CREATIVE AGING CLASSES
The Wallis offers courses for older adults designed to stimulate creativity, connect to others, and tell your personal stories. Courses are held either in-person at The Wallis or virtually through the ZOOM platform. Class sessions start several times per year and sell out quickly!
Staged Stories (1, 2, 3) and Beyond Staged Stories
Do you have a story to tell? Staged Stories jumpstarts your creativity and invites you to start writing YOUR story. Through a series of short assignments students explore various themes and excavate memories and life events, learning the power and importance of finding and sharing your voice. The class culminates with a public sharing of a selected piece at The Wallis.
Staged Stories 1Wednesdays 1 – 3 P.M. October 18 – December 13, 2023
Staged Stories 1 is open to all students. This is an in-person course offered for people ages 55+.Cost: $125
Staged Stories 2Thursdays 1:30 – 3:30 P.M. October 19 – December 14, 2023
Staged Stories 2 is open to students who have completed Staged Stories 1. This is an in-person course offered for people ages 55+.Cost: $125
Staged Stories 3Tuesdays 9:30 – 11:30 A.M. October 17 – December 12, 2023
Staged Stories 3 is open to students who have completed both Staged Stories 1 and 2. This is an in-person course offered for people ages 55+.Cost: $125
Beyond Staged StoriesTuesdays 1 – 3 P.M. Wednesdays 10 – 12 P.M. Thursdays 10 – 12 PM.
October 17 – December 14, 2023
Beyond Staged Stories is open to students who have completed Staged Stories 1, 2 and 3. This is an in-person course offered for people ages 55+.Cost: $125
Instructor: Debra Pasquerette
Debra Pasquerette is the Director of Creative Aging Programs at the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts. She has been with The Wallis since 2014 and was previously Manager of Community Engagement. Debra has worked in theater and arts management for over 30 years, including serving as the Director of Education at The Geffen Playhouse for 12 years. Debra is a writer, director, and mixed media artist. She studied Performance Studies at Arizona State University and New York University.
StageWrite MonologuesTuesdays 10 – 12 P.M. October 17 – December 12, 2023
In this StageWrite course, you’ll practice the art and craft of writing short monologues. Each weekly session will focus on a particular aspect of the monologue as we study examples from movies, TV, and published plays as a guide and inspiration for writing your own. The course will culminate in an invited public performance of one of the monologues you have written—this may be one you’ve worked on throughout the course, or a one you’ve chosen from several that you wrote over the eight weeks. You’ll also have the choice of whether you perform the piece yourself, or whether you’d prefer to have someone else perform it (a willing classmate or someone you bring in).Cost: $125
Instructor: Dan Oliverio
Dan Oliverio has written books, plays, translations, and articles, as well as directed and produced plays in New York, San Francisco, and Los Angeles. Having taught for over 30 years, he’s led courses in theater history at American Jewish University and writing at the University of Southern California. His seminars about sexuality and relationships eventually led to his award-winning book, The Round World: Life at the Intersection of Love, Sex, and Fat. He is currently one of the co-hosts of the Big Fat Gay Podcast. Dan earned his bachelors from Cornell University and received an MFA in Stage Directing from the University of Texas at Austin.
Have you ever wanted to write a play, TV pilot, or screenplay but didn’t know where to start? Or have you begun a script you haven't been able to finish? SCRIPTING will teach you the fundamentals of story building so that you can make it to “Fade Out. The End.” This popular script writing workshop, open to any type of script project or genre, focuses on dramatic structure: the sequencing of character-driven scenes for maximum emotional effect. Come to class with some ideas, an open mind, and the script writer’s most essential tool: index cards.
Scripting 1Mondays 8 – 10 A.M. October 23 – December 11, 2023
SCRIPTING I: IDEA TO OUTLINE
Is available to writers new to this course, as well as returning writers who are developing the major story beats of their projects. There is no pre-requisite for enrollment.
This is a remote course offered online for people ages 55+.
Scripting 2Tuesdays 8 – 10 A.M. October 24 – December 12, 2023
SCRIPTING II: OUTLINE TO DRAFT
Is available to returning writers who have established the major beats of all their storylines and are developing their outlines. To enroll, please send a 500-word synopsis of your project to firstname.lastname@example.org
This is a remote course offered online for people ages 55+.
