CONVERSATION with Yasen Atour
What was a difficult challenge for you as an actor?
After graduating from drama school, I was launched into the industry and auditioned for just about everything. I got close to a few things… the famous “pencilled in” line from my agent. Then one day, I received a call with an offer! It was amazing, and it paid! It was my first professional role.
I loved the character because it was totally the opposite of who I was; I played a “Terrorist” who was part of a global crime syndicate.
And the money was great. I couldn’t believe I actually got paid to do what I love. It’s a funny feeling, because getting that role was the best and worst thing that ever happened to me as an actor.
Let me tell you why it was the worst thing that happened to me.
When I finished that project I became very entitled. This was my mentality with my agent: “We need to step up our game. Don’t send me out for any more ‘Terrorist’ roles, or ‘Bartender # 5s’.”
I was so naive. If I could go back, I’d slap that version of me. I couldn’t book an opening to an envelope after that. The issue was this… and I feel it’s the case with many actors… I call it the “the curse of the first gig you book“.
You think you’re amazing, and then you start to believe your own hype and forget about your craft.
Fast forward six months. I’m sitting at home without a penny and I’m thinking: “Whats going on, Yas?”.
And then it hit me. I didn’t get that role because I was the best thing since Brando… I got it because I looked, walked and talked li
Moral of the story is that, as artists, we are so hungry and caught up on getting that “bigger and better role” that we can lose focus on being the artist.
It was also the best thing that happened to me: learning and knowing what my “unique selling point” was empowering. I was lucky to figure that out early on in my career.
– Yasen Atour
WHO IS THIS CLASS GOOD FOR?
This is for actors who want to dig deeper into their confidence and skills of working on camera!
Whether you’re a working actor searching for the final piece of the puzzle, a musical theatre artist ready to take the leap into Film and TV, or someone that has had limited training and is keen on becoming a professional in the industry, Yasen’s class is for you. Yasen has an extraordinary skill at meeting you where you are at in your process and bringing out the best in you.
WHAT YOU GET
Twenty-four hours of class time spanning six days. It’s an Intensive! What a way to wrap up the summer and launch you in to the busy Fall season!
In the 6 Day Intensive you’ll focus on and work through:
- Expressing how you feel physically
- Blocking for camera
- Internal monologue
- Finding the beats
Using imagination and empathy
Physicality of character
What are you selling
How to market the product (you)
On set skills 101
Relationship with agents/manager
Creating your own lane
WHY IS IT DIFFERENT?
Classes are limited to 8 people so Yasen can better gauge individual strengths and weaknesses. This allows for a much more intimate and tailored approach to teaching.
Yasen offers a methodical and practical way for students to analyze and improve their own performance with the goal of becoming self-sufficient. You will work through:
- Translating emotion on screen
- Breaking down scripts using imagination and empathy
- Efficiently identifying and making performance adjustments
- Demystifying the industry
You’ll be watching your own performances each week and will develop a highly trained ‘camera lens’ eye for what works and what doesn’t on screen. By the end of the course, everyone can expect to be able to identify when something doesn’t translate on camera and efficiently make the adjustment.
Simply put, this class demystifies performing for the camera. It covers our unique three-step process to acting on screen and explores:
- Script Analysis
- Scene Work
- Working on Set
- Finding work and representation
- Marketing yourself and furthering your career
WHAT THEY SAY
“Yas is such a generous teacher, and also refreshingly honest. Film Club felt like a very safe space in which to fail… something that ironically brought out some of my best work. Highly recommend to anyone who works on-screen – even if you’re a seasoned pro, Yas will no doubt find ways for you to grow and evolve. Thank you, Yas!!
STEPH JACK, Actor
“We see many talented actors who fall a little short when it comes to acting for screen. After watching the radical transformation of our clients who attended (Film Club), this is an absolute game changer”
GAVIN MILLS, Olivia Bell Management
“Great class – very specific to film and tv which you don’t get in many other courses with lots of on screen practice. Helps you create in depth, interesting and nuanced performances for screen – highly recommended!”
DÍANA CAROLINA BERMUDEZ, Actor
Film Club founder, Yasen Atour is an actor/director and producer, known for Mission: Impossible –Rouge Nation, Ben-Hur, Marcella, The Dead Sea, Robin Hood, and The state Founder of Palikuku Films.
“As an actor, I’ve always been obsessed with film and what makes someone compelling on screen. A number of masterclasses and workshops I had taken throughout my career have more or less alluded to the same things: ‘act through your eyes’ and ‘internalize more’. As I became more comfortable and grew in experience as both an actor and director, I couldn’t help but think that there must be a clearer way to master screen acting, because at the end of the day what does ‘acting through your eyes’ even mean? So with the actor in mind and empowerment the goal, I constructed a simple, tangible and (importantly for us artists) affordable six-day process called Film Club. “
You made that performance possible, quite frankly. I was really intimidated and riddled with doubt. As embarrassed as I was to be lost when I entered your space, you did a terrific job of being compassionate, specific and clear.
