Jim Jarrett (Founder/Director) is one of the most respected and qualified teachers of The Meisner Technique in the world.
He spent a total of six years with the legendary acting teacher – two in Mr. Meisner’s professional private class then two more working privately with Sandy, both as an actor and teacher-in-training.
After his apprenticeship, Jarrett spent two more years working as a teacher with Sandy as his mentor and emerged as Sanford Meisner’s last teaching protégé.
Since 1989, Jarrett has taught throughout North America, Europe, and Asia on behalf of the standards and respect for the craft of acting for which Sandy stood.
In 2005, Jarrett came home to San Francisco and opened The Meisner Technique Studio. In so doing, he made good on a promise he’d made to Sandy many years before – to establish an acting school dedicated solely to the teachings of Sanford Meisner.
Since 1997, he has toured Vincent, Leonard Nimoy’s international smash-hit to over a quarter million people throughout the globe.
In 2006, Jarrett introduced three children’s shows that have also begun a nationwide, educational tour. His latest production, MEISNER, is an original, full-length play created from four years of notes taken during Jarrett’s time with the master teacher, Sanford Meisner.
In addition, Jarrett has adapted MEISNER into a full-length feature film as well as a one-hour dramatic series.
Melissa Thompson Esaia
Melissa Thompson Esaia has been working as an actor for almost twenty years.
She studied The Meisner Technique with Jim Jarrett for 2 years in his professional, private class. When she completed her studies, Jim invited her to continue on as a teacher-in-training. She studied intensively with Jim to learn to teach Sanford Meisner’s technique purely and authentically. Now, several years later, Melissa serves as Assistant Director and Head of Faculty at The Meisner Technique Studio.
In addition to her work with Jim Jarrett, Melissa continues to produce her own projects. In 2011, Melissa formed Kina’ole Productions, a production company focused on making documentaries that aren’t documentaries – feature films that spotlight social and environmental issues.
David Usner moved to San Francisco to find Jim Jarrett, who motivated and inspired him to take the next steps in pursuing his dream and career.
Jim and the Meisner Technique have transformed David’s craft and the opportunity to teach this technique is a joy and gift. In over 30 years of acting, David has been on stage in Edinburgh, Berlin, Vienna, NYC, Philadelphia and the Bay Area. Most recently he has turned more of his attention to the screen.
He is also a script writer and has had three plays and one film produced. Currently, he serves on the Board of Trustees of the Playwrights Foundation in San Francisco.