Testimonials and thoughts from our working graduates
“Trust the process — results will follow!”
As a new student, I am just beginning to see the beauty of the Meisner approach to acting, and it’s already clear to me why it’s so effective. You don’t need to know anything about acting to start the classes, and if you just trust the process and take it seriously, results follow. Wendy’s years of experience in the industry and with the Meisner technique make her a powerful teacher. She really cares about her students’ progress and guides us to achieve the best in ourselves. I’m excited to have found exactly what I was looking for - New York-quality professional training right here in Durham! —Sharon Bishop, Durham, NC
"Started booking serious work."
I really only started booking serious work after completing my Meisner training with Wendy Ward. Since I finished, I've booked three network co-star roles and a major movie coming out this year and keep getting called back by the same casting directors. I'm truly grateful to Wendy! —Julee Cerda, Broadway revival Children of a Lesser God, Smart People (Atlanta), Orange is the New Black, House of Cards
"Powerhouse Meisner teacher."
Wendy is a powerhouse Meisner teacher. She is not only the best teacher I've had in my fifteen years as an actor, but she is the one that actually taught me HOW to act. To be a successful actor here in Los Angeles, to compete with the immense number of talented actors, one must have a strong sense of self, truth and an extraordinary connection with their emotional life. For me, Wendy was the teacher that taught me ways to bring these things to life. I use Wendy's teaching every single time I walk into an audition, a booking, or a class. —Brandon Pizzola, Los Angeles
"Each second 100% there with you."
Wendy actually makes sure you able to feel the difference in your good work from your bad work. She is incredibly generous in her teaching. She's always, each second 100% there with you. Always. She's never, never, never superficial in the way she leads the class. And, most of all, she really wants you to be a good actor. She really does. —Aglaia Mora, Italy
"Dedication second to none."
I had been looking for training that would propel me forward into a new realm of acting when I came across the Ward Studio. Now halfway through Tech I, I can safely say that Wendy’s training is always challenging, provocative and unlike any other training I have ever encountered. Wendy brings authenticity and honesty to the craft of acting and her dedication to the craft and the technique is second to none. —Emma Caldwell, Melbourne
Wendy’s audition workshop was incredibly helpful, it highlighted Dos & Don'ts, which seem so obvious now, whilst also giving you a chance to practice these tips in mock auditions. Since then I’ve been offered roles in 9 out of 12 short films and 2 out of 3 plays I've auditioned for. —Libby Brockman, Melbourne
"Her specificity is the best I have ever seen."
When I started working with Wendy, I’d been happily involved in theatre for twenty years. My goals were to do something about my nervousness working in TV and film and to do what it took to move from two-line roles to principal work.
I benefited from one-on-one online work with Wendy, so following her recommendation, I then joined her Tech 1 class, unsure of whether or not an online approach to Meisner would work.
I am half way through Tech 2 at this point and just finished filming four scenes for a film, the largest role I’ve had to date. Here are my observations: I would absolutely not have landed this role, which involved a self-tape and a callback, without my classes and Wendy’s coaching. My nervousness on set was minimal and temporary. I knew what it meant and how to address it.
Wendy is extraordinarily committed to excellence. She has a singular gift for zeroing in on what you need to address and how to communicate this to you. Her specificity is the best I have ever seen. —K.S., Canada
Wendy Ward’s dedication and conviction to achieving work that is not just entirely believable but instead actually real is incredibly inspirational. —Jordan Katelanis, Melbourne, Australia
Wendy is the epitome of Meisner Training. She has the unique ability to transform one’s acting ability into something so pure and real you start to even fool yourself. Wendy is completely dedicated to pushing you to surpass your limits in ways you never thought possible —Jazmyne van Gosliga, New Zealand
Wendy is extremely passionate about the work and works tirelessly with each one of her students to help them develop and grow. You MUST have great work ethic, must be able to listen and work somewhat independently, be invested in YOUR OWN growth as an actor, show up to give it all you got. Wendy will work with you no matter what level of training you're at. The Ward Acting Studio is a MUST for anyone looking to push themselves to be at the top of their craft. —Ruka Osoba, Raleigh
"Taught me to seek truth."
