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Inaugural American Theatre of Being Acting Summit with Alabama State University's Tonea Stewart (406 hits)

Inaugural 'American Theatre of Being' Acting Summit Held in Montgomery!

In Tribute to Hollywood Acting & Directing Legend Frank Silvera; Hosted by ASU Legend Dr. Tonea Stewart

The Event Teaches and Continues the Acting Technique that is a Hollywood Benchmark; Created by Silvera

WHEN: Saturday & Sunday (Sept. 29-30) - see the agenda below for specific events, times and locations.
WHERE: The ASU Building at 32 Commerce St. (downtown) and at the Hampton Inn (downtown).

The inaugural 'American Theatre of Being Acting Summit' is being held in Montgomery this weekend, and its sponsor is no other than the dean of ASU's College of Visual and Performing Arts, and recognized and renowned Hollywood actor, Dr. Tommie 'Tonea' Stewart.

Stewart says that with so many movies now being filmed in the River Region, Alabama State University's Center of Excellence for the 'Study of Being' saw the need to offer to all actors - and those interested in the art - a great opportunity to learn about the 'nuts and bolts' of acting from acclaimed movie and TV acting experts who are schooled in the technique called 'The American Theatre of Being,' which will be taught at this weekend's acting summit.

'The American Theatre of Being' acting technique is one that Stewart practices herself, and acquired it from its originator, Hollywood acting and directing legend, the late Frank Silvera. Stewart was the recipient of intense training and mentorship from Silvera and acclaimed actress Beah Richards, famous for many roles, which includes from the movie "Guess Whose Coming to Dinner?" Richards was Silvera’s first star-student, and ASU's Stewart was his last pupil before his death.

Stewart says that both Silvera and Richards passed the "Being" techniques torch to her, and she has spent the last 50 years teaching this method with great success at ASU and elsewhere.

"I am hosting this weekend's summit in tribute to Frank Silvera, who is the founding father of 'The American Theatre of Being' and whom became my friend as I worked on many movies and television shows in Los Angeles and around the nation," Stewart said.

"Our weekend event is a rare and important avenue for experts and beginners alike to learn and hone important acting techniques that Silvera created, which are among the most utilized acting techniques used today," Stewart added.

The 'Summit' is bringing to its event this weekend actor Art Evans, who is a master - student of Silvera's acting technique, and an ASU alumnus (photo above).

Evans' acting career spans almost 40 years, and started with Frank Silvera's Theater of Being in Los Angeles. He took a starring role in The Amen Corner which transferred to Broadway in 1965. His first credited TV role was in Chico and the Man, and his talents for many instruments came in handy when playing Blind Lemon Jefferson in the movie Leadbelly.

In 1984, Evans co-starred in the all-star African-American drama A Soldier's Story as the memorable brown-nosing character Wilkie. He is probably best known for his role as Leslie Barnes in the action film Die Hard 2 in which he played an air traffic control tower employee at Dulles International Airport that helps Bruce Willis' character stop terrorists from crashing planes. His other film credits include Big Time, Native Son, School Daze, The Mighty Quinn, Tales from the Hood and Metro. He has also made many appearances in a variety of television shows such as M*A*S*H, Hill Street Blues, Monk, The X-Files, and Family Matters. In 2010, Art Evans was seen in Anderson's Cross playing the grandfather of the lead character. In 2011, he had a guest appearance on the sitcom Last Man Standing.

Silvera made his film debut in the western, The Cimarron Kid. Due to his light complexion, the African-American actor was cast in a wide variety of ethnic roles on the stage, in films and television. He was cast as Mexican general Victoriano Huerta in Viva Zapata!, starring Marlon Brando. The role marked the first time a major motion picture studio cast a non-white actor in the role of a non-white character. Silvera also portrayed roles in two films directed by Stanley Kubrick, Fear and Desire (1953) and Killer's Kiss (1955). He appeared on Broadway in The Skin of Our Teeth, A Hatful of Rain, and as King Lear in Shakespeare’s King Lear at the Public Theatre. In television, he made guest appearances in Studio One, Alfred Hitchcock Presents, Bat Masterson, Thriller, Riverboat, The Untouchables, Bonanza, The Twilight Zone, Mutiny on the Bounty, and a regular on the series High Chaparral.

In 1964, Silvera, with the help of Vantile Whitfield founded The American Theatre of Being, a Los Angeles-based theater dedicated to providing black actors with non-stereotypical roles. The theater's first project, The Amen Corner by James Baldwin, made history as the first African-American play to be produced, directed and staffed by an all African-American company. The play's star, Beah Richards, won critical acclaim for her role.
Posted By: Reginald Culpepper
Tuesday, September 25th 2018 at 6:32PM
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