CHOOSE YOUR OWN WORKSHOP ADVENTURE

We're offering 3 Structures of Classes

Food for Thought

Lecture

Experts will explore particular aspects of the field and share their knowledge in a presentation format. 

There will be opportunities to ask questions.

On Your Feet

Active Classes

Instructors will lead and demonstrate an active stage combat training session which you can follow along at home. 

They’re designed to be performed in your space and with ordinary objects if you’ve no theatrical weapons available. 

There will be opportunities to ask questions but not much, if any, individual feedback.

Close Encounters

Small Class Seminars

Getting a little more up close and personal, these seminars will be limited space classes for folks to engage a little more deeply either in conversation about a particular topic or practice of a particular discipline and receive more individual feedback.

If the class is full, we will start a wait-list. For more details click here.

 
 

Intimacy Principles in Stage Combat

 

Taught by Siobhan Richardson

Food for Thought

You’ve heard about Intimacy Choreography. Maybe you’ve taken a class and maybe you’ve even worked with an Intimacy Director or Coordinator. In this class, we’ll look at what principles of intimacy we can bring into stage combat workspaces, and the subsequent positive effects they can have on our workspace, our craft and on the art we make.

Prerequisites & Equipment:

Open to the beginner. No specific certifications needed, though familiarity with stage combat in general will be helpful. This can be knowledge gained through having choreography during a show.

Rehearsal for Tender Container and the frank theatre company's Serenity Wild by Katie Sly at Summerworks Performance Festival, directed by Audrey Dwyer. Actors Pictured: Dainty Smith and Julia Matias. Photo by Blaize Thomas

Models of Teaching and Learning

 

Taught by Dan Granke

Food for Thought

A look at ways to look at learning for those interested in improving their teaching skill.

Prerequisites & Equipment: None

Things that go Bang in the Night

Part 1 & 2!

 

Taught by Robb Hunter

Food for Thought

This class is an overview of a prop that, as an actor, you are far more likely to find in your hands than a sword…firearms. We will discuss the various types you should expect to see in your career, the dangers of these props, the reliability of blank firing props, “live-fire” versus sound FX, some firearm and ammunition terminology and safe handing techniques. This class is for any level, and anyone who wants to know more about firearms in the theatre. Show and tell: Oh yes, there will be an effectively infinite number of examples shown…please no touching the guns without asking first…oh…

Prerequisites & Equipment: None

Motion Capture

Taught by Andrew Dylan Ray

Food for Thought

A presentation and Q&A session exploring the art and industry of motion capture. This work is being utilized throughout the world, breaking ground in the cinema and video game industries. 

 

Prerequisites & Equipment: None

 Fightaturgy: Bringing Dramaturgical Thought to Stage Combat

 

Taught by Meron Langsner, PhD

Food for Thought

This lecture/discussion takes Miyamoto Musashi's guidance of "be well versed in the arts of pen and sword" to stage combat, exploring how textual analysis and dramatic structure can inform choreographic choices, as well as how violence and the threat and/or aftermath of violence informs character relationships and conflict. We will also explore various avenues of research where students can build on their foundational knowledge to help them build upon clues in a play or director's vision to fully realize their choreography as part of the world of the play. Understanding dramaturgical thought can have immediate practical application at any stage of production, from negotiating appropriate rehearsal time to choosing prop weapons (and coaching performers in appropriate handling of said weapons in character) to talking to the press. Students may find it useful to read the article "Fightaturgy: Towards a Dramaturgy of Stage Combat" on HowlRound: https://howlround.com/fightaturgy

Prerequisites & Equipment: None

Psychology of Violence

 

Taught by Kathryn Jacobs

Food for Thought

Do you want to know why it is easier to learn something than unlearn it? Would you like to learn why professional fighters train so much? Just want to watch a cute kitten video? In The Psychology of Violence, you'll get to do all three! Learn some fundamentals of human behavior, such as how we learn, how we respond to danger, as well as brain structures and their functions. Next, learn to apply your new knowledge to stage combat techniques in order to more effectively portray fake violence to an unsuspecting audience.

Prerequisites & Equipment: The electronic device you're already using. 

Please Try This At Home

Taught by Mike Lubke

Food for Thought

 

What can you do to keep up your training while you're alone without a teacher? Learn a series of drills, exercises, and games for home study as well as the underlying principles behind successful practice. Use these building blocks to build your own custom exercises and adapt them to whatever you might want to train.

