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Acting Movement Technique Courses

Located in the heart of Hollywood, the Theatre of Arts drama conservatory offers a full slate of acting movement technique classes to all students enrolled in our accredited two-year acting degree program. Interested in pursuing an acting career? We invite you to apply or request free information today.


Movement I: Fundamentals of Movement

MF101, Year One, (2 Credits)


This course introduces students to body awareness, physical intention, and the development of character movement using a number of methodologies and class exercises. Through a sequence of practical classes, students are presented with the opportunity to explore their resources for controlled, free and expressive movement. Basic movement skills such as strength, stamina, flexibility, coordination, agility, economy of effort and movement flow will be covered. The classes will also require students to employ  physical resources in effective communication, and will guide them to broaden expressive range and connection of imagination in character work for stage, film and television.

Course Learning Outcomes:

Upon completion of this course, students should demonstrate:

  • Sustaining concentration and consistency of effort in physical work 

  • Basic movement skills

  • Opening of expressive range and understanding the relationship of this to stage character

  • Ability to play and connect physicality to image with spontaneity and truth

  • Awareness of spatial relationships and the physical space


Movement II  

MF110, Year One (2 Credits)

This course continues and deepens the exploration of body awareness, physicality, and development of character through the methodologies and exercises acquired in Movement Fundamentals. This review will refine and expand upon these fundamentals to prepare for mask work, mimicry, and discovery through gesture. The student will be challenged to build a character by bringing the observed world into their physicality, explore meaning through form and shape, and experience transformation into character through mask work. The student will have the opportunity to explore a variety of emotional expressions to broaden performance range. The class will engage in imaginative work with text, music, and improvisation to create freedom within rehearsal and the ability to focus for performance. The goal is to broaden and deepen the actor’s interpretation of the emotional and physical life of the characters within a dramatic story. Emphasis will be placed on how mask work, gesture, and observation can influence the actor in the ability to transform into a character.


Prerequisites: Movement I


Course Learning Outcomes:


Upon completion of this course, students should demonstrate:

  • A greater understanding of how these exercises, skills, and techniques can be used in concert with tools acquired from other classes 

  • To experience the mask as an agent for psychophysical release

  • To acknowledge and release “the cast of characters” within

  • To be able to develop an appropriate psychophysical existence for each character created

  • An understanding that characters, like masks, demand total commitment to make them come alive

  • To discover that the external world is rich with potential resources for the imaginative actor creator

  • Effective, economical and appropriate use the total body-mind to communicate

  • The ability to discover one’s own idiosyncrasies and habitual movement patterns so that they can be employed or eliminated in developing a characterization

  • To recognize the limiting effect of habitual psychological choices and patterns of behavior so they will NOT be projected onto every performance

  • The ability to communicate a truthful physical manifestation of the character’s inner state of being through external actions

  • To develop free, imaginative, specific and effective means of expression and communication through rehearsal and performance


Movement III: Intro to Performance Capture

MT201, Year Two (2 Credits)


Introduction to Motion Capture Performance class is a rehearsal course designed to give the student an overview of the actor’s job on a motion capture set. The class continues to develop the concepts learned in Movement and Combat classes. The class begins with creature work and character creation. Students will then be introduced to the concepts of video game performance capture, terminology in Kinematics work and In-game technical skills that prepare the actor for work in all the areas of performance capture. The class will culminate in scene work focusing on elements of physical listening and character believably. Throughout the course, the student is exposed to the business of motion capture, effectively learning the secrets to getting cast in this exciting new field of performance.


Prerequisite(s): Movement I, Movement II


Course Learning Outcomes:

Upon completion of this course, students should demonstrate:


  • Knowledge of the terminology and techniques for successful performance capture creation

  • The skills necessary to perform in any volume at any motion capture studio

  • Knowledge of the professional and unique relationships required between actors and animators.

  • An understanding on how to form a believable creature in an imaginative way

  • Awareness of the rigorous challenges of controlling body movements precisely for a motion capture environment 

  • Demonstrate readiness to work in the motion capture industry

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