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Teachers & Faculty – NYC Campus

NEW YORK FACULTY

  • Claire Alexander

    Courses: Institute: Method Acting (Young Actors: Method Acting, Audition, Monologue, & Performance)

    Claire is an actor, teacher, and formerly trained classical musician in the realms of operatic voice, cello and piano. She has played and sung under the renowned conductors at the Kennedy Center, Notre Dame, Viterbo Italia Mainstage, Hawaii Mainstage Opera, Carnegie Hall and St. John the Divine. She received her certification in longform improv at the Magnet School of Improv under Rick Andrews, and was a longtime pupil of Seth Barrish at the Barrow Group, with emphasis on analysis of text and playing Shakespeare. Work in Shakespeare also extends into numerous roles with numerous Shakespearean companies; including Hamlet Isn’t Dead, Barefoot Shakespeare Company, Hudson Shakespeare, Bergen Shakespeare of NJ and Genesius Theatre Company. In 2018, Claire was a selected artist for Commonwealth Shakespeare Company’s CSC2 actor residency, performing a tour of Macbeth and in Boston Common’s summer arena seating of Richard III. Claire is also a proud collaborator with the Pride Center of Brooklyn, helping to marry the concept of the art of Method acting with healing trauma as a means of coping. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Vocal Performance from Manhattan School of Music, as well as a two-year certificate from LSTFI. A proud member of the faculty, Claire has taught Method and audition with YAS since 2017, and is overjoyed to continue to teach a fully immersive character class with the LSTFI institute, weekly. 


  • Bill Balzac

    Courses: Institute: Method Acting, Character Work, Improvisation (Young Actors: Method Acting)

    Bill Balzac has been an actor, director, producer, and teacher for more than 25 years. He teaches at The Lee Strasberg Theatre & Film Institute and NYU Tisch Program at the Strasberg Institute. After being inspired by the teachings of Lee Strasberg, Bill co-founded the Hyperion Theatre Group, Soul Productions, and the Hyperion Children’s Theatre. He then formed and directed the Mixed Nuts Improv Company, which performed throughout NYC. Bill has been a member of the Brooklyn Shakespeare Company under the artistic direction of Geoffrey Owens and appeared as Gately in the New York debut of the two-act version of James McLure’s Pvt. Wars, Directed by Gene Frankel. His directing credits include Israel Horovitz’s The Indian Wants the Bronx in Scotland at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, the New York premiere of Israel Horovitz’s Sins of the Mother, SubUrbia by Eric Bogosian, and LaRonde, The Laramie Project, Dancing at Lughnasa, Rumors, The Norman Conquests and Into the Woods all for NYU/Strasberg. He also recently co-directed Crimes of the Heart and Sunday on the Rocks with Geoffrey Horne. Bill graduated from NYU Tisch School of the Arts with honors and is a member of SAG/AFTRA and Actors’ Equity Association.


  • Bruce Baumer

    Courses: Institute: Singing, Vocal Production (Young Actors: Musical Theatre)

    Bruce Baumer is a professional opera singer who has sung as a principal artist with more than 20 American opera companies, including the New York City Opera, the San Francisco Opera, the Washington Opera at The Kennedy Center, Santa Fe Opera, among many others. He has performed over 40 roles. He began his musical studies as a student of piano at the College Conservatory of Music Preparatory Department in Cincinnati, Ohio at the age of 10. He received his undergraduate degree in German Studies as well as a Master’s Degree in Finance. Upon completion of his business degree, Mr. Baumer decided to pursue a career in Opera. He is a graduate of Yale University with an Artist’s Diploma in Opera Performance. Bruce has also accompanied numerous singers and instrumentalists in recital. He has taught extensively privately, as well as on the faculty of The Lee Strasberg Theatre & Film Institute and The New School in New York City and has directed nine productions. Bruce has taught numerous master classes at various universities throughout the United States. He has music directed and accompanied benefits at 54 Below in NYC as well as music directing and accompanying various theatrical and musical performances in NYC. Most recently, Bruce served as musical director for Multistages Temple of the Souls for the prestigious NYMF festival in New York City and has also been the musical director for many professional projects throughout the New York City area, including New York Fringe Festival’s By Hands Unknown. Mr. Baumer has served as musical director for many productions at the Strasberg Institute, including Kiss Me Kate and Into the Woods. He is on the Board of MultiStages Theatre Company as well as the Applied Theatre Collective, both in New York City.


  • Teva Bjerken

    Courses: Movement

    Teva Bjerken (Movement) teaches the Alexander Technique to performers, bringing her career in dance to the art of performance. She trained and was certified by the American Center of Alexander Technique in 1995 before teaching at The Actor’s Studio MFA Program for ten years. She has been faculty at the New School for Drama MFA program since 2005. Recently Teva joined the Lee Strasberg Theatre & Film Institute teaching Movement for Actors informed by principles of the Alexander Technique. As a performer Teva worked with dance-theater artists from Spain, Israel, Germany and the US collaborating in the development of pieces premiered at Jacob’s Pillow, American Dance Festival, Los Angeles Opera, La Mama, The Kitchen, PS122, and DTW- Live Arts. She co-developed two “Freedom to Act: Acting and the Alexander Technique” conferences which took place in NYC in January of 2012 and 2013. The conference is designed for actors, theater and film professionals, as well as teachers. Teva has regularly presented workshops at the annual conference. Currently, she is working towards earning a Laban Movement Analyst certification here in NYC. Over the years she has received nominations for Distinguished University Teaching Award at The New School.

    Over the past five years, Teva has served as the Movement Coach on many original full-length productions in the MFA program at The School for Drama, as well as worked privately with individuals performing in Broadway and Off-Broadway productions.  She is currently developing a Cultural Exchange project through Fundacion Amistad.

    The design of the NYU Tisch Drama at Strasberg program affords co-teaching with Voice Faculty which brings integration of movement to the art of singing and enhances the students learning immensely!


  • Ignacio Borderes

    Courses: Acting for Film & TV and Business of Acting

    Ignacio Borderes (aka Nacho) is a Psychologist / Actor / Director, originally from Buenos Aires, Argentina, where he studied at the Fundación Julio Bocca and with director Luis Romero. He began his acting career in the “Buenos Aires Players” theatre group and made his TV debut on the hit teen TV show, Rebelde Way.  He directed several musicals in Argentina, as well as teaching acting in Bilingual Schools. His TV work in the United States includes roles in CBS’s Instinct, My Sordid Affair, I Love You… But I Lied, and Scorned. Nacho had a significant role as the main character in Metallica’s music video “Am I Savage?”, working closely with directors Herring & Herring. He had a lead role in the 2017 short film The Trial of Everett Mann (accepted at Cannes Short Film Corner as well as winning several Best Short and Best Actor awards in festivals worldwide) and he made his American feature film debut in the lead role of the 2018 release of “Into the Valli”. Off Broadway he performed in the psychological thriller “The Black Book”.  He recently wrote and directed his first movie “Christmas Summer” in Argentina. Nacho was a cast member of the Strasberg Institute 2015 production of Red Light Winter and traveled to Warsaw, Poland for the performance in the International Theatre Schools Festival (ITSelF.) Nacho has acted in more than 65 commercials in the past 3 years and done voice-over work in English and Spanish. Other professional background includes being an entrepreneur who started 2 companies in Argentina. 


