“Lisa Wolpe has an encyclopedic knowledge of the Shakespeare canon. Her passion and enthusiasm is infectious and inspiring. She helped me overcome my fears of tackling the intimidating Shakespearean verse” – Tonya Pinkins, Broadway Star
I’ve had the pleasure of coaching many brilliantly talented people as actors and directors! We work on lots of different kinds of texts – from Shakespeare to movies to commercials. Broadway stars like Charlayne Woodard and Tonya Pinkins. Television actors like Robert Wisdom, and Kyle Bornheimer, working on text, drama, comedy, timing, depth, inspiration. Kids in high school, reaching for a star. It’s such a pleasure!
I occasionally offer Shakespeare and Clown classes privately. Workshops have included Los Angeles, NYC, Chicago, San Francisco, London, Vancouver and Prague.
“Lisa Wolpe is truly in another league. Rarely do you find that an actor and teacher who is so deep and so passionate – and Lisa is by far the deepest and most passionate actor and teacher you will ever experience – is also the most disciplined, the most imaginative, the most intelligent, and a true master of her craft. If you are able to digest even 1% of what she shares with you, you will be a 100% better actor. An actor should not go a lifetime of acting without experiencing someone like Lisa Wolpe at least once.” – Kyle Bornheimer, T.V. Star
I have taught and/or directed in dozens of major universities, including Boston University, NYU, UCLA, USC, DePaul, Northwestern, Rockefeller, Tulane, Academy of Classical Acting, AADA, AMDA, Whittier, U.C. Boulder, MIT, Wellesley, Emerson, ACT, and Cornell. I’ve taught in some amazing high schools as well, including Herricks School in upstate NY, Marymount High School in Brentwood, CA, Westridge High School in Glendale, CA. I’ve taught all levels of school kids and school teachers in Stratford, ON, through the SpringWorks Festival and the Stratford Shakespeare Festival. I’ve run Shakespearean Training programs in many cities, from Boston to NYC, Sedona to Los Angeles, Vancouver B.C. to London U.K..
“Whether you are just discovering Shakespeare or are a seasoned pro, Lisa generously shares her expertise in working with you to joyously delve into vocal technique, body work, and in-depth text analysis, as well as preparation for scene study, performance, and auditions. In the dictionary under “genius”, the definition should include: LISA WOLPE”.
- Nancy Jane Smeets
“Lisa Wolpe is an extraordinary teacher. She meets you where you are–welcomes you with an open heart, whether you are a beginner or an experienced actor–and then takes you on an incredible journey of exploration, discovery, and inspiration. I love the very specific way she works with breath, body, and text.
As a singer, it is a real joy to work with an acting teacher who understands the voice, breath, and body as deeply as Lisa does. I have begun to use some of the things I have learned from her to in my songs and arias–and I already am finding greater freedom, inspiration, and honesty, Thank you Lisa–you are an amazing actor, a master teacher, and very beautiful person.”
- -Elizabeth Ackerman
“Lisa’s a magician. She makes you feel like wresting the meaning and passion from Shakespeare’s words is a matter of life and death, and she gives you the technical and emotional tools to do it. Few people have the talent and experience to legitimately call themselves master teachers of Shakespeare; Lisa is one of them.”
- – Andrew Heffernan, Actor
“Lisa’s classes are electric! Her love and knowledge of Shakespeare’s works, the Elizabethan world they were written for, unlocking the clues in and approaching the text is motivating and inspiring. Any actor with an interest in performing Shakespeare should LEAP at the opportunity to take one of her classes. I’m so glad I did!”
- – Diane Baker Cummings, Actress
“I’ve wanted to work with Lisa Wolpe for a few years and was not disappointed. She’s the best!”
- – Kevin Vavasseur, Director
“Lisa Wolpe is a teacher’s teacher − caring, thoughtful and thorough. She has unimaginably enhanced my teaching and performance of Shakespearean texts.”
- Leigh Kennicott, Ph.D.
California State University, Northridge
“Lisa’s wisdom, clarity and acceptance lends her classes the kind of ease, warmth and openness one often needs yet rarely in an acting class. I found being in her Sunday classes an immense joy; a much needed part of my week where I could go be big and playful and vulnerable without fear of shame or judgement. Lisa’s “Geography of Thought” technique has forever altered my approach to performance and has done wonders in bringing my voice and my intentions out of my body and into the audience. Lisa helped me find the power and skills I needed to really tackle Shakespeare’s beautiful and complex text.”
