Alumni News: Jason Tottenham on Nightcap

This season, Jason Tottenham (“House of Cards,” “Quantico”) joins the cast as Davis, a cool, unflappable talent consultant and “fresh pair of eyes” brought in by the network to help Staci bring “Nightcap with Jimmy” to the next level. (Read more: theFutonCritic)

jason-tottenham-nightcap-season-2

Studio Alumni – Jason Tottenham, Nightcap Season 2

“Nightcap” is a sturdy little comedy that owes a little, if not a lot, to NBC’s “30 Rock.” “Nightcap’s” Liz Lemon is harried talent booker Staci, played by star and executive producer Ali Wentworth. The show Staci produces — also called “Nightcap” — is a talk show hosted by “racist homophobe” Jimmy, a generically named and never-seen figure that consumes all of Staci’s time and sanity.

Although there is a bit of familiarity to “Nightcap’s” premise, it’s at least a fun one to work with. And there are significant differences: While Staci, like Liz, is surrounded by a motley crew of helpers, Staci’s oddballs are a bit more worryingly damaged than those of “30 Rock.” (One, played by Don Fanelli, might in fact be a dog.) Further, while “30 Rock” made the most of its conservative corporate higher-up boss-man, “Nightcap” removes Jimmy entirely from view, turning him into the Maris of this sitcom — making all the rest of the characters together into one hapless Niles.

jason-tottenham-nightcap-season-2B

And instead of punch line humor, “Nightcap” runs a bit darker and meaner. (Even Jimmy’s name is an elbow to the ribs of the late-night industry, which seems dominated by men with that name.) The show is aided in delivering sketch comedy beats by a surprisingly deep bench of stars willing to show up to play (and skewer) themselves. The first episode, “Babymaker,” features Sarah Jessica Parker — who pretends to not recognize Wentworth, who she knew from Poughkeepsie summer drama camp, until things take a surprising turn in the third act. Real-life couple Kelly Ripa and Mark Consuelos, star as well, interviewing incompetent employee Penny (Lauren Blumenfeld) to see if she will be their surrogate. (“We’re not here to judge,” Consuelos says soothingly, when Penny discusses her sex life. Ripa turns to him in irritation. “That’s exactly what we’re here to do. We’re here to judge.”) Upcoming guests include Gwyneth Paltrow, Denis Leary, Michael J. Fox, Whoopi Goldberg, Jason Biggs, and Wendy Williams.

The talent willing to show up on “Nightcap” is a testament to Wentworth’s long career in the industry, where she is known in both performance and political spheres. For a comedian who isn’t a household name, she carries the show with the confidence of a star; Wentworth’s remarkably at ease at the center of the show about celebrity, delivering a combination of world-weary resignation and overzealous star-f–cking that are two sides of the same self-loathing coin.

“Nightcap” is surprisingly quick and sharp, with a strong sense of comedic timing and the layered humor of a sitcom episode. It’s a little fuzzy in places — there’s a slightly casual quality to the editing that would better serve a mockumentary-style comedy, and it’s hard not to miss Wentworth when she’s not on-screen. But with recognizable guest stars, commitment to madcap gags, and short-running episodes — just 20 minutes, with the credits — “Nightcap” is lightweight, rewarding, and extremely watchable comedy.

This article first appeared here: http://variety.com/2016/tv/reviews/tv-review-nightcap-pop-ali-wentworth-1201918886/

The following article Alumni News: Jason Tottenham on Nightcap was first published to Maggie Flanigan Two Year Acting Program Read more on: http://maggieflaniganstudio.com/

Alumni News: Jason Tottenham on Nightcap

jason-tottenham-nightcap-season-2

This season, Jason Tottenham (“House of Cards,” “Quantico”) joins the cast as Davis, a cool, unflappable talent consultant and “fresh pair of eyes” brought in by the network to help Staci bring “Nightcap with Jimmy” to the next level. (Read more: theFutonCritic)

jason-tottenham-nightcap-season-2

Studio Alumni – Jason Tottenham, Nightcap Season 2

“Nightcap” is a sturdy little comedy that owes a little, if not a lot, to NBC’s “30 Rock.” “Nightcap’s” Liz Lemon is harried talent booker Staci, played by star and executive producer Ali Wentworth. The show Staci produces — also called “Nightcap” — is a talk show hosted by “racist homophobe” Jimmy, a generically named and never-seen figure that consumes all of Staci’s time and sanity.