  • Mauricio Bustamante

    Courses: Method Acting, Building a Character

    Mauricio Bustamante has acted professionally in the United States since 1967 and has toured nationally in a variety of starring roles that have given him coast to coast critical acclaim. He recently appeared in Ira Sach’s film Little Men, which obtained international critical acclaim and 98% on Rotten Tomatoes. Other films in which Mr. Bustamante plays a variety of principal roles are currently successfully making the rounds in international film festivals, including Cannes. He also directed and appeared at the Edinburg Theater Festival as Madame in Jean Genet’s The Maids as well as the cabaret circuit in NYC under the artistic direction of cabaret luminary, KT Sullivan. He began his acting career in his native Mexico City at the age of twelve, working on live television with the greats of the Spanish speaking world. His studies began with Lee Strasberg in 1975, and has been a part of the acting faculty since 1994, which has included teaching children since 2005. He has also studied with Shelley Winters, Kim Stanley, John Stiks, Geoffrey Horne and Irma Sandrey, under whose artistic guidance he has worked since 1978.With Irma Sandrey, he created IS/MB Productions, which has produced several theatrical productions and short films in NYC.  In NYC, he has appeared in the New York Shakespeare Festival, Brooklyn Academy of Music, Puerto Rican Traveling Theater, Repertorio Espanol, Teatro Latea, and Multi Stages. Regionally, he has starred in productions at the Houston Grand Opera, The Allyance Theater in Atlanta, Casa Manana Musicals in Ft. Worth, Texas and National Tours. Mauricio is a ten year member of MENSA International, an international high IQ Society.


  • Maria C Byers

    Courses: Young Actors: Dance for the Actor

    Maria C Byers is elated to return home to LSTFI! She graduated with a BFA in drama from NYU Tisch School of the Arts, where she studied at LSTFI and the Experimental Theater Wing. She recently choreographed “State Fair,” “Hello,Dolly!” “Bye Bye Birdie,” and “Curtains”! Some other past favorites include: “Hairspray,” “The Producers”, “Anything Goes”, and “Oklahoma!” 

    Onstage, She recently played Lorraine Flemming in a regional production of her favorite show, “42nd Street.” When she is not choreographing and performing, Maria is extremely passionate about theater education and also teaches at Stage Left Children’s Theater (Tappan, NY) and Young Peoples Theater Workshop (Swarthmore, Pa)


  • Nick Cianfrogna

    Courses: Speech, Vocal Production

    Nick Cianfrogna is a New York-based actor and teaching artist in speech and voice. He is graduate of NYU/Tisch and CAP21 with a BFA in Drama as well as the Kristin Linklater Voice Center in Orkney, Scotland where he became designated as a Linklater Teacher.  He teaches in the MFA program at Columbia University and in the BFA programs at The New School, CAP21/Molloy College, and the Lee Strasberg Institute at NYU. At CAP21 he was also the director of the Creative Ensemble Project that specialized in Voice, Movement, and Text. Nick’s talents specialize in dialect work, most notable with Emmy Award winner Ann Dowd for HBO’s The Leftovers, and with Jimmy Biberi for his role in the feature film Ocean’s 8.  He was the dialect coach for the University of Delaware’s REP production of Our Country’s Good, NYU’s Safety Net (dir. Young Jean Lee), and numerous Off-Broadway productions. He assisted Susan Cameron with her book Perfecting Your English Pronunciation, published by McGraw-Hill, and recently recorded voice over for the 2nd edition. Nick also teaches accent reduction to students from around the world. As an actor, Nick has worked in television, online media, film, and stage. He can be seen in the short film The Professor, starring Betsy Brandt of Breaking Bad. He also starred in the web series Handsome Town and guest starred in Chaos Theory, both airing online at phoebetv.com.  Nick is also is the creator and host of the YouTube cooking show Fantasy Food Show.


  • Susan Grace Cohen

    Courses: Method Acting, Audition, Acting for Film & TV

    Susan Grace Cohen is a graduate of the Juilliard School. Formerly a professor at NYU/Tisch Film & TV Department, Ms. Cohen has been a faculty member at The Lee Strasberg Theatre and Film Institute for over 15 years. In October, 2008, Ms. Cohen was honored to represent the United States in the work of Lee Strasberg, at the international Methodic Theatrical Festival in Tuscany. Guest master acting teachers and directors were represented from throughout the world. Ms. Cohen’s former students include James Gandolfini (Sopranos), Linda Hamilton (Terminators 1 & 2,) Karen Allen (Raiders of the Lost Arc), James Spader (Sex, Lies and Videotape, Boston Legal), Melora Walters (Boogie Nights, Magnolia and Big Love (HBO), Mel Harris (Thirtysomething), Justin Chambers (Grey’s Anatomy) Heather Juergensen (Kissing Jessica Stein), and most recently, Sarah Burns, (I Love You, Man). She is author of Bridging the Gap, Student to Professional Actor, and is a contributing essayist to Soul of the American Actor. Recently, Ms. Cohen received the James L. Hearst Guest Lecturer Award in the Arts and Humanities at the University of Northern Iowa. A newly published book entitled: Acting Teachers of America interviews Ms. Cohen about her studies with and teaching for Lee Strasberg. Susan teaches Method Acting at LSTFI.


  • Lola Cohen

    Courses: Method Acting, Building a Character

    Lola Cohen trained with Lee Strasberg during the last 5 years of his life and has taught Method Acting for 31 years at the Lee Strasberg Theater and Film Institute in NY and LA and in private classes.  Lola is an NYU Tisch School of the Arts, Strasberg Faculty member. After Lee’s death, Lola continued her training with Method actress/teacher Kim Stanley and the acclaimed director Jose Quintero. She has trained and directed multitudes of actors in scenes and plays during her career in the theater.  As a member of Bob Dylan’s Rolling Thunder Review, Lola made her film debut in, Renaldo and Clara in 1975 and in 2009 played Judge Kaplan in Rik Cordero’s Inside a Change, which won best film at HBO’s Latino International Film Festival in 2010. Lola’s directorial credits include A Midsummer Night’s Dream for the Woodstock Youth Theater; Jean Genet’s The Maids at the Strasberg Institute and Lewis John Carlino’s Snow Angel while at the 2009 Artist-in-Residence at SUNY-Ulster. Lola is also an Associate Adjunct Professor of Law at Brooklyn Law School where for the last fifteen years she has taught her class “Intensive Communication Skills for Attorneys”.  Lola’s first book, The Lee Strasberg Notes (Routledge, 2010) was done in close cooperation with the Strasberg family and is in multiple printings. Lola’s second book, The Method Acting Exercises Handbook, was published by Routledge in 2017. Lola has lectured at Pratt Institute, The National Film School of Denmark, The Stanislavski Museum/Moscow and has taught Master Classes at The American University in Washington, D.C. from where she was graduated with a Bachelor of Arts degree in education. Lola was awarded with a Fulbright Specialist Scholar designation, 2017-2020. She has conducted additional Master Classes internationally in Milan, IT; Lisbon, PO; Copenhagen, DK; Moscow, RU and at the Chekhov International School, Melikhovo, RU where she serves on the faculty.
    Woodstocker Lola Cohen on teaching acting in Russia


  • Tim Martin Crouse

    Courses: Institute: Method Acting, Audition, Acting for Film & TV (Young Actors: Method Acting)

    Tim Martin Crouse has taught Institute and NYU students since 2005 and has taught in the Young Actors Program since 1989, where he has directed more than forty productions with the students. As an actor, he has performed in A Midsummer Night’s Dream and All’s Well That Ends Well at The Riverside Shakespeare Company as well as an off-Broadway production of David Mamet’s The Woods. Tim has recently appeared on the Amazon series pilot The Point. He had the lead in the Nickelodeon series Kid’s Court and the recurring role of Barry on The Guiding Light. He produced many programs for MTV and spent five years as head writer at MTV2. Tim directed the short film Mousetrap which aired in WNYC and co-directed the short film Tumors for HBO. He also wrote, produced and directed the independent feature film The Orchard which won an award for Best Suspense Feature at the 2008 NY Independent Film & Video Festival. He also wrote, produced & directed the upcoming documentary Talking with the Piano Player. Tim’s second feature film titled Redemption on which he is a writer, director and producer premiered as the closing film of the 2014 Coney Island Film Festival. And the New York City Indie Film Festival in the same year.


