Young Actors Studio FAQs
Where are you located?
Saltworks’ offices are located in the Bellevue/Avalon section of Pittsburgh, PA. We hold classes and camps in the rooms around our offices.
Is the Young Actors Studio a highly competitive environment?
No! Something unique about our program compared to many others in Pittsburgh is that every student gets a part and a chance to stand out at Saltworks. We are sure to highlight each child’s talents and challenge them to build new strengths. Though we do expect our students to work hard and earn the parts they receive, casting is always a low-stress process no matter if it’s for today’s scene study or this year’s big musical. Students in the Young Actors Studio learn to value a strong ensemble rather than over-emphasizing starring roles. Our teachers always take attitude, teamwork, and enthusiasm into account as much as talent.
My child has a physical/mental/social/emotional disability. Will the Young Actors Studio be a good place for them?
Only you and your child can know whether a certain type of activity or location will be appropriate for them. However, we have had a number of students with a range of different disabilities who have all thrived at Saltworks. We approach each student with the mindset that everyone can do everything and then make adjustments as necessary. Our location is handicap accessible. Saltworks can be a noisy, seemingly chaotic, joyously wild place at times and that is something that cannot be changed. The Young Actors Studio might not be the right place for everyone, but everyone is welcome.
Is Saltworks a Christian theater company?
The most important thing to emphasize is that everyone is welcome at Saltworks! Kids of many faiths and creeds have happily been students at Saltworks and it is honestly a non-issue. Saltworks was founded in 1981 on the guiding principles behind many religions; things like caring for others, being positive about situations, and always giving your best self. These are the values that influence the foundation of our classes. Saltworks’ mission is to educate, challenge, and inspire students to make positive choices both on and off the stage and we endeavor to nourish children’s spirits through the magic of theater and the experience of performing. We do not pray with our students, talk about the Bible in classes, or ever expect our students to make any pronouncements of faith.
What if I’ve never acted before?
Then Saltworks will be a great place for you! We pride ourselves on making sure that all of our classes are appropriate for students of all levels of experience and commitment to theater. Our teachers are all equipped to work with students who maybe need extra support or a greater challenge.
Who teaches at Saltworks?
Our teachers are all theater professionals who love to teach their craft! We look for a very special kind of enthusiastic, positive person to teach at Saltworks, so we frequently have teachers return year after year for our classes and camps. We are also lucky to have many alumni come back to teach or assist every year. All of our instructors have their necessary clearances.
Will I be in a class with people my own age?
We always endeavor to put students with people near their age, but the size of the class dictates whether or not we are able to split classes into age groups so sometimes a 10 year old will be with a 14 year old. A mixed-age class is an excellent experience, though! We always encourage our students to learn from and support each other during class so it can be wonderful to have people of different ages contributing to one learning environment.
How many students are in a class?
At the Young Actors Studio, we always aim to have, at the most, a 1-10 teacher/student ratio. This is because we believe that having a lot of one-on-one time with our students leads to more successful experiences all around.
I see you’re a non-profit so where does my child’s class fee go?
First and foremost, it is used to pay our teachers and assistants! Teaching can be a great way for creative professionals to make a rewarding living in their field and we are so happy to support some of Pittsburgh’s theatrical set in this way. Whatever is left over from that goes towards class materials, then to support Saltworks Theatre Company’s school tour (which you can learn more about here) and then to help Saltworks with general upkeep as a business.