One of Canada’s hottest acting studios has come to Manhattan: MY iCAST NY — a studio which offers self-taping, coaching and demo-reel services.
The Toronto sister studio, Armstrong Acting Studios, has helped to develop many mega-successful and accredited stars like Nina Dobrev (The Vampire Diaries), Brittany Allen (All My Children) and Miley Cyrus (Hannah Montana), all of who personally trained with owner, Dean Armstrong, before their breakout careers. In fact, these three starlets and a slew of other working actors attribute a large part of their success to the coaching they received at the studio.
MY iCAST NY focuses on coaching, capturing and distributing industry competitive auditions. All auditions are mic’d, recorded in HD and can be instantly streamed to an unlimited number of email addresses.
Managing the NYC Studio
To coach at and manage the studio Armstrong has brought in Justin Turner, a former Casting Associate. Prior to this Turner worked on a number of major projects for CW, USA Network and Syfy; as well as major motion pictures like “Total Recall” (Colin Farrel), “Pacific Rim” (Charlie Hunnam and Idris Alba) and “The F Word” (Daniel Radcliffe).
“I think we’re the only office in New York with the experience in casting,” Turner says, explaining that most self-taping studios are run by other actors, “This is the reason I’m here. I don’t have a secondary goal…I love being in the audition room. My priority is always getting the best audition.”
As a Casting Associate Turner has worked in every stage of casting; deciding who to bring in, running the auditions, deciding who to move forward, dialoguing with producers and directors about the auditions — to booking. This has impacted his coaching style.
“I try to not go too poetic into process,” Turner says, “…but more just focusing on the streamline version of what I think casting directors and producers want.”
A Standout Team
Where MY iCAST NY really shines is the combined experience and focus of Turner and owner, Armstrong.
On top of coaching his personal clients and running the Toronto studio, Armstrong actively works in the industry as an actor (film, television, Broadway), a screen test advisor and a pre-production + on-set acting coach for various networks and feature film production companies. You may have heard of a few: DISCOVERY, NBC, SHOWTIME, GLOBAL, PARAMOUNT and ALLIANCE ATLANTIS.
Though Armstrong’s coaching is subject to availability he is actively involved in developing and maintaining the studio’s relevance and pulse in the New York industry.
“The whole point of this studio,” Turner says, “the whole point of me being here, and [Armstrong] overseeing it from Toronto, is we both understand pretty much the whole aspect of the business.”
Part of their services is accessibility. MY iCAST NY is open from morning to night, 7-days a week, in the Downtown / Tribecca area.
Turner is particularly empathetic to the actor’s schedule, “I’ve been on the other end of it where I’m asking for auditions last minute, so I’m open to last minute [scheduling] and I’m open to expanding our schedule online.”
MY iCAST NY has been picking up momentum since early February. Just last week alone three of Turner’s clients have been given call backs for self-tapes done at the studio.
“It’s a confidence boost for the actors and for myself. The self tapes have been good enough for call backs with notes.”
MY iCAST NY is open 10am-8pm — every day — and is located at 368 Broadway, studio 307, New York, NY 10013
Armstrong Acting Studio is open from 10am – 6pm Monday – Friday and is located at 9 Davies Ave., Studios 408, 409, 410, 500, Toronto, Ontario M4M 2A6
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image courtesy The CW