  • Suzanne DiDonna

    Courses: Method Acting and Acting for Film & TV

    Suzanne DiDonna was born and raised in New York. She has been a professional actor for more than 20 years. Suzanne began her studies at The Lee Strasberg Theatre & Film Institute with George Loros, Robert Castle and Elizabeth Kemp. She is a life time member of The Actors Studio and worked/trained with Ellen Burstyn, Estelle Parsons, Harvey Keitel. She has performed in numerous plays at the Actors Studio including the premiere of Edward Allan Bakers Free Gift Inside directed by Elizabeth Kemp, the premiere of Lyle Kessler’s First Born directed by Daniel Talbott, and The Last Days Of Judas Iscariot written by Stephen Adly Guirgis and directed by Estelle Parsons. She has performed in dozens of Off Broadway and Off Off Broadway plays including the world premiere of Edward Allan Bakers The Framer and Edward Allan Bakers The Bride of Olneyville Square. She is a member of SAG, AFTRA and EQUITY. Her film credits include Hungry Ghosts Directed by Michael Imperioli, Trooper directed by Christopher Martini, Indiana directed by Toni Comas. Some of her TV credits include The $treet, Law & Order, Law & Order SVU, The Jury, Brotherhood, Sex And the City, She had a recurring role on The Sopranos and Magic City.


  • Jan Eric Douglas

    Courses: Singing, Musical Theatre

    Jan Eric Douglas has taught Singing and Musical Theater classes at The Lee Strasberg Theater & Film Institute since 1988. He has also held positions on the faculties of Teachers College of Columbia University, New York University, Hunter College and currently, Long Island University. Courses taught at the college and university level include vocal pedagogy and repertoire as well as individual voice instruction. He earned the degree Doctor of Music from Florida State University. Jan maintains a private studio in New York City. His students have appeared on Broadway, at the Metropolitan Opera and in opera and musical theater productions throughout America. He is a former president of both the New York City Chapter of the National Association of Teachers of Singing and The New York Singing Teachers’ Association.  In 1999 he was elected to membership in the American Academy of Teachers of Singing and served for 6 years as its Chair. Performance credits include recital, opera and oratorio. He has had articles published in The Journal of Singing and has presented at NATS national convention and workshops.


  • Jeffrey Ferguson

    Courses: Institute: Dance, Musical Theatre (Young Actors: Musical Theatre)

    Jeffrey Ferguson (Dance, Musical Theatre) has taught dance at the Lee Strasberg Theatre & Film Institute since September 1989. He teaches Dance Technique, Intermediate & Advanced Jazz, Tap, Musical Theatre and Stretch. Jeffrey’s classes are very emotional, mental, physical and technical. It requires total involvement of the body and mind, a thinking-feeling mix, the marriage of the physical and the spiritual. There is always a celebration of life that encompasses every movement, therefore movement always has purpose and intention, focus and direction. As a dancer, Jeffrey has performed with the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, ALvin Ailey Repertory Ensemble, Alvin Ailey American Dance Center Workshop Company, Pearl Primus and Dancers, a ludwig co, Contempo Jazz Tanz, and Joffrey Ballet Company with Agnes De Mille – with the latter, a PBS special called Conversations About The Dance. As an actor, singer and dancer, Jeffrey has appeared in many theatrical productions such as Show Boat at PaperMill Playhouse (was on PBS Great Performance) Pippin, My One and Only, Five Guys Named Moe, The Tempest, Mother Courage with Eileen Heckart at McCarter Theatre, Pippin at Bay Street Theatre, Kiss Me Kate, and ShowBoat on Broadway and in the Chicago production at the Auditorium Theatre. He has also performed in many business theatre shows, commercials as well as television appearances. Jeffrey has taught, performed, directed and choreographed throughout the U.S. and Japan, as well as France, the Bahamas, Bermuda, Canada, El Salvador, Guatemala and Trinidad. He does workshops, private coaching and choreography in and outside New York CIty.


  • Lindsey Ferrentino

    Guest Teacher

    Courses: Playwriting

    Courses: Guest instructor Play Writing

    Lindsey Ferrentino is a prolific playwright who writes with, according to The New York Times, “a muscular empathy which seeks to enter the minds of people for whom life is often a struggle of heroic proportions”. Whether writing about a female burn survivor or the first leading role for a person with Down Syndrome, Lindsey has been called “a brave playwright of dauntless conviction whose unflinching portraits are hard to come by outside of journalism.” 

    Her produced plays include Ugly Lies the Bone (Roundabout Theatre Company, The National Theatre, UK, NYT Critics Pick), the “barrier breaking” Amy and the Orphans (Roundabout Theatre Company, The Royal Court, UK – upcoming), This Flat Earth (Playwrights Horizons), and The Year to Come (La Jolla Playhouse, Roundabout Theatre Company – upcoming). Other plays include Kokomo, Magic Man, Moonlight on the Bayou and Paradise Bar and Grill. Ferrentino is the recipient of the 2016 Kesselring Prize, Laurents/ Hatcher Citation of Excellence, ASCAP Cole Porter Playwriting Prize, Paul Newman Drama Award, 2015 Kilroys List, finalist for the Susan Smith Blackburn, Catalyst Award for Entertainment Industry Excellence, NYU Distinguished Young Alumna Award, nominated for the Outer Critics Circle John Gassner Award, and is the only two-time finalist for the Kendeda Playwriting Prize. 

     Lindsey is also a screenwriter, with various projects in development. Most recently announced, she is adapting the screenplay for the film Not Fade Away, for Annapurna Pictures starring Emily Blunt. David O. Russell and John Krasinski are attached as producers.


  • Robert Grusecki

    Accompanist

    Robert  is a pianist, conductor, and composer working in the New York musical theatre and teaching community. As a musician, his Broadway credits include shows with such artists as Bernstein, Sondheim, Kander & Ebb, Yeston, Arthur Laurents, Baayork Lee, and Thommie Walsh. As a writer, he has produced many songs, musicals, revues, recordings, and songbooks with collaborator Anya Turner. Their Off-Broadway musicals “Greetings From Yorkville” and “After All, a musical much ado” were both named finalists for the Richard Rodgers Award. Recent choral events include the GenOUT teen chorus performing their song “Caitlyn” in concert with the Gay Men’s Chorus of Washington D.C. Their partnership is also the subject of the recent music documentary “Dream On, a songwriting life” by filmmaker Bill Hopkins. Recipients of a Bistro Award, several ASCAP awards, and a grant from Meet the Composer, Robert & Anya are currently recording a new CD entitled “Listen”. 


  • JACQUELINE HOLLOWAY

    Courses: Young Actors: Stage Combat

    Jacqueline Holloway (she/her pronouns) is an internationally recognized Fight Instructor,
    certified with the Society of American Fight Directors and Fight Directors Canada. Jacqueline has worked as an instructor and fight director throughout the U.S, Canada and select European cities. In addition to teaching stage combat and theatrical consent through her company Arte Violenta, she is a stage combat instructor with Acting House Studios and Pinnacle Parkour Academy. She also holds the title of East Central Regional Representative for the Society of American Fight Directors. For more information on Fight Direction, Certification or Theatrical Consent.


  • Bill Hopkins

    Courses: Institute: Acting on Camera, American Cinema, World Cinema (Young Actors: Acting for Film & TV)

    Bill Hopkins (Acting on Camera, American Cinema, World Cinema) is a filmmaker and stage director. As a teacher he specializes in the relationship of the actor to the lens and teaches this to actors at several leading conservatories and universities, as well as to film directors at The School of Visual Arts and at his studio in Manhattan. Bill has produced and directed over 30 documentary and archive films for The Actors Studio and he has directed and written screenplays for feature films, documentaries, commercials and corporate films. Bill is also a Producer and Director of Photography. Recent work includes the Pilot Episode of Port 80 for CBS/ESPN, Episodes of Sherry’s Kitchen for Cloudy Sky Films and Episodes of Skipping Stones for the Web. In the theatre world, Bill has worked as an actor, director and producer at The Iowa Theatre Lab, TRG Repertory, Al Carmines, The Women’s Project, Circle Repertory and Equity Library Theatre.