Prerequisites & Equipment: None

Smallsword Footwork

 

Taught by Ian Rose

On Your Feet

The footwork required in smallsword and its special nature will be drilled. A focus on vigorous footwork gives an explosive style to this sometimes dry weapon. Energetic movement (hand and foot) is used in conjunction with this accurate and deadly weapon.

 

Prerequisites & Equipment:

Previous swordplay footwork training or knowledge recommended.

A Smallsword or something that can be held/used as such.

Click here for a reference!

Longsword is the Foundation for All Weapons

 

Taught by Jess Finley

On Your Feet

 

The medieval fighting arts are holistic systems intended to teach an integrated Art. In this class we will explore how the techniques of the longsword apply to all of the medieval weapons. We will practice guards, explore the shapes specialized cuts make in the air, work on turning cuts into thrusts as single motions, and hit some footwork in the meantime.

 

Prerequisites & Equipment:

Bring anything you have - longsword, spear/staff, pole axe, dagger, single handed sword with or without a buckler, falchion/messer - or broomstick, Jo, escrima stick, long pair of scissors, empty wine bottle, pot lid - it doesn't really matter! 

Looking Bad@$$ with a Single Sword

 

Taught by H. Russ Brown

On Your Feet

Exploration of various "fancy-schmancy" Single Sword locks, wounds and disarms that will shame your opponents and prove your Buckle is the Swashiest on the Seven Seas!

Prerequisites & Equipment:

A single sword if you have it.

Check out this video for what to do if you haven't got a sword or a partner! https://youtu.be/m5R3e7UCiVw

The Best Defense

 

Taught by Samantha Egle

On Your Feet

The best defense is a good defense. This class will explore the different dramatic combat techniques one can employ to successfully defend oneself from attack. We will play with our parries and activate our avoidances. We’ll look at the structures of these foundational aspects of stage combat to build strength in structure and effortlessness in execution.

Prerequisites & Equipment:

Space to move. A sword or sword stand in (long kitchen spoon), a dagger or dagger stand in (butter knife), a shield or shield stand in (cut a piece of cardboard and add a loop or two of ribbon. Click here for photo references)

Yang Style Long Form Taijiquan

 

Taught by Mark Guinn

On Your Feet

 

Practice and review of the Yang Style long form as described by Fu Zongwen in his book Mastering Yang Style Taijiquan.

Prerequisites & Equipment: None

How to Vocally Score a Fight

 

Taught by Jenny Male

On Your Feet

 

Have you ever received the note “too much GPM” (Grunts Per Move), but didn’t know how to fix it? Well, this is the workshop for you! Participants will learn about different types of resonance chambers, breathing patterns, and vowel sound variety that will give their fights dynamic musicality and raised stakes. This class will be a mixture of lecture and the performance of simple unarmed techniques while focusing on vocal scoring. 

Prerequisites & Equipment: None

Leveling Up Your Movement Game for Film/Theater

Taught by Mike Yahn

On Your Feet

 

Stunt Coordinator/Fight Coordinator Mike Yahn will lead the students in the same movement sequences he uses to train actors on set for fighting on film. The lessons learned in this class can be used to improve the movement and performance of any actor regardless whether they work in Film or on Stage.

Prerequisites & Equipment: Space to move

 

Hand Eye / Feet Eye Coordination

 A Combat & Clowning 

Capacity Exploration

 

Taught by Scottie Witt

On Your Feet

 

Recently I have been exploring the concept of why some actors have more difficulty picking up some of the skills we share in the fight and movement world. So I started to consider how could we own more of the learning responsibility and building blocks within our own practice and bodies that lead up to the development of combat and physical comedy. This class is a response to those thoughts. I’ll lead you through a series of physical exploration focusing on gross / fine motor skills, dexterity and hand / eye / feet coordination to offer you some insight into how your body can better communicate with itself.

Prerequisites & Equipment:

Eye patch, hacky sac, 2 bouncy balls (small hand grip size), short stick (kali size is perfect: 28Inches / 70 cm), a space free enough to move arms about and a wall that can deal with bouncing balls against it. Possibly more offers to come.

 

 Assembling the Previz 

 

Taught by Mike Yahn

Close Encounter

The students will edit raw previz footage from a variety of sources into a coherent fight. Learn the trick of the trade on how to professionally pitch the action sequence of your dreams. 

