Clowning #4: Clowning and Theatre
3rd-4th February 2024
Venue: Bold Elephant, 21 St.George’s Road, London SE1 6ES
Cost: £130 per weekend
Time: 10am-4pm Saturday and Sunday
To book your place, email firstname.lastname@example.org for details on how to enrol
Maximum: 18 participants per workshop
Clowning #4 - Clowning and Theatre
Protagonists and Intruders
This practical workshop explores clowns as both protagonists and intruders upon the stage. As creators and destroyers of meaning and of worlds. As dramatic figures who collide and harmonise with each other through their ridiculous desires, hopes and fears.
Using exercises and games specifically designed for these purposes, we will look at:