The late Lee Strasberg is notable for two recognizable accomplishments: starring as Hyman Roth in The Godfather: Part II and starting the famed Lee Strasberg Theatre & Film Institute. Both mark a legacy, but one has proven to be a haven for hungry actors looking to hone their craft and possibly follow in the footsteps of celebrated Strasberg pupils like James Dean, Marilyn Monroe, Jack Nicholson and Al Pacino.

Students who attend the Strasberg Institute will engage in Strasberg’s acting technique known as “method” acting. Method acting may be a turnoff to some people, which David Strasberg (son of Lee Strasberg), the Los Angeles Strasberg Institute’s director, is aware of.

“I think one of our greatest strengths is that we don’t say, ‘Well, we like this part of the work, so this is what we’ll teach.’ No. We teach all aspects of acting,” explains Strasberg. “We teach the skills that every actor needs so that we can customize what is necessary for each individual actor. Each actor requires something different and our work has enough options in it and the flexibility in its principles to make sure the needs of every actor can be developed.”

Strasberg assures that the institute takes its acting instruction very seriously, with the thought that everyday they are creating their history. Students looking to become a part of this history do not need to audition. An essay and a personal interview are the only requirements to get a sense of who really wants to attend the institute and make the most of it.

“We are looking for passion and dedication primarily,” says Strasberg. “I want the people who are going into it thinking, ‘I’m going to do that. I’m going to be an actor.’ We can’t do anything with the casual actor.”

For more information about the two-year conservatory program, visit