About Classes

AWE

CB Production’s Teaching Method

“I have had the honor and privilege of working in theater as a professional artist/actor/teacher/director for over 40 years now, so believe me when I say acting classes are for everyone – not just those who want have a passion to perform. Enrolling in an acting class is a surefire way to get more in touch and familiar with yourself allowing you to become more self-aware. Through guided scene study classes, no matter what level you are at, you are able to gain a better understanding of motivations and desires.  If you want to work on your interpersonal skills, you would benefit from both acting and improv classes. Thinking on your feet, responding to physical and verbal cues from others in conversation, and being able to have a better understanding of where others are coming from will make you a more empathetic person. Theater is a window to the wide world around us allowing us to step into different situations that are outside of our personal zone.

Educationally I have found that theater aligns perfectly with the Multiple Intelligence’s Theory, developed by Harvard professor Howard Gardner and everyone who teaches here at CB strives to apply them across all our programs. According to Gardner’s widely-accepted research, humans have not one but 8 (and possibly 9) different intelligences, all of which can be developed over the course of a lifetime. Ironically actors need to tap into the full range of Multiple Intelligences, depending on story line and stage requirements, but at their very core Acting Classes develop the students’ “self-smart” (intrapersonal), “people-smart” (interpersonal), and “word-smart” (linguistic) abilities:

“Self-smart”: when we nourish students’ self-smart intelligence, through role playing and character study, they discover what feelings are, and how to identify feelings within themselves. As students become more aware of their own feelings, they also develop the ability to empathize with others.
“People-smart”: Our Acting Classes build social skills and break down social inhibitions, as they encourage students to create face to face interactions with each other though role play. Focusing on development of the students’ people-smart intelligence, our Acting program also teaches students the importance of working as a team. Acting students naturally acquire collaboration skills as well as the ability to obey rules and follow direction.
“Word-smart”: Acting is about communication. Students in the program develop the art and all-important life skill of expressing themselves and sharing their thoughts and feelings with others. As part of the learning experience, students explore forms of verbal and non-verbal communication (body language). Well developed communication skills not only inspire intellectual curiosity but also provide the tools for non-violent conflict resolution.

A CB Productions Acting Class is all about us learning and discovering together, set in an extremely supportive environment and taught by professional artists who really care and believe in YOU!”   Carla Barwineck, Artistic Director

Teaching with “AWE”

CB Productions is a unique theater company and school working to provide teen artists (13-18) with the necessary skills to be successful on the stage and to carry these character-building traits throughout life. Artistic Director, Carla Barwineck, has developed a distinct teaching and directing method called “AWE” (an acronym for “Acting with E’s”) which is taught throughout every aspect of CB’s theater-education programs. The goals for this technique were developed from action verbs (all beginning with the Letter “E”, of course) which are so important to theater. This carefully designed method is meant to:

  • Enrich the natural abilities of the young artist by creating experiences, which focus on using the “whole body” as an effective communication tool (body, mind and voice).
  • Equip teens with skills of observation, non-verbal and verbal communication and self-evaluation.
  • Elicit a safe environment allowing for Exploration of self and the world around us.
  • Encourage curiosity, discovery and life-long learning.
  • Enliven a sense of passion for the arts by Engaging teens in the creative process, while housed in a fun and supportive, nurturing and safe environment
  • Empower teens to take responsibility for the outcome of what is created by recognizing and improving on personal strengths and weaknesses while respecting differences.
  • EXCEL! in all tasks and projects that we undertake

FAQ’s

Who should take these classes? “My child has no experience.” “My child has vast experience.”

The greatest strength of the AWE Series of classes (and any classes we present) is that they are designed to challenge and engage each student at ANY level (whether it is their desire to pursue acting in college and beyond OR to stay involved just because they love it) there is everything to gain to include theatre in your child’s education:

“Theatre is a disciplined approach to critical thinking, intellectual insight, and problem solving. Theater fosters self-expression, emphasizing individuality, humanity, imagination and talents. It uses an individual’s strengths to the benefit of society and teaches the whole person, not just the intellectual person. Theatre builds self-confidence and self-esteem. It emphasizes concentration and fosters listening skills. It teaches students to live fully and builds a strong sense of community trust and strong interpersonal relationships. It requires students to learn perseverance, develop a work ethic, and always strive toward excellence. It teaches students to delay instant gratification and learn patience towards greater rewards. Theatre teaches the individual to be real, natural and comfortable in & out of the public’s eye. It teaches students to imagine & create and helps students identify and utilize hopes, dreams, fears and values.  Most importantly theatre is applicable to life beyond high school, regardless of whether a career in the arts is chosen.” The New York Theatre Alliance

How old do I need to be to take a class?

While our primary focus for our classes are teens, ages 13-18, we are offering a new Creative Dramatics Pilot Program in association with YEAH Academy Junior for students 11-0-12

What is the class size?

The average class will be 12-20 students. In our Summer Intensives we can work with up to 25 students.

What does a class cost?

All class costs are unique to the size, length and specifics of the class/workshop. Information about pricing can be found on the School Day Class and Evening Class pages.

What class should I take?

Because our classes are more than just gaining experience in the theatre arts we recommend that everyone start with a Level I or Fast Track class.

What do we wear or bring to class?

All classes are extremely active so wear comfortable pants and shoes, keep your hair out of your face, no GUM chewing and NO cellphone use during class…just use your common sense. It is a good idea to bring a light snack and plenty of water to drink.

Can parents watch class?

Parents are always welcome to stay and observe ANY class their child is involved, as long as their presence doesn’t disrupt the class. Siblings and friends are allowed to watch with instructor permission and must be accompanied by an adult (unless approved).