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Vanessa Ballam

The Business of Show

What does it take to book the part? Learn the secrets to success in the audition room and beyond. From research to material, to booking the gig, there is a method for a polished audition. Examine all aspects of a theatrical audition and walk away with your theatrical toolbox overflowing.

Selling A Song

Does musical theatre get a bad rap? Do people really spontaneously break into song and dance? Can anyone succeed in a musical or a musical theatre audition? The answers to all of these questions is YES! The art of musical theatre is a part of our heritage, and a rich heritage to boot. Learn how to succeed in musical theatre with some fine-tuned trying!

Scoring a Scene

Finding the motivation for your character in a play is like finding the holy grail of the theatre for an actor. What is the secret to truthful moment-to-moment acting? Learn the scientific method of breaking down a text to its smallest unit of playable action, and why that will help you onstage. Find out how Constantin Stanislavki changed the face of modern acting technique and why you should care.

State Standards

These presentations meet the following state education standards for high school students:


Anchor Standard 1: Generate and conceptualize artistic ideas and work.

TH:Cr1.1.IIIb Create a complete design for a drama/theatre work that incorporates all elements of technology.


Anchor Standard 2: Organize and develop artistic ideas and work.

TH:Cr2-IIIb Collaborate as a creative team to discover artistic solutions and make interpretive choices in a devised or scripted drama/theatre work.


Anchor Standard 3: Refine and complete artistic work.

TH:Cr3.1.IIIa Refine, transform, and re-imagine a devised or scripted drama/theatre work using the rehearsal process to invent or re-imagine style, genre, form, and conventions.

TH:Cr3.1.IIIc Apply a high level of technical proficiencies to the rehearsal process to support the story and emotional impact of a devised or scripted drama/theatre work.


Anchor Standard 5: Develop and refine artistic techniques and work for presentation.

TH:Pr5.1.IIIa Use and justify a collection of acting exercises from reliable resources to prepare a believable and sustainable performance.

TH:Pr5.1.IIIb Explain and justify the selection of technical elements used to build a design that communicates the concept of a drama/theatre production.