What is the Meisner Technique?

The Meisner Technique is often misunderstood, thought to be a completely different theory than the concept of method acting. However, Sanford Meisner developed Meisner training as a variation of “the method” adopted to suit American actors. Meisner believed that actors in American theater were not trained with the same rigor as those in Europe and other places abroad and set about to change that.

actors in the meisner technique class in new york ny with charlie sandlan

Meisner Technique New York NY – Maggie Flanigan Studio – (917) 789-1599

Maggie Flanigan studied in New York City with William Esper, who had worked directly with Sanford Meisner. She became interested in teaching and trained as an instructor as well. She soon became one of the most sought after teachers at William Esper Studio. She has a deep understanding of the Meisner technique and communicates it very clearly. Maggie is also gifted at nurturing actors while also inspiring them to push themselves. Her students work beyond what they think they are capable of under her guidance.

In 2001 she launched the Maggie Flanigan acting studio. The goal was to build an acting program that would keep class sizes small and allow actors to do the personal work Meisner requires. The studio is a safe space where you work closely with other serious actors. Maggie Flanigan Studio teaches the Meisner technique with clarity and specificity. The technique begins with repetition exercises that minimize the focus on words compared to the underlying emotions. The actor also learns to focus on the other actors, rather than themselves. The goal is to instinctively lose any sense of yourself and begin living in a new reality as a play or movie unfolds. The goal is to “act truthfully under imaginary circumstances,” which is a Meisner actor’s mission.

Maggie Flanigan Studio is a two-year acting conservatory known for nurturing actors while also setting high expectations and requirements for having a work ethic, and a sense of professionalism. Meisner technique classes learn Sanford Meisner’s original methods. The studio is now overseen by master teacher Charlie Sandlan, the Executive Director and Head of Acting.

What are the Reasons to Study the Meisner Technique?

There are several reasons serious actors study the Meisner technique. The first is to gain the skill needed to create fully realized truthful behavior that is instinctive. With Meisner, an actor doesn’t learn characteristics or take on certain behaviors to pretend. The Meisner actor instead creates a new reality, moment to moment in a story, with real behavior and honest emotions. Mastering this requires that you hard work and build a large foundation of human reactions and emotional responses. The actor acquires a deep awareness and mastery of a full range of human emotions and behavior so that they can eliminate false notes and self-awareness.

The second reason to study Meisner is a vulnerability. A great actor cannot be closed off or constricted. Because of the high degree of socialization we experience, people tend to develop defenses. They are always looking to protect themselves from feeling too many extreme emotions, especially negative ones. Or we may learn to make some feelings more prominent while shutting others off. This has to be broken down so the actor can start over. This all requires a particular vulnerability.

The third and final reason to master the Meisner technique is spontaneity. Any audience is looking to suspend their reality and be completely drawn into the story. Predictability is the enemy of this. Meisner trained actors don’t use memorized or practiced behavior, the work more organically, and with more immediacy. This brings more excitement to a production.

Who Should Study the Meisner Technique?

What kind of actor should consider studying the Meisner technique? First, this training is not designed for actors who are afraid of hard work. Meisner is not about quickly jumping in and pretending to be someone else. Acting is an art that requires talent and passion, but more importantly, years of dedicated hard work. Serious actors should be prepared to work hard on a series of skills that they refine and build upon over time.

students studying the meisner technique in new york ny at the maggie flanigan studio

Meisner Technique Studio New York NY – Maggie Flanigan Studio – Call (917) 789-1599

Meisner actors study a progressive series of exercises that allow them to build a full range of layered, complex human emotions and behaviors. They also learn sequential exercises that heighten their ability to listen and focus on other players. This deep well of fully realized, organic responses allow them to be more spontaneous and in the moment. It imparts new meaning to the play. They create a new reality with no self-awareness or self-consciousness.

