The Acting Matrix Technique

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Getting To Know: Aaron Ganz



Training

Mr. Ganz holds a B.F.A. in Drama from New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts, where he was awarded the Outstanding Achievement in Acting award, upon his graduation. During his time at N.Y.U., he trained for two years under Vicki Hart at The Meisner Extension. After graduation, he was given a scholarship to study under renowned Movement Instructor Loyd Williamson at The Actor’s Movement Studio in New York. Mr. Ganz received his Masters of Fine Arts degree from the Institute for Advanced Theatre Training/ Moscow Art Theatre School at Harvard University.

 

Mr. Ganz has had extensive training in The Williamson Technique, The Meisner Technique, Practical Aesthetics, Russian Acrobatic Training, The Alexander Technique, Viewpoints, Shakespeare, and Fitzmaurice voice work.

 

Professional Experience

As an actor, Mr. Ganz has appeared in numerous New York productions including Off-Broadway with The Pearl Theater Company. Regionally, he has worked with acclaimed companies such as the American Repertory Theater, the Utah Shakespearean Festival, and the Chautauqua Theater Company. Internationally, Mr. Ganz has appeared in multiple stage productions at the renowned Moscow Art Theater in Russia.

 

As a director Mr. Ganz has helmed numerous productions including Cymbeline, Lady of Shalott, Joan of ArcWouldn't It Be Lovely (Theatrum Elysium) along with The Front Page, Dark of the Moon, Uncle Vanya, A Streetcar Named Desire, and The Phantom Lady (X Repertory Theater Company).

 

A sought-after theater educator, Mr. Ganz is the Artistic Director of ECT, author of The Acting Matrix training technique, and has taught acting technique, voice, and movement work at NYU’s Tisch School of the Arts, The Actor’s Movement Studio in New York City, the Utah Shakespearean Festival in Cedar City,  and was the creator of the X Repertory Theater Company’s Studio XRT in Los Angeles.


The Acting Matrix Technique: An Overview


The Acting Matrix is a series of principles, tools, and exercises that shape the artist’s ability to live truthfully under imaginary circumstances with personal, professional pride.

The ability to live truthfully – to be fully present & in the moment - is fundamental to FEARLESS acting. When present, an actor cannot prepare for the next line, cannot judge a previous moment, cannot expect. It is a fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants experience, like riding a rollercoaster with your eyes closed! In today’s world of split focus and diminishing attention spans, it is more important than ever for the artist to maintain an instrument that can receive experiences without filter, releasing behavior without apology. The Acting Matrix develops performative instruments that are healthy and flexible, instinctual and vulnerable, producing artistic work that is always fully textured and FEARLESS.

As the idea of “good” acting is highly subjective (as with any artistic discipline), it is important to note that The Acting Matrix aesthetic finds its distinction in the difference between acting (the art of transforming) and performing (technical showmanship). When an artist acts, they are taking ink from a page and bringing to life a fully textured, subtle and unique life. That art of transformation is what is meant by living truthfully under imaginary circumstances. The Acting Matrix provides the actor with a clear, organized and distinct box of tools to shape and transform the actor’s instrument into a fully realized and unique character. The fundamentals of the technique - being both Specific & Improvisational - come from the philosophy that specificity in craft inspires improvisational life in the work. It is in this ideal that the actor’s full talent is realized, and truth is set free. The Acting Matrix toolbox has a tool to deal with any professional need – carrying an actor through the first read of the script until the final performance.

Acting is a profession where even the greatest talent in the world is not guaranteed a day of work. No matter our abilities, readiness or know-how, if we are an inch too short or have blond hair instead of the preferred brown, the role will probably go to someone else. In this fickle environment where the actor controls so little, it becomes imperative as a professional to excel at those things they can – preparation and readiness, ease at collaboration, continued personal and artistic growth. At the same time, an artist needs their own strong, internal barometer to guide their personal ethics and aesthetic against the raging tempest of the industry. The Acting Matrix offers the actor a framework in which to locate their unique, artistic self and consistently generate work with personal, professional pride. Through professional dedication – the acquisition of new tools, the development of individualized principles and daily exercises – the Acting Matrix artist ensures continued artistic growth, striving to become their own Ideal Artist. Beyond simply the studio, the Acting Matrix professional carries the positive habits of creation into life, being a joy to collaborate with, a person of genuine caring and a leader by example - always showing up early and prepared. These are the attributes that endow Acting Matrix artists with the highest likelihood of personal and professional success – all while inspiring deep, and continued pride in their work.

- Aaron Ganz

Creator of The Acting Matrix 

Getting To Know: Chris Lang


Training

Mr. Lang holds a BFA in Acting from the University of Wyoming and an MFA from the American Repertory Theatre (A.R.T.)/Moscow Art Theatre School (MXAT) Institute for Advanced Theatre Training at Harvard University. While at Harvard, Mr. Lang was afforded the honor of being accepted to the program in teacher training under Fitzmaurice Master Teacher Nancy Houfek. Mr. Lang spent the next two and a half years training as a voice, speech, dialect, and text coach for both actors and non-actors.  Mr. Lang’s love of voice stems from the discovery that it was his road into his work as an actor.

Professional Experience

As an actor, he has appeared on stages across America, and Europe enjoying such roles as George in All My Sons; Iachimo in Cymbeline; Theo in The Underpants; Armado in Love’s Labours Lost; Dying Man in Wings of Desire (American Repertory Theatre), Jimmy, Phil, Randy, and Lendall in Almost Maine and others.

 

As a voice coach, Mr. Lang has coached productions in regional theatres around America and also internationally. He has coached productions with some of the industry’s foremost directors including Robert Woodruff, Ola Mafaalani, Jeri Mouwad, Rinde Eckert, Gadi Roll, Marcus Stern, KJ Sanchez, Scott Zigler, Sam Wiseman, Roman Kozak, and Karin Coonrod. He has also coached privately for film and television actors: Bernie White (24 and The West Wing), Mam Smith (HBO’s Angels in America), Diana Schneider (The Good Shepherd).

 

Mr. Lang has taught at Harvard University, Harvard Summer and Extensions Schools, the University of Wyoming, the ART Institute, and the Moscow Art Theatre School. Chris is a teacher of Fitzmaurice Voicework, and plans to attend the program in Fitzmaurice teacher certification in the near future.

Did You Know?

Chris is an avid outdoorsman and has climbed 27 of Colorado’s 58 Fourteen Thousand Foot peaks!