Newtown Parks & Recreation recently announced a new series of acting classes and workshops set to begin later this month. These classes will be part of the season program and event offerings.

Theater programs will be conducted by Inspiring Acting Studio, located on the first floor of Edmond Town Hall.

Inspiring Acting Studio was created by Newtown resident Grant Ossendryver, who is also the owner/director of the Inspiring School of Music in Newtown.

“The studio is taught by theater professionals with industry, stage and film experience. Each course is designed to give students a fun, challenging, and unforgettable set of acting skills,” Ossendryver explained.

Inspiring Acting Studio specializes in working with beginner to advanced student actors.

The three Parks & Rec offerings this fall will be:

*Acting Intensive: According to the brochure, “students will be assigned a play to read and will be placed in a partner and/or stage on the floor of the play. We will learn how to analyze a scenario and break down a character. By playing with stage partners, we will discover the importance of being able to listen and react with sincerity to our partners. We will also learn how to block a scene (that is, to determine the details of the environment in which the scene takes place and to choose movements that seem truthful to our characters).

Session 117301 A, for ages 9-15, will take place on Thursdays, September 22 to November 10, each 60-minute session starting at 4:30 p.m.; and

Session 117301 B, for ages 14-18, will also run on Thursdays, September 22 through November 10, with these 60-minute sessions starting at 6:30 p.m.

Both programs have a $350 fee.

*Shakespeare workshop: “There’s an old adage in theatre: ‘Once you can do Shakespeare, you can do anything.’ The study of Shakespeare’s language is an essential pillar of an actor’s training. Students will work with a partner, or on a group stage, from a work by Shakespeare. Learn to analyze the text, embody the character through the work of the elements, and make powerful and confident acting choices,” Parks & Recreation detailed in its booklet.

Session 117302 A, for ages 9 to 14, will take place on Thursdays, September 22 to November 10, from 4:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m.; and

Session 117302 B, for ages 14 to 18, will take place on Thursdays, from September 22 to November, from 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.

Both programs have a $325 fee.

*Private theater lessons: “Learn to be a character and use acting to become a truthful storyteller. Develop your own toolkit of acting skills to deliver powerful performances. During each session, students will break down and analyze a monologue or a screenplay Students may bring their choice of work materials or will be provided with small sections of a screenplay or monologues (this may include poetry or Shakespeare if the student wishes). in monologue, audition preparation, script/monologue analysis, Shakespeare (optional), poetry reading (optional),” the program brochure describes.

Session 117303 A is offered Monday, September 19 to October 10, for 30 minutes at a selected time between 4:30 p.m. and 8 p.m.;

Session 117303 B is offered Monday, September 19 through October 10, for one hour at a selected time between 4:30 p.m. and 8 p.m.;

Session 117303 C is offered from Monday, October 17 to November 14, for 30 minutes at a chosen time between 4:30 p.m. and 8 p.m.; and

Session 117303 D is offered Monday, October 17 through November 14, for one hour at a selected time between 4:30 p.m. and 8 p.m.

Half-hour programs are $149. One-hour programs cost $269.

All four options are available for ages 7-18.

Meet the instructor

Newtown resident Claire Swanson of the Inspiring Acting Studio will lead Parks & Recreation acting classes and workshops.

Swanson has extensive acting experience and first gained experience in musical theater with Sabrina’s Encore Productions.

“I still remember how glamorous I felt backstage at my first play with [owner Sabrina Post] with the vanity lamps and all my friends doing my hair and makeup. Watching older children sing and play opened my eyes and gave me a level of professionalism and talent to strive for,” she said.

Swanson participated in Encore productions of Sabrina from seventh grade through high school, while taking Shakespearean lessons through Shakesperience Productions, Inc.

“After high school, I attended the American Academy of Dramatic Arts Manhattan campus and was introduced to the teaching philosophies of Uta Hagen and Stanford Miesner, as well as trained in movement, Shakespeare, dance, voice and speech, including dialect/accents, and Alexander Technique,” ​​she explained.

Swanson said he made his lead debut in his first off-Broadway drama, Letters to Salawas the culmination of this official training.

She also has experience teaching young people. She taught children at nature camps while in high school and later when she worked as an assistant teacher at Fraser Woods Montessori School in Newtown.

“I’ve always enjoyed being able to connect with children, share their bright imaginations and encourage their interests/talents,” she said.

She is looking forward, she said, to taking what she has learned from her theater conservatory and bringing it to local students in upcoming classes through Newtown Parks & Recreation.

“Our city is so well-versed in the arts, and I look forward to showcasing the methods I’ve learned and including Shakespeare and Improv training,” Swanson said. “I look forward to helping each participant find their foundation and their passion for acting.”

For more information about Inspiring Acting Studio, visit or email [email protected]

Journalist Alissa Silber can be reached at [email protected]

Inspirational acting studio director Claire Swanson and owner/president Grant Ossendryver stand outside Edmond Town Hall on September 7. Swanson will lead several acting classes and workshops through Newtown Parks & Recreation starting later this month. —Picture of bee, silver