  • Geoffrey Horne

    Courses: Method Acting, Shakespeare at the Globe, Acting Chekhov

    Geoffrey Horne was born in Buenos Aires and raised in Cuba. He graduated from U.C. Berkeley in 1954, is married and has nine children. Geoffrey studied with Lee Strasberg for many years beginning in 1954 and became a member of the Actors Studio in 1956, the year of his Broadway debut. He made his film debut in The Bridge on the River Kwai. Geoffrey has taught Method Acting at The Lee Strasberg Theatre & Film Institute since 1978. He has directed a number of Alumni/Teacher productions including The Glass Menagerie, A Streetcar Named Desire, and most recently Othello. He is the co-founder of Shakespeare Downtown, a Shakespeare theatre at Castle Clinton National Monument in Battery Park in Lower Manhattan. Shakespeare Downtown produced Romeo and Juliet in June 2016 and Richard III in June 2017.


  • Amelia Huckel-Bauer

    Courses: Young Actors: Method Acting & Acting for Film & TV

    Amelia has a BFA in Acting from Tisch, NYU, where she studied at Strasberg with Geoffrey Horne, Bill Balzac and Debra Wiley. While at Tisch, she also studied Viewpoints with Mary Overlie, clowning with Christopher Bayes, spent a semester in Dublin and her senior year at Stonestreet Film and Television Studio. Amelia holds an MA in Educational Theater from Steinhardt, NYU. 

    As an actor, Amelia primarily works with EMIT (Educational, Mobile, Immersive, Theater) and with Red Monkey Theater Group, where she is also the Education Director. Roles include Hunter in Neil Gaiman’s NEVERWHERE,  Silvia in Two Gentlemen of Verona, Chick in Crimes of the Heart, Lynsander/Flute in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Lady Capulet in Romeo and Juliet, Gertrude in Hamlet and Sebastian in The Tempest.  

    As a teacher, Amelia has taught at New York Film Academy in their Tweens and Adult programs, as well as at the Bronx Charter School for the Arts and Bronxville Adult School. Amelia is a Public Speaking instructor at the New York Botanical Garden’s School of Professional Horticulture, and is the founder of Elora Theater Arts, an educational theater company. Amelia lives in the Bronx with her husband and daughter Elora, who follows her to almost every rehearsal, and also loves to come through Strasberg’s red doors.


  • Jacqueline Jacobus

    Courses: Method Acting

    Jacqueline Jacobus was born in Paris and spent her early years in France and England. When 17, she had the great good fortune to begin her acting studies with Lee Strasberg in his private classes in NYC. Several years later, she became a member of the Actors Studio, where she had the opportunity to work with and be influenced by directors such as Arthur Penn, Elia Kazan, and Vivian Nathan, just to mention a few. As a young actress, she worked extensively in TV, Film, and the theater, both in NYC and Regionally. As a member of The Ensemble Studio Theater she worked along side of playwrights such as Jonathan Ringkamp, Rommulus Linney, and Lyle Kessler as they developed their scripts. Favorite roles were Laura in the The Glass Menagerie, Kim in Mama Sang the Blues, Nina in The Seagull, Florrie in Waiting for Lefty, Emily in Our Town, The Whore in La Ronde, Titania in Midsummer Summer Night’s Dream, Portia in The Merchant of Venice just to mention a few. Most recently she played Marty in Annie Baker’s Circle, Mirror, Transformation.

    Jacqueline has been teaching acting, and specifically The Method as it was taught to her by Lee Strasberg, for the last 10 years. She is an accomplished pianist who treasures the literature for the piano as much as the literature for the actor.


  • Madeline Jaye

    Courses: Institute: Dance, Movement (Young Actors: Method Acting)

    Madeline Jaye has been teaching Ballet, Jazz/Theatre Dance, Movement I and II at LSTFI and in NYU programs here for 22 years. During and prior to that time, she has been on faculty at AADA, Steps Studio and Third Street Music School and has been a guest teacher/substitute at AMDA, Broadway Dance Center, Steffi Nossen School of Dance and LaGuardia HS of Performing Arts. Privately, she teaches acting/speech presentation to clergy, trial attorneys and business executives, as well as coaching young dancers/actors for auditions/performance. Choreography credits include period movement and dance for Dietrich Rides Again, five plays/musicals for The Medicine Show, industrials for Mattel Toys, Inc., Bell South, Barbie Fashion Summit, Dole Foods’ Easter on the White House Lawn, Hewlett-Packard and several productions at LSTFI: On the Verge, Dancing at Lughnasa, ART, NYU Practicum. Madeline has performed as a dancer/singer/actor across USA, Europe, Japan and the Middle East, including 3 years as a Radio City Music Hall Rockette. She holds a BA w/Honours in Dance, from Butler University, with additional 17 years of training as an actor and singer in NYC. She is co-creator of Actors Launch and is the creator of Jaye Actors Movement; a movement program designed to bridge the gap between dance, singing and acting training and to incite physical fluency and emotional and vocal connectedness in performers and regular civilians.


  • Mike Keller

    Courses: Conservatory Performance

    Mike Keller is an actor/director who holds his MFA from The New School for Drama.  He is a NJ native, former West Point cadet, and a director member of the Actors Studio Playwright & Directors Unit.  He is also the founding member/administrator of Lyle Kessler’s private workshop in the East Village.  His recent theater credits include “Cliff” in The Woolgatherer, directed by Chazz Palminteri, and “Chicken” in Tennessee Williams’ Kingdom of Earth, at St. Luke’s Theater.  TV Credits include FBI, Blue Bloods, The Blacklist, Ray Donovan, & 30 Rock. Mike will soon appear opposite Forest Whitaker in the EPIX series Godfather of Harlem, and on big screens opposite Bill Murray in Sophia Coppola’s On The Rocks, and withJennifer Lopez in Hustlers. Photo credit: Xanthe Elbrick Photography


  • Lannon Killea

    Guest Teacher

    Courses: Developing your Career for NYU

    Lannon Killea is an NYC based SAG-AFTRA actor and graduate of NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts.  He studied with Kevin Kulhke at the International Theatre Workshop in Amsterdam, as well as The Classical Studio with Daniel Spector and Louis Scheeder.  He began his career regionally at Goodspeed Opera House in Happy Days the Musical, meeting the legendary Garry Marshall, and then in the York Theater’s critically acclaimed Enter Laughing, where he met Joseph Stein and Carl Reiner.   He then went on to play a deranged killer in As The World Turns. It was after these early jobs, at the urging of his agent that he began working in commercial and promo voiceover and he’s been at it ever since. He was the voice of viral internet series Next Time On Lonny,produced by Ben Stiller.   He’s consistently worked for most of the major ad agencies on and off camera over the last 12 years. He is currently the narrator of HGTV’s Island Life and the promo voice for The Late Late Show With James Corden on CBS. Lannon lives in Brooklyn, where he has a home studio and can be found in Western MA tending his family vegetable garden. 


  • Portia Krieger

    Guest Teacher

    Courses: Working with Casting Directors for NYU Practicum

    Portia Krieger is a New York-based theater director who mostly works on new plays and musicals. Favorite productions include Deborah Zoe Laufer and Daniel Green’s musical Window Treatment, Olivia Dufault’s The Tomb of King Tot (Clubbed Thumb), Susan Bernfield’s Tania in the Getaway Van (The Pool), Deborah Zoe Laufer’s Be Here Now (Cincinnati Playhouse), Sofia Alvarez’s Friend Art (2ST Uptown), Sarah Einspanier’s The Convent of Pleasure (Cherry Lane Mentor Project), Caroline V. McGraw’s The Bachelors (Lesser America), Clare Barron’s Baby Screams Miracle (Clubbed Thumb), and Eager to Lose, a burlesque farce Portia co-created with writer Matthew-Lee Erlbach, director Wes Grantom, and burlesque starlet Tansy (Ars Nova).

