These boutique classes provide young performers with early access to professional skills and screen techniques within a fun and vibrant learning environment.
Develop confidence and learn skills in communicating, team work, listening and expression. Improvisation and text based exercises, filled with fun games and engaging activities for young people who are interested in acting and presenting. Practical skills to develop the young actor’s understanding of working on screen. Including scripts; taking direction; building a character and working with others to make a scene work, as well as exercises to develop presenting skills and confidence in audition preparation.
Each course culminates with a presentation of work to casting director and SDS principal Toni Higginbotham, allowing her to monitor their development and provide feedback on their growth.
2014 Term Dates
Toni Pearen - Head of Acting Classes for Kids & Teens
Toni is an accomplished actress, singer and presenter who most recently played the role of Tilly Devine in an Episode of Crime Channel’s Tough Nuts.
Toni’s television credits include Beth Armstrong in Home & Away, Justine in Out of the Blue, Jenny in JAG, Toni Windsor in E-Street and Patty Morrison in A Country Practice. Toni also made a guest appearance in Tom Hanks and Steven Spielberg’s The Pacific.
Toni has had film roles in the Australian feature films All Men are Liars and On the Dead Side as well as on the US production Colin Fitz Lives!
Toni has also appeared on stage with Perth Theatre Company’s Stories from Suburban Roads and at Brisbane’s Lyric Theatre in Return to the Forbidden Planet.
As a presenter & personality Toni was the host of the hugely successful Australia’s Funniest Home Videos for over four years and then took to the floor in Channel Seven’s Dancing with the Stars. Toni has hosted numerous TV programmes including Red Music Television, Video Smash Hits, Coca Cola Take 40 and also featured in Celebrity Circus and Abbamania (Nine Network).
Toni’s early music career saw her release four singles and an Album titled Intimate through Mushroom Records.
With over 20 years experience in the industry she is looking forward to sharing her knowledge and skills. Her past teaching experience includes teaching roles at NIDA and ATFRS.
Gabrielle Rogers - School Holiday Workshops
Gabrielle Rogers has taught voice and performing to actors of all ages for 10 years. As a qualified trainer and assessor as well as graduate from NIDA’s prestigous Voice Studies course; Gabrielle teaches practical skills and exercises to enable each performer reach their personal best. Students of Gabrielle’s have gone on to perform in countless theatre, television and feature film roles. Gabrielle’s enthusiasm and positivity makes her one of the best acting teachers for young people Sydney has to offer.
Toni Higginbotham – Sydney Dram School Principal
Toni is one of Australia’s leading Casting Directors. Toni personally cast Cate Blanchett in her first drama series Heartland, Simon Baker in E street, and Geoffrey Rush and Sam Neil in Frontier. She got Megan Gale her first on-screen performance. And because she is dedicated to doing great work a lot of the world’s leading directors come to her for their castings. They know they’ll get the best. Because she has great eye for talent. And it’s this quality that puts her in a unique position to offer support and guidance to both aspiring and established actors.