Cost: £70

Live Dates: @ and 9 December 2017

An intensive two days of physical play!

Commedia dell’Arte provides a core training for actors working with physical theatre, comedy and masks. Having worked for over twenty years with this form, actor/teacher Cheryl Parmenter draws on a wealth of experience in this two day, practical masterclass. The focus will be the use of comic techniques, bringing to life the archetypal characters, and exploration of comic slapstick. We will explore classic lazzi from A Servant of Two Masters and slapstick sequences from Accidental Death of an Anarchist, amongst other sources. With the foundations laid in week one, the second workshop will take participants into greater detail of characterisation, relationships and devising scenarios, ending with in-class performances and discussions. Whether you are an actor, a teacher, a director or a student, you will find this masterclass invaluable training. Participants will need a good level of fitness as this is high energy work!


December 2nd – Masterclass Day One

• The movement, mannerisms and behaviours of the stock characters
• The origins and development of the characters and the form
• The voice of the mask using the breath, grummelot and dialogue
• The key principles of mask work
• Audience interaction
• Comic techniques
• Devising using spontaneous improvisation

Our starting point is the physicality of the characters exploring movement and behaviour, then relationships between characters with classic pairings e.g. Master and servant, Doctor and patient, dumb and dumber fools. Staging and the relationship with the audience is considered throughout along with comic devices to allow the mask to work effectively. We recreate well known lazzi and work on short scenarios. There is an element of performing to the rest of the group as the day progresses, as a comic mask needs an audience to play off and much is learnt from watching and analysing others in the mask.

December 9th – Masterclass Day Two 

• A deeper exploration of the repertoires of the main stock characters
• Honing and refinement of your characterisation through the masks, both vocally and physically
• Development of comic material (e.g. lazzi, tirante, sproloquio, concetti)
• A focus on staging, complicite, audience interaction and comic techniques
• Rehearsal, performance, reflection and refinement to fully understand how to work the masks in performance.

Dates: December 2nd and 9th

Venue: The Actors’ Workshop Studio, Factory 8, Upton Rd, Southville, Bristol BS3 1QZ

Times: 10.00 – 3.30

Cost: £70 for the 2-day course

Sign up on our website or email [email protected]



FACTORY 8, Upton Road, Bedminster, Bristol BS3



Contact Details

Clara Marullo
[email protected]
07970 748640

Expiry Date: 2017-12-02T17:00:00+00:00