I had the pleasure of studying with Petronia in 2012 through 2014, in various capacities. She was the first acting teacher that I ever had. I recall walking into her acting class for the first time. I immediately sensed her commanding, confident, graceful presence. Her students, ranging greatly in age and type, respected her deeply, and worked hard for her. I was attracted to the sense of direction, purpose, and discipline she gave to all of her actors -- including me.
After presenting a shaky monologue in my introductory class, Petronia immediately challenged me, assigning me a scene as Stanley from A Streetcar Named Desire. Frightened and somewhat clueless, I found myself working deeply on a classic text within weeks of deciding to begin acting. In addition to making class feel comfortable for me despite being a novice (among many skilled actors), Petronia also instilled in me a great respect for the work I was doing. My rendition of Stanley grew quickly into something that I was proud of. In addition to text work, she integrated movement and physical work, helping me to feel my character in my body. Great discoveries and leaps forward continued throughout her classes.
By 2014, after taking many classes with Petronia, I hired her to train me for graduate school auditions. She worked with me on several monologues, helping me find new, deeper range, unique approaches to situations, and freedom within the text. I was accepted into several programs and am now entering my 2nd year in the MFA Acting program at NYU Tisch.
Justin Walker White
I the Actor has allowed me to grow in my craft, in a comfortable environment I never experienced even while studying in college. Petronia always challenges me to feel Open to new possibilities. I respect the fact that she is raw and caring at the same time . Her love, guidance and execution of the craft herself pushes me to be better. I truly found a home when I found I the Actor.
As someone who began studying acting late in life, I was fortunate to find Petronia at the very beginning of my journey. She is an excellent teacher because she doesn’t direct or tell you what to do but allows you the freedom to make discoveries on your own. If you are willing to put in the work, she will work tirelessly with you to help you achieve your goals.