You taught me to seek truth with boldness and toughness and to make no excuses or apologies when doing so...to need-it-like-oxygen and it has affected my priorities in art and expression and I'm forever grateful. —Steve Annan, Philadelphia
"Challenges you in a positive way."
It was when I finished my first lead in a move, two guest parts in big pilots and tested for Gossip Girls that I realized how much I learned in Wendy’s classes. She challenges you in a positive way. I would love to be in her class again. —Alexandra Daddario, When We First Met, San Andreas, True Detective
"Challenges your limits."
Wendy's passion for the craft of acting is contagious. She ignites a fire within you and makes you want to explore the deep places within your soul; often the places you are fearful of going. I have found that she has a perfect balance of being brutally honest, challenging your limits and extremely encouraging. —Katie Adler, Los Angeles
"Most significant training of my life."
After the first week, I knew I was doing the most significant training of my life. After six weeks, I had a completely different understanding of what real acting is. The classes not only hold you up to incredibly high standards, but they make you raise your own standards as well. Wendy seems to intuitively get the strengths and weaknesses of each actor, and that's where she teaches from. —Jason Rosenberg, New York
"Three times higher standards."
Having taken the Six-week Intensive and having graduated from her part-time Meisner program, I can say that the Ward Acting Studio's standards are about three times higher than other schools in this area. —Brandon Cooke, Raleigh
"True eye opener."
A big THANK YOU to Wendy Ward for being my acting coach. Working with her is a true eye opener. It helped me not only take the next step in my career, but also deepened my love and appreciation for the profession. After working with her in Durham, NC and NYC I am back home in Austria and am thrilled to have the opportunity to continue working with her via Skype. Her training is hands on, particular and helps me find a new understanding of what acting can be. —Karin Schmid, Austria
“Remain humble and trust the work.”
You will surely exercise discipline, patience, and readiness throughout the Intensive. It is important to remain humble and trust the work because nothing will be sugar-coated. Trust me. But without Wendy’s truthfulness, I would not have experienced the growth that I did. —Jessica Palmer, 2018 Intensive
“I booked the role!”
I've studied and paid for top acting coaches in NY but have gotten little results or improvements from them. But with Wendy, I get more than my money's worth. After working with Wendy for several weeks, I started booking on my auditions and had more confidence in the room. She worked with me on a self-taped monologue for less than three days and I booked the role! —Julie Pham, New York
"Hands down the best."
In early 2012 I signed with a top L.A. Management company. I have studied with Broadway directors and NY and LA’s “famous” acting teachers. Wendy Ward is hands-down THE BEST. If it weren’t for her Meisner training, my skill set would not be at the level it is and I most certainly would not be booking all this work. One casting director told me that my performance was the best monologue performance he'd ever seen, and I attribute that to my Meisner training and to Wendy. —Toni Romano-Cohen, Ugly Betty, Sweet Lorraine
“Sent my confidence through the roof!”
The first time I self-taped and auditioned for a film role was after working with Wendy. That audition got me two callbacks for a film with over 3000 submissions! Her training sent my confidence through the roof! I have since gone on to book several TV shows, in part, due to Wendy and her exceptional Meisner classes. Her coaching is a game changer for the serious actor! —Evit Emerson, Durham
"Gave me confidence."
My training at Ward gave me the confidence not only to brave the unknown in ANY performance capacity, but to be excited by the prospect as well. It ain’t for the weak of heart, but it IS for any actor determined to have success!” —Dana Fuchs, Across the Universe
"Pushed myself to go to the edges."
Wendy Ward's Meisner program has been one of the most rewarding experiences I've had on my acting journey. Her program focuses on quality through a study of truth and meaningfulness. I have pushed myself to go to edges I did not even know existed and have had some successful work as a result. I am confident that without this program, I would not have experienced those moments of success. I am currently in the middle of Tech II and look forward to continuing to grow with Wendy’s guidance. —Joya Joseph
"Truthful, inspired work."
