Anthony Abeson
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Jennifer Aniston

Anthony Abeson was the first man to inform me that I was funny. This news was bittersweet considering the information came just as I exited, having performed Chekov. I came off stage and I said, “they’re laughing at me.” And he said, “I know. They were….” Awkward silence. “Jennifer, let me tell you something: you’re funny.” Offended, I replied, “I’m not funny, I’m a serious actress.” And he said, “No, no, this is not a bad thing. Go with it. We love funny. Just understand that you can’t use that as a crutch when you need to go deep.” So all these years later, I guess you could say, Anthony Abeson sent me on my path because his words, to this day, resonate in me and in my work. My instinct was to find the funny. He steered me by understanding what was inside of me before I could, and how comedy can be deepened by a dramatic moment and drama can be enhanced by a comedic approach. They’re intermingled; that’s life. Anthony helps his actors find the honesty in every moment. So for any actor to just have a moment with Anthony or a class with him, or by luck, have his words to read and reread, one will be twice or three times the actor for it.

All my love and support,
Jennifer xx

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Sherri Saum - (The Fosters, Rescue Me, In Treatment, Gossip Girl)

Anthony Abeson is my secret weapon. Working with him has raised my game in ways inumerable. I don't walk onto a set or into an audition room without his principles guiding me, and I am a stronger actor for being his student.

Ian Somerhalder - (Lost, The Vampire Diaries)

There are very few people in one's life that make a profound difference whether it be from tutelage or just friendly advice. Mr Abeson gave me both. Learning and applying what is learned are two vastly different things; it takes the right teacher to offer a way in which to easily bridge the two while staying emotionally connected to whatever you find yourself doing in a professional situation on screen or stage. The way in which Anthony Abeson teaches is like no other- you are his equal, although he's going to know more than you at this point so close your mouth and listen... He's also the only man I've met whom can drop a Stanislavky quote in reference to a scene in a tv pilot and make it sound so utterly simple, making absolute sense while simultaneously making it usable to a scattered, young, and struggling actor. I think about him and use his methods constantly in my work and have a life-long appreciation for his unique teaching style, Buddha-Like patience and understanding. Those looking for guidance in order to make sense of this crazy business should listen to this man...

By making actors better at what they do from his studio to the stage and on the screen, Anthony Abeson's contribution to the world of Theater and Film should be appreciated and respected by all who reap the benefits of emotionally connected and moving performances by his former and future actors.

Esai Morales - Esai Morales - (Caprica, La Bamba, Bad Boys, American Family, NYPD Blue, Jericho, The Brink, From Dusk Till Dawn: The Series)

Anthony Abeson is an actor's alchemist. A sorcerer of sentiment. A medicine man of motivation. To this day his words of wisdom, quoted from sages past, reverberate in my mind and heart. Anthony Abeson's teaching technique, cultivated from his own studies with 5 of the great masters, not only preserves, but also enhances the dynamic artistry of our craft. With Anthony Abeson, it's not just about being good at what you do, but connecting with greatness. He shepherds you to reach deep down and find things that might surprise and startle you. For me?Anthony Abeson is an endless well of inspiration. I have not gone to many acting coaches. Frankly I find some of them develop unhealthy co-dependencies with many of their students. Anthony teaches and guides in a style that allows you to think and learn for yourself. He teaches us so that we do not have to go back to him ... but boy do we always want to.

Dilshad Vadsaria - (Revenge, Bones, Greek)

Anthony was my first acting teacher. His passion & respect for the craft always shone through in class. Anthony taught me to always have respect for the work & challenged me to find the life & humanity behind the words. He challenged me to always make specific choices.

I can’t express enough how fortunate I was to find a teacher & mentor who taught me what it is to raise my work, especially in a world where what we try to achieve as story tellers is mostly overshadowed by frivolity.

 

Reno Wilson - (Mike and Molly)

Anthony Abeson's effect on my life and career has been profound.
If you study with Mr. Abeson, you are not only becoming a versatile actor-- you become a student of the history of the craft.

