readers choice

Ventura County’s Choice for Acting Schools!

Westlake Acting Studio Mission

Westlake Acting Studio started in 2008 with the idea of bringing professional acting training to Ventura County. Why Ventura County? Because acting students were traveling to Los Angeles for the very same instruction that we could provide right here in a non-intimidating setting. And we could offer new actors the Meisner technique to improve listening and to help you focus on your scene partner. We’re one of the few schools outside of the city to offer the program, which was developed by Sanford Meisner at New York’s Neighborhood Playhouse. We know it will be helpful to both future professionals and non-actors who simply want to feel more confident in social interactions.

Our mission: To provide varied classes and teachers in an effort to create a place for people to further their creative interests.

Our goal is to help you become a better performer. Westlake Acting Studio may have began with acting classes, but we soon added on-camera commercials training and improv & stand-up comedy classes in order to build well-rounded performers. Then we created an acting Master class to hone our graduates’ skills (and to keep them in practice). ‘Rogues of LA,’ the studio webseries, just wrapped shooting and is now in post production. Acting studios have long created traditional stage companies. And some even support a theatre. We are taking that concept into the twenty-first century and onto the web. Not only will a web series give our students an opportunity to be seen; you will feel the camaraderie of working within a company while gaining crucial on-camera experience. Not only is it fun to act on ‘film,’ but it can be an entry point for SAG membership too. And our studio continues to grow through our very popular “Conversations with…” speaker series. Now in it’s third year, our past guests have included Melissa Gilbert, Alan Ruck, and Stacy Keach.

Westlake Acting Studio Offers Something for Everyone

Improvisation class sharpens your instincts and builds your self-trust. Stand-up comedy polishes your presentation and increases your ability to tolerate risk in a performance setting. Each provide a different set of challenges! Our personal expression & performance classes can help you overcome barriers by building the confidence that you need to succeed.

One Less Bitter Actor


You can’t think that everyone is going to like your work. I just started my new class and in the first day talk, I ask them who they like as actors and they can always find someone and tell me why they like them.  Then I point out that there are also many famous, iconic, talented actors that they don’t like. That’s the beauty of art. It’s for everyone. Many actors go to work everyday because someone likes their work enough to pay them for it, and many people watching their work think they’re awful and can’t imagine how they keep their jobs.

Uh huh…that’s how it works.

Art can’t be measured by it’s appeal to the masses BY THE ARTISTS, that kind of measuring is for the marketing department. It’s not your job to wonder if it’s good enough for everyone watching, it’s your job to wonder if you’re giving over all you have to the part. Your only shot at fulfillment in your work, is by doing authentic work. You’re happiness as an artist is in direct proportion to how authentic you are being. The struggle to find more and allow more of yourself to be included is about bravery.  That’s what we do in class and every night in the play, we keep looking into what we have to offer. Talent is the thing that you can’t know, it’s the thing that makes your authenticity appealing.

If you find yourself in a place or group of friends that don’t allow, or stifle, your authenticity…it’s time for a change, or, you can go on wondering why you just don’t feel great about your work.