Winter 2020 Partnership Classes

Write Your Role

February 26 - April 15



Instructor: John Greene (Pulitzer Prize nominee)

9th Grade-Adult

Is there a type of character you’ve always wanted to play? Good, evil, loving, lost or an honest politician? Bring your dream archetype to Write Your Role, and craft a scene specifically for yourself.  Students will collaborate and create short dynamic scenes that showcase themselves in the roles they are most interested in playing.  These scenes will be performed in a showcase in Chicago at the Russ Tutterow Theatre, at Chicago Dramatists. Explore all the fundamentals of acting--objectives, back story, emotional-needs, and more--and pour those skills into your writing.  Strengthen your voice as a writer, and hone your skills as an actor: perform the role you’ve always wanted to play!

Note From Instructor:

"I am thrilled to be teaching at ATC in Wilmette where I grew up. The first play I ever did was Peter Pan in the basement of our house at Fifth and Washington when I was in third grade. Since then I’ve pursued a life of acting, writing and song. To be able to bring all of my skills together in Write Your Role just three blocks from my grade school is beyond words." - John Greene

Pitch Your Pilot

Instructor: Mary Ruth Clark (original screenwriter of Meet the Parents)


In this third Golden Age of Television and era of Peak TV, this class is for anyone who has an idea that could make a great web series, TV show or limited series and wants to learn the crucial basics of how to write it and pitch it.


We will study successful pilots and the pitch documents that started them off. We will tease out/explore the inherent possibilities in your idea, where it fits in the vast small screen landscape, what makes for great characters, visual storytelling, proper story structure and proper formatting. Participants will pitch, write, and rewrite.


You will leave the workshop with:


  • An understanding of what goes into a verbal pitch, a PowerPoint pitch, and a pitch document

  • The makings of a pitch document

  • A grasp of the show template, structure, core cast, and the ongoing character revelations as opposed to character development

  • A grasp of the process of creation that optioned shows and writers go through

  • A better grasp of the language that writers/producers/agents speak

  • The beginnings of a rough draft of a television pilot

Instructor Bio:

Mary Ruth Clarke is a Resident Playwright at Chicago Dramatists. She co-wrote and starred in the original low-budget Meet the Parents and adapted it into the blockbuster Meet the Parents, starring Robert De Niro, for which she shares Story credit with Greg Glienna. The original Meet the Parents was chosen by critic Dave Kerr as his favorite home-grown Chicago movie and was featured at the Gene Siskel Film Center’s grand opening. She also shares Characters Creation credit with Greg for Meet The Fockers and Little Fockers.

-- | 1120 Central Ave, 2nd Floor, Wilmette, IL 60091 | 847.251.8710


All donations are tax-deductible!


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