Acting School




Brendan Dooling for his starring role in THE CARRIE DIARIES

on the CW network 8:00 Monday nights

Brendan studied here with a great crop of kids from 2002-2008. After taking many different classes and performing in our Children’s Theater, Brendan was able to do our showcase program which landed him his first manager and agent. He was an original class member of the first Cold Reading/Auditioning classes taught by Robin Joy Allan. Brendan appeared in Gateway’s production of THE FULL MONTY and THE CENTURY OF CHRISTMAS at The Patchogue Theatre. Always part of the Gateway family, we are very proud of his accomplishments!



Gateway also congratulates Nolan Lyons  taking the next step in his career, cast in the feature length motion picture, THE HARVEST, playing the role of Jason. 11 year old Nolan started classes at Gateway at age 6 and is continuing his training in accelerated classes. He was also well reviewed in The NY Times for his performance as Young Eric in Gateway’s production of PHANTOM this past summer:

“In a flashback that shows how Erik came to be who he is, a young actor,

Nolan Lyons is heartbreaking in his portrayal of Erik as a boy,

happy until he catches a reflection of his face.”


            At Gateway we set out to take talented, creative young people on a journey to open

up their imaginative world allowing them to appreciate their sensitivity and unique ideas. We allow them to be who they are, to think more deeply, to feel larger, to dream bigger.  We give them tools and skills to guide them, shape them and broaden their horizons.


Class break time, some talented young ladies entertain each other in the theater lobby.        

We have found that the arts provide young people with essential communication and creative tools that last a lifetime.  Confident expression, clarity and focus, tolerance, perception, openness, articulation, empathy for others, motivation and self esteem are just some of the qualities and traits that emerge through dramatic study. Our beginning students gain not only a strong acting foundation, but also learn to trust their creative abilities.  Our experienced and/or returning students explore different levels of technique and challenge themselves. 


We enroll students from all over Long Island, coming from as far away as Mattituck, Hampton Bays, Islip and Jamesport. They all have varying interests and levels of training, some with none and some with plenty.  Many students have stayed with their training and have landed parts in our summer Children’s Theater and young roles on the Main Stage.  Others have had success in commercials, National Tours and Regional productions.  Recently, several students have landed jobs in the industry, on network television series, B'way shows, pre-B'way tours, feature films, and soaps.You can find out more about this by checking out the success stories page on this website.



                                         2011 Student Production of TOMMY


Those who may not be familiar with the reputation of Gateway, or who are new to the area, are curious as to the difference between our programs and the programs at Long Island’s numerous amateur theaters and centers. Gateway is unique because it is a professional theater.  The casts of Gateway productions come from Broadway’s talent pool, and many are members of Actors Equity, the union for professional actors. We employ union directors/ choreographers/ musicians and designers for our Main Stage productions. The teachers, directors and designers that work with our kids are all experienced professionals from both major meccas for the performing arts industry, New York and LA.


                                     2012 Student Production of INTO THE WOODS


The Acting School Division has Robin Joy Allan at its helm.  Allan, granddaughter of Gateway's original founder, has a lifetime experience in the entertainment industry, growing up at Gateway and traveling to NYC and LA where she spent many years casting Feature Films and Television Series. PARENTHOOD, WHEN HARRY MET SALLY, GHOST, SIDE OUT and LORD OF THE FLIES,  are on her extensive casting resume. You can read her bio here. While in Los Angeles for six years, she coached and taught many industry children on their way to network tests and callback auditions for major film and television projects. Balthazar Getty, James Badge Dale, Leonardo DiCaprio, Alicia Silverstone, Tobey Maguire, Thora Birch, and many other actors of that generation met and worked with Robin on projects she was casting, most of whom landed the projects (some being their first credit) she was helping them audition for.


Ms. Allan oversees the class programs of the Acting School and spots youngsters with potential to further prepare them for careers in the arts, as well as connecting them to her contacts in casting when they are right for projects. The methods taught in the school prepare students for all areas of the entertainment industry. This is reinforced by an excellent teaching staff, mostly from NYC and working in the industry constantly; including current guest instructor from Manhattan, Jessica Kelly, a feature film and television casting director, who incidentally started her performing arts involvement here, taking classes at Gateway Acting School. 


We are not a franchise business, we are here to provide a consistent performing arts program that moves from year to year, set up for those interested in pursuing this art form. The school is designed for consecutive yearly study. As classes may only amount to one or two a week, there needs to be a long time commitment for the best possible progression and advancement, as it is in all of the performing and fine arts. As many children are blessed with innate skills and may have a supreme passion for the arts, they still need valuable tools and techniques that can be learned in serious study at a profession institution. We provide the necessary atmosphere of support and care that afford children and teens a playground for nurtured study and growth. We do offer showcases and have contacts available for those who are ready for professional auditioning.


We hope you’ll join us for some fun and creative exploration!