Mary Irwin

My teaching style has been described by former students as nurturing, yet firm. I believe that I inspire through example and through my own passion for the voice and text work that I do. We get a lot accomplished in class – there is a balance of practical voice work and work with spoken texts; particularly Shakespeare in my classes. My classes are challenging. We dig deep in order to learn to speak from ourselves, and therefore to illuminate the text with a sense of personal authenticity. We also focus on tools for speaking heightened text in detail.

The actor’s instrument is her or his body, and the voice lives in the body.  It is a tangible physical attribute, and the most effective voice and speech teaching is always quite physical in nature.

  • Designated Linklater Teacher
Career Highlights
  • In recent years, Mary has thoroughly enjoyed playing great Shakespearean roles alongside current and former students. 
  • In May 2015, she played Titania in Carl Forsman’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream, a collaborative orchestral/theatrical production with the North Carolina Symphony. 
  • In summer 2011, she played Gertrude in Hamlet, directed by School of Drama alumnus and current faculty member Quin Gordon, with the Shostakovitch score conducted by former Chancellor, Maestro John Mauceri at the Aspen Music Festival. 
  • In 2012 appeared as a voice-over artist on the BBC radio’s What the Papers Say, special US election edition.

M.A. Voice StudiesThe Central School of Speech and Drama

B.A. (Summa Cum Laude)New York University