Theatre Arts

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History of Western Theatre

Monday, March 11th-June 24th at 9am EST

(meets for 1 hour once a week)

Alternate Dates:

Monday, September 9th 2019-January 20th, 2020 (December Break)

9am-10am EST

$240 per student

6 students maximum, minimum 3 students to run

Ages 14-17 (some plays have mature content)

In this sweeping 16 week class, we will be studying some of the most important periods in the history of western theatre by examining play texts, in-class performances, reading theatre criticism, and studying the authors and historical contexts of each play. Students will be introduced to performance theory throughout-touching on some of the most important developments in the field as we explore theatre history- from Greek Drama to contemporary American and British playwrights.

We will be covering:

Week 1: Origins of the Theatre 

Weeks 2&3: Greek and Roman Theatre 

Week 4: The Middle Ages and the Passion Play

Week 5: Elizabethan Drama-Shakespeare and his Contemporaries 

Week 6: Commedia Dell’arte

Week 7: Moliere and the Comedie Francaise

Week 8: American Theatre 1900-1930 

Week 9: American Theatre Post World War II

Week 10: Absurdist Theatre 

Week 11: Contemporary British Playwrights

Week 12: Contemporary American Playwrights, Part 1 

Week 13: Contemporary American Playwrights, Part 2

Week 14: Contemporary American Playwrights, Part 3 

Week 15: Theatre of The Oppressed: Augusto Boal and Applied Theatre

Week 16: Reflections

By the end of this class, students will have an extensive knowledge of the Western theatrical cannon and will be well-versed in the most important aspects of performance theory. 


The Monologue

Group and Solo Acting Classes

Group Class: $40 per student

Solo Class: $60 per student

Group Classes have a maximum of two students

Ages 10+

These classes will be focused on the art of the monologue. Young actors will be assigned a monologue to work on over the course of four weeks, with exercises throughout to deepen character, perspective, physicality, and dramaturgical research. By the end of the class, each student will have a personalized, polished monologue that they can use in a professional audition setting. 

Interested in a longer acting class for one student? Laurabeth also offers an individualized acting course. Click Here to register.



Playing Shakespeare: A Young Actor's Guide 

Tuesday, March 14th-April 16th (meets for 1 hour once a week)

$60 per student

6 students maximum, minimum 2 students to run

Ages 10+

In this six-week course designed for absolute beginners, we will explore Shakespeare's usage of iambic pentameter, colorful imagery, and punctuation to convey meaning throughout his work. We will use Shakespeare's sonnets as well as excerpts from his plays for analysis. Handouts and reading materials will be provided. By the end of this course, students will be able to read, analyze, and perform Shakespeare with confidence!

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Shakespeare II: Greatest Works

Wednesday, September 11th 2019- February 27th, 2020 (December Break)

(meets for 1 hour once a week)

$270 per student

6 students maximum, minimum 3 students to run

Ages 10+

This course is for students who have taken "Shakespeare: A Young Actor's Guide" or for students who have previous experience reading, analyzing, and performing Shakespeare. 

In this sweeping course students will study some of Shakespeare's most famous plays-from an actor’s perspective! This is how The Bard intended it- his plays are meant to be heard, not read quietly in a small vacuum! We will read the material out loud in class each week.

Students will be assigned a scene or a monologue from the play unit they are studying and will perform their scenes/monologues in class at the end of each unit.

Plays vary according to term: 

 Spring Term: Romeo and Juliet, Hamlet, Macbeth, The Tempest

 Fall Term: Julius Caesar, Othello, A Midsummer Night's Dreame, Antony and Cleopatra 

By the end of this class students will not only have a working knowledge of Shakespeare’s greatest works, but will have experience performing in each of them!


Laurabeth Rapaz teaches all of the Theatre Arts courses here on MTC.


About Laurabeth:

Laurabeth Rapaz, our Founder,  is an educator born and raised in New York City. She graduated from Brown University in 2006 with a B.A. in Theatre Arts. In 2012 she earned her M.A. in Applied Theatre from the City University of New York's Applied Theatre Program. She also spent 15 years as a professional actress in New York City (if you'd like to learn more about her acting credentials, click here). As an acting teacher she is dedicated to helping participants bring spontaneity, fun, risk, and most importantly, truth to their creative work. Laurabeth is also a professional puppeteer and toured with Lincoln Center Theater and the National Theatre of Great Britain’s Broadway production of War Horse, playing the foal, Baby Joey.