    Portia has workshopped new plays and musicals with the O’Neill/National Playwrights Conference, Playwrights Horizons, 2ST, Roundabout Underground, New York Stage & Film, Rattlestick, Page 73, Ars Nova, the Lark, the Juilliard School, NYMF, and many others. She has been an inaugural O’Neill/NNPN National Director’s Fellow, a member of the Civilians R&D group, a New Georges Audrey Resident, a member of the Drama League Directors Project and the Lincoln Center Theater Directors Lab, and an Ars Nova Director-in Residence. She was the Associate Director of Fun Home on Broadway, and is working on the Broadway-bound musical Almost Famous. She is a Clubbed Thumb Affiliated Artist and a co-founder of the New Georges Jam. Education: BA in Theater, Smith College.


  • George Loros

    Courses: Method Acting

    George Loros (Method Acting) won the SAG Award in 2000 for Best Ensemble as a member of the cast of The Sopranos, in which he played the role of Ray Curto for six seasons. George received a Best Supporting Actor nomination at the New York Film Fest 2004 for his portrayal of Harvey in Clean, which won the Best Film Award in 2004. As Mitch in Mitch and Barbara, George won the Cine Golden Eagle as Best Actor in a Short Film, 1972. George has performed and directed on Broadway, Off Broadway and with theatres across the country. As a director, George won the Dramalogue Award – Best Director for The Phone Call, 1978, and Prowlers, 1979, both done at the Los Angeles Actors’ Theatre. George studied with Lee Strasberg and is a Method Acting teacher at The Lee Strasberg Theatre & Film Institute. He directed the Alumni production of Tennessee Williams’ Period of Adjustment in October 2012. George has been acting for 45 years, and teaching for 42 years. He is a member of Actor’s Equity, SAG/AFTRA, the Society of Stage Directors an Choreographers, The Actor’s Studio, and is a voting member of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.


  • Mitch McCoy

    Courses: Institute: Stage Combat

    Mitch McCoy is a professional actor, fight choreographer, and Reiki Master. He graduated from NYU Tisch School of the Arts in 2011 where he attended the Lee Strasberg Theatre & Film Institute for three years. He has been teaching stage combat privately since 2010, and has choreographed the violence for over 30 stage and film productions. Most recently he was a stunt performer in Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers (MMPR), and assisted with the fight choreography for Disney’s Aladdin.


  • J9

    Courses: Hip Hop for the Actor

    J9 (aka Janine Micheletti)  is a native New Yorker, a Hip-Hop dancer, and a Street Fusion Choreographer. Her dancing credits include Madonna, Keys N’ Krates ft. 070 Shake, Spotify, Reebok and more. She graduated from SUNY Purchase’s School of Art & Design with a concentration in photography. Thereafter, she has spent most of her professional life as a visual artist and accomplished textile designer. In 2009, she began taking dance classes again as a hobby. The art form quickly enraptured her as it did as a child, and since she has pursued it with fierce abandon.This dedication has led her to being selected for the Breaking Glass: an emerging female choreographers program run by Ellenore Scott. This allowed her a mentorship with the esteemed Rhapsody James. She has since choreographed for shows throughout the city and works with musical artists such as Shenna Music, Jennifair and Calvin Play. She produced her own show in 2016 called Street Spectrum, which was a huge success.


  • Ron Navarre

    Courses: Tai Chi

    Ron NaVarre has been teaching at The Lee Strasberg Theatre & Film Institute for more than twenty years. As an actor, dancer, singer, director and choreographer, Ron has worked on Broadway, Off-Broadway, in Regional Theater, Film, Television, Commercials, and Industrial Theater. As an adjunct Professor, Ron has taught tai chi at Fordham University at Lincoln Center, New York University, and the Pacific Institute of Chinese Medicine. Along with Madeline Jaye he is also the co-creator of Actors Launch, an audition prep and career guidance training program for actors and performing artists. Ron is the founder of Stress Defense, Inc. and has taught seminars on stress management, self-healing and effective communication to fortune 500 companies and health clubs. A lifelong martial artist he has trained in Tang Soo Do, TaeKwon Do, Hapkido, Aikido and Tai Chi Chuan. In the healing arts, Ron has taught mindfulness meditation, yoga, tai chi, qigong, Reiki and Rei Qong for over thirty years. For the last ten years, Ron had been working with cancer patients and post surgical patients as an energy therapist and spiritual counselor.


  • Patrick Noth

    Courses: Institute: Improvisation (Young Actors: Improvisation)

    Patrick Noth is an Emmy nominated comedian working in New York City. He began his comedy career studying at the Upright Citizen’s Brigade where he now teaches and performs regularly. His television credits include appearances on Comedy Central, MTV, IFC, TV Land, NBC, Nickelodeon, and countless digital platforms. Similarly, writing credits include Comedy Central, MTV, Nickelodeon, and many digital platforms. Moving to New York as a teenager, he’s worked as a freestyle rapper, composer, music producer, but after studying improvisation, he become quickly hooked, rising through the ranks at UCB. Patrick is also a director and has worked for Comedy Central, many self-produced projects and the Gizmo ASP at the Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre. Patrick graduated from the City College of New York with a B.F.A in Music.


  • ALEX NOTKIN

    Courses: Young Actors: Method Acting & Acting on Camera

    Alex Notkin was born in St. Petersburg (Leningrad), Russia to a family of doctors (Efim and Olga Notkin). He graduated from The Saint Petersburg State Theatre Arts Academy. His early career includes both theatre and film roles. He starred as Roland Cassard in Michel Legrand’s musical “The Umbrellas of Cherbourg”, The Author in “The Letters of Vertinsky”, Alex Incub in crime TV series “Goodbye Makarov”, Lt. Voytkevich in feature film “Dry Valley” , Detective Egor Mitrokhin in TV Series “I Believe Him”, TV series “The Streets of the Shattered Lanterns”, “Strange Neighborhood”, “Liteyny, 4”. In addition to his theatre and film works Alex became a renowned voice talent. He was cast to perform Russian Dubbing for the voices of: Christian Bale in “Terminator 4, Salvation”, Sam Worthington in James Cameron’s “Avatar”, Colin Farrell in Disney’s “Fright Night” and “Saving Mr. Banks”, Benedict Cumberbatch in “The Fifth Estate”. In 2014 Alex Notkin came to the U.S. to pursue his acting career. He completed a 1 year Conservatory Program at the Lee Strasberg Theatre & Film Institute, New York. His American Projects include Films and TV shows: “Madam Secretary”, “The Americans”, “Sheepshead”, “A Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing”, Theatre productions: “Green Card, the New Musical”, “ART”, “Raskolnikov and the Pawnbroker, Love Story” Alex has also directed the following productions in New York: ‘ART’, by Yasmina Reza -Marilyn Monroe Theatre (Lee Strasberg); ‘I Remember It Well’- Strasberg Works project – Irma Sandrey Theatre; ‘Defendant Maurice Chevalier’ – an Off Broadway Production, The American Theatre of Actors.  


  • Charles Nuckolls

    Courses: Screenwriting and Advanced Dramatic Writing

    Charles Nuckolls is a writer, director and producer of theatre, film and television.  His programming has been seen on national cable, PBS and local broadcast networks. La MaMa, The Blank Theatre and Ensemble Studio Theatre have presented his theatrical productions in Los Angeles and New York. His other exhibitions include Urbanworld Film Festival, Newport Beach Film Festival, Williamstown Film Festival, Museo Reina Sofia, Madrid; Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin; Video Frontiers Festival, Perugia; The New Foundation, Seattle; and PRX- Public Radio Exchange.