Although there is a bit of familiarity to “Nightcap’s” premise, it’s at least a fun one to work with. And there are significant differences: While Staci, like Liz, is surrounded by a motley crew of helpers, Staci’s oddballs are a bit more worryingly damaged than those of “30 Rock.” (One, played by Don Fanelli, might in fact be a dog.) Further, while “30 Rock” made the most of its conservative corporate higher-up boss-man, “Nightcap” removes Jimmy entirely from view, turning him into the Maris of this sitcom — making all the rest of the characters together into one hapless Niles.

jason-tottenham-nightcap-season-2B

And instead of punch line humor, “Nightcap” runs a bit darker and meaner. (Even Jimmy’s name is an elbow to the ribs of the late-night industry, which seems dominated by men with that name.) The show is aided in delivering sketch comedy beats by a surprisingly deep bench of stars willing to show up to play (and skewer) themselves. The first episode, “Babymaker,” features Sarah Jessica Parker — who pretends to not recognize Wentworth, who she knew from Poughkeepsie summer drama camp, until things take a surprising turn in the third act. Real-life couple Kelly Ripa and Mark Consuelos, star as well, interviewing incompetent employee Penny (Lauren Blumenfeld) to see if she will be their surrogate. (“We’re not here to judge,” Consuelos says soothingly, when Penny discusses her sex life. Ripa turns to him in irritation. “That’s exactly what we’re here to do. We’re here to judge.”) Upcoming guests include Gwyneth Paltrow, Denis Leary, Michael J. Fox, Whoopi Goldberg, Jason Biggs, and Wendy Williams.

The talent willing to show up on “Nightcap” is a testament to Wentworth’s long career in the industry, where she is known in both performance and political spheres. For a comedian who isn’t a household name, she carries the show with the confidence of a star; Wentworth’s remarkably at ease at the center of the show about celebrity, delivering a combination of world-weary resignation and overzealous star-f–cking that are two sides of the same self-loathing coin.

“Nightcap” is surprisingly quick and sharp, with a strong sense of comedic timing and the layered humor of a sitcom episode. It’s a little fuzzy in places — there’s a slightly casual quality to the editing that would better serve a mockumentary-style comedy, and it’s hard not to miss Wentworth when she’s not on-screen. But with recognizable guest stars, commitment to madcap gags, and short-running episodes — just 20 minutes, with the credits — “Nightcap” is lightweight, rewarding, and extremely watchable comedy.

This article first appeared here: http://variety.com/2016/tv/reviews/tv-review-nightcap-pop-ali-wentworth-1201918886/

The post Alumni News: Jason Tottenham on Nightcap appeared first on Meisner Acting | The Maggie Flanigan Studio New York NY | Call 917-789-1599.

Two Year Acting Program – Sietzka Wiersma Talks About Year One

The Maggie Flanigan Studio is an acting studio in New York City that provides the best two year acting program in NYC, a professional actor training program founded on the principles of the Meisner Technique. In this video interview Sietzka talks about the standards at the studio and her first year in the two year acting program.

best two year acting program SIETZKA 06

Best Two Year Acting Program in NYC | Sietzka Wiersma Interview | 917-789-1599

Sietzka, compared to other places you may have studied, what is different about the students here at Maggie Flanigan Studio?

There is an incredible amount of diversity among the students here. We have all kinds of backgrounds, all kinds of professional acting experiences. We have different ages with different walks of life. People who’ve had careers and then people who have not thought about acting until nine months ago. It’s wonderful to be in a room with this diversity and on a level playing field at the same time.

A few students who you began the first year with are no longer here. What does that say to you about Maggie Flanigan Studio and the passion and dedication it takes to be a serious actor?