I met Wendy almost two years before I studied with her, but I never forgot that meeting. After taking the six-week intensive, I can say that my impressions of Wendy were right. She is dedicated to her students and pushes them to surpass their limits. She does not let them get away with anything less than truthful, inspired work. —Anthony Smith, Author Acting Career Start-Up
“Quality not quantity.”
One thing that's unique about Wendy is she really stresses quality over quantity. When you're doing the work and getting it right, you're finished for the day. It could be 15 minutes or 30 but if you nail it, you get the positive reinforcement of not having to hash something out when it isn't necessary. On the other hand, Wendy is always there to support you when extra attention is needed. —Karla Hillam, Australia
“Never done better work.”
I've studied with Wendy time and time again over the last 4 years. Be it full time classes when I'm in the same city as Wendy or online Skype courses when I'm not, I keep going back to her training, because it works. I've never done better work than when in training with Wendy. This training pushes you be truthful, cut the crap and excel. I cannot urge you enough to train with Wendy. —Isobel Yates, Australia
"Years of experience.“
Wendy’s years of experience have made her capable of noticing your strengths and weaknesses very quickly, making you lose your bad acting habits, not by forcing her point of view upon you but by helping you grasp what you lack and what you need to do to become good...and yourself. —Gintare Parylute, Berlin
"Always leave a better actress."
I often arrive to Wendy's classes with butterflies in my stomach, but I always leave a better actress. Expect to be invigorated, challenged, excited, tested, frustrated, have highs and lows and, most importantly to discover more about yourself and your ability to take on any aspect of the human condition. —Helena Plazzer, Melbourne, Australia
Working with Wendy has been amazing. My acting skills have continued to improve each session. —Corey Jackson (Everyday Black Man, I Almost Got Away With It)
To call this training a transformative experience would be an understatement. —Farren Wood, 2015 NY Intensive
"Best at what she does!"
I have been involved in many organizations both professionally and voluntarily and it is not often you come across someone who is the best at what they do. You are indeed that. Your commitment to your students is something that is very rarely seen and I would like to thank you personally for it. —Geordie Worland, Melbourne, Australia
"Phenomenal acting coach."
Wendy Ward is a phenomenal acting coach, and I cannot recommend her classes highly enough. I entered her classes as a complete beginner and feel that I have dramatically improved, especially in leaving the mental space to depict characters more intuitively and authentically. Wendy enabled me to make this progress by striking a wonderful balance between being supportive and highlighting the areas which needed further work. Ultimately, learning the Meisner method with Wendy has enabled me to go into auditions with much more ease and confidence than I ever could have before." —Jack Lattimore, Yale
“My show reel gained industry attention.”
My one-on-one Skype sessions with Wendy really helped me with getting a callback and booking the role. I also would say consider working with Wendy if you're thinking about creating a showreel. Thanks to my work with her, it really helped me create a showreel that has gained some pretty good industry attention so I owe a lot to those sessions. —Max Gettler, Australia
"Knowledge and patience."
Having no experience in acting, I was terrified, but having such a calm teacher as Wendy with so much knowledge and patience helped a lot. I’m loving this! —Thomas Brarud, Norway
"What a great experience!"
I came into Wendy’s class as a robotic, unsure person. Wendy taught me more than acting, but about behavior and living in the moment. Wendy, thank you for changing my life. —Dylan Crumpler, Durham
"Most rewarding training."
This acting training was awesomely challenging and perhaps the most rewarding, profound and humbling I have ever done. —Courtney Halstead, Melbourne
"Training is addictive."
The intensive demands the highest level of discipline and commitment imaginable, but if you can meet these standards, your acting will be so much better for it. It is hard but the payoff means that you will be grateful for every single minute. The training is addictive!” —Adriane Daff, Perth
"When it comes from Wendy, you know it's real."
