About the author
J. MICHAEL MILLER is a seminal figure in theatre training in the United States. In 1966, he co-founded New York University's Tisch School of the Arts and ran the Theatre Program for over 30 years. Under his guidance, NYU became one of the leading theatre training institutions in America.
Michael's ideas have impacted training programs all over the country. In 1972, he co -founded the League of Professional Theatre Training Programs, a consortium of schools advocating for higher train - ing standards, and served as President for much of the organization's history. From the early '70s to the late '80s, the League was given sub-granting power by the National Endowment for the Arts to establish and uphold those standards. The organization's annual Actor Presentations or "Leagues" have been widely copied as graduating artist showcases at training programs across the country. Its sister event, the Design Portfolio Review, has introduced several generations of America's premier design students to working careers in theater, film and television. In 1996, after retiring from NYU, Michael founded The Actors Center, which quickly became one of the preeminent acting studios in the country. At The Actors Center, Michael established a Workshop Company which today provides 250 award-winning artists an ongoing residency program to advance their creative and artistic develop - ment. In 1997, Michael initiated a Teacher Development Program, together with Lloyd Richards, Earle Gister, and Ron Van Lieu, offering vital mentorship to the next genera - tion of acting teachers and advocating for greater diversity in the field. In 2014, Michael led the program's alumni in founding the National Alliance of Acting Teachers. Over 200 acting teachers graduated from the program at The Actors Center and now teach at leading institutions throughout the United States and abroad. Michael's legacy has been to rectify the perception of actors as commodities, rather than as valued collaborative artists at the center of the theatre. In Michael's words: "Actors are essential in any society. They help us understand ourselves. I have always believed that their ability to expose their understanding of our deepest fears and desires makes them the most essential of all the artists who serve us. Just give them an opportunity to do their work, and the rest of us will grow and prosper."