And as an actor you constantly challenge yourself to stay in the moment, think real thoughts and be private in public. "Your talent is in your choices," if you choose Mr. Abeson, you choose freedom and success. He is the last bastion of hope for the American actor. I am forever a disciple.

 

Vicky Jeudy - (Orange Is the New Black, Netflix Original Series)

"Anthony Abeson's acting class has become the foundation of discipline combined with a pleasurable level of challenge and education. The message of his class is profound: We all have a responsibility to pursue our purpose in life. Whether it’s done through the craft of acting or practiced in our everyday lives. Anthony teaches us how to exercise compassion, diligence, professionalism and respect through his various creative exercises. Through Anthony, I have learned to defeat my greatest enemy: Hollywood's obsession over appearances and the desensitizing of our talent by modern technology. Thank you Anthony Abeson aka A$ for turning my weaknesses into strengths and always believing I had the universe inside me to fight."


 

 

 

 

 

Brendan Dooling - (The Carrie Diaries)

Guidance and Discipline. While one requires a lot more dedication on the part of the individual, outside influences play a major role in the advancement of said individual’s career. Throughout my life, I have been blessed with the privilege of a mentor - someone to see the potential within and believe adamantly in my ability to reach the full of it. In 2010, this wise instructor came in the form of an infinitely knowledgeable, astoundingly articulate, remarkably comprehensive silver fox named Anthony Abeson. From the moment we started working together in a private audition, I could sense his passion for and vehement dedication to the craft of acting, and, the actor. In an age when the industry is getting lost in “What’s Hot and What’s Not”, Anthony is the beacon that draws us back to a safe place of compassion and human understanding. That is, after all, the objective. An actor’s goal is to increase the humanity of the audience by virtue of his own humanity (Abeson). What better way to instruct young actors in the art of human expression than to lead by example? Anthony provides a nurturing atmosphere where actors can forge on through their work fearlessly because they know the “classroom” is void of judgment. He engages fully and invests himself wholeheartedly in the work of his pupils. Behind the scenes, he is an advisor as well. It’s not just in a class setting or in a private coaching session that he’s focusing his energies on his students. I’ve sought Anthony’s help a number of times for audition preparation or career counseling or just plain life advice, and he’s never made me feel I wasn’t worthy of his time; And might I add, a moment of his time is sought by many. He has always made himself available and accessible to all of his students. I’m blessed to have Anthony’s guidance. It has certainly been a determining factor in the fruition of my recent success, and it is comforting to know I’ve got Anthony Abeson in my corner ready, willing, and able to oust any oh-so-insidious doubt.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Chaley Rose Jackson - (Nashville)

I was nervous as I handed Anthony my headshot and resume when I came to his cozy little studio to audition for his class. "How much did you pay for these head shots?" he asked. I told him proudly that they were free. He chuckled and said, "Well you get what you pay for."

He took a moment to read my resume, looked down his nose over his glasses and said "you've got no acting experience." took a deep breath, shook his head and had me perform my monologue.
Awkward headshot and skimpy resume aside, he saw something in me and allowed me to start his class the next week. After a month or so, it became clear to me that my retail job and good attitude weren't enough to help me pay for classes. I was discouraged as I told Anthony I couldn't afford to come to class any longer. "You need to be in class," he said as if he hadn't heard me, and in the first act of generosity I'd seen out of a New Yorker since I moved from Indiana, he put me on a tab. It's this combination of no bullshit and generosity that make Anthony such an extraordinary human being and acting coach.

Anthony has a "no recipes" approach to acting and over the course of two years I watched him pull from his eclectic and wide reserve of knowledge to create coaching that is catered to each student based on their needs and ability. He can also dole out tough love.

