Black Box Acting Studio was founded in 2009 by Audrey Francis and Laura Hooper as a place for actors to develop and hone their craft. The founders grew the company from a handful of classes in various spaces around the city into one of the premiere acting schools in Chicago, and the only with dedicated space on the Northwest side.
After taking class with Audrey at the University of Chicago, I attended Black Box’s intensive, long form ACADEMY program in 2012. It was a transformative experience for me, and to this day, I credit it with my foundation in the field as an actor.
In 2013, I started teaching at the company. For the next several years, I enjoyed the enormous privilege of working with Black Box students and helping them to realize their goals in and out of the classroom.
Then, in 2018, Amanda Fink, Eric Gerard and I purchased Black Box, and took over as the full-time leadership team, while continuing our teaching duties. That leadership transition was covered in Newcity Stage in 2019.
Elsewhere, I have used what we teach at Black Box as a lecturer for the Committee on Theatre and Performance Studies at the University of Chicago. I taught an Advanced Acting Workshop Fall Quarter of 2018, a Black Box module in Summer Quarter 2019, and returned to teach Acting Fundamentals Winter Quarter 2023. My teaching CV can be found here.
Since becoming the leadership team, Amanda, Eric, and I have worked tirelessly to uphold the original mission of Black Box: to be a place where actors can find what it means to live truthfully under imagined circumstances.
We hope to continue to make that mission as expansive as possible. We are working to continue to bring our brand of fearless acting to stages and sets across the country.
For any inquiries related to my work as a teacher or administrator at Black Box, including coaching requests, please email me at email@example.com.