“Diving into the Deep”

Amparo de GataGabriela Bonomo on the Freedom to Act [Portuguese with English subtitles]

“When we are satisfied with being half-filled with the objective, half-radiating the atmosphere, half-guessing the gesture, we are on the wrong path because we are only half-creators, half-actors, we are half-strong or half-weak, and this is what we must overcome. That is the reason why we have our school; to get something to the fullest extent.”  Michael Chekhov (1938)

The Course
In this course actors can deepen their prior experience of the Michael Chekhov Technique and develop their sense of ownership while working on individual material.This three-week progressive journey builds on each actor’s previous foundation and supports their individual development and mastery of this work.

A Program for Actors
For the practitioner with some fundamental knowledge of Michael Chekhov’s approach to acting. If you question whether your particular background provides you with a sufficient foundation for this course, please contact us.

When & Where
Hudson is accessible by train (Amtrak); the closest airports are Albany (NY) and all NYC airports.


Course Description
Week 1-3
We will build the specific content of this course around all participating actors. As part of your application process we invite you to express the area of the technique you feel you need to focus on to progress in this work. In addition, we will work every day on strengthening each actor’s foundation through seeking to incorporate the FULL BODY experience, the true depth of PSYCHO-PHYSICAL, the actuality of GESTURE and the experience of SENSATION.

Extra Weekend (optional)
During an optional extra weekend, we work ON CAMERA with scenes. Bringing MICHAEL CHEKHOV’S APPROACH to this work, supports each actor in meeting the challenge to live & perform genuinely in front of the camera.  All your material will be shot by camera-man Mathias Magnason, FILMMAKER and former participant at the Michael Chekhov School. During this extension-week we will work both, in the studio and on location in Hudson.

With Dominik Bopp, Dorothea Barth-Jørgensen, Marina Kraitor. (Diving Into the Deep, 2018)

Our core faculty includes Ted Pugh, Fern Sloan & Ragnar Freidank. Ted & Fern are bringing their experience of more than 40 years with the Michael Chekhov work to this course. Ragnar is an award-winning filmmaker and co-director of the acclaimed DVD series Master Classes in the Michael Chekhov TechniqueAdditional faculty include the last living direct student of Michael Chekhov Joanna Merlin, plus other guests. All of our faculty are teachers for MICHA, the Michael Chekhov Association. For more information on our faculty, please visit our ‘faculty’ page.

“If one is intrigued by, finds joy in, and is dedicated to the concept of transformation, how does one actually go about realizing this transformation?  The ability to transform is not something one can take for granted.  One must hone the creative imagination and seek to find pathways into the physical/soul configuration necessary to enable it to respond to any and all suggestions which may present themselves.  Thus it is necessary for the actor/artist to seek with undying determination the ability to develop the fullness within of what the human being is capable of experiencing. Does this require a disciplined practice?” Fern Sloan

“The work of Michael Chekhov is not just a matter of knowing the exercises, but of experiencing them on a deeper level through repetition and practice, to own them, to imbue your actor’s nature and organism with content and capacities that can carry your abilities and talent into the realm of art. To have the tenacity and discipline required to make this work your own.” Ted Pugh

“There is a power in what we might feel is lacking. And when we feel that something is lacking there might be a pain that comes with that. It is understandable that we may want to fill the pain and talk the occurrence away from our heart. The suggestion I am making is to lean into the experience we are having. We may find that technique can be helpful in giving this experience a space in us. Instead of using technique for being “professional” and pushing our experience away, we are using technique to identify our experience and to work with it.” Ragnar Freidank

For the duration of the course affordable housing is available at Barry Butterfield’s B&B in Hudson, walking distance from our work-space. A limited number of shared and single rooms are available; please inquire for details. Alternatively, actors may wish to arrange their own housing through airbnb, etc. When booking your own accommodations, we recommend you choose a place within walking distance to 360 Warren Street in Hudson, NY.

More Information
If you have additional questions; or you would like more information, please contact us. We look forward to hearing from you.

With Margot FenleyCraig Mathers(Diving Into the Deep, 2018)