Course Tutor: Didi Hopkins
Commedia dell'Arte is a highly effective tool for students of all abilities and ages. It is a template that can be applied to classical text or contemporary theatre making. This highly practical one-day course gives a solid foundation in commedia, exploring masks and character types, physical storytelling, improvisation, lazzi, stagecraft, grommelot and developing scenarios. Each element of the training can be used to launch other work with actors and students. The strategies, exercises and techniques together form the ABC of commedia for the classroom and the day culminates with the development and performance of classic two-person scenarios. High quality professional Commedia masks are supplied.
Didi Hopkins (Commediaworks) was advisor to Richard Bean when he was writing One Man, Two Guvnors and she works regularly for the National Theatre Education department.
"A triumph of visual and verbal comedy. One of the funniest productions in the National's history." - The Guardian on One Man, Two Guvnors.
This one-day course is suitable for teachers, freelance theatre directors, drama workers and actors who would like to extend their theatrical skills and knowledge.
We shall explore:
Didi Hopkins is one of our foremost practitioners and experts on Commedia dell'Arte. As actor and director, she was co-founder of Beryl and the Perils who toured internationally exploring the politics of gender through Brechtian cabaret sketches and cartoon-style physical theatre. Didi was a huge influence on the National Theatre’s One Man Two Guvnors, working with the writer, Richard Bean, who took the original Italian popular play Servant of Two Masters and updated it to the 1960′s so successfully that it has toured, moved to the West End, transferred to Broadway and is now being presented by a second cast at the Theatre Royal Haymarket, London.
Didi has been devising and delivering Commedia work for 10 years for the National Theatre (TheatreWorks). She runs on-stage masterclasses to link the play with its roots, and the National Theatre has made five films about her practice that can be viewed on YouTube or downloaded for free from iTunes. She also uses the experiential work of the rehearsal room to work with women in business.
The emphasis will be on a relaxed atmosphere. You will work at your own pace - come with an open mind and you will leave inspired, refreshed and equipped with a new skill set of ideas and approaches.
If you have any enquiries, please email David Farmer or telephone 01603 465973 or 0797 321 7876.
What to bring
Yourself - and a friend or colleague if you like! Comfortable clothing to move in. Light refreshments are included and at lunchtime we usually walk to eat a delicious lunch at Leons at Old Spitalfields Market (lunch not included).
Toynbee Studios is part of the Toynbee Hall complex at 28 Commercial Street, London E1.
Download directions to Toynbee Studios by car, tube, bus, train or bike.
Please visit the Cancellation page if you wish to cancel your booking.