J.D. Coburn

J.D. Coburn


Acting teacher in Tagum, Philippines

About J.D.

I was born in a trunk on West 76th with the Sun in Aries and the Moon in Aquarius. No, it just doesn't get any better than that.

My name is Joseph Dean Coburn and I taught acting in L.A. and Seattle for over 20 years. I thought I'd open an account here to answer questions about acting, training, and offer some legitimate career guidance. It costs you nothing.

There is no box to check for that.

My family was in the American Theater for over 150 years. I got my first lead at age 7 and by 18 had been in over 40 productions including 6 years of repertory. I parlayed that experience into an award-winning career in commercial broadcasting (Edward R. Murrow Award, Golden Mic, International Radio Festival Grand Award, American Religion in Broadcasting Award, etc.). For 24 years, in Seattle and Los Angeles, I worked on-the-air, in production and voice-over. I also spent a couple of years producing rock concerts and managing the Paramount Theaters in Seattle and Portland.

I am a founding member of the Playhouse West Acting Company. We were the stuff of Hollywood legends. We improvised a play, a director saw it, bought it, and made it into a movie starring the original cast (he re-wrote it, made a terrible movie). Some of our people improvised another play, Jeff Goldblum, one of our teachers, directed a film version and it got an Academy Award nomination. Our members, some of them my students, are genuine A-List movie stars; many more hold positions at the very highest levels of the industry in production, development, and as writers and producers. I mention this only to illustrate the caliber of people with whom I have worked.

I've done a smattering of work in motion pictures (http://www.imdb.com/name/nm1062092/?ref_=fn_al_nm_1). I never really pursued acting work. I never auditioned. When friends had a role that needed filling, and I was right for the part, they'd call and I'd say, "Okay." I only ever wanted to teach acting. I started my training to teach in 1991 and by 1995 began teaching at one of the largest, most respected, most recommended schools in the motion picture industry.

Because we conducted some of our classes in the same studio where Sanford Meisner taught in North Hollywood, I had keys to his building and would sneak in to watch him teach. Sandy came to see a play I was in, twice. Sandy said it was best theater he'd seen since "Waiting For Lefty" (which he directed with the Group Theater in New York and his best friend, Clifford Odets wrote). Mr. Meisner said he had never seen a play that so galvanized the audience. Sandy was NOT known to compliment ANYONE, EVER.

Therein lies something like a bio and some credibility. The problem with biographies and resume's is that they only tell people what you've done, not that of which you may be capable. Still, I'm retired now and live in Mindanao, The Philippines so I can answer questions freely without fear of professional reprisals.

Ask away.

Name: J.D. Coburn

Lives in: Tagum, Philippines

Company: Nobody

Occupation: Acting Teacher

Unique traits: Deep voice, articulate, and I look like the bad guy.


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  • American Religion in Broadcasting

  • Edward R. Murrow Award

  • Golden Mic

  • International Radid Festival Grand Award


  • Playhouse West

J.D.'s Profile Statistics

  • Since: December 2012
  • Last online: > 2 weeks ago
  • Invites sent: 0

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