"By properly funneling imaginative vigor, it is possible to create a more powerful presence and state of concentration onstage. Once freed from the constraints of self-limitations, a stage actor can truly take us anywhere and on any journey because imaginary forces work. As an actor I seek to unfetter this fancy because a talented performer is limited solely by his or her imagination. As an instructor, I endeavor to show my students how to accomplish the same: to stretch, pull and test limits. This is and remains my primary charge. Nowhere is it more appropriate for young actors to be so rigorously challenged than within the halls of a college of art and design. The vagaries of the 'outside' will all come soon enough. The best way to prepare student actors for that future reality is by recognizing, developing and liberating the unique artist dwelling inside. Beyond releasing their imaginations and developing their singular talents, I also want to help create within my students the beginnings of a true, mindful, future professional. Respect for acting has as much to do with pragmatic business matters as it does with philosophy, artistry and the depths of the soul."

Laurence Ballard | Performing arts professor

Awards, recognition and honors

Fox Fellow; Footlight Seattle Critics Award; ArtsFund Seattle Special Recognition; Garland Award; USA Today Top 10 National Performances; Arizona Critics Award; Dewar's Profiles National Performance Arts Award; Bay Area Critics Award; Dramalogue Award

Organizations

Actors' Equity Association, American Federation of Television and Radio Artists, Screen Actors Guild, Southeastern Theatre Conference

Previous Positions

More than 175 productions in theaters across the United States; International Theatre Festival, Toga-Mura, ACM Theatre, Mito City, Mitsui International Performing Arts Festival, Japan; children's film in Georgia, (former U.S.S.R.); adjunct assistant professor, Cornish College of the Arts, Seattle, Washington; master class, Northwest Actors Studio, Seattle, Washington; owner/teacher, Imaginary Forces Work; production director, ACT, Seattle, Washington; production director, Washington State Cultural Enrichment Program