WHO WE ARE
Our teachers make the commute so YOU don't have to. All ASOOC teachers are working actors from Los Angeles. They make the commute to teach classes, because they are passionate about teaching and love the quality of our students. All teachers have high degrees in acting and teaching.
WHAT WE OFFER
The Actor’s Studio of Orange County offers creative and challenging classes, private coaching, mentoring, workshops, and intensives.
Through its innovative approach to training actors, the Actor's Studio of Orange County provide the community not only with an artistic gym for actors to transform through art but also provides the Los Angeles industry with a fresh and creative resource.
The studio’s goal is to put Orange County actors on the map by catapulting students toward achievement of their creative and career goals. Both our adult and teen divisions thrive because they are learning a challenging technique that stands the test of time.
Our students gain confidence in their communication and collaboration skills, learn to access their emotions and imaginative life, discover the path toward character transformation, act with ease and authenticity and are equipped and motivated to pursue acting as a profession or apply it to their professional and personal lives. ASOOC students are held to the highest professional standard and, should they choose to pursue it, receive recognition for their talents and commitment by booking TV/film/theatre and commercial venues as well as by creating their own creative opportunities.
WHAT WE BELIEVE
Acting is living truthfully under imaginary circumstances.
To act is to transform with ease and authenticity.
WHO WE SERVE
It matters not how old or young you are, what your experience is, what your life has been like. This school meets you where YOU are and helps you to grow to your potential and beyond. We serve adults and teens who desire to study the craft of acting and explore their own humanity through this awesome art form. We appeal to the longing for technique that will help the individual to reach his or her professional goals and dreams. We also service business professionals and non-actors who are seeking a creative outlet and new way to express themselves. We are an all-inclusive community that welcomes actors of all backgrounds, ethnicities, gender identities, sexual orientation, age, and religions.
SOMETHING FOR EVERYONE
We service actors and non-actors alike of all ages. Our teen curriculums are modeled on the level of skill and professionalism that we offer in our adult classes. Also designed for teens, The Actor's Studio of Orange County is vendor for Inspire Charter Schools. Students, no matter what brings them in the door, all receive high quality training. All in all, the training is comprehensive, personal, and professional.
What Sets Us Apart from Other OC Studios
We are the top studio for adult actors; our youngest classes are for teens, and we treat and train them like our adults.
We are the premier studio for film/television training in the OC.
We teach a specific, advanced, and modern technique. Most other schools do not have clear messaging about what is taught in their classes. The technique, Seven Pillars Acting, originated at this studio. Now, it is taught across the country and is spreading to actors and professionals around the globe.
Our teachers are not only working actors, they also have masters degrees in acting. That means you are being trained by teachers who not only know how to act, but also know how to TEACH.
Integrity is most important to us, and we aim to ensure the safety and respect deserved of our community. There are some studios in the OC that promise or guarantee getting you an agent or casting you in films to promote you to their classes. It's called "Pay to Play", which is nonethical, illegal, and preys on the dreams of novice actors and those unfamiliar with the industry.Our studio EDUCATES our students on what programs and institutions are trust-worthy, as we (faculty and staff) had our days of susceptibility to predatory services. Bottom line: if it sounds too good to be true, you are right. Owner Sonya Cooke personally mentors students who come to her with questions about the legitimacy of casting opportunities. She vets them for her students and guides them to make good decisions for themselves.
WHAT WE TEACH
Seven Pillars Acting is a comprehensive technique for the modern actor. These seven essential tools come from the great acting teachers of the 20th century: Stanislavsky, Adler, Meisner, Declan Donnellan, and Grotowski namely. They are synthesized into one process, giving the actor a clear path to total transformation in a role. They emphasize authenticity, listening, imagination and curiosity. Developed and authored by our owner, Sonya Cooke, Seven Pillars Acting is adaptable to the individual actor, helping to unlock his or her natural talents. In the beginning level classes, an individual Pillar is instructed and experimented with using scenes and monologues a month at a time. The Pillars are taught sequentially, but the student can enter into to the learning process from any Pillar and go deeper with each new Pillar. All these Pillars ultimately are activated in an actor's performance. We break it down in our beginning level classes so the student learns how to isolate and master an individual Pillar, each with its own tools and principles. In the intermediate and advanced levels, students work on scene study to apply the Pillars and activate them simultaneously.
WHAT ARE THE SEVEN PILLARS?
Your relationship with the other, the quality of your listening, being in the moment and on the breath of the scene, opening up to vulnerability;
Learning the specific breakdown of what is happening TO the character, an elaborate process of understanding the world of the story;
What the circumstances emotionally mean to the character, identifying the core differences between actor and character;
4. Emotional Life
Bridging the emotional gap between oneself and the part; learning how to open up imaginatively and emotionally; programming the circumstances with emotion;
The craft of scoring the wants and needs of the character, understanding motivation and will;
What the actor DOES with the objectives, how to play an action on text;
7) Physical Life
How the body and voice influence, inspire and open up the actor's imagination and performance. We have seen the Pillars help the actor get out of his head and into the imaginative world of the character. Our ultimate goal is to transform into character with ease and authenticity.
ASOOC’s COMMITMENT TO SUCCESS
In order to ensure success, we get to know our students, track students’ goals, and do everything in our power to help them to achieve them. Our students’ successes are shared with the community through social networking and our website, making it a community crusade to help each other reach dreams and manifest success. Some of our classes are by audition only and, therefore, encourage growth and commitment. Public showcases mark the graduation of ready students to the next level of education.
WE ENCOURAGE ALL OF OUR STUDENTS TO WORK THE MINUTE THEY BEGIN TRAINING WITH US.
In order to help them, all students in their 2nd consecutive semester have free career mentorship available to them through the head of the studio, Sonya. Through emails, texts, phone class and meetings before and after class, students are encouraged to ask questions and set goals with Sonya.
Any person who refers a friend to the studio and they enroll in a 8-12 week class will receive $20 off their next class.
The Actor’s Studio opened in 2007 under the leadership of Ken Garcia, who was the main instructor for five years before tragically passing away. An incredible testament to his teaching and the community he created, the studio stayed busy, providing Beginning, Intermediate, and Advanced Acting classes, as well as a Kids and Teens class on the weekends. The studio underwent another major shift as Sonya Cooke stepped up as owner and head teacher in the Fall of 2013. Six years later, the school has quadrupled in size. The studio is unparalleled in the region as the only professional school for film acting for adults and teens.
In 2019, Sonya was given the opportunity to expand the studio even more and bring her technique and the core curriculum of ASoOC, Seven Pillars Acting, to higher education by becoming the Head of Undergraduate Acting at Louisiana State University. With this incredible opportunity brings an exciting new chapter in the studio's history. She continues to run and own the studio remotely, which would not be possible without the great leadership and commitment to studio from its faculty and staff.
Currently, as the world adjusts to a pandemic, the studio is still open. It was quick to move classes online, and today, training is as vibrant as ever. Classes are now back in person!