    His awards include: Emmy Award Nomination, National Academy of Television Arts And Sciences; Best Documentary, National Federation of Local Cable Programmers; Silver Cindy Award, Association of Visual Communicators; Best Long Documentary; New York University Video Festival – Two Consecutive Years. His foundation support includes grants from the American Film Institute and the Writers Guild of America.

    He has developed work in Europe, Asia, North America and the Caribbean and teaches film at the School for Visual Arts in New York and dramatic writing at The Lee Strasberg Theatre and Film Institute.  He holds a BFA in Film and Television Production from Tisch School for the Arts, New York University, a MA in Theatre from Hunter College and is a member of the Playwrights/Directors Unit of TheActors Studio and The Dramatists Guild.


  • Lorca Peress

    Courses: Audition, Monologue, Script Analysis

    Lorca Peress has been on the LSTFI Faculty since 2000, and NYU-Strasberg Faculty since 2001. Lorca is a director and performer specializing in new works. She is the Founder/Artistic Director of MultiStages, a multicultural, multidisciplinary company that has developed new works since 1997. She has directed over 50 theatre, opera, and musical productions in NYC (The Public Theatre, Signature Theatre, The Acorn at Theatre Row, Theatre for the New City, et al), and at Strasberg and other universities. Lorca performed and toured for many years as an actor and singer. Awards and Grants include: 2017 Institute of Puerto Rico Award, NYMF 2017 Next Link Project, Women in Arts & Media Collaboration Awards, National Opera Prizes, 2015 Taino Areito Award, HOLA Zaldivar Outstanding Production Award, Manhattan Community Arts Grants (LMCC/DCA), Dramatists Guild Fund Award, La MaMa Inky Award. She was Co-President of the League of Professional Theatre Women (2011-14), and a featured panelist and moderator for theatre organizations focused on diversity and gender parity. She curated NYU hotINK Festivals for Strasberg (2002-10), and served 2 years on NYU Production Committee. A graduate of Bennington College (BA in Drama) and National Theatre Institute. Professional studies with Shelly Winters, Gene Frankel, Leonard Melfi, and at LSTFI with Irma Sandrey and Charlie Laughton, and YAP. Unions/Member: AEA, SAG-AFTRA, SDC, LPTW, NTC.


  • Heather Petruzelli

    Courses: Singing

    Heather Petruzelli has appeared with New York Gilbert and Sullivan Players,  The Merry-Go-Round Playhouse, The Astoria Music Society’s Big Band, Opera With a Twist, Cantiamo Opera, Liederkranz Opera Theater, Henry Street Opera, New Jersey Association of Verismo Opera, The Astoria Symphony, Opera Northeast, The Opera Company of Astoria,  The Civic Orchestra of Northeastern Pennsylvania, and as part of the Simply Grand Concert Series radio broadcast presented by WVIA of Northeastern Pennsylvania. She has performed and taught many styles from classical to musical theatre. Ms. Petruzelli serves as the Head of Voice and Music for the Molloy College/CAP21BFA Program and has taught for the former CAP21 since 2008. She also has been teaching at The American Musical and Dramatic Academy of NYC since 2001. Ms. Petruzelli holds a BM from Wilkes University and a MM in Voice Performance from Boston University where she studied with the late Phyllis Curtin. Ms. Petruzelli is an Equity Membership Candidate. Additionally, Heather is a certified Positive Psychology Life Coach.


  • Alba Quezada

    Courses: Speech

    Alba Quezada is a designated teacher of the Linklater Technique, is thrilled to bring this innovative vocal production technique to her students at The Lee Strasberg Theatre & Film Institute (LSTFI) as it partners well with the Method. She has performed in operas, musicals and on the recital stage in regional theaters throughout the United States and in Europe. She has also worked in recording, film, television and radio. Highlights include: Original cast member of Phantom of the Opera on Broadway, the title role of Frida Kahlo at the Brooklyn Academy of Music, Maria in West Side Story at the Teatro Tivoli in Barcelona, the role of Liu in the MGM film Yes, Giorgio! with Pavarotti, featured soprano in the Grammy nominated and Latin Grammy nominated recording for Best Classical Album in 2005 for The Music of Carlos Chavez: Vol. 3. 2014 Distinguished University Teaching Award recipient. She has taught at LSTFI since 2008.


  • Meghan Rafferty

    Guest Teacher

    Courses: Working with Casting Directors for NYU Practicum

    Meghan Rafferty is a casting director, actor and coach who has worked with some of the most respected directors, writers and producers in the television and motion picture industry.Meghan received her BFA in Acting from Adelphi University and an MFA from the Asolo Theatre Conservatory. She began her casting career just a few years after graduating, assisting on network pilots for Fox, NBC and ABC.  From there she moved on as a casting associate for big budget films such as: Café Society, The Wolf Of Wall Street, Shutter Island, Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close, Louie and the pilot episode of Boardwalk Empire. Now, with fourteen years of cable and big budget film casting experience under her belt, she continues to cast and formed M&M Casting with her partner Mia Cusumano. Meghan co- cast ‘Paterson’- a film written and directed by Jim Jarmusch, Season 1 of ‘The Leftovers’ created by Damon Lindleloff, Season 1of NBC/Universal’s ‘Falling Water’ and The Cannes Lions Award winning web-series ‘Margo vs Lily’.  

    Current projects include: ‘I Don’t Live Today’ by writer/director/actor Mtume Gant, “The Bohemians” by Michael Walker, ‘Bang Bang’ by writer Will Janowitz, the pilot ‘Paint’, which was selected for the Sundance Film Festival 2018, Bentonville Film Festival winner ‘Lez Bomb’ starring Kevin Pollack, Bruce Dern, Cloris Leachman and the soon to be released comedy ‘My Cousin Sister’s Wedding’  

    Meghan is one of the very few, who over the years has been lucky enough to create a successful balance between her career as an actor and casting director; she feels each craft feeds the hand of the other.  Additionally, through her years as an acting coach, Meghan has been able to help actors navigate the turbulent waters of show business and help the next generation to be successful.


  • Sarah Rayani

    Courses: Speech, Dialects

    Sarah Rayani is a professional singer, dancer and vocal coach. She specializes in speech and accent reduction and teaching the dialects of the British Isles. Sarah received her MA in the Practice of Voice and Singing from the Guildford School of Acting in her native United Kingdom. Sarah feels passionately about drawing on wisdom from both the speech and singing sides of the voice world in order to make her student’s healthy and effective professionals. Sarah performed as both a solo artist and as the lead singer of Blue On Wax for seven years, appearing at numerous venues in New York City as well as in the UK. Sarah also has recording and songwriting credits. She has appeared in various music videos as well as Sex and the City 2.


  • Michael Kevin Ryan

    Courses: Movement, Scene Study

    Michael Kevin Ryan trained as a dancer with Martha Graham, Hanya Holm and Merce Cunningham. As an actor he has worked extensively in his native Australia as well as Germany where he studied with Eugenio Barba and Jerzy Grotowski. In New York he was a long-standing company member of Creation Production Company, with whom he created lead roles in Chromatic Spectacles, Ice Station Zebra, The OBIE Award winning Abandon, The Bessie Award winning Memory Theatre of Guilio Camillo, The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari, Propaganda, Nighttown, The Inferno, The Tower and most recently in Man Made at The Ohio Theater NY. Also in New York: Uncontrollable Elements at The Kitchen, his own The Pasolini Tapes at The Knitting Factory and Enter The Dragon at Second Stage and Escalator, a performance piece for the architects Diller and Scofidio at The Museum of Modern Art. At the Lee Strasberg Theater and Film Institute NY, where he has been on the faculty for 18 years he has directed John Webster’s The Duchess of Malfi and a Shakespeare adaptation midnight’s dream as well as his original pieces Moist Tiny Elephants and Eveningland. He has also taught Movement / Feldenkrais for The Tisch School for the Arts NYU, Strasberg LA, The School for Film and TV/NY and Fordham University at Lincoln Center. He is a Guild Certified Feldenkrais Practitioner (2002-2006 training with David Zemach-Bersin, Dr. Moshe Feldenkrais’ 1st American student) He maintains a private coaching business in both NY, LA and London working with actors for Film and TV. Among his recent clients have been Josh Bowman (Revenge, Time After Time) Adria Arjona (True Detective, Emerald City and Good Omens) and Henry Garrett (Poldark, The Son).