Oh man, okay. It takes incredible passion and incredible dedication. This work is too difficult to do if you do not love it. It’s too much energy. It’s too much time. It’s too much money. You need to love it. You need to want it. Every single day you need to be able to fail and still want to go after it again and again and again.
[post_author]

The training at the studio is very intense and deeply personal. What has it been like to watch your classmates grow as your first year has ended?

Watching my classmates grow is probably the most profound, remarkable thing about being in this program. It’s difficult to see that kind of growth in yourself. So, to be able to have all these classmates that you can see the growth in a little bit more quickly is a nice reflection onto yourself as well. That, yes, I’m different than I was in September. I have grown. I have taken these leaps and these strides.

How have your classmates inspired your work?

This idea of permission comes up a lot in the Meisner technique. I think I’m finally starting to understand that through the inspiration that I get from my classmates. There will be a class where someone does something that scares them, is daring. That inspires me to do something daring myself and to push myself to limits that I didn’t even know existed perhaps the class before.

To get through the first year with Charlie, how important does acting need to be to you?

It needs to be the most important. Not only does acting and becoming an actor need to be important to you, becoming an artist but you need to want to be changed as a human being, fundamentally. That requires an extraordinary amount of trust, not only in yourself but your classmates, in the teachers, in the process, and of course, in Charlie.

two year acting program SIETZKA 05

The Best Two Year Acting Program NYC | Sietzka Wiersma Interview | 917-789-1599

What is Charlie Sandlan like as a teacher?

He’s the best. I’m not just saying that. He’s incredibly perceptive. I think that he does a very good job of teaching the student particularly. Your notes might not be the same as someone else’s notes and for a good reason. We all have these different backgrounds, have these different histories. He’s very in tuned to every individual in the studio and cares about our success.

How has training at the studio changed your life professionally and personally?

It’s a night and day difference. I was at a time in my life where I was struggling as an artist and struggling as a human because of it. I needed this. It’s been incredibly challenging. It’s uprooted all of these things in my life in a way that I didn’t necessarily think was going to happen but it’s been the best thing for me. I’ve grown more in this last year than I probably have in the last 10, honestly.

You’re not only taking acting while you’re here, but you’re also taking movement, voice and speech and a couple of different ancillary classes. How do you think that’s affected you? Since you’re not just taking the acting class, you’ve added some of these supplementary classes.

Yes. I had a history of being a dancer before this. When I initially signed up for the program, I thought, “Well, I’ve done 15 years of ballet, what could movement class possibly teach me at this point?” I was incredibly wrong about that. Movement is probably my favorite auxiliary class because it’s this chance to be free and carnal and permissive again. It’s wonderful. I miss it when I’m not in the movement class. I honestly don’t know how I’m going to survive once I’m done with the studio here without that class.

best two year acting program interview with sietzka

The Best Two Year Acting Program | Sietzka Wiersma Interview | 917-789-1599

How has the work that you’re doing in your ancillary classes affected the work you do in the acting classroom?

It’s opened me up. It’s made me comfortable with my classmates, comfortable making choices, following my instincts. In acting class, when you go up to work, all eyes are on you. That can be intimidating. When you’re in voice, and you’re in movement class, you are a collective. You’re part of this group. There’s safety in that to experiment and find yourself in that collective.

Your first year acting class, in general, is pretty close. What do you think that has to do with the small size of the studio and intimate size of the classes?

I think that has an effect, the small class sizes. We’ve become so close because we’re so invested in each other’s triumphs and failures. When there are only ten people in the class, if someone does something bold and gets it, everybody’s rooting for them. It’s wonderful to have that camaraderie.

What would you say to a prospective student who maybe was on the fence about training or was on the fence about this studio compared to another studio? What would you say to them to help them decide where they should be going?

I’d say that if you’re ready to take a leap and become your truest self in the best way and you’re ready for that challenge, you’re willing to be changed, then this is the studio for you.

best two year acting program SIETZKA 08

Interview with Sietzka Wiersma – Best Two Year Acting Program

Well, you’ve worked in the business before. Maybe not acting but in a realm of the entertainment business. How would you feel going on an audition today as opposed to how you feel going on audition a year ago when you haven’t had any training, you haven’t been through the summer intensive, the first show of your program? What do you see the difference? How do you see the difference in yourself?

