Posted: May. 26, 2013
Category: Acting Tips
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Actors are made by their own desire for greatness.

By John Pallotta Acting Coach


Inspired by his gift for providing deep insight with quiet, well-chosen words, John Pallotta at John Pallotta Studio is quickly becoming one of the top acting coaches and on set coaches in New York City. Some have taken to calling him the Actor Whisperer, but thanks to amazing reviews from Academy Award winners, nominees, Emmy winners and so on, his secret is out. He is sought after by film companies, actors and schools.

John is based out of New York City where he is an award-winning playwright, actor and coach. In addition to his New York City studio classes, he has recently established classes in New Jersey and Chicago. The demand for his teaching style encourages him to coach acting students and teach intensives around the country.  John’s 2011/2012 Intensives include: New York City, Chicago, Washington D.C., New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Washington, Ohio, South Carolina, and Indiana.  He has received kind words from Academy Award Winners, , Emmy Award Winners, Obie Award Winners and so on. Actor Joseph D`Onofrio (Goodfellas, A Bronx Tale) credits him with being one of the best acting coaches that can change anyone on a drop of a dime.

Drawing on wisdom absorbed from the masters Lee Strasberg, Uta Hagen, Herbert Berghof, Anne Jackson, William Hickey, Austin Pendleton and many more, he founded John Pallotta Studio in New York City in 2005, where he has honed a highly successful approach that emphasizes teaching students to rely on their own instincts, imagination and choices. John Pallotta Studio is an acting studio providing workshops that offers a safe and challenging work environment for the beginning or professional actor. The Studio is dedicated to training and preparing actors for professional work in the film and television and theatre industry. Classes are small and very individualized. The Studio was created so actors can work on their craft every week.

I remember William Hickey quoting Rosalind Russell back in 1980; “Acting is standing up naked and turning around very slowly”. He also said “Actor must be like children playing in the field that have forgotten all the rules”.

I am a firm believer that there is no such thing as 'acting' there is only ‘life’. John’s technique is based on his belief that “Acting is A STATE OF MIND. It is about Innocence, Imagination and Vulnerability. It is about practicing the potential qualities that you were born with. The less you think like an actor and the more childlike and innocent you are the more productive” and in the moment “you will be”.

I was taught a long time ago, as a young actor in the late 1970s, that when you bring your love of the craft to class, you change the way other actors and teachers look at you. Take that same love for the craft and apply it to the stage or set, you change the way the actors, industry and audience look at you and allows you to fulfill your desire to be great.

Anyone can say that they are an actor, but can they deliver what it truly means to be an actor. It’s much more then expensive headshots, more than just smiling for the camera or the way you walk into a room. It’s about being a part of something greater than just yourself, it is your heart as an actor, the colors of your soul, the way you wake each and every morning and question the universe, your very being as an actor and a person, and this thing we all do and want to be successful at. 

Kevin Spacy said it best in an Actors Studio interview - "Too many young actors walk around with no idea why they’re doing what they're doing. That there is no prize and the only prize is what is in your heart and what you feel and what you want to accomplish. To want and to be ambitious and successful is not enough - that is just desire! To know what you want, to understand why you’re doing it, to dedicate every breath in your body to achieve. If you feel you have something to give or your particular talent is something worth developing, is worth caring for, then there is nothing you can't achieve."

My Method is aimed exclusively at unleashing the actor’s emotional power. My aim as a teacher of the craft is to help each and every one of my students find their own voice as an actor. Acting is a process. It is a journey of discovery. It is a living breathing process that happens each and every day and does not happen overnight. Becoming an actor is learning a new way of thinking and about the way you look at life. Just as you make choices in life that determine your success or your failure. It goes the same for your choices you make as an actor.

Good acting requires that you study in order to master the craft. My method, teaches actors how to achieve and respond to honest emotions both on and off-camera by utilizing certain principles: Innocence, Imagination and Vulnerability, Instincts and Imagination. Using these principles encourages actors to experience rather than indicate an emotion. Not just see a character, become them. Not just become them, become a living breathing thinking human being. We work on this on a conscious level in the classroom so my students can use it on a subconscious level on a set or stage. I don't waste time dictating about whose method is best; I encourage my students to conflate different methods and find out what works for them. I also teach them to turn it into performance.