I highly recommend training with Wendy Ward at the Ward Acting Studio. Wendy teaches the Meisner Technique with a no –nonsense approach that gives you a solid foundation in a discipline that trains you to listen, observe and work truthfully off the behavior of your acing partners. This work will challenge you, and at times you might struggle. However, Wendy has a keen eye for detail and provides you feedback on what you need to work on. As a result, you come back the next time, and get it right. Consequently, piece by piece, and step by step, you are on your way to becoming a good actor. And, she will tell you when you are getting it right, and this will mean a lot to you because when it comes from Wendy, you know it’s real, and you have earned it. The Triangle area should be considered really fortunate to have an authentic Meisner teacher like Wendy for those that want to really learn the craft of acting.
By the way, I am not related to Wendy - just happen to have the same surname. —Gabe Ward, Durham
"My skills are stronger than ever."
I've recently come back to Meisner via Wendy's online coaching after nearly a ten-year absence. At the start, I could not get out of my own way. I watched myself constantly. I had all but put the process aside, and it did not feel good at all. Working with Wendy taught me to remember the importance of doing the work, of strong preparation, and of reality of doing. I learned to focus and to live truthfully in my work again, which is an amazing gift. After so long, I wasn't sure I could do that again. Now, my skills are stronger than ever. —Mary McGraw, Voice over actress New York
Thoughts from a few of our working graduates
“More independent film directors need to think about acting and think about how they’re directing actors, because they’re so involved in the writing and technical issues that they are not putting thought into their relationships with their actors. I think nine months of Meisner training was time very well spent! I’d be happy to roll up my sleeves and get dirty and do it again, to develop the habit of really showing up and bringing my A game every class. —Julia Halperin, Director La Barracuda, Now Foyager
"Appreciate the time you have in the training to turn over and unearth and explore every facet of yourself that can be brought into the training. It's not something to just pass through and at the other side you get a certificate that says you're a great actor -- it's the actual experience in the room. It's going to be over, and you're going to need it. So use it when you have it... and take notes!" —Clayton Dean Smith, Director Off Track Betty
"Whenever things are going hard or I want to make a decision, I always think back to my time at the Ward Studio because...I found a way to make it happen, to do the whole program. I think it's really important for the rest of your career. It gives you really great tools as an actor but also as a director. The lessons I learned from Meisner -- committing to every project, to be genuine, to be truthful -- it's important just for working with people wherever you are in your life." —Merel Smitt, The Netherlands
"Because I have the strong foundation of the Meisner technique, I just know every second, nothing can happen to me. Whatever people throw at me... I just know what I'm capable of. I can adapt. I'm not the kind of actor who says, 'Well, but I don't feel it right now.' The foundation I got in the craft is really, really good. You just have to learn to work with other people. If you're professional and you put in hard work, people will work with you over and over again." —Torben Karstens, Germany
"Meisner helps you maintain your self-respect. Don’t get distracted by other actors and how they have trained. You’re always going to come across actors who are incredibly self-conscious. Meisner helps you let go of that kind of thinking. It stops you from being judgmental. You learn quickly what a leveler the Meisner Approach is. It doesn’t matter who you are or where you’re from. You can be someone who has been doing professional film work for twenty years and be in class with someone who has never done acting work. You’ll go through the same course and you’ll find out very quickly how very equal we all are and never know from one class to the next who’s going to have one of those days where everything works and everything falls into place or who’s going to have one of those days that nothing is working no matter how much experience you’ve had." —Petra Glieson, Melbourne, Australia
"I actually get about a minute or two minutes to look at the script before I start. It has to be genuine. What I learned from my Meisner training is specificity and reality of doing. You may not think you can do that in a recording booth but I know that one of the reasons that I am as successful as I am is I know how to do that quickly! Once you are confident in your skills... and your training is strong and your instincts are good, the only way you learn how to handle it [the industry] is by doing it." —Cathy McGraw, Voice Over Actress New York City