Prerequisites & Equipment:

Editing software and a basic understanding of how to use it: DaVinci Resolve (free), iMovie, Final Cut, or Adobe Premiere. 

Footage will be provided to the students to download and edit a few days before the class.

Dynamic Body Knife 

Making this Small Weapon BIG!

Taught by Leraldo Anzaldua

 

Close Encounters

 

An exploration and discussion to examine different practices that can highlight a story with a small weapon. Fast, fun, and impactful connection of knife and the whole body.

Prerequisites & Equipment:

A stage combat safe knife or a butter knife (do not use a sharp knife)

 

Preparing for the TCW

Taught by Dan Granke

Close Encounters

A discussion of how best to prepare yourself for the TCW if that is your goal, whether in the near future or in the longer term.

Prerequisites & Equipment: None

4D Movement - Space, Timing, and Getting Rid of the Egg on Camera

 

Taught by Nigel Poulton

Close Encounters

 

Reactions are key to the effectiveness of portraying conflict on camera, and camera is a medium where there is so much variation inside the same sequence and very little room to hide. Your ability to ‘sell’ the action can make or break the fight and your reputation. Fight Coordinator Nigel Poulton will employ the same process he has used with stunt teams on and off set, using a series of templates of increasing complexity, we will  look at how an understanding of technical elements and biomechanics is crucial to being good at this job. We will explore in detail concepts such as burning and fading the camera, film space and timing, performance and technique for close up and wide shots, and pre-loading.

Prerequisites & Equipment:

Camera needs to be positioned at head height and be able to adjust for distance - CU to Mid

 

Making an Impact!

 

Taught by Ruth Cooper-Brown

 

Close Encounters

How to not hurt yourself or others while throwing yourself about and working with props. 

This class is tailored to your own living room and inspired by Rc-Annie’s experience of working in theatre and film. Requesting a soft prop or a load bearing item doesn’t mean that you will get it, there is always a compromise. So we have created our own techniques of how to work with wobbly sets and lessen then blow when working with those ‘bitey' robust props.

 

Prerequisites & Equipment:

Intermediate & Advanced understanding of stage combat. 

Must be in a place where you can make noise and bang things. Wear movement friendly clothing including trainers. A blank, load bearing wall as big as your body that can be slammed into, a table, a chair and a kitchen utensil (wooden spoon, wisk, etc. as per length it should be able to be hit without getting hurt) that does not have an edge and is durable /not prone to breaking - flexible/floppy is good.

Found it? Fight with it!

 

Taught by Siobhan Richardson

Close Encounters

What better to do in isolation, than to explore your possessions and environment in a new way… as though they were weapons? In this class we’ll explore some basic principles of choreographing fights with ANYTHING. Beyond just “wielding” your belongings, we’ll look at additional elements of how to build an effective Found Weapons scene.

Prerequisites & Equipment:

Please bring a dish cloth (could also be a hand towel), a mug or teacup, and another one or two items of your choice. They can be ANYTHING!

Intermediate level. Understanding foundation unarmed stage combat principles is essential.

Kali w/ Kitchenware

 

Taught by Jake Guinn

Close Encounters

Filipino martial arts forms are intended to showcase the universality of the movement - From stick, to knife, to open hand. We'll test the limits of that theory and work with what we've got!

Prerequisites & Equipment:

Escrima Sticks (and/or 28 inch sticks), a dull stage combat knife, and/or kitchenware stand-ins! (Do not use anything sharp)

 

 Dynamic Longsword

 

Taught by Nigel Poulton

Close Encounters

Function and form are interrelated. Proper posture, footwork, balance and cutting mechanics are key to the successful deployment of any weapon. This class will take advantage of weapon and movement specialist Nigel Poulton’s years of historical and classical fencing experience and movement pedagogy and, using the longsword as the case study, will dig into the mechanics of longsword play, and start to embed the key principles, elevate your understanding and practice and provide a means to self exploration in this weapon system through solo drills and form work.

Prerequisites & Equipment: 

Intermediate. Should have some experience with historically inspired Longsword work.

Space to move.

 

Longsword or something that can be held/used as such. If you use a ’stick’ or dowel  mark on it where the true edge would be. Length can be comparable to a sword or shorter but handle should be long enough for two hands to grip with a few inches between. If you can add something to the end comparable to a pommel all the better. 

 
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©2016 by Samantha Egle