VanArts News Article

From ‘X-Files’ to Mentor: William B. Davis’ Acting Masterclass at VanArts

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Acting for Film & TV students at VanArts are set to embark on a journey of mastery with the esteemed William B. Davis, renowned for his iconic portrayal of the enigmatic Cigarette Smoking Man on the hit series ‘The X-Files.’ Davis, who founded the William Davis Centre for Actors’ Study in 1989, which joined VanArts in 2008, brings decades of industry experience to the classroom.

William B. Davis teaching Acting students

Transformative Learning with William B. Davis

Under Davis’s guidance, students will delve into the intricacies of acting and gain valuable insights from his illustrious career. From mastering the art of character development to understanding the nuances of performance, students can expect a transformative learning experience that will shape their craft and elevate their skills to new heights.

William B. Davis, the Cigarette Smoking Man from The X-Files

Drawing Inspiration from ‘On Acting and Life’

Davis’s teaching philosophy is deeply rooted in his own journey as an actor and educator. Drawing inspiration from his book, ‘On Acting and Life,’ Davis offers students a wealth of practical insights and personal anecdotes that reflect his seventy-year career alongside theatrical luminaries such as Laurence Olivier and Maggie Smith. Much like Stephen King’s ‘On Writing,’ Davis’s book serves as a valuable resource for actors seeking to hone their craft and navigate the complexities of the industry.

Photo of William B. Davis' book 'On Acting and Life'

A Testament to Excellence in Acting Education

Chilton Crane, head of VanArts’ Acting Department, underscores the significance of having esteemed instructors like Davis guide students on their artistic journey. With Davis set to teach his acclaimed acting methodologies in a series of upcoming classes, students can look forward to an immersive and enriching experience that will equip them with the tools they need to succeed in the competitive world of acting.

Stay Tuned for Updates

As excitement builds for the upcoming workshops, VanArts invites the community to stay tuned for more updates and a sneak peek from inside the Acting Studio. With William B. Davis at the helm, VanArts continues to uphold its commitment to excellence in acting education and nurturing the next generation of talent in the performing arts.

William B. Davis teaching Acting students


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