Once during a ridiculously theatrical exercise I made the mistake of saying "I can't do this." So he told me to sit down. That stung a bit. There was no coddling or coercing. I could either sit and watch all my classmates do the exercise or suck it up and be willing to make a fool of myself to allow him to teach me. Because “if Spielberg asked you to do it, you’d do it," he'd say. There is no "I can't" or "I don't do that" with Anthony because "we have the universe inside us." I came into class afraid of my own anger and in the end he had me screaming at the top of my lungs, not for the sake of volume but for what that volume permitted. "Because," he said, “it can lead to a deeper connection to the words. To be connected to the words is to do the words justice.” Because, as he teaches, “we have no right to speak for our characters if we don't know and believe what we are saying.” Anthony is a protector of the art of acting and encourages his actors to act with integrity. "What are you gonna bring into the room," he asked us, “your bad self with your good hair?"

Anthony is a nurturer. He can be firm but he's also a champion of the vulnerable actor on stage. "Protect the moths; the delicate intricacies of your talent." You'll never see a person pay more attention to another human being than Anthony Abeson does an actor on stage. It's fascinating. His whole body is listening and absorbing the performance. He gives you 100% of himself.

He demands that everyone in the room give the performing actor the same. He feels with us and for us, and is proud of us when we succeed. He is offering a gentle hand to pull the "caged bird" from inside us. I've watched it time and time again with myself and my classmates. People grow in Anthony's class. They bare places in themselves they never knew existed because inside those walls of that little old theatre and in his gifted hands we are safe.

My time in Abeson's class has been such an important part of my life- not just as an actor but as a person. He introduced me to parts of myself I didn't know or didn't want to know. But after Anthony's gentle and sometimes not so gentle encouragement, I discovered new places in my instrument. And for that I am a richer, more complex, more honest human being and therefore a better actor with more places within myself to visit.

I'm so excited that he's written this book. I love that there might be another girl with a dream from small town Indiana who will have access to the words of this wise old wizard of a man!

Kerry Butler - (Broadway: Xanadu, Catch Me if You Can, The Best Man; TV: Submissions Only, Rescue Me, Blue Bloods, 30 Rock)

I wish I found Anthony earlier in my career. He is Very helpful when developing a new character. He sees things that aren't on the page. The technique of fleshing out what the character is thinking is extremely beneficial. The work he does with you, makes you to pay attention to the details. This has helped me in many aspects of my career- on stage and film.

Adam Chanler-Berat (Broadway: Next to Normal, Rent, Peter and the Starcatcher; Film: The Delivery Man with Vince Vaughn)

In an art form so personal and so often mystifying, Anthony's approach cuts through the fog with clarity, sensitivity, richness, and options. His exercises are meant to empower the actor with confidence in the boundlessness of one's own imagination. If we're lucky, a modicum of his curiosity, generosity, playfulness and passion will rub off on readers like me.


 

 

Jimmy Wolk (Political Animals, You Again, Front of the Class, Lonestar, Shameless, Happy Endings, For A Good Time Call, The Crazy Ones, Zoo)

I was fortunate enough to be told about Anthony Abeson and smart enough to seek out his class the year after college, and his work forever changed my life. His words hold a boundless amount of wisdom and the language in which he speaks is so understandable and relatable that an actor can’t help but flourish and deepen their work just by talking with Anthony, sitting in his class, and now, by reading his book.
The other benefit (in addition to sharpening my tools and learning my craft as an actor) I accrued from studying with Anthony was uncovering my deeper purpose for pursuing the craft and learning to be proud of calling myself an actor. His love and reverence of acting is so contagious that you can feel it down in your soul.

If you are looking for deeper meaning in your work then look no further. I became truly alive as an actor after studying with Anthony, and I am forever grateful to him for this.

 

Emma Bell - (The Walking Dead, Final Destination 5, Life Inside Out, Bedford Diaries, Gracie, Death In Love – Sundance, Frozen, Dallas)

Anthony made me want to act again. After going through many acting programs which beat one particular method into me, I began to feel restrictions around my art. I started resenting the process of getting into character. When I joined Anthony though, he made it very clear that 'what every way works for you, works for you.' He gave me the tools from all different methods and allowed me to pick which one worked the best for me. He is the greatest teacher and mentor anyone could ask for.

