Luna Stage to hold classes for adults

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WEST ORANGE, NJ — Luna Stage, 555 Valley Road in West Orange, will be holding several courses for adults this winter and spring. To register for any or all classes, visit

• The civic playwriting class for new and novice writers will meet Tuesdays, Feb. 14 through April 24, with no class April 11, from 7 to 9:30 p.m. You’ve never written a play before? No problem! For thousands of years, playwrights have been bringing people together to explore what it means to be part of a particular society.

This unique playwriting class, taught by Anna’le Hornak, will stimulate novice writers who have an interest in how their words can affect and engage their community. This class begins with the basics of playwriting, exploring what it means to write a “civic play,” and sampling multiple techniques for doing so. Playwrights will work on short plays outside of class, using class time to further develop their work. The class culminates in a public reading of these plays by professional actors on Luna’s mainstage on May 2.

• More seasoned writers can get involved in PlayGym — with two sessions from which to choose. Each PlayGym writer will spend one-on-one time with instructor Kaitlin Stilwell. Session I will be Wednesdays, Feb. 15 through May 3, with no class Feb. 22 or April 12, from 7 to 9:30 p.m. Session II will be Tuesdays, Feb. 7 through May 2, with no classes Feb. 21, March 21, or April 11, from 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. This class is intended for playwrights with some experience or training; submit a brief resume, including any classes taken, or a writing sample.

You’ve taken playwriting classes, you’ve got drafts piling up on your desk. But how do you take that next step? PlayGym is a new play development forum for playwrights to hear their work read aloud and to receive feedback from professionals in a safe, nurturing environment. PlayGym playwrights have access to four or five professional actors trained in new play development and Luna’s resident Dramaturg. Each playwright receives more than three hours of personalized time and becomes a part of a community dedicated to play development.

• Instructor Ned Coulter will lead an acting essentials class for beginners and veterans alike on Tuesdays, Feb. 14 through April 25, with no class April 11, from 7 to 9 p.m. Designed equally for beginning actors as well as actors with experience, this 10-week intensive class provides a nurturing professional atmosphere where participants learn to free the power of their imaginations and gain a better understanding of the actor’s journey when creating a role. The class starts with a review of basic acting skills and quickly progresses through improvisations, exercises, cold readings and script analysis to acting monologues and scenes from theater and film.

Because of the emphasis on the individual, the goal of the class is that everyone achieves a deeper insight into their own unique knowledge of the acting experience and how they personally relate to it. Directors and playwrights who want a better knowledge of the actor’s process have found this course valuable for its straightforward approach.

• Coulter will also lead “Master Class: The Actor’s Workshop” on Wednesdays, Feb. 15 through April 26, with no class April 12, from 7 to 9 p.m. Take your acting skills to the next level. This class is designed for student actors with prior classroom experience who wish to further explore the craft of acting through the use of monologues and scenes from contemporary and classic writers. Building on the principles introduced in the acting essentials class, emphasis is on character development and preparing for production. The goal of the class is that everyone achieves a deeper insight into their own unique knowledge of the acting experience and how they personally relate to it. The class will culminate in a presentation on May 3 in Luna’s Studio Theater with an invited audience. Students who have not taken the acting essentials class must receive permission from the instructor to register for the master class. Inquiries may be sent to