Support BIPOC Actor Training

Encompass Collective (co-founded by Francesca Fernandez, Jenelle Chu, Sohina Sidhu, and Julian Elijah Martinez) is a community of Global Majority actors committed to training the next generation of professional actors of color. Learn more about Encompass Collective at or Instagram: @encompassnyc

In collaboration with Celebration Barn (David Bruin, Executive Artistic Director), we will host our mentor and renowned acting teacher Budi Miller in the United States from Australia for two weeks of intense training for Global Majority actors. Students of all levels (from emerging artists to graduate students from top acting programs) will be participating in scene study, voice technique, movement, and Budi’s techniques of Mask Work, which he has spent his career honing. The beautiful woods at Celebration Barn provide a secluded retreat for actors interested in developing their skills for embodying character and story for stage and screen in an environment that is both rigorous and healing.

Photo: The 2022 Encompass Retreat

Our mission is to make this training experience as accessible as possible for our community. Your donations will go towards transportation and scholarships for all those coming to the Celebration Barn in South Paris, Maine. Celebration Barn, a 501(c)(3) nonprofit, has agreed to be our fiscal sponsor. All donations are tax deductible to the full extent permitted by law.

Sponsor a Student!
A gift of $500 makes it possible for a student in need of financial assistance to attend the Encompass Collective Summer Retreat! By sponsoring a student you cover their registration fees above and beyond the $100 deposit, as well as offset the cost of their transportation to and from Maine. These gifts make an extraordinary impact, and they are an opportunity to support an actor of color at a pivotal point in their development as an artist. At the conclusion of the workshop, you'll hear directly from your student about their experience and the impact of your gift.

About the Workshops
Week 1, "The Visit," will be led by Budi Miller in an Actor’s Lab for graduate and postgraduate working actors. This week will focus on reclaiming ancient acting techniques and using spiritual practice as a foundation for scene study, voice work, and physical storytelling. Budi will also be passing on knowledge from years of teaching to help the Encompass Collective deepen their tools as artist-educators.

In Week 2, Encompass and Budi Miller will welcome pre-graduate and early professional actors to the Barn for intensive graduate-style training. Encompass will facilitate actors in classes for movement, voice, on-camera skills, and scene study. Miller will support Encompass’ teaching artists throughout the week working through training challenges in real time as well as passing on his work to a whole new generation of actors in the United States.

About Budi Miller
Budi Miller has developed techniques for training actors into activating the Balinese divine performance energy known as taksu, which is recognized as an ultimate state of presence and the full embodiment of a role. He has coached film and television roles for Michelle Williams (Brokeback Mountain) and Jonathan Majors (Lovecraft Country, The Harder TheyFall, Antman III [Kang the Conqueror], Creed III), and continues to work with Julian Elijah Martinez (Wu-Tang: An American Saga) and the Encompass Collective to provide professional actor training for BIPOC young adults. He is Senior Lecturer (Acting) at Victorian College of the Arts, University of Melbourne(UoM) and is on the Blak C.O.R.E. (Circle of Radical Energy) Leadership Committee at UoM Museum and Collections. He is the co-Artistic Director of Theatre of Others. He is an UNESCO designated master teacher of mask work. He has been an actor-director-writer-teacher in the United States, the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Denmark, Singapore, Hong Kong, Taipei, Australia, Malaysia, India, China, and Indonesia since 1992. He is the Director of Advanced Training for the Fitzmaurice Institute. Learn more about Budi Miller at The Theater of Others and The Fitzmaurice Institute.

About Celebration Barn
Celebration Barn creates opportunities for physical theater artists to hone their craft and share their work. Located in South Paris, Maine, each summer the Barn offers workshops and residencies for artists whose work celebrates the physical eloquence of mime, the unruly energy of clowning, and the transformative power of acting. In addition, the Barn presents a season of live theatrical productions and produces a number of community-based initiatives to serve the residents of Oxford Hills and beyond.

Students from last year’s retreat had this to say

“This workshop was a GIFT. It's cliche to say an experience was life-changing, but this actually was—it's not like anything I've experienced before. Were the classes wonderful? Yes. Did I grow as an artist? Yes. Is Celebration Barn an absolutely magical, beautiful, natural location? Yes. But for me, the thing that mattered most was the community. To be in space with only artists of color, in a location and setting many of us would never otherwise get the chance to experience...that changed something deep in me, opened up a world of possibilities I hadn't otherwise considered—to put it simply, it made me feel FREE. I could BREATHE in a way it's very, very hard to do in other types of company, i.e., the rest of the entire damn world. Thank you Jenelle, Ato, and Sohina, thank you Encompass Collective, thank you Celebration Barn. I'm carrying this one with me forever.” - Joseph Cardozo

“Experimentation and Curiosity brought me to the Barn with Encompass Collective. My relationship with theater is a new one in comparison to the larger arc of my creative path and I knew I wanted to play/learn/rest with highly skilled practitioners. My time at Celebration Barn deeply transformed how I sharpen and sustain my artistic vessel, affirmed my journey in theater in spite of/in celebration of the place I started from, and reminded me that acting training can be FUN. My time at the Encompass Collective Retreat enriched all aspects of my life: my other artistic disciplines (dance and performance art) intrinsically got sharper and clearer after my time with Jenelle, Sohina, and Ato. If you are a life-long theater kid or an experimental performer looking for a new perspective, deeply consider spending your Summer at Celebration Barn with Encompass Collective.” - Bryanna Bradley

Donations (55)

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  • jane mcpherson
    • $200 
    • 3 mos
  • Nicole Chu
    • $500 
    • 4 mos
  • John McKenzie
    • $500 
    • 4 mos
  • Justine Wolf Williams
    • $50 
    • 5 mos
  • Thaddeus Jankowski
    • $500 
    • 6 mos
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Celebration Barn Theater
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