Sign up for our upcoming Trance Mask workshop weekend.
1st and 2nd July, 2017 – 11am-5pm, YARD Theatre, close to Manchester City Centre.
The workshop is an introduction to Keith Johnstone’s Trance Masks and Full Masks. Wearing a mask is a powerful way to unlock creativity and to discover how to be expressive, releasing the pressure on us to “create” as we let the mask lead us, and giving us a new experience of our own possibilities as performers.
During the workshop, participants will move constantly between exercises without masks, with full masks and with trance masks. In this way of working, the creative flow of the group is maximized.
The full mask completely covers the face, and therefore does not allow the actor to speak. This limitation results in an amplification of the nonverbal communication of the performer’s body. During the workshop students will discover how, by minimizing their gestures, they are able to communicate the emotions of the character more clearly, even those emotions that seem to contrast with the fixed expression of the mask.
The Trance Mask (half mask) technique was developed by Keith Johnstone at the Royal Court Theatre in London and later perfected at Loose Moose Theatre in Calgary, Canada.
This technique used observation of shamanic ceremonies in Africa as a starting point. This use of the mask in a magic context was then combined with modern theater’s most well-known mask techniques.
The Trance Mask covers only the top part of the face leaving the mouth free, since sound is one of the central tools used to activate the mask.
There are no fixed characters. Whatever emerges from the encounter between an actor and a mask, if powerful and pure enough, is the start point from which a character can be developed. This process may bring to mind the development of a little child as he discovers how to speak and relate with the world and different experiences.
Simone Tani graduated at Ecole Philippe Gaulier in Paris where he studied Theatre, Clown and Bouffon. Recently he founded the bouffon company “Teatro Pomodoro” and performed at Edinburgh Fringe Festival 2014.
Earlier, he studied improvisation at the school Verba Volant in Rome, and with Keith Johnstone, Shawn Kinley and Dennis Cahill at Loose Moose theater in Calgary, clown and physical comedy at Second City Theater in Chicago and in London with Mark Bell and Peta Lily (Dark clown), trance and full masks with Steve Jarand (Calgary), commedia dell’arte with Carlo Boso and Onda D’Urto Teatro in Rome, mask making and wood carving in with Anom Ida Bagus in Bali.
He’s one of the founder members of the improvisation company i Bugiardini in Rome and performs and teaches improvisation, trance masks and drama in Italy, UK, France, Finland, Japan, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Singapore, New Zealand and Australia. His workshops have been selected also by Finland International Improvisation Festival, New Zealand Impro Festival, Melbourn Improv Festival and Taiwan National University of Arts.
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Why not come to one of our comedy improv shows? If you show up to our monthly Bridge Street Irregulars night and mention that you’re considering taking this class, you’ll get free entry for yourself.
Alternatively, we have the Manchester Improv Jam, which is a free improv session run weekly just for fun and always has new people with no performing experience rocking up to let loose after work.