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Physical Comedy

Mondays, January 28 through March 11, 2019 (No Class on President’s Day, February 18)

Instructors: Mark Jaster and Sabrina Mandell
Prior Experience: Not required.
Explore the physical techniques that support comic performance, with exercises in stillness, reaction, mimetic gesture, physical characterization, status, clown and much more. Mark draws on his training with Etienne Decroux and Marcel Marceau. Sabrina draws on her training in the LeCoq pedagogy with Dody DiSanto with concentration in the realm of the theatrical clown. Their complementary approaches combine to address both nuts-and-bolts technical skills and more elusive issues of honesty, presence and accessibility.

Last Seen In: MANIFESTO! at Baltimore Theatre Project and BROUHAHA at Theater for the New City in New York produced by their company Happenstance Theater.
What Their Students Say:

  • Sabrina and Mark are awesome! Love’em! Technical, experiential, deep. I could do this every week.
  • Class was great fun and a great introduction into the world of clowning.

Recognition: Winner of FIVE Helen Hayes Awards including Outstanding Ensemble and Outstanding Lead Actor
Website: www.happenstancetheater.com

From the Syllabus:

  • Week One: Stillness, Observation, Exaggeration, Flying with Nothing, Balance of Form and Content
  • Week Two: Beginning Theatrical Clown, get messy and have fun, tap your resources
  • Week Three: Bold physical choices, The Flop, Finding the Game, Improvising
  • Week Four: Clarity and Specificity in Physical Expression, Using the Structure to Connect
  • Week Five: Structure work continued, Comic Violence/Slapstick
  • Week Six: Status play, Escalation, Synthesis: Form, Content and Construction


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