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Visit Death In Love Website

Rachel Boston - (In Plain Sight, 500 Days of Summer, Ghosts of Girlfriends Past, American Dreams, The Pill, The Witches of East End)

Here's to all the amazing artistic souls you touch each day with your heart and work! Can't wait to read your book!

Anthony Abeson is a true deep sea diver into the human soul. I met Anthony when I first moved to New York City from a mountain in Tennessee at 17. I was in this giant city with a southern accent and a subway map and was led to a class that dramatically shaped my life. From the very first day, Anthony inspired me to trust my heart and instincts. In a world that encourages and rewards the external and material, Anthony remains true to the internal and intangible. With compassion, humor, and humanity, he sets up an environment where you are safe to break down walls and find your truth. He teaches it and lives it and his teachings and life lessons are with me on every set and every step of the way.


Lisa Vidal - (Numb3rs, The Division, E.R.)

My years studying with Anthony Abeson have been some of the most exciting and educational times in my career. He truly has a way of reaching an actor's inner thought process that proves to be a handy tool in creating the moments and experiences needed to develop a character. Anthony Abeson creates a blackboard for the actor to use as a beginning to the life of a character.


Amy Ferguson - (Garden State, An American Crime, Weapons, Hart of Dixie)

Working with Anthony has been a pleasure right from the start.  He has an abundance of knowledge that comes from a life of experience, a strict work ethic, and a sense of humor that makes for an excellent mentor.  In the classroom, he is a captivating lecturer.  But he won’t stop there.  Class is active from the start, with improvisational work alongside other materials to be prepared.  He makes sure to select actors he feels have ambition and talent, so your partner is bound to help you grow, and they constantly change. 

Somehow he manages to give every actor an individual experience, and it is always a positive one, even when we aren’t at our best.  And there is a positive and realistic motivation:  “Do work that gets work.”  Private coaching sessions are always beneficial.  He quickly finds the heart of it, and lets the actors’ discovery be their own.  Anthony is one of the greatest teachers and persons I have ever had the honor of knowing, and I would recommend him to anyone.


Cedric Sanders - (The Ten - Sundance, Influence)

I am soooo glad I met Anthony he has given me a new approach to sides! One thing he said that I always keep in my mind is that sides reflect different sides of the character.

Anthony has a way of getting one to be available in both subtle and extreme ways.

Fleshing out has been my saving grace in auditions.

Anthony really really loves doing this and I think he makes every student feel like they are first priority/(or maybe just feel that way!lol!)


Hassan Manning - (King - Sundance)

Studying with Anthony has forced me to look in the mirror and search my inner being. One thing I've learned from my studies is knowing how to find the humanity of in every character I play. Anthony assures all of his students that the universe is in all of us but its our responsibility, as actors, to be willing embrace it! Overall, I have come to live by one of his quotes "there are no recipes, whatever works" because every actor is different!
Kecia Lewis-Evans - (The Drowsy Chaperone)

I credit Tony Abeson with teaching me that acting is the gift of holding a mirror up to nature, and as people's mouths are open in laughter or wonder or surprise my job is to slip in the truth of their human-ness.

Tex Beha, Founding partner of PARADIGM , a talent and literary agency.

Previously, a Partner in STE, a talent agency.
         
I have been sending clients to Anthony Abeson for about 20 years.  He was initially recommended to me by a Casting Director who said, " he was the only acting teacher she knew, who was able to teach actors how to make the transition from Theater to Televion or Films.  He is certainly able to do that and much more.   Anthony is a very caring human being and extremely sensitive to actors and their needs.   
Really "one of a kind"  and an incredible teacher.

Ellen Pompeo (Grey's Anatomy)
Robert LaSardo (General Hospital)
Julianne Nicholson - (Law and Order)
Jean Michelle Grier - (The Lion King - Sarabi)
Ana Ortiz - (Ugly Betty)
Jim Breuer - (SNL and "Half Baked")