JOLIET – When Jan Novotny, principal at St. Joseph Academy in Joliet, was taking voice and acting lessons from Coral Rose in Joliet, she became stunned when Rose said, “We’re going to the Golden Halo Awards.”
These, Rose said, are presented by the Southern California Motion Picture Council.
Soon Novotny was on a plane bound for Hollywood. The next day, she was sitting in the office of Paramount’s vice president, the “most elegant and pizzazz guy,” Novotny said.
Next, “mouth hanging open,” Novotny said she was attending an “elegant award dinner” amid such famous guests as Shirley Jones and two of the original “Wizard of Oz” munchkins and declining an invitation to attend the church of the Rev. Della Reese.
“Our flight was leaving the next day,” Novotny said.
With retirement of her acting instruction career imminent, Rose is recording a DVD series of her teaching methods. She’s currently seeking individuals with all levels of acting experience, ranging from none to professionally trained individuals, to be featured in those DVDs as Rose demonstrates techniques.
Rose has one reason why acting students should contact her for this project.
“Because their faces will be all over the world,” Rose said. “When I was in the business, I would have jumped over three cars and a bus to get there.”
Rose (her real last name is Gayle) is a multi-credentialed acting coach and owner of Screen Actors Academy, which teaches the Stanislavsky method of acting, which early film stars learned, Rose said.
In an advertisement in the September 2013 “Beverly Hills Times,” Rose offered a two-week acting workshop in Hollywood. The workshop featured “acting techniques, reacting to the camera, voiceover, earpiece, reading for auditions, speech and diction, blocking, scene study, pictures and marketing, cold reading, commercial copy, being creative, taking risks and developing an individual style.”
And if that isn’t enough, Rose believes a year of Shakespeare instruction should be woven into the curriculum of any good acting instructor.
“You learn to pronounce all the vowels and consonants properly,” Rose said.
Unfortunately, Rose, said few acting instructors teach the Stanislavsky method, to the detriment of acting students. Instead, far too many “young hopefuls” head to Hollywood hoping ‘to be discovered.’
“There are no discoveries,” Rose said. “Kids just don’t want to do the work. We’ve got a generation of ‘me, me, me.’ ”
Rose’s interest in acting stemmed from her modeling work, which began when she was 17. Agencies would send Rose out for small film roles. Eventually, Rose married, raised two children and completed nursing school. A back injury ended nursing and sent Rose back to modeling and acting.
“My chiropractor said, ‘You’re out of work,’ ” Rose said. “At that time, nurses did a lot of bending over patients.”
Rose said she was doing some theater-in-the-round work where Cesar Romero was one of the actors. Rose said when Romero criticized her voice by saying, “You’ve got a voice like a ruptured crow,” she asked him how to correct it.
Romero, Rose said, recommended Ted Liss [now deceased] a Chicago acting coach. For six years, Rose said she took acting and directing classes from Liss, which led to a new career in voice-over work, as well as roles in film and theater, Rose said.
Eventually, Rose opened the Screen Actors Academy in California, closed it to take care of her dying father and then returned to reopen it, until her mother was dying and also needed care. So Rose moved her career to fit the situation.
“I opened up a school here,” Rose said.
Past school locations, Rose said, include Los Angeles, Chicago and San Diego. Rose now rents space at St. Joseph Academy, where she continues to teach acting. Contact Rose at 815-230-5795 or CoralRose47@yahoo.com.