TESTIMONIAL STORIES

Chris Quellette

Sofia Gutierrez

Nathan Audette

Marilyn Willock

Natasha Britto

Alex Pierce

Catherine Welch

Liza Scully

Pamela Yurek

  • Testimonials from Kids, Parents and Former students!

    Chris Quellette - (Letter)

    " Hi, my name is Chris Ouel lette. I have been attending the Toronto Academy of Acting since March of 2012. My first eight week course was in the te levision, film and commercial course. My instructors were Vladimir Bondarenko, Milan and Russell. During that course I completely bombed, but Vlad, Milan and Russell were extremely supportive and gave me the encouragement I needed to move forward. My second course was Method Acting. I learned so much about the industry and method acting. It was an invaluable experience. I couldn't help but admire the passion my instructors had for the craft of acting and teaching. The latter half of the method acting class we were given scenes from plays that we had to film with a partner. Vladimir invited my partner and I to rehearse on his own time. We planned a two hour session that went well beyond two hours. I was surprised that Vladimir wasn't concerned with the time, only how well we were doing. Vladimir and Milan and Russell have instilled a love of acting in me I didn't think was possible. I can't remember the last time I was so passionate about anything this much. I can't thank the Toronto Academy of Acting enough and in particular my teachers."

    (To view the pdf format)

    Sofia Gutierrez - (Letter)

    "Dear TAA,

    Zan is such an inspiration, she has a colonial sense of humor and I really learn in her classes. I have so much respect for Zan because she made it okay for me to express myself and to accept myself. I've never felt so free mentally and physically as I do when I'm in Zan's classes. I was in one other teacher's class before Zan and I feel that with the other teacher I wasn't really learning, but with Zan I get feedback and I know how to become better. I have also never felt so miserable in my life as I do in Zan's classes or maybe a better way to say it is, Zan made me face my misery and use it to reveal myself in a story, use it to make art, and also learn how to move out being trapped in it. I've learnt that that pain is key to getting into 'the zone' where I can allow and flow unblocked. After all, as she would say 'Emotion is just 'energy in emotion' or 'Your just having a 'vowel movement' since all emotions are expressed on vowel sounds!' And she always shows us new ways to balance ourselves after delving deep; techniques from every culture to heal and restore peace to my heart. There's never been one class that I've thought, "This was boring, I want to go home". Zan has constantly helped me break through as a person and as an actor; I've never felt so alive. Zan doesn't just focus on the skills needed how to act, but how to become a better person. Everything is interconnected and she is always telling us new things and how we can use them as actors and in our everyday lives. I don't know how I would have come out of the hole that I was in without Zan. Her class was a lifeline. I didn't feel supported and I couldn't deal with the pain. I hid it all behind a smile because I don't like to feel selfish; Zan helped me out of it. She is one of the few people in this world that I have a very high level of respect for. Sincerely,

    Sofia Gutierrez"

    (To view the pdf format)

    Nathan Audette - (Letter)

    "Christian Horizons is one of the largest agencies working with MCSC in Ontario to provide residential support for individuals with developmental disability.

    Nathan Audette lives at Halton 5, one of the residential homes of Christian Horizons in Halton. It has been our great pleasure as a team to assist and observe Nathan's interaction with staff and students at The Toronto Academy of Acting.

    It has been a personal dream of Nathan's, for many years now, to gain more experience and education in the profession of acting. We were delighted that The Toronto Academy of Acting became the school that is helping Nathan to achieve this dream. It was encouraging to see the flexibility of th.~ school in changing their approach to accommodate Nathan's special needs. Staff and students alike displayed enormous generosity in ensuring that Nathan felt comfortable in the class-room. They worked directly with him in a sensitive and understanding manner. Nathan's class-teacher, Mr. Vladimir Bondarenko even allowed Nathan to perform scripts which Nathan had written himself. He also took time to come in early and work with Nathan one-on-one. For all of these supports- we are grateful.

    As a support team for Mr. Audette, we at Halton 5 home would love to extend our appreciation for the flexibility, creativity and service that the Toronto Academy of Acting has provided. We look forward to more collaboration in the future. Thank you."

    (To view the pdf format)

    Marilyn Willock - (Letter)

    "To whom it may concern,

    I trained at the above Academy throughout the fall of 2011. I studied the Susan Batson and Meisner Acting theories both of which were expertly and professionally taught by working actors. We obtained the theories, acted scenes and were then critiqued with very careful attention to detail.

