Classes at CVRep’s Conservatory were interrupted in March amid the coronavirus pandemic. Coachella Valley Repertory has announced that classes will resume in August, offered in a 100% virtual environment. The same instructors who’ve taught at CVRep for past classes will begin teaching via Zoom.
Said Artistic Director Ron Celona, “Students are always reaching out to me, asking when classes will resume. Education has always been an integral element of CVRep’s offerings and it is vital that we keep education at the forefront. It’s part of our mission. We’ve relied on Zoom to connect with our patrons and offer our weekly “Theatre Thursdays” events. Now we’ll take it one step further and offer all of our classes via Zoom.”
Information on upcoming classes can be found on the website. To sign up for any of these online classes please visit www.cvrep.org.
AUGUST ONLINE CLASSES
The Joy of Singing – Aug 4,6,11,13,18 and 20
Instructor: Susan Benkin
“The Joy of Singing” will help students find their true voice with vocal technique tips and tricks. Each student will learn the basics of healthy singing and have the opportunity to work on a song of their choice by performing it in a class setting. All types of singers and genres are welcome. Class is open to all ages. Class meets Tuesday and Thursday from 3pm to 4:30pm for 3 weeks.
Acting Without Limits – August 17, 19, 24,26, 31 and Sep 2
Instructor: Jeanette Knight
By enrolling in “Acting Without Limits,” students will be able to break through limiting barriers of confidence and the need to be “right” and discover how to bring their own uniqueness to the roles they tackle. This course will help participants refine their physicality, vocal technique, concentration, emotional availability and spontaneity by utilizing the teachings of Stanislavsky and Meisner. Students will apply these skills to perform a scripted monologue, scene or play as part of a culminating online performance. For ages 18+ (students 14-17 will be accepted based on online audition). Class meets Monday and Wednesday from 4pm to 5:30pm for 3 weeks.
The Art of Storytelling – Aug 18, 25, Sep 1, 8, 15 and 22
Instructor: Francesca Amari
“The Art of Storytelling” is a course that will teach students the art and technique of telling and creating stories. Participants will be enriched in a safe, fun atmosphere to share their stories, hone storytelling technique and even explore improvised storytelling, using theatre games, reader’s theatre and story prompts. Class will meet Tuesday from 4:30pm to 6pm for 6 weeks.
Creative Drama For Kids Ages 8-14 – Aug 21, 28, Sep 4, 11, 18 and 25
Instructor: Francesca Amari
“Creative Drama For Kids” is a 6-week online class for ages 8-14. This course will include fundamentals of acting using theatre games, warm-ups, improvisation, storytelling and more. Pupils will focus on improving communication skills, basic acting skills and confidence, with a focus on monologues and two-person scenes. Friends and family are invited to watch a final performance showcased via Zoom.
Improv For Performance – Aug 21, 28, Sep 4, 11, 18 and 25
Instructor: Jeanette Knight
“Improv For Performance” is designed for the experienced improviser. This course will culminate in an interactive online improv show where students perform based on suggestions from viewers. Emphasis will be on relationships and their dynamics, truthful emotions and reactions, object work and heightening the stakes in improvised scene work. For ages 18+ (students 14-17 will be accepted based on an online audition).
SUSAN BENKIN has had a 25 year long performing career in almost every possible genre of music, beginning with a rock band as a teenager and moving on to a stage career with over 1,000 performances of operas, operettas and musicals. In addition to her American debut at Cincinnati Opera and her debut at the Bavarian State Opera in Munich, Germany, Susan was also first cast Jenny-any-Dots in the Hamburg, Germany production of CATS, and participated in several world premieres of modern operas. She has taught voice privately in Europe and the US, and was on the voice faculty at AMDA LA for 7 years and has a BM, BME, MM, and Opera Diploma. Susan currently has a diverse teaching week here in the Coachella valley, working with several programs at Rancho Mirage HS coaching classical and musical theater singers, as well as working with AMP as a vocal/performance coach for rock bands.
JEANETTE KNIGHT As founder of the improv troupe, Joe and Mustard, and 3rd Sunday Improv at the Palm Canyon Theatre, Jeanette Knight helped develop an improv community in the Palm Springs resort cities area. In 2017, she was named “Most Inspirational” by the Desert Theatre League. She conceived of and carried out the first ever Coachella Valley Improv/Comedy Festival at the Indio Performing Arts Center. The festival moved to the high desert as the Joshua Tree Improv/Comedy Festival for three years, and now, in its most significant chapter, takes up residence at Coachella Valley Repertory May 29, 30 & 31. Jeanette has been part of the theatre faculty at the Idyllwild Arts Academy for the last twelve years.
FRANCESCA AMARI Recently nominated as Best Jazz Vocalist in the 2018 Coachella Valley Music Awards, Francesca Amari is an award-winning, versatile singer who has performed at top-rated cabaret clubs from New York to Hollywood, including Birdland Jazz Club, the Metropolitan Room and the 92nd Street Y in NYC and The Gardenia, Catalina Jazz Club, The Mbar, Rockwell Table and the E Spot in Hollywood; & Martinis Above Fourth in San Diego and The Purple Room in Palm Springs; earning rave reviews for her entertaining cabaret shows. She’s toured the country with her critically-acclaimed Gilda Radner tribute since 2011; locally, performs weekly at the COPA Nightclub with The Mod Squad Variety Show. She appears regularly at such top Coachella Valley spots as Melvyn’s, PS Underground and Woody’s. Francesca also directs audiobooks and has been teaching and directing children’s theatre for 30 years.