November 29, 2006
Andreas Manolikakis, Chair, Actors Studio MFA Program at Pace University, and member of the Acting and Directing Faculty; and Dr. Bill Coco, Director, Theater History Department, and member of the Theater History and History of Directing Faculty, 12-1-06
The Actors Studio MFA was born of the decision to train students carefully selected for their talent and potential in the system practiced at the Studio. Over three years in a full-time program, all MFA candidates study and practice together—beginning at the same place as they learn a shared “language” and technique. On parallel tracks to that “ensemble” experience, every student, actor, director, writer, is undergoing intensive—and intense—training in his or her own discipline, at the hands of one of the most distinguished acting, directing and writing faculties ever assembled.
From the beginning, all students participate in Craft Seminars, where the most accomplished members of the Actors Studio share their knowledge and experiences. Many of the Actors Studio artists also teach in intensive Friday Workshop sessions. While the Actors Studio is a private space, accessible only to members, MFA candidates have the rare privilege of attending a number of the Studio’s closed-door sessions as observers. Each year, on from 14 to 20 occasions, the program's students spend an evening with some of the world's most distinguished creative and performing artists in the Inside the Actors Studio seminars.
Andreas Manolikakis was chair of the Directing Department at the Actors Studio Drama School, where he taught acting and directing from 1995 to 2005. He has taught workshops in acting, directing, and script analysis in Athens, Berlin, and Paris (at the French National Film School LA FEMIS; the Conservatoire National Superieur d’Art Dramatique; and at L’Escalier 4). He has translated into Greek and published in Athens in 1997 Nikolai Gorchakov’s Russian classic The Vakhtangov School of Stage Art, which became a required text for the Theatre Department of the University of Athens.
Mr. Manolikakis has also given lectures on “Stanislavski and Vakhtangov,” “The Actors Studio,” “Method Acting and Greek Tragedy”, and “Method Acting and Directing” at L’Escalier 4 in Paris; the University of Athens; the National Theater and the University of Northern Greece; the Drama School of the National Theater of Greece; and the National Organization of Theater Studies in Athens. As a director and as an actor, he has worked in the United States and Europe. Among his directing highlights are: Porte Close, by N. Darmon, at the National Theatre of East Paris; Elektra, by Sophocles, at the Actors Studio; Liliom, by F. Molnar, in Athens. Among his acting highlights: on Broadway opposite Sir Derek Jacobi in Hugh Whitemore’s Breaking the Code; and a leading role in the feature film Ice House, opposite Melissa Gilbert. He directed and acted in numerous plays from the Greek and international repertoire for the New Hellenic Stage of New York, which he founded in 1983. He is also the author of The Classmates, a 13-episode television series produced by the National Greek Television ET3.
Mr. Manolikakis holds a B.A. in acting from the Greek Art Theatre Drama School in Athens, founded by Karolos Koun, and an M.F.A. in theater from the University of Paris VIII-Vincennes. He also studied with Marcel Marceau at his International School of Mime in Paris. At the Actors Studio, he is a Lifetime Member and a member of the Board of Directors.
A dramaturge, translator, magazine and book editor, and teacher, Dr. Bill Coco was principal dramaturge for the late director Joseph Chaikin on 15 productions for the stage, radio, and audio-recording. His has written for The Drama Review (TDR), Performance, Scripts, Theater Journal, and Performing Arts Journal (PAJ). He was associate editor of TDR and a founding editor of Performance and Scripts, which were published by Joseph Papp at the New York Shakespeare Festival Public Theater. He was also contributing editor for PAJ and the Yale School of Drama’s Theater. His translations include Sophocles' Elektra, produced at the Actors Studio, and Strindberg's Dance of Death (cotranslated with Peter Stormare) at Arena Stage in Washington, D.C.
Dr. Coco’s productions with Mr. Chaikin include premieres and performances of plays by Jean-Claude van Itallie, Sam Shepard, Adrienne Kennedy, Moliere, Ionesco, and four plays by Beckett, at venues including the NYSF Public Theater, Signature Theater (Shepard and Kennedy seasons), the Mark Taper Forum in L.A., and the Juilliard School. He coedited, with Gloria Brim Beckerman, Bernard Beckerman's posthumous book Theatrical Presentation: Performer, Audience and Act. Also, he dramaturged the Shepard-Chaikin collaboration When the World Was Green, which toured Moscow as the first American company to play guest performances at the Moscow Art Theater. Dr. Coco holds an M.F.A. and a Ph.D. from Columbia University and has taught at Columbia, New York University, and, most recently, at the Actors Studio Drama School from 1995 to 2005.
Posted by David Lemberg at November 29, 2006 09:03 AM Return to ARTSCAPE home page