder: Doug taught UM acting and technical majors how to
make masks for performance and taught movement/acting workshops utilizing a
variety of masks.