- Orange Is The New Black Guest Star
[American Idol Winner] Fantasia unleashes with a feeling of connection to the dramatic moment.
- New York Times Review Private Acting Coach to Fantasia for Broadway’s THE COLOR PURPLE
“I think that was my best audition for a Broadway show. There’s no question that I was in control of my own audition. I knew from CD’s response that she had received what I shared. I’m excited to work a little differently and more healthfully in future audition situations.
- Brittney Morello www.brittneymorello.com
“Heidi is the lady to go to!! I use her convenient skype sessions to make sure I’m super ready for auditions and I went to her AFTER I booked Red Oaks to make sure I would show up on set guns-a-blazin.
- Alexandra Turshen Amazon’s series RED OAKS alexandraturshen.com
I wanted to say thank you again for taking the time to meet with me on Sunday! I just had my audition and I really genuinely felt like it went very well. I employed all of your tips (including getting a blow out before!) and it made me so confident going in to the audition.
- Comfort Clinton www.imdb.com/name/nm5472725/
You are an amazing teacher and I’ve learned and gained so much about myself as an actor as well as a business. I know this is truly the beginning for me. I have so much more to do and so much further to go but for once I feel excited and equipped for the journey [when I graduate]. There’s a sense of feeling more grounded and in anticipation of exploring ME in this journey rather than living for the outcome. Thank you for that!!!
- Stephanie McBee A.C.T. MFA www.stephaniemcbee.com
Coaching ’twas very helpful and all went well. Even when I half-forgot my second line, I was able to just breathe and roll with it since we prepped so nicely!
- Nina Covalesky www.ninacovalesky.com
I genuinely feel I learned so many tips and techniques from just working with you in that one session. I felt like I had a mini acting crash course. It’s so important to stay fresh, and I can’t thank you enough! You’ve definitely changed the way I will look at sides from now on, as well as cold reading.
- Katie Dixon http://encompassarts.com/artist/katie-dixon/
Thank you for making auditioning fun and not terrifying!
- Ingrid Vollset www.ingridvollset.com
Thanks SO much for your help with this audition. I’m really happy with my takes.
- Carmen Gil carmengil.com
I wanted to thank you for everything you taught me. So much clicked in with this audition that I just booked. I can’t really put into words what clicked, but it sure did.
- Bruce Fuller
Audition went incredibly well. It was a very necessary and joyous win for me. I left the room swimming in tears of joy and relief; I felt like I had finally returned to that creative lovely place I was in during school and had missed since graduating.
- David Siciliano www.davidsiciliano.com
You gave me the shot of adrenaline I needed, now to stay on Cloud 9.
- David Martin
And, may I say, thank you so much!!! I can’t tell you how grateful I am for you helping me get through that block that I have had for years. I really communicated with my singing today – and it was such a huge breakthrough for me. I look forward to carrying that connection with me into all of my auditions. So, thank you a million times.
- Gabrielle Sterbenz www.gabriellesterbenz.com/
“I wanted to let you know that I felt really great about my audition today. I was more relaxed than I’ve been in a long time, and really focused on the characters. Funnily enough, my reader was mouthing my lines along with me, but I focused on using that annoyance as part of my character’s annoyance. I even made the casting director laugh. It was great to be able to separate the audition from the result with the realization that even if I don’t get the part, I had fun in the room.
- Melle Powers
A heart-felt thanks for your wonder-full bedside manner in yesterday’s coaching. I left renewed in my commitment to be part of the solution, etc. Took some bold actions today as a direct result of our talk/coaching.
- Wendy Allegeart www.wendyallegeart.com
Once again in a short hour you inspired and change my life for the better! You rock! Being motivated to finally be the artist I’ve dreamed of is amazing!
- Vince Vincent www.vincebvincent.com
Guess who booked the movie!?” ME!! All thanks to YOU!!! Best coach ever! I’m a lucky gal!
- Samantha Massell www.samanthamassell.com
I don’t think I have ever auditioned so well. Thank you for all of your help! There really is nothing better than feeling prepared. Then your nervousness has the chance to turn into excitement (which makes this fun- and that’s why we do it, right?!) instead of morphing into worry
- Arlene Chico-Lugo www.arlenechicolugo.com
Heidi embraces each entity of the audition process with careful directness, providing an atmosphere which encourages the Actor, Writer, Camera and, yes, even Casting Director, to ‘do their own thing’ to the max!
- Ellyn Long Marshall Orpheus Group Casting