  • Laura Savia

    Guest Teacher

    Courses: Casting Workshop NYU

    Laura Savia is the Associate Artistic Director of the Tony Award-winning Williamstown Theatre Festival, where she is in her eighth season.  Directing credits include the world premieres of James Anthony Tyler’s Artney Jackson (Williamstown), Lucy Thurber’s Once Upon a Time in the Berkshires and Orpheus in the Berkshires (Williamstown), Lucy Thurber’s Unstuck (59E59/Throughline), and Bareknuckle (Vertigo Theatre) as well Ryan Haddad’s Hi, Are You Single? (Public Theater – Under the Radar).  Her production of Jonathan Caren’s The Recommendation for IAMA won two Ovation Awards, including Best Production.  Other directing credits include James Lescesne’s The Absolute Brightness of Leonardy Pelkey (City Theatre), Adam Rapp’s Red Light Winter (Itself Festival in Poland) and Shakespeare’s The Winter’s Tale featuring Hoon Lee (Warren Miller Performing Arts Center). She has directed short plays by Rob Askins and Halley Feiffer for Naked Angels and Living Newspaper plays by Sarah Burgess and Don Nguyen (at A.R.T./Club Oberon, Joe’s Pub, and Le Poisson Rouge). She has developed work with Roundabout Theatre Company, New York Theatre Workshop, Atlantic Theater Company, Second Stage, Labyrinth Theater Company, Ars Nova, Playwrights Realm, Primary Stages, Rattlestick, and Ma-Yi Theater Company.  Assistant directing includes Broadway’s The Merchant of Venice, starring Al Pacino.  Laura spent five seasons on the artistic staff at Atlantic Theater Company.  She is an alum of the Drama League Directors Project and Northwestern University. 


  • Johnna Scrabis

    Guest Teacher

    Courses: Improvisation

    Johnna Scrabis is Brooklyn-based comedian, Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre teacher, and UCB weekend team performer on GOAT. She has written two ten-episode series for College Humor’s DropOut and has written and produced four mockumentary comedies for BRIC TV. In 2018, her feature comedy, A Tiny Perfect World, was selected as a finalist for the IFP Made In NY Fellowship. Johnna is also a co-founder of Hot Metal Arts Collective, a theater company named after a nice bridge in her hometown of Pittsburgh. johnnascrabis.com / hotmetalco.com  


  • Marcel Simoneau

    Courses: Institute: Method Acting, Audition, Film Analysis (Young Actors: Method Acting)

    Marcel Simoneau is originally from Luceville, Quebec, and studied in New York as an actor. His latest short film, Lurker (producer, director, screenwriter, actor), was recently accepted at Cannes 2017’s Short Film Corner, Hollyshorts and NY Shorts Fest and is currently running in Festivals. His 2016 film Like, Totally Hot Couple Seeking Same (producer, director, actor) CineKink NYC (Best Comedic Short), NY Shortfest, Emerge Film Festival, Dam Short Film Festival (Best Screenplay), Mountain of Laughs Film Festival, Another Independent Film Festival), Is currently touring the Festivals and won Best Comedic short last week at CineKink NYC and Best Screenplay at Dam Short Film Fest. His 2016 film Sarah Is Not Her Name (producer, actor) (Cannes Short Film Corner, NY Short Fest, Chelsea Film Festival, HollyShorts, Nitehawk Film Festival, Sidney Lift-Off Film Festival, The Williamsburg Film Festival). He has also made several music videos and web series. As an actor, he appeared in the films: The Rebound, Imperialists are Still Alive, Horizon, Nick & Norah’s Infinite Playlist, Stranger, Kinsey, Seduction, Meridian. On TV: Gotham, Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, Fringe, Law & Order, Ed and Strangers with Candy. Marcel has also performance in numerous Off-Broadway and Off-Off-Broadway shows including My First Time for a year and a half. He can also be heard in numerous VO commercials in French, Spanish and English.


  • Jeffrey Stanley

    Courses: Theatre History

    Jeffrey Stanley is a screenwriter, playwright, performance artist, director and 2018-19 Fulbright Scholar conducting research in India on early 20th century Bengali film and theatre and their impact on India’s nascent independence movement.  He is currently writing a book on the topic.  He most recently acted in the Indian feature film Manbhanjan, and his solo show Jeffrey Stanley’s Boneyards garnered national attention.  His stage play Tesla’s Letters (Samuel French, 2000) premiered to rave reviews Off Broadway in 1999 and has gone on to national and international productions including the Edinburgh Fringe. He is a past president of the board of directors of the New York Neo-Futurists experimental theatre ensemble, he has been a fellow at Yaddo, a Copeland Fellow at Amherst College, and a guest screenwriting lecturer at the Imaginary Academy summer film and theatre workshop in Croatia sponsored by the Soros Foundation. Stanley’s award-winning short film Lady in a Box starring Sarita Choudhury has been licensed numerous times for international broadcast and distribution. He was one of 24 writers chosen from over 16,000 entrants for the first Amtrak Writers Residency in 2014-15, and served as a residency judge for the 2015-16 competition. Stanley has appeared as a guest writer in the Washington Post, New York Times, Time Out New York, New York Press and Brooklyn Rail, and he was a senior editorial adviser to Boston University’s Center for Millennial Studies’ book on apocalypse movements The End That Does (Equinox Books, 2006). He is a member playwright of the invitation-only International Theatre Initiative (ITI), a UNESCO-sponsored world theatre education program. He holds an MFA in Dramatic Writing from New York University Tisch School of the Arts where he studied under playwrights David Ives and Tony Kushner, and a BFA from Tisch in Film & Television Production. He currently teaches at Tisch, and at Drexel University Westphal College of Media Arts & Design.  http://www.brain-on-fire.com .


  • J. Allen Suddeth

    Courses: Stage Combat

    J. Allen Suddeth has worked professionally for the past thirty years out of the New York area. For Broadway, he has staged fights for the current smash hits Pretty Woman, Disney’s Aladdin, and Newsies plus the recent revival production of Jekyll and Hyde, as well as Gem Of The Ocean, Saturday Night Fever, Jekyll & Hyde, Angels in America Part One and Two, Loot, Saint Joan, A Small Family Business, and Hide and Seek. Off-Broadway he has worked on productions for The Manhattan Theater Club, Playwrights Horizons, The New Group, Theater For A New Audience, The Public Theater, BAM, The Women’s Project, Ensemble Studio Theater, Second Stage, Riverside Shakespeare, Jean Cocteau Repertory, Cleveland Playhouse, The Alliance Theatre, Regional/LORT Theaters, WestBeth, The Pearl Theater, Cherry Lane Theatre, and the New York Theater Workshop.  Regionally, and in LORT theater he has worked for Centerstage in Baltimore (over 70 productions), The Arena Stage and The Shakespeare Theater in Washington, D. C., as well as The Denver Center, The Huntington Theatre, The Papermill Playhouse, The Hartford Stage, The Goodman Theater, The Actor’s Theater Of Louisville and The Cincinnati Playhouse In The Park, Seattle Repertory Theatre, The Northshore Music Theater, and the Big Apple Circus, among many others.  As a master teacher, Allen has been on faculty for The Juilliard School, Mason Gross School of The Arts at Rutgers University, The Lee Strasberg Theatre & Film Institute, S.U.N.Y. Purchase College, and The Stella Adler Conservatory, as well as being a frequent guest artist at major universities in the US and abroad. For television, he has staged action sequences for over 750 programs on ABC, CBS, NBC, and HBO. He is the author of Fight Directing For The Theater, published by Heinemann Press.  Allen has also taught at the National Stage Combat Workshop, currently at U.N.C.S.A., for over fifteen years, and is the founder of the National Fight Directors Training Program. Allen is also a producer of The Complete Unarmed Stage Combat DVD Library. He has trained over 10,000 students, and tested many thousands more. He is ranked as one of seventeenth recognized Fight Masters in the United States by The Society of American Fight Directors. He is also a “Fellow” and Life Member of the British Academy of Dramatic Combat and an Honorary Fight Master with Fight Directors Canada.