The difference in myself is now I know that I have a certain amount of craft. I’m not in there with some crapshoot. I think I know what’s right. I know what I know. I know that most of the other people in that room have no clue what they’re doing. That kind of confidence is incredibly valuable.

You’re finishing up the first year. You’re almost done just a few more weeks. How do you feel about finishing up your first year and heading into the second year?

I’m excited for the second year, but there is a part of me that just wants to hold on to this. I’m stressed out. I’m exhausted. I have eight projects to do. I’m working three jobs. Life is not easy peasy right now. But I know I’m going to miss this as soon as it’s over. I’m just dreading with a pause of summer.

A lot of prospective students put this off because they feel exactly what you just said, I don’t have the time, I don’t have the money. What would you say to them if that’s what was holding them back?

I didn’t have the time or the money, and here I am. I am happier now in my exhausted, depleted, crazed state than I was a year ago just working my jobs and having days off.

Apply Today for Admission to the Best Two Year Acting Program in NYC

To learn how you can apply for admission to the best Two Year Acting Program in NYC, contact the Maggie Flanigan Studio by calling 917-789-1599.

The next post Two Year Acting Program – Sietzka Wiersma Talks About Year One is republished from Maggie Flanigan Studio Find more on: http://www.maggieflaniganstudio.com/

Two Year Acting Program – Sietzka Wiersma Talks About Year One

two year acting program SIETZKA 04

The Maggie Flanigan Studio is an acting studio in New York City that provides the best two year acting program in NYC, a professional actor training program founded on the principles of the Meisner Technique. In this video interview Sietzka talks about the standards at the studio and her first year in the two year acting program.

best two year acting program SIETZKA 06

Best Two Year Acting Program in NYC | Sietzka Wiersma Interview | 917-789-1599

Sietzka, compared to other places you may have studied, what is different about the students here at Maggie Flanigan Studio?

There is an incredible amount of diversity among the students here. We have all kinds of backgrounds, all kinds of professional acting experiences. We have different ages with different walks of life. People who’ve had careers and then people who have not thought about acting until nine months ago. It’s wonderful to be in a room with this diversity and on a level playing field at the same time.

A few students who you began the first year with are no longer here. What does that say to you about Maggie Flanigan Studio and the passion and dedication it takes to be a serious actor?

Oh man, okay. It takes incredible passion and incredible dedication. This work is too difficult to do if you do not love it. It’s too much energy. It’s too much time. It’s too much money. You need to love it. You need to want it. Every single day you need to be able to fail and still want to go after it again and again and again.

author-pic

If you are ready to take a leap and be challenged, and you are willing to be changed, then this is the studio for you.

Sietzka WiersmaActor, Two Year Acting Program

The training at the studio is very intense and deeply personal. What has it been like to watch your classmates grow as your first year has ended?

Watching my classmates grow is probably the most profound, remarkable thing about being in this program. It’s difficult to see that kind of growth in yourself. So, to be able to have all these classmates that you can see the growth in a little bit more quickly is a nice reflection onto yourself as well. That, yes, I’m different than I was in September. I have grown. I have taken these leaps and these strides.

How have your classmates inspired your work?

This idea of permission comes up a lot in the Meisner technique. I think I’m finally starting to understand that through the inspiration that I get from my classmates. There will be a class where someone does something that scares them, is daring. That inspires me to do something daring myself and to push myself to limits that I didn’t even know existed perhaps the class before.

To get through the first year with Charlie, how important does acting need to be to you?

It needs to be the most important. Not only does acting and becoming an actor need to be important to you, becoming an artist but you need to want to be changed as a human being, fundamentally. That requires an extraordinary amount of trust, not only in yourself but your classmates, in the teachers, in the process, and of course, in Charlie.

two year acting program SIETZKA 05

The Best Two Year Acting Program NYC | Sietzka Wiersma Interview | 917-789-1599

What is Charlie Sandlan like as a teacher?

