Commedia Dell'Arte

Dive in and explore the cartoon-like world of mask theatre!

La Commedia Dell'Arte (Italian 15th century masked comedy) was the Big Bang that gave us the last 500 years of theatre and the grandparent of physical theatre. There are older forms, but few which are richer in character definition, narrative and potential.

La Commedia Dell'Arte is where theatre meets impro and they elope to the circus on a runaway train. It features grotesque-yet-charming characters who reflect the triumphs and flaws of humanity.

Discover the freedom of masks, the joy of slapstick and the vibrant world of archetypal characters and rich story-weaving without the unhelpful gender stereotypes and sexist jokes, as traditional masks, characters and style are super-charged with contemporary impro skills and awareness. This take on La Commedia Dell Arte is huge fun, personally rewarding, challenging and eye-opening.

In this course, you will learn:

  • physical characterisation
  • traditional Commedia characters names, masks, movements
  • how to work with traditional Commedia masks both leather and latex
  • environmental performance and use of space
  • creating stories through relationships and archetypal characters
  • how to use your own body more freely
  • connection and interplay with audience

Prerequisites: Completion of Impro Melbourne's Foundation Course (SpontaneityNarrative TechniqueCharacter, Scene Work), or experience in theatre, circus, street performance, dance, or previous Clown or Commedia workshops with Christof Gregory.

Physical demands:This class is very physical and fitness helps, but there is no requirement to be super fit. Work within your potential and your limits.

Impro Melbourne workshops are for ages 18 and over. Under 18 years of age? Please see our Theatresports™ Schools Challenge and Impro in Schools programs.