  • Kelsey Torstveit

    Courses: Institute: Method Acting (Young Actors: Method Acting, Audition, Monologue, Breaking Type, & Acting the Greats)

    Kelsey hails from Phoenix, AZ.  She is a NYC based AEA actress and playwright.  Her recent acting credits include: …Where you Eat (Wild Project, NYC), Blithe Spirit (Capital Repertory Theatre), The Turn of the Screw  (Wellfleet Harbor Actors Theater, voted favorite performance of 2017 by The Cape Cod Times), Theory of Mind  (Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park) and A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Capital Repertory Theatre). BFA: NYU Acting and Creative Writing.  Outstanding Achievement in Studio Award recipient from NYU and the Lee Strasberg Institute in 2012.   In 2011, Kelsey performed in the Institute’s Alumni production of A Hatful of Rain that traveled to the iTSeLF Theatre Festival in Warsaw, Poland as the representative theatre school from America.  As a writer, Kelsey was awarded the Bernard and Shirley Handel Fund Fellowship for Playwriting in 2017 from Byrdcliffe Arts Colony for “demonstrating superior skill and dedication to her work”.  The fellowship culminated in a staged reading of her one-act play The Octopus.  Her 2nd one-act, Lonelyhearts,  co-conceived with composer David Bird, went up in spring 2018 produced by Qubit New Music in an evening of one-acts with music called 21st Century Sound Stories, as a part of TAK Ensemble’s 2018 season.


  • John VanWyden

    Courses: Speech, Dialects

    BFA Point Park College, Pittsburgh Pa.; MFA Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, Ohio. John has served as the dialect coach for many of Tisch Drama StageWorks productions including The Who’s Tommy, Cabaret, Ragtime, Born Bad, The Secret Garden, Engaged, and Blue Stockings. John’s coaching credits at various Department of Drama’s studios include: Top Girls, Mad Forest, Cloud Nine, Our Country’s Good, Dancing at Lughnasa, The Norman Conquests, Nine and many others. Professional coaching credits include the Cirque du Soleil production of Zarkana at Radio City Music Hall, the national tour and the Mallz Jupiter Theatre production of Cabaret, and the Off Broadway production of The Shanghai Gesture. John has also served as the dialect coach for Christine Lahti in Pride in the Fall of Autry Mill and for Concetta Tomei in Fallaci.


  • Moritz VStuelpnagel

    Guest Teacher

    Courses: Working with the Director for NYU Practicum

    Moritz is a Tony nominated, NYC-based director. Broadway: Bernhardt/Hamlet, Present Laughter starring Kevin Kline (Tony nominated for Best Revival), Hand to God (Tony nominated for Best Play and Director). West End: Hand to God (Olivier nomination). Off-Broadway: Seared (MCC), The Thanksgiving Play (Playwrights Horizons), Teenage Dick (Ma-Yi/Public Theater), Important Hats of the Twentieth Century (Manhattan Theatre Club), Verité (Lincoln Center Theatre/LCT3), Bike America (Ma-Yi), Trevor (Lesser America), Love Song of the Albanian Sous Chef (Ensemble Studio Theatre), Mel & El (Ars Nova), Spacebar (Studio 42), and My Base and Scurvy Heart (Studio 42). Regional: Alliance Theatre, Williamstown Theatre Festival, Huntington Theatre, Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival, and more. Moritz is the former artistic director of Studio 42, NYC’s producer of “unproducible” plays. He has taught at over a dozen universities including Juilliard, Rutgers, Boston University, NYU, University of Rochester, and more.


  • Debra Wiley

    Courses: Method Acting

    Debra Wiley is an internationally acclaimed acting teacher, performance coach, and singing voice specialist (M.A. in Acting and Vocal Performance, NYU) who has taught at the Lee Strasberg Theater and Film Institute for nearly twenty years. Debra has also taught and directed performers in the U.S. at institutions that include The Juilliard School, Manhattan School of Music, Mannes College of Music, Montclair State University, New York University, Marymount Manhattan College, Harlem School of the Arts, and Henry Street Settlement. She has directed plays and numerous classical recitals, and given master classes and seminars at organizations which include: Disney Theatrical Productions, SAG Conservatory, The Danish State Theater School, The Danish Actors Union, Eklektisk Theater Company, Chamber Music America, Operafest, Songfest, [email protected], Mannes College of Music, and NYU Steinhardt. As a stage performer, she has been featured with professional companies in New York and regionally across various disciplines, including theater, musical theater, opera and cabaret. Debra studied and worked extensively with some of the finest teacher/directors of our time, including Lee Strasberg, Irma Sandrey, Ed Kovens, and Wesley Balk (Minnesota Opera).This year, Debra was again included in Who’s Who Among America’s Teachers.


  • Christopher Windom

    Guest Teacher

    Courses: Working with the Director for NYU Practicum

    Christopher Windom (Director/Choreographer) was born and raised in St. Louis, Missouri and is now based in New York City. Christopher has directed and choreographed at The Vineyard Theatre, The Public Theater Mobile Shakespeare Unit, Guthrie Theater, Alabama Shakespeare Festival, Trinity Repertory Company, Signature Theatre, Dallas Theater Center, TheatreWorks in Palo Alto, NYMF, Arrow Rock Lyceum Theatre, Maples Repertory Theatre, and Maine State Music Theatre, as well as NYU, Columbia University and Temple University. He choreographed the first staged production of Frozen: Live at the Hyperion for Disney Resorts. He was the Drama League Fellow Assistant Director for the Broadway production of Pippin, directed by Diane Paulus (HAIR, Waitress, Porgy & Bess). He served as the Associate Director for the national tour of Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat, directed and choreographed by Andy Blankenbuehler (Hamilton, Bandstand). He’s served as assistant director on productions of Ruined directed by Liesl Tommy, (Berkeley Rep, Huntington Theatre, La Jolla Playhouse) and February House directed by Davis McCallum, (Public Theater, Long Wharf Theatre). As a performer Christopher has performed on Broadway and National Tour productions of Fosse and Damn Yankees starring Jerry Lewis. He’s also performed at Paper Mill Playhouse, St. Louis Repertory Theater, STAGES St. Louis, The MUNY, Goodspeed Opera House, Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park and Sacramento Music Circus. He received his MFA from Brown/Trinity Rep, and BFA from Webster University. AWARDS: Dean Goodman Choice Award for Best Choreography, RAGTIME. NYMF, Excellence Award for Choreography, Central Avenue Breakdown. Christopher is a Drama League Fellow and member of SDC.


  • Ted Zurkowski

    Courses: Method Acting, Shakespeare at the Globe, Acting Chekhov

    Ted Zurkowski was made a lifetime member of the Actors Studio by Lee Strasberg where he trained with him. At the Studio he also trained with Elia Kazan, Al Pacino, Harvey Keitel, Shelley Winters and Ellen Burstyn. Ted did his Shakespearean training with Patrick Tucker of the Royal Shakespeare Company. Ted has been an actor, director, producer, screenwriter, as well as a casting associate at MCA/UNIVERSAL where he worked with Bonnie Timmermann. Ted co-founded the Frog & Peach Theatre Company, a New York City-based Shakespeare company with Lynnea Benson, his wife and fellow Actors Studio member, and served as its Artistic Director and Lead Actor. The Company just celebrated its 23rd season. Ted is thrilled to pass on everything he has learned from Lee to his students.