“The institute changed my approach to singing, acting, and teaching; in short, it truly changed my entire way of thinking.” • Recent Participant
Performance classes are led by Institute staff exploring an integrative approach to singing-acting inspired by the teachings and writings of Wesley Balk, author of THE COMPLETE SINGER-ACTOR, PERFORMING POWER, and THE RADIANT PERFORMER.
Daily movement sessions are integrated into Performance classes to help participants develop an awareness and appreciation of their total performing instrument’s design, use, and function.
Each performer is assigned two scenes which are informally performed for the full group on two scene presentation days. Daily rehearsals are used to integrate classroom techniques with scenes drawn from the opera, musical theater, and new music-theater repertoire, directed by both staff and participant music and stage directors.
Staff directors lead small group classes exploring such areas as musical style, playful improvisation, collaboration, and rehearsal techniques. These excursions are designed to contribute to the participant’s ongoing work and lifelong learning.
Directors and coaches participate in all the activities offered to the performers, plus regular group meetings and private coachings with Institute staff to discuss scene work, explore rehearsal techniques, and develop collaborative skills.
In addition, all Institute participants receive a workbook with scene assignments and training materials, including a complete set of Wesley’s exercise cards.
Comments from past participants:
"The Institute gave me an abundance of tools and information that I’m sure I’ll be exploring and digesting for years to come!"
"The Institute brought out all of the best aspects of myself and gave me the tools I need to develop and trust my instincts."
"I’ve been stretched body, mind, and soul. I’m ready to embrace new challenges and situations full of imagination, creativity, sensitivity and an acceptance of myself I’ve never had before."
"The staff encouraged all of us, in the most delicate of ways, to accept the truth that there are 500 ways to view each experience and 500 ways to express that single experience and that none of those ways are without value."
"As an experienced performer, I was able to examine and explore my habits and to distinguish them from my instincts, both good and bad. They created a very safe environment for this process."
"Musical rehearsals were super. The music directors were great; they were clear and unique in their approaches and were entirely supportive."
"Movement sessions helped me discover muscle, bone and joints that I was totally unaware of, and just this awareness alone has increased my performing power a thousand percent!"
"Wonderful atmosphere for growth as a singer-actor and as a person. The staff is very supportive, well-qualified, and generous with time and talent. The whole program is well-integrated and a great value!"
"An incredible journey right to the soul."