NEW YORK — The first question students ask at the beginning of every school year is whether they want to be an actor.
It’s not just for their acting careers, says Kaitlyn Prewitt, director of the New York City-based Theatre Arts Initiative, or TAI.
“I think it’s very important to think about why you’re acting,” Prewett said.
“Do you want to become a musician?
Do you want a painter?
TASING OUT NEW YORK CITY’S NEW ENTERTAINMENT TEACHER: The New York Times reports that there are now more than a dozen theater teachers in the city, but most work in private schools, and many of them are in the schools of theater arts. “
These are the kinds of questions that teachers ask and they’re a lot more common than you might think.
TASING OUT NEW YORK CITY’S NEW ENTERTAINMENT TEACHER: The New York Times reports that there are now more than a dozen theater teachers in the city, but most work in private schools, and many of them are in the schools of theater arts.
For example, the New School in Manhattan has a full-time full-year theater teacher, which is a new development.
The New School’s director, Marisa Kavanagh, said she wanted to create a teacher who would be the most inclusive of all the New Yorkers who are theater teachers.
But she was worried that the school might not have enough teachers for students in need.
So, Kavanach set out to find teachers who could teach more than just acting.
She hired a New York University professor, a New Jersey-based teacher who was part of the teacher-student partnership with NYU and an NYU teacher.
And Kavanah also hired a filmmaker, who helped teach an improv class for the students.”
I knew I had to be really thoughtful about the teachers we brought in,” Kavanaugh said.
With her students in tow, Kavanagh began to create the new teachers.
She hired a group of actors who all had backgrounds in theater and film and were all women.”
It was really challenging to get these diverse groups together,” she said.
But Kavanughs teachers were also looking for actors that would embody their characters.”
There were some things that I was concerned with, like if they had a voice that was unique,” Kavannagh said.
In addition to acting, KAVANAGH wanted the teachers to understand the value of the art form.
In addition, Kavinagh also looked for teachers who were also writers.”
So they’d be like, ‘Hey, if we were in your story, would you write this character?’
” she said, adding that the students are drawn to teachers who can write about subjects they care about, such as politics, education, economics and even religion.
I think that’s a very powerful skill that we need to cultivate in our schools,” KAVINAGH said.