Scripting 3Wednesdays 8 – 10 A.M. October 25 – December 13, 2023
SCRIPTING III: WRITING IS REWRITING
Is available to returning writers who have completed their outlines and are now embarking on the first or revised drafts of their projects. Writers who have taken other professional writing courses and have a completed draft may also apply. To enroll, please send a draft of your project to email@example.com.
Instructor: William Nedved
William Nedved is a writer and writing teacher living in Los Angeles. He is the co-founder of the gift theatre company of Chicago, a 21-year-old equity ensemble. Recent collaborations include the original musical wanderlust at Cal-State Fullerton; the audio play the ravages with theatre of note; medusa: the musical with deaf west theatre at the Getty villa; and the opera the passion of McQueen at Boston court Pasadena. He frequently adapts international films and television series into English for Netflix. He studied dramatic writing at the university of Iowa, the university of new South Wales, and the university of southern California. He is also the former associate director of communication for the Wallis.
Afro Cuban Dance with BODYTRAFFICTBA
Join BODYTRAFFIC company dancer Joan Rodriguez in a movement workshop series connecting storytelling and dance. In these classes, you will learn movement fundamentals of Latin and Afro-Cuban dance styles. No dance experience required. For ages 55+.Cost: $100
Instructor: Joan Rodriguez
Joan Rodriguez was born in La Habana, Cuba where he graduated from the Escuela Nacional de Arte with the “Best Graduate of the Year” award. His professional career began with DanzAbierta, and he went on to join Malpaso Dance Company. He became a political refugee in 2017 and relocated to Arizona, where he focused on creating, teaching, and producing multimedia projects. He has also served as a Guest Artist in Residency for universities and arts centers throughout the U.S. and has received awards in several dance competitions. In 2019, he joined Parsons Dance and choreographed an original work for the company as part of the 2019 GenerationNow fellowship program. Throughout 2020 and 2021, Joan has focused on freelancing in dance, teaching and videography. Joan has also showcased his own collaborative works at the Blacktinx Dance Festival, the Solo/Duo Dance Festival, and at NYC art galleries as part of mixed media performances. He has taught guest classes at The Juilliard School, New York University, Gibney Dance, Yale University, Hunter College, Akron University, and RWU. He was recently commissioned as a choreographer by Connecticut Ballet for their “Ballet Under the Stars” 2021 summer program.
Ballet Brain CircuitTuesdays 10 – 11 A.M. October 31 – December 12, 2023
Physical and mental fitness should be connected. It’s one of the smartest things you can do to ensure you are healthy and lucid in your later years. Ballet Brain Circuit ® is comprised of conditioning and stretch exercises based on ballet training principles. The class is designed to improve cognitive function while increasing muscular endurance, cardiovascular health, balance and coordination. It decreases chronic stress and promotes an uplifting mood. No experience with ballet needed, all are welcome.Cost: $125
Instructor: Ingrid Graham
Ingrid is a classically trained dancer, choreographer and educator. Her performance and choreography affiliations include the Edinburgh Festival, Pacific Northwest Ballet, Brooklyn Academy of Music and the California African American Museum. As a guest artist she performed at Stephen Sondheim’s Gala Benefit in NYC.
The Lear ProjectWednesdays 10 – 12 P.M. October 18 – December 13, 2023
In the form of an acting class, we will explore the ideas inside Shakespeare’s King Lear, by working with the text, understanding what is being proposed by Shakespeare, doing it - and most importantly, using your experience of life to discuss what it means, and seeing if we can bring that into the playing of it. You do NOT need to have any expertise of Shakespeare or Acting in order to enjoy and benefit from this course. Tools to understand and work with the language will be provided. All you need is a rich tapestry of experience and a willingness to dive in!