- Sean Miller
“Lisa Wolpe cracks open your imagination and encourages you to go to new levels in your work. She is a great teacher for beginners and for the most advanced actors of all. I have played most of the major Shakespearean clowns under her direction……..and I am a WOMAN!!! Think of that.”
- Barbara Bragg
“Lisa’s clowning has been the best physical theatre training I could hope for. Her work has allowed me to develop wondrous techniques in playing roles that are centered in movement and physical comedy.
Lisa is a wonderful teacher of clown. Her courses journey into the world between failure and beauty.
Lisa’s courses will invigorate the participant in such a way that finding simple pleasures in ‘clown failure’ becomes more pleasing then success.”
- Christopher Gelvin
“Lisa Wolpe’s classes not only help actors delve through the intricacies of Shakespeare complex characters, but her techniques got me out of my head and into the scene and character. My voice, my breathing, my presence, my energy, my understanding of Shakespeare’s writing, my ability to become a character organically- all of this was awakened. Lisa is truly a gifted teacher and mentor!”
- Alice Walker
“Lisa’s workshops provide the tools to reach down inside yourself to breathe life into a character through physicality, emotions, and richness of text. She is a masterful teacher whose passion and knowledge inspires her students to strive towards the upper echelons of success in performance.”
- Zeenath Shareef
“Lisa Wolpe’s clown class is a gift you give yourself. I found it liberating, challenging and inspirational every time! She is a Master Teacher for the serious actor.”
- Katrinka Wolfson
“Lisa’s amazing wealth of information and inspiration helped free me of myself through her holistic approach to Shakespeare. She changed my life really, because she knows acting, but more importantly she knows the human condition. She is the first teacher I ever had who had real resounding compassion. It is this compassion which sets her apart as a brilliant actress and teacher.”
- Kristin D’Andrea
“Clown challenges you to take risks and fall on flat on your face. You’ll never have so much fun failing.
Clown makes me alive as an actor and a person.
Lisa Wolpe is kind and stern Clown Master. She will lead you places you in yourself you’ve never been.
There is nothing more challenging or essential for the actor than clown.”
- Carey Upton
“Lisa Wolpe’s Shakespeare and Clown classes are extremely informative and helpful!
In the Shakespeare class her technique helps you find your way through the sometimes daunting text; indeed, to embrace it. The physical work helps you step into the character’s shoes. I saw people from every walk of life become Hamlet, Richard III, etc. It was gratifying to see! I’d recommend this class to anyone! If you’ve never done Shakespeare, this is the way to start; if you’ve done a few plays,like me, you will only improve!
The clown class is terrific because it helps you reconnect with your imagination and the joy of true spontaneity. It was extremely helpful for me because I was rather “stiff” both physically and mentally. The class helped me interact with other actors, stimulated my improvisation instincts, and helped me ‘loosen up’ a bit.
Both classes teach skills that can definitely be used by actors in the television/film world as well!”
- May Victor
“Lisa Wolpe is an amazing teacher. I’ve had Shakespeare training in the past but never before was it presented so clearly to me. She has a way of working with you, whether you are a novice or have been doing Shakespeare for years, that truly inspires. I always leave her class feeling exhausted and elated. ”
- Victoria Ullmann
“Lisa’s joy, intelligence and ability to articulate the ephemeral is extraordinary. Working with her in Clown workshop brought me to a place of daring play, deep expression and exquisite goofiness which continues to inform my work as a choreographer and physical theater consultant. Just do it! ”
- Myrna Gawryn
- Training a young director in Shakespeare at NYU.
- Training a young director from the Young Vic to direct Coriolanus, with Daron Oram, Voice and Acting teacher from Central School, as Volumnia. TranShakespeare Project.
- International Actors at London's King's College.
- Tigger Blaize (Coriolanus), Chipo Chung (Hamlet), Sue Frumin (Prospero) training in cross-gender Shakespeare at my TranShakespeare workshop in London.
- Students exploring the world of playing men in Taming of the Shrew, NYU
- Relaxation, breath, and imagination in a writing exercise, TranShakespeare, London.
- High School kids working on Shakespeare with me in Long Island New York.
- Clown Class, Los Angeles
- Collaborating with Daron Oram from Central School on our "TranShakespeare" project.
- Teaching Shakespeare to the USC MFA First Years - Priceless!
- Clown Class, Los Angeles
- Clown Class, Los Angeles
- Clown Class, Los Angeles
- TranShakespeare - I led 40 artists in gender bent Shakespeare scenes in London, with co-teachers Christine Adair of ACT and Daron Oram of Central School, with the support of KIng's College and the Young Vic.