Scene Study

Classes taught by

John Gordon and Shaun McComb:

On-Camera Scene Study Class w/ John Gordon

What am I responsible for bringing to my acting and what do I leave to inspiration?

These questions never end, they are different for every actor on every day and it’s a teacher’s job to help an actor with these questions as they prepare to be on set, on stage or in the audition room.

In these classes, actors will learn their strengths and what they need to work on in front of the camera.

Points of emphasis will be:  

  • seeking out visceral objectives
  • the belief that an objective is attainable
  • finding compelling obstacles through both character and in-depth script analysis
  • learning to be comfortable being uncomfortable while working in front of the camera through breath and physical awareness on existing film and television scripts

This is a class for working film and television and theatre actors.

Maximum number of students: 8-10 (depending on Zoom or in-person).

Online classes will be held by video via Zoom conferencing. In-person classes will be held at the studio.

Click here for Class Times.

Weekend Intensive: Theatre Scene Study w/ John Gordon

Students will be assigned one theatre scene from a well-regarded playwright and will work on the same scene for both days of the Intensive.

Students will rehearse with their assigned partner 2-3 times before the Intensive.

There will be chances to explore different rehearsal methods (i.e. script analysis, up-on-your-feet, diving in the rhythm of playwright, character intention, tactics that work well for the individual actor).

The workshop will be 12-5pm on February 25/26.

Maximum no. of students: 10

IN-PERSON One session (6 classes)$500 inc. hst
Early-bird rate$450 inc. hst
Payment can be sent by e-transfer to (use password “dirtunderneath”)
2-day Intensive$300 inc. hst
Early-bird rate$275 inc. hst
Payment can be sent by e-transfer to (use password “dirtunderneath”)

On-Camera Scene Study Class w/ Shaun McComb

*Actors will rotate between two training slots which were put in place to accommodate social distancing concerns. Training slots are 2-5pm and 6-9pm. Please refer to the application form for more details.

Students are cast five days prior to class in material pulled from The Dirt’s scene database of contemporary film/TV sides.

The focus of class is momentum and practice and to find the joy in getting the best take possible on the day.

Actors are expected to prep as they normally would for an audition or a day of work on set so that maximum effort can be put into the playing of the scene. Technique is meant to stir the actor’s imagination and/or articulate and focus impulses, therefore the work each term is curated for the cohort of individual actors.

Ultimately, Shaun’s work meets the actor where they are and builds on concepts of story analysis, character development, and play

*Each application process is different, so please anticipate Shaun getting in touch with you via-email prior to the session’s start.

Please refer to TESTIMONIALS page for any questions about the class vibe.

The Self Tape Study is on-going, click here for more details.

Click here for Class Times.

IN-PERSON One session (6 classes) $450 inc. hst
Early-bird rate$400 inc. hst
Payment can be sent by e-transfer to

The Sandbox Intensive (Acting Foundations) w/ Shaun McComb

Saturdays 11:30am-2:30pm

The Sandbox Intensive is a four-week acting course that is an introduction to the principles and practices of acting in the forms of realism, at a professional level for the camera.

Areas of focus will include:

  • Story
  • Character
  • Play
  • Relationship
  • Emotion
  • Environment

If you’ve wondered what acting is, or what The Dirt Underneath Actors’ Space is all about, or you’re returning to acting, then we recommend The Sandbox Intensive for you. It’s not a bootcamp, but there’s a trajectory. Students will primarily work on scripted scenes from day one, but there will be exercises – different than theatre games – to start every class.

Max: 8 students – registration will be on a first-come, first-serve basis.

If you have questions about this please email .

Click here for Class Times.

IN-PERSON One session (4 classes) $375 inc. hst
Early-bird rate$325 inc. hst
Payment can be sent by e-transfer to

I had a very short notice for my Kim’s Convenience audition and immediately called John. He challenged me to dig deeper into the scenes and reminded me to slow down and work moment-to-moment. He gave me the confidence to trust my instincts and truly bring myself to the work.

Nicole Power