Note From Instructor: I believe that Shakespeare wrote this play with something very specific in mind. I have been a fellow at the Global Brain Health Institute this last year (A neuroscience fellowship) at UCSF. One of the courses we took was a didactic on Lewy Body Dementia. This type of dementia Robin Williams had. As we looked at the diagnostic criteria and symptoms of the disease, I had a startling revelation. I thought about Lear, and about the chart of symptoms and their onset that was in front of me. I imagined a chart of Lear’s behavior super imposed above the chart of symptoms, and in my mind, they looked very similar. My conclusion was a hypothesis worth testing: Does Lear have Lewy Body Dementia? Was Shakespeare writing about a condition which was not diagnosed (it’s a subset of Parkinson’s) for another 200 years? Also, the relationship of Lear to the Fool in the play has a lot of things to say about elder care, and about what being a caregiver means. This class will not be a downer. This will not be heavy and brutal. There is a mystery of how someone 500 years ago was able to enumerate behaviors so accurately and have such a modern take on dementia care - that would be useful for society to take note of today. We will read the text together, work on bits of it (Everyone will be Lear, at some point) and everyone will have a chance to get up and work in every session.Cost: $125
Instructor: Jake Broder
Jake Broder lives in Los Angeles with his wife Lucy and children Ella & Louis. He is currently an Atlantic Fellow at the Global Brain Health Institute (at UCSF and Trinity College, Dublin), He was the Hellman Visiting Artist in 2019, which resulted in the script for his play UnRavelled unravelledplay.com. His play Our American Hamlet premiered at the Commonwealth Shakespeare Company, and was nominated for best new play, IRNE (Boston). His musical, Miravel, won the LADCC for best score, composed by Jake. He co-wrote and originated the role of Louis in Louis & Keely Live at the Sahara, winning Jake Ovation, LADCC, Garland and LA Weekly awards for Best Actor and Best Musical the Geffen Playhouse, directed by Oscar-winner, Taylor Hackford, and since toured Chicago and SoCal. As an actor, Jake recently shot The Patient, with Steve Carrell, was on The Morning Show on Apple TV+. and has a recurring role on HBO’s Silicon Valley He received his BA from Tufts University and trained at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London. www.jakebroder.com
Act 3Thursdays 10 –12 P.M. October 19 – December 14, 2023
Act-3 is a basic skills acting class for older adults, based on the acting exercises developed by the legendary acting teacher Sanford Meisner, with one purpose in mind, To Live Truthfully Under Imaginary Circumstances. Participants will work on four skills that will provide a solid foundation for beginning actors or build confidence in those who feel shy in the spotlight. These skills are: Really Doing, Other Person Focused, Point of View, and Emotional Preparation. Simply put, Act-3 will teach you the acting “ROPEs."Cost: $125
Act 3 Take 2Thursdays 2 – 4 P.M. October 19 – December 14, 2023
This course takes the exploration of the Acting R.O.P.E.S. to new heights. Actors will delve into characterizations, complex relationships, and challenging scenarios throughout this eight-week program. They will continue to explore the nuance of behavior using the foundational techniques of Sandford Meisner, which leads an actor to live truthfully under imaginary circumstances. The culmination of this journey will be a showcase of final scenes screened for friends and family at our "ACT3 - Take 2 Micro-Short Film Festival." Prerequisite: ACT3Cost: $125
Instructor: Cindy Rucker Trost
Cindy Rucker Trost is the Creative Director of the Meisner Institute, which sponsors acting programs worldwide. She is a producer, director, actor, and acting teacher with 35 years of experience in Radio, Television, Film, and Live Events. Cindy began her study of the Meisner Technique in 1995 at Playhouse West and began teaching at Playhouse West in 2012. While teaching at Playhouse West, she served as assistant director and cast member of Welcome Home Soldier, one of the longest-running non-musical productions in American Theater. In addition to acting, Cindy is also a writer and poet. “The Pandemic Rat Race,” written in response to a Staged Stories class prompt, was published in the online literary magazine Drunk Monkeys (June 2021-Vol.6, No.6). She is a staunch supporter of education programs in Beverly Hills and is a past president of the Beverly Hills Education Foundation. Cindy serves on the Friends of Greystone Board of Directors and is the Friends of the Beverly Hills Public Library Board Secretary.
ENROLL INTO CLASSES
If you are not yet a registered Creative Aging student, click HERE to register and a Wallis staff member will contact you.
If you are already a registered Creative Aging student please email Charleen Molina,CMOLINA@THEWALLIS.ORG with the name of your desired course, or call (310) 295-1918