Practical Aesthetics Australia is honored to have hosted the following Atlantic Theater Company Master Teachers in Sydney, some on several occasions.  We hope to organize more of these Master Classes in the near future.

William H. Macy taught this phenomenal sold out Master Class in Sydney at the invitation of PAA.  Macy brought his incomparable wit, career experience, generosity and instructive storytelling to an enthralled audience of film, theatre and television professionals lucky enough to score a seat.  A handful of actors had prepared scenes and received his candid Practical Aesthetics-style guidance.

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Macy debuted his film The Deal at the Sundance Film Festival,a film he not only starred in and produced, but also adapted from the novel by Peter Lefcourt with long time writing partner Steven Schachter. Recent movie credits include Wild Hogs, The Cooler, Bobby, Edmond, an adaptation of the David Mamet play and Thank you for Smoking. On television, Macy has been seen in Stephen King’s "Umney’s Last Case", "The Wool Cap", "Door to Door", "Stealing Sinatra", "ER", and "Sports Night".

Macy also appeared in two Mamet vehicles, "The Water Engine" and Showtime's "Texan." In 1999, he starred, "A Slight Case of Murder" opposite his wife Felicity Huffman and received another Emmy nomination. On the big screen, Macy was seen in the critically-acclaimed feature, Seabiscuit, and is best known for his portrayal of Jerry Lundergaard in Fargo, for which he garnered an Oscar Nomination. Additional film credits include Sahara, Cellular, Spartan, In Enemy Hands, Magnolia, Pleasantville, Happy Texas, State and Main, Jurassic Park 3, Focus, Welcome to Collinwood, Psycho, A Civil Action, Boogie Nights, Wag The Dog, Air Force One, Ghosts of Mississippi, Mr. Holland's Opus, The Client, Shadows and Fog, Murder in the First, Searching for Bobby Fischer, Radio Days and Panic.

Born in Miami, Macy lived in Georgia until age ten before moving to Cumberland, Maryland, where his love for acting spawned as ‘Mordred’ in Camelot. Macy transferred to Goddard College in Vermont, where he came under the tutelage of theater Professor David Mamet. In 1972, Mamet, Macy and his writing partner Steven Schachter moved to Chicago, where they collectively created the St. Nicholas Theater. Macy originated roles for several of Mamet's classic original productions, among them, ‘Bobby’ in American Buffalo, and ‘Lang’ in The Water Engine, soon establishing his feature film presence with writer/director Mamet. His performances in Oleanna and "Homicide" earned Macy kudos and he continued with Mamet in Things Change, House of Games and Wag the Dog. Moving to New York in 1980, he originated theater roles in such off-Broadway productions as Baby With the Bathwater, The Dining Room, Life During Wartime, Mr. Gogol and Mr. Preen, Bodies, Rest and Motion, and Mamet's Prarie du Chen, Oh Hell, and Oleanna. Macy appeared in the Broadway production of Our Town (Tony Award winner for Best Ensemble), and on the London stage in Atlantic Theater Company's revival of David Mamet's American Buffalo, at the Donmar Warehouse.

Macy has also earned respect as a teacher and director, having led theater classes in Chicago and at New York University, today he serves as director in the residence at the Atlantic Theater Company in New York. His extensive directing resume includes Boy's Life at Lincoln Center, the LA production of Oleanna at the Tiffany Theater, as well as Lip Service, an HBO film which won an ACE Award for best Theatrical Production. Macy also directed the play The Joy of Going Somewhere Definite at the Atlantic Theater Company in New York. In 1998, Macy was honored by Showest when he was named Best Supporting Actor of the Year for his body of work. Macy is married to Oscar nominee and Golden Globe, Emmy and SAG award winner, actress Felicity Huffman, who stars on "Desperate Housewives." They live in Los Angeles with their two daughters.


