For "," an ongoing and open-ended series, we ask prominent figures in the community what they most enjoy about SM.
Eleven years ago, Michelle Danner—who has coached big names ranging from James Franco and Chris Rock to Salma Hayek and Penelope Cruz—co-founded the , where she currently serves as artistic director. The complex features two theaters, an art gallery and also The Acting Studio at Edgemar (formerly The Larry Moss Studio).
The studio will get a fresh boost of celebrity later this month when Brad Garrett, the Emmy Award-winning star formerly of Everybody Loves Raymond, hunkers down there to teach a six-week class on sitcoms.
But while that doesn't start until July 26, Edgemar enthusiasts looking to get schooled should take note of the ongoing class hosted by Danner herself: The Actor's Golden Box. The two-day course, which she teaches one weekend each month, includes performance training, technique exercises, analyses of famous actors' methods and lectures.
Recently, Danner briefly broke away from her Edgemar duties to talk about her other favorite aspects of Santa Monica. Here's what she had to say:
1. ": Having a seafood dinner at a restaurant overlooking the ocean and then riding the rides for kids and adults, especially the . I make a lot of important decisions looking at the sea from up there. It clears your mind."
2. "Walking up and down Montana Avenue, with all the quaint and unique boutiques and all the movies at the ."
3. "Going to Santa Monica's and walking in the sand, swimming with the waves and biking along the path with the breeze of the ocean."
4. "The life and people walking on the . If one wants a transfusion of energy, walk down Third Street and watch the performers truly perform. There is a magic to it. When I close my eyes, I imagine when it was a desert and no one was there."
5. "Main Street in Santa Monica: The , or parking your car and having dinner and ice cream, and catching a show."
What are your favorite aspects of Santa Monica? Tell us in the comments box below.