He’s the best. I’m not just saying that. He’s incredibly perceptive. I think that he does a very good job of teaching the student particularly. Your notes might not be the same as someone else’s notes and for a good reason. We all have these different backgrounds, have these different histories. He’s very in tuned to every individual in the studio and cares about our success.

How has training at the studio changed your life professionally and personally?

It’s a night and day difference. I was at a time in my life where I was struggling as an artist and struggling as a human because of it. I needed this. It’s been incredibly challenging. It’s uprooted all of these things in my life in a way that I didn’t necessarily think was going to happen but it’s been the best thing for me. I’ve grown more in this last year than I probably have in the last 10, honestly.

You’re not only taking acting while you’re here, but you’re also taking movement, voice and speech and a couple of different ancillary classes. How do you think that’s affected you? Since you’re not just taking the acting class, you’ve added some of these supplementary classes.

Yes. I had a history of being a dancer before this. When I initially signed up for the program, I thought, “Well, I’ve done 15 years of ballet, what could movement class possibly teach me at this point?” I was incredibly wrong about that. Movement is probably my favorite auxiliary class because it’s this chance to be free and carnal and permissive again. It’s wonderful. I miss it when I’m not in the movement class. I honestly don’t know how I’m going to survive once I’m done with the studio here without that class.

best two year acting program interview with sietzka

The Best Two Year Acting Program | Sietzka Wiersma Interview | 917-789-1599

How has the work that you’re doing in your ancillary classes affected the work you do in the acting classroom?

It’s opened me up. It’s made me comfortable with my classmates, comfortable making choices, following my instincts. In acting class, when you go up to work, all eyes are on you. That can be intimidating. When you’re in voice, and you’re in movement class, you are a collective. You’re part of this group. There’s safety in that to experiment and find yourself in that collective.

Your first year acting class, in general, is pretty close. What do you think that has to do with the small size of the studio and intimate size of the classes?

I think that has an effect, the small class sizes. We’ve become so close because we’re so invested in each other’s triumphs and failures. When there are only ten people in the class, if someone does something bold and gets it, everybody’s rooting for them. It’s wonderful to have that camaraderie.

What would you say to a prospective student who maybe was on the fence about training or was on the fence about this studio compared to another studio? What would you say to them to help them decide where they should be going?

I’d say that if you’re ready to take a leap and become your truest self in the best way and you’re ready for that challenge, you’re willing to be changed, then this is the studio for you.

best two year acting program SIETZKA 08

Interview with Sietzka Wiersma – Best Two Year Acting Program

Well, you’ve worked in the business before. Maybe not acting but in a realm of the entertainment business. How would you feel going on an audition today as opposed to how you feel going on audition a year ago when you haven’t had any training, you haven’t been through the summer intensive, the first show of your program? What do you see the difference? How do you see the difference in yourself?

The difference in myself is now I know that I have a certain amount of craft. I’m not in there with some crapshoot. I think I know what’s right. I know what I know. I know that most of the other people in that room have no clue what they’re doing. That kind of confidence is incredibly valuable.

You’re finishing up the first year. You’re almost done just a few more weeks. How do you feel about finishing up your first year and heading into the second year?

I’m excited for the second year, but there is a part of me that just wants to hold on to this. I’m stressed out. I’m exhausted. I have eight projects to do. I’m working three jobs. Life is not easy peasy right now. But I know I’m going to miss this as soon as it’s over. I’m just dreading with a pause of summer.

A lot of prospective students put this off because they feel exactly what you just said, I don’t have the time, I don’t have the money. What would you say to them if that’s what was holding them back?

I didn’t have the time or the money, and here I am. I am happier now in my exhausted, depleted, crazed state than I was a year ago just working my jobs and having days off.

Apply Today for Admission to the Best Two Year Acting Program in NYC

To learn how you can apply for admission to the best Two Year Acting Program in NYC, contact the Maggie Flanigan Studio by calling 917-789-1599.

The post Two Year Acting Program – Sietzka Wiersma Talks About Year One appeared first on Meisner Acting | The Maggie Flanigan Studio New York NY | Call 917-789-1599.

on camera acting classes larry ballard 01

Lawrence Ballard teaches On-Camera classes for actors at the Maggie Flanigan Studio. In this video, Larry talks about the community mindset that actors need to have to work professionally.