Maggie Flanigan Studio is for students who have completed an undergraduate program, or who have earned their masters, but understand that they still have gaps in their training. Another way to determine if you are the right candidate is to consider whether you would thrive in smaller classes, working with other serious actors. Unlike a college setting where there are students who are trying acting on for size, Maggie Flanigan Studio is strictly for those serious about studying the craft.

If the passion for acting is ongoing and you can’t imagine life without it, then it’s worth considering the Meisner acting program at Maggie Flanigan Studio.

Finding the Right Place Near Morningside Heights NY to Study the Meisner Technique

There are plenty of acting studios that offer classes, but many things to consider before signing up with an acting school. Once the decision has been made to study Meisner, the next issue is who to study with. Of course, serious actors want to study with the best teachers. What does that look like? That depends on the person and the environment that lends itself to their learning.

Meisner training requires a level of trust in others and a safe environment. Actors need to explore emotional patterns and behaviors learned throughout their lives. This can be challenging and requires a high degree of vulnerability. It’s better to work through this with instructors you can trust to help you safely deconstruct this. Another aspect to training in Meisner is doing so with other actors who believe in the technique and are willing to work extremely hard both in and out of the classroom.

The Maggie Flanigan Studio is set up to train serious actors committed to developing the skills necessary for a career. We accept, on average, 14 to 18 students per class, rather than working as a factory. Everyone is interviewed personally by Charlie Sandlan. We have built our reputation on accepting only passionate, hard-working students. Sifting through the available studios and coaches in New York City can be daunting. If you are an actor who desires a community of actors that are supporting and pushing each other to train with excellence, the Maggie Flanigan Studio is a perfect choice.

actors in teh studio during meisner technique training in new york ny at maggie flanigan studio

Meisner Technique Training New York NY – Maggie Flanigan Studio – Call (917) 789-1599

Meisner Technique Training for Morningside Heights NY

When studying acting, an investment of time and money pays off, if you work hard. The Maggie Flanigan Studio is a two-year conservatory that teaches the Meisner Technique in a safe, and nurturing environment. The studio sets high expectations for professionalism, asking students to develop good work habits, so they can do their best work. The program is two years of Meisner, and Voice, Movement, Script Analysis, Character Development, training in Business for Actors, and more.

This is Meisner taught in its original format, with adaptations made by master teacher Maggie Flanigan. Since 2001 the studio has been dedicated to passing Meisner training on to the next generation of actors. This NYC studio is where serious actors prepare for auditions, demanding roles, and long-term acting careers. To apply for admission, register for an interview with Executive Director and Head of Acting Charlie Sandlan online or call (917) 789-1599 for more information.

Best Meisner Technique Studio Morningside Heights NY

Meisner Technique Morningside Heights NY

The acting school of Maggie Flanigan Studio offers profession acting training for serious actors from Morningside Heights NY as well as these New York, NY areas:

New York NY, Manhattan, NYC, Bronx NY, Brooklyn NY, Queens NY, Staten Island NY, Battery Park City NY, Financial District NY, TriBeCa NY, Chinatown NY, Greenwich Village NY, Little Italy NY, Lower East Side NY, NoHo NY, SoHo NY, Wards Island NY, Washington Heights NY, West Village NY, Alphabet City NY, East Village NY, Lower East Side NY, Two Bridges NY, Chelsea NY, Clinton NY, Gramercy Park NY, Kips Bay NY, Murray Hill NY, Peter Cooper Village NY, Stuyvesant Town NY, Sutton Place NY, Tudor City NY, Turtle Bay NY, Inwood NY, Spanish Harlem NY, Waterside Plaza NY, Lincoln Square NY, Manhattan Valley NY, Upper West Side NY, Lenox Hill NY, Roosevelt Island NY, Upper East Side NY, Yorkville NY, Hamilton Heights NY, Manhattanville NY, Morningside Heights NY, Harlem NY, Polo Grounds NY, East Harlem NY, and Randall’s Island NY.

To learn more about the Meisner Technique and the Meisner Summer Intensive offered by the Maggie Flanigan Studio, click here.