Cunning Folk Productions will offer free acting workshop Sunday | TheUnion.com
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Cunning Folk Productions will offer free acting workshop Sunday

William Paul Smith will present a free actors workshop Sunday at the Center for the Arts’ Off Center Stage. Participants will have an opportunity to meet other actors, join in exercises in movement, memory, expression, and building trust with the group while looking closer at the tools of acting for theater and film.

The seminar will serve as an introduction to ongoing weekly workshops scheduled at the Off Center Stage Sundays and Thursdays.

“First and foremost my method will be to get students up and moving and creating truthful experiences on the stage,” Smith said. “Actor’s learn best by doing. Every student comes to the workshop with different needs, weaknesses and strength. We are prepared to support students in developing their own process for performance so they have the opportunity to grow and discover their talents.”



Students will be introduced to the depths of art history as well as contemporary ways of working. Film scripts and plays will be used for working in class and bridging theater and film. Cunning Folk Productions will create a tight knit and dedicated group and an environment that embraces the deepest work of an actor.

“We will encourage students to take chances to explore their instruments to the fullest, while they learn ways of working that embraces both theater and film. Our workshops are designed to get students familiar with many aspects of film and theater: camera, lighting, costume, make up and hair, staging, props, and performance,” Smith added.




While working in a multi­media based performance environment, the group will be working with the multi­faceted aspects of production. Workshops will be designed for the students who attend, and will bring out the talents of the individuals in the class with the goal of creating a community of artists committed to future collaboration in Nevada County.

As part of the Center’s series, the nonprofit arts organization will offer classes in:

• Movement

• Acting Techniques & Exercises

• Scene Study

• Improvisation

• On Camera Workshops

• Performance and Presence

• Business of Acting; Head shots, agents, auditions, cold reading

A filmmaker, writer and actor, Smith has lived in New York City for the past 10 years, where he attended The School of Visual Arts BFA screenwriting and directing program, and the Columbia University MFA film directing program. During that time, he worked with Dangerous Ground Productions, performing and directing in several Off­ Broadway and Off­ Off­ Broadway shows, including Beware of a Holy Whore, an adaptation of Rainer Werner Fassbinder’s renowned film, and L’Amour Fou an adaptation of Jacques Rivettes 1969 film, according to his bio.

Smith has written and directed several short films, including “Where Frogs Grow,” which is currently being screened in an exhibit at California Institute of the Arts, in collaboration with Nate Cumming’s Native American Project. In 2012, he produced and directed his first feature film, “Labor of Life,” which was shot here in Nevada City. Smith is currently in post­production with his new feature film about the artist Izhar Patkin, in collaboration with Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art (MASS MOCA). He has recently returned to California with his company Cunning Folk Productions, and is offering multi­media workshops for actors and other artists to engage and build community while bridging film and theater.

To reserve at seat for the 6 p.m. Sunday workshop, or for more information, call Smith at 530-559-8045.

The Off Center Stage is located at 315 Richardson St. in Grass Valley.


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