    We also learned how to audition for the film and television with scene work, working with the camera and finally critiqued.

    A working film director come to the school. He trained us in scene work and filmed us. He was very conscientious and critical. We also had periodic visits from several other directors. Finally, several talent agents came to see our work on our last day of school.

    I am very glad that I attended the Academy and learned a lot.

    Sincerely,

    Marilyn Willock"

    (To view the pdf format)

    Natasha Britto - (Letter)

    "I owe everything I have learned at the Academy to the patience and expertise from instructors Vladimir and Milan, who have been extraordinary throughout this journey. Alex Pierce, my fellow scene partner, has been tremendous in helping me relax and channel emotions unrestrained. That said, I still have a long way to go.

    I'd started taking these lessons as a leisurely activity. I'd hoped, if anything, that it would help with self-confidence. I have something of an aversion to cameras, mirrors and bright lights - can't really say why- but have found that acting has allowed me to confront who I am and change who I am for who I want to be. There is a lot more depth and understanding involved than anyone could imagine. I can certainly say that I've gained a heightened sense of awareness both of myself and of the world around me (greatly attributed in part to the journal writing so strongly encouraged by Vladimir and Milan).

    I aim to further my studies in acting and will absolutely keep in touch.

    Warm Regards,
    Natasha Britto"


    (To view the pdf format)

    Alex Pierce - (Letter)

    "Dear TAAFT

    I was enrolled in Method Acting with Vlad and Milan. This letter may serve as a testimonial to anyone interested in enrolling in this Academy course.
    More importantly, I wish to express my dearest appreciation towards Vlad and Milan who were a pleasure to work with throughout the entire class (8 weeks). Milan is a very open minded individual, helping students understand the view of the camera. His extensive experience and understanding of the art speaks for itself. If a camera could speak and explain the importance of the details needed to make a shot count, its name would most likely be Milan. Vlad, a working actor with not only tons of experience on screen, but with the expertise and the teaching ethics of a long teacher, turns any session into an academic milestone. His passion for the craft and his drive to spread acting knowledge truly illuminates our learning. Vlad went out of his way to help students achieve the best results in their scenes by sacrificing his time to rehearse with the actors in private. He also helped me adjust my resume to industry standards, which again he did in his private time. (Let's put it this way, it can never hurt to have a former English teacher review your resume).

    All together, the class was a lot of fun, and I was able to acquire an immense insight into Method Acting. I was equipped with many new tools and techniques which will allow me to take my craft to the next level.

    I truly wish to thank Vladimir and Milan for their effort and look forward to working with them again in the near future."

    (To view the pdf format)

    Catherine Welch - (Letter)

    "To the President/Owner of the Toronto Academy of Acting,

    I am a current student of the Beginners course for film scenes and TV commercials.

    After my class this past Wednesday, I felt compelled to contact you and let you know what an amazing group of professional educators you have on your hands.

    Our teacher Vladimir has been nothing shy of inspiring. He is always positive, full of amazing insight and knowledge and his passion for the craft drives me to be better. Through his vast knowledge and experience I learned how to make acting much more realistic and it has allowed me to work much deeper within myself then I ever though would be possible.

    This week Vladimir brought in a special guest (Russell) to work with us as we did our commercials. What an amazing treat it was to work with a professional actor, and Russell gave his all to each and every one of us. I just thought it was fantastic that he would give his time, talent and full energy to us.

    I really felt it necessary to let you know because it is rare to find such gems in the large dark cave of acting educators.

    Thank you for your time.
    Sincerely,

    Catherine Welch"

    (To view the pdf format)

    Liza Scully - (Parent Letter)

    "My daughter Taylor Scully attended your showz kidz summer camp last July. It was the highlight of her summer. I am just emailing you to let you know it has paid off.

    She just filmed her first Canadian National Union commercial for KRAFT DELISSIO PIZZA- baby."

    Pamela Yurek - (Former Student)

    "I am a former student of TAA and would like to submit my success. I have landed a role in a commercial, music video, tv series and numerous independent films as well as theatre. Much of my success goes to my acting coach Kenneth McGregor who always taught me to push myself and my limits. He encouraged me to pursue my dream and now I can say I am living them. Thanks so much Kenneth. If you could forward this letter on to him it would be greatly appreciated as he was not only my coach but a mentor and I would love to get in touch with an old friend.

    Much appreciated.

    Pamela Yurek"