Professional actor, print model and filmmaker Benjamin Madrid founded the Lumiere Academy in order to aid people who want to work professionally as an actor, model or filmmaker. Based out of Indianapolis, this academy has opened its doors to community members to educate them about the industry and improve their skills.
As a highly seasoned professional, Madrid aims to grow the talent in the Midwest and has created classes to help students navigate the business and reach their potential in the industry.
“Students learn about the business, many people new to the industry do not know how to navigate the business and make a living. We also spend a lot of time on camera.” Madrid says.
At Lumiere, students can enroll in acting, modeling, or film classes. Many academies around the Midwest do not offer services of this variety and are not actually taught by a professional. Madrid explains that many classes of this nature are not legitimate and encourages people that are interested in learning about the acting and furthering their career to look at Lumieres website to understand that the services that are offered are geared to help students grow to their full potential, not to make money.
“A lot of people who teach acting classes are not professional actors. I started because I do not want these people with so much potential to not get quality coaching and get scammed” he says. “A lot of people in the business are hesitant to help others because of the limited jobs. I think that the more people that get helped, the more people you can connect with and people in the business need to be supportive”
Madrid uses his background from in front of the camera, as well as a unique experience as Director of Business Development at Helen Wells Agency to help prepare students for both sides of the industry. In classes, there is an emphasis on both educating students on the business side as well as improving their skills on camera.
“For film and acting students, we go from reading script to shooting a short film at the end” Madrid says. “For models, we bring in different photographers and the students work with them and the modeling coach.”
Madrid teaches many of the classes but also brings in other professionals to teach the things that Madrid feels as if he cannot teach as well as others. The students education is the priority at Lumiere, so Madrid includes an array of talents to help teach the class to help the students get a vast amount of information.
“I don’t always teach the modeling classes, sometimes I have other teachers step in” he explains. “I will have very experienced models come in and teach. Even if I feel comfortable doing it, I will still bring other people in so students can get the most help they can.”
At the end of the class, students should plan to have a deep understanding of the industry and have developed skills that they can use together to book jobs. Madrid and the Lumiere Academy help students of all ages and stages of their career reach their potential and develop them into well rounded talents.
“Many students use the information and skills that they have gained from the Academy to sign with an agency” in places like Columbus which is one of the biggest fashion hubs in the Midwest, Cincinnati, Chicago and of course Indianapolis. “Many students will call me about auditions, directors and photographers and because I have worked with many of them I can tell the students what these people are looking for. If the students move to other cities, most of the time I can help them understand the scene and business in those markets” Madrid explains.
If you are interested in learning more about Benjamin Madrid and the services that the Lumiere Academy offers, head over to the website and follow their Instagram. Classes at Lumiere follow a six-week program with meetings every Saturday to get exposure in front of the camera and learn about the business from a professional himself.