Karen Kohlhaas is a director and a founding member of the Atlantic Theater Company. She has been teaching Practical Aesthetics since 1987. As a director she has worked at Atlantic, the New York Shakespeare Festival/Public Theater, Second Stage Theatre, Ensemble Studio Theatre, Naked Angels, New Dramatists, the Alley Theatre in Houston, the Practical Theater Company in Sydney, and many others. Her short films have been seen at the Silverlake Film Festival in Los Angeles, the Galway Film Festival in Ireland, and the Crossroads Film Festival in Mississippi. She is the author of The Monologue Audition: A Practical Guide for Actors; The Monologue Audition Teacher's Manual, and director/writer/producer of The Monologue Audition Video (DVD). She maintains a website for actors, www.monologueaudition.com.

Karen recently won Backstage New York Readers’ Choice Awards 2010 Favorite Cold-Reading Teacher and Favorite Monologue Coach.


American Repertory Theater: Copenhagen, Absolution, Animals and Plants, The Cripple of Inishmaan, the world premiere of David Mamet's The Old Neighborhood; Assistant Director of Mamet’s The Cryptogram at the A.R.T. He directed The Old Neighborhood on Broadway, the national tour of Mamet’s Oleanna, as well as the theatrical trailer for the film version of that play.

He also directed Mr. Mamet’s plays The Woods and Sexual Perversity in Chicago, as well as numerous shorter pieces. Mr. Zigler served as Artistic Director of the Atlantic Theater Company in New York and as Executive Director of that company’s professional training program, the Practical Aesthetics Workshop.

He was also Director of the Actors Theatre of Louisville Apprentice/Intern Company from 1992-94. At Actors Theatre, Mr. Zigler directed Oleanna and Jose Rivera’s Tape for the 1993 Humana Festival. Mr. Zigler is Associate Director of the A.R.T./MXAT Institute for Advanced Theatre Training (at Harvard University) and Artistic Coordinator of A.R.T. New Stages.


Robert has written, produced and directed numerous independent feature films, including: Colin Fitz Lives!, Revengers, Inc., Night Windows and The Girls Club. Colin Fitz Lives! had its World Premiere at the Sundance Film Festival - Dramatic Competition. A Founding Member of the Atlantic Theater Company, Robert has served as Atlantic's Producing Director, Associate Artistic Director, and Executive Director of the Atlantic Acting School. He has worked internationally on over 100 plays for the stage and radio as an actor, director, writer and producer.

Acting credits include: Off-Broadway: Boys' Life, Measure for Measure (Lincoln Center Theatre); Rarities (Lucille Lortel); The Night Heron, The Dog Problem, The Water Engine, Revenge of the Space Pandas, Dangerous Corner, Shaker Heights, Nothing Sacred, Trust, The Virgin Molly, Five Very Live, Three Sisters (Atlantic Theater Company). Regional: Oleanna (National Tour); The Water Engine (Goodman Theatre). Film: This Revolution; Spartan; Magnolia; Colin Fitz Lives!; Homicide; Things Change; The Contenders; Hitsville.

Directing credits include: Off-Broadway: Unidentified Human Remains and the True Nature Of Love (The Lion Theater). Off-Off -Broadway: Class Enemy, True West, Spike Heels, A Midsummer's Night Dream, La Ronde.The Atlantic Acting School: Julius Caesar, Mad Forest, The Crucible, The Front Page, The Revenge of the Space Pandas, and Balm in Gilead. Regional: Love’s Labour’s Lost (ART/MXAT), Knuckle (ATC-Vermont), Dangerous Corner (Sacred Fools). International: All Men Are Whores, The Frog Prince, and The Boys (Canada -Playwrights Theatre Centre), Trust (Australia - Cheeky Monkey).

Robert is a Master Teacher for the Atlantic Acting School and has taught classes for schools such as (United States) Harvard, NYU, Indiana University, (Canada) The Playwrights Theatre Centre.
(Australia) Practical Aesthetics Australia, NIDA, AFTRS, The Actor's Centre. (France) The International Institute of Performing Arts. He is a co-author of "Training of the American Actor" (TCG).