Being an artist can mean different things according to your medium. While the same principles of being in touch with your soul and humanity are universal, how you express your art and the circumstances in which you do, can change according to your discipline. An actor is an artist that uses the physical much like a dancer and understands words and their power like a poet but has an element of human interaction that is comparable to being involved in a sport.

Your acting will always be done within a world of collaboration. It is done as part of a production and most likely will involve an acting partner or partners. Because of this, it is important to learn and to practice in an environment that will allow you to simulate that as much as possible while giving you the room to make mistakes. This is why training is important for all of us.

Most actors do not get the opportunity to learn on the job from scratch. I have seen actors that do not have a handle on the dedication that is required, actors not knowing their lines, showing up late, generally not having the professionalism that it takes. There is just too much that goes into the business of entertainment for chances to be taken on people who don’t have an idea of what needs to be done.

There are also too many people who have to work together in order to make production flow smoothly. Here is where the sports analogy comes in. As an actor, you will always be part of a team interacting with people besides the audience. It is all in order to service an artistic vision. Sometimes this can be nerve-wracking and it can have its difficult moments but when it works there is an element of beauty, community. It is a glimpse into the best of people and what we can do together. Acting is an expression and an exploration of humanity. Being an actor is being part of a community, being a stone in a bridge leads others to the road of those same things. Being an artist is understanding those things and then being disciplined and dedicated enough to work very hard toward being able to deliver when called on.

To learn more about the On-Camera and Commercial Acting classes at the Maggie Flanigan Studio, visit the studio website or call (917) 789-1599.

Maggie Flanigan Studio
153 W 27th St #803
New York, New York 10001
+1 917-789-1599
www.maggieflaniganstudio.com/
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On Camera Acting Classes and Collaboration

Lawrence Ballard teaches On-Camera classes for actors at the Maggie Flanigan Studio. In this video, Larry talks about the community mindset that actors need to have to work professionally.

Being an artist can mean different things according to your medium. While the same principles of being in touch with your soul and humanity are universal, how you express your art and the circumstances in which you do, can change according to your discipline. An actor is an artist that uses the physical much like a dancer and understands words and their power like a poet but has an element of human interaction that is comparable to being involved in a sport.

Professional Actor Training Includes Artistic Collaboration

On Camera Acting Classes NYC - Maggie Flanigan Studio

on camera acting classes nyc – Maggie Flanigan (917) 789-1599

Your acting will always be done within a world of collaboration. It is done as part of a production and most likely will involve an acting partner or partners. Because of this, it is important to learn and to practice in an environment that will allow you to simulate that as much as possible while giving you the room to make mistakes. This is why training is important for all of us.
[post_author]

Most actors do not get the opportunity to learn on the job from scratch. I have seen actors that do not have a handle on the dedication that is required, actors not knowing their lines, showing up late, generally not having the professionalism that it takes. There is just too much that goes into the business of entertainment for chances to be taken on people who don’t have an idea of what needs to be done.

The Need for Discipline and Dedication

There are also too many people who have to work together in order to make production flow smoothly. Here is where the sports analogy comes in. As an actor, you will always be part of a team interacting with people besides the audience. It is all in order to service an artistic vision. Sometimes this can be nerve-wracking and it can have its difficult moments but when it works there is an element of beauty, community. It is a glimpse into the best of people and what we can do together. Acting is an expression and an exploration of humanity. Being an actor is being part of a community, being a stone in a bridge leads others to the road of those same things. Being an artist is understanding those things and then being disciplined and dedicated enough to work very hard toward being able to deliver when called on.

Learn More About On Camera Acting Classes

To learn more about the On-Camera and Commercial Acting classes at the Maggie Flanigan Studio, visit the studio website or call (917) 789-1599.

The following blog post On Camera Acting Classes and Collaboration is courtesy of Maggie Flanigan Two Year Acting Program Read more on: http://www.maggieflaniganstudio.com/