In the Frame

The art of directing actors

To all Directors, learn how to achieve a great performance from your actors.

“A good director makes a playground and allows actors to play.” – Martin Landau

“The magic doesn’t come from within the director’s mind, it comes from within the hearts of the actors.” – James Cameron

If you want to work with experienced well trained actors then this is the course for you.


Contact us to Signup

It may seem mysterious from the outside, but the connection between the actor and the director is crucial to the success of a project. Like any healthy relationship, they need to effectively communicate, share, invest and grow together in order to achieve the desired outcome.

Unfortunately most directors don’t often get the chance to practice working with experienced actors, to engage with them in a supportive environment, take risks and experiment. While the director has to oversee all aspects of a shoot (camera, costume, design, story etc.) they often don’t have the time to devote energy and focus to the most vital aspect of their project – the performance.

If you are a passionate filmmaker who wants to practice your craft and work with experienced actors then this is the course for you. This is an opportunity to not only be exposed to some of the best SAC trained professional actors but also analyze and expand your practice, get a deeper breadth of what’s possible in the rehearsal process and find a practical language with which to communicate with actors.


About SAC trainer Nadia Townsend:

Nadia started out as an actress and has been working in film, TV and theatre for the last twenty years. Nadia has been brought on to local and international productions as a dramaturg to rehearse actors from all levels of experience, background and ability. Her recent credits include, Little Monsters, Secret Daughter, Love Child, Brock, Mad Max Fury Road. She is known for her practical and tangible approach to working with actors and is one of our most popular trainers at SAC. Nadia teaches the Language and Process of Acting for Directors and Producers at the Australian Film and Television school (AFTRS).

To view her credentials and work please visit her website

Course format

This course is a hands on experience for directors and actors. The course will include theory and class work but will also comprise of 3 small shoots where directors will shoot and deliver scenes for viewing each week.

The course runs for 1 full Sunday and 3 Wednesday nights.

Open to only 5 directors.

Date: Sunday April 15th and Wednesday 25th April, 2nd May and 9th May

Cost is $325

SUNDAY (1 Day) – 10am to 5pm

This class is a full day intensive that will focus on the language and process of acting, look deeper into your current approach and prepare for your upcoming rehearsals and shoot with your actors.  During the day you will be working on small one page scenes and guided through particular principles of the work via getting on the floor. The practical experience is vital to gaining a deeper understanding of the inside (actor) v. outside (director) nature of the process.

After this class directors have just over a week to shoot a scene. Each director will be given two experienced SAC trained actors to work with. Directors will be responsible for all aspects of the shoot including equipment, locations, editing and final delivery. The scenes will be single location two handers around 2 to 3 minutes long. Focus is not spent on production values but more the performance and story.

WEDNESDAYS (over 3 weeks) – 6pm to 9pm

Each Wednesday night actors and directors will convene at SAC studios to watch the weeks scenes. Nadia will offer notes on all the scenes, on direction, story, performances and then discuss the process with all participants. Nadia will then choose two scenes to be work shopped on the floor with the actors and directors. Nadia will offer further ideas, insights, processes and knowledge from her years of experience to further develop the director actor relationship.

At the completion of this class each director will be given the same two actors and have a week to shoot another scene for the following Wednesday class. Here the team gets to take the information from Nadia and put it to actual practice in another shoot.

After viewing scenes and notes on the second Wednesday, directors will be given a new pair of SAC actors to shoot another final scene for the following Wednesday.

This is a breakthrough hands on course for the emerging director. You not only gain theoretical know how but, most importantly, you will learn by making work – the only way for directors to truly practice and hone their craft. You will work with one of the best dramaturg’s in Australia and some of the most talented SAC actors to make magic!


SAC is proud to offer this innovative new course for directors. We have had many successful directors such as Nash Edgerton (Gringo), Rowan Woods (Rake), Tony Rogers (Wilfred), Rachel Ward, (Beautiful Kate), Wayne Blair (Cleverman) conduct masterclasses to support us in our venture to train the new generation of Australian filmmakers.


For more details or to register your place please email

“The guys at SAC are full of knowledge and will help any actor achieve their goals”

-James Tobin (Channel 7 Sunrise presenter)

“Acting with Chum on The Straits was great. This man knows acting!”

-Firass-Dirani (Logi winning actor: House Husbands, The Straits, Underbelly)

“I have worked with Chum as an actor and director. As a director he knew how to bring out the best performance in me. He cares!”

-Andy-Whitfield (Actor: Sparticus Starz TV USA)

"They will take your acting magic to the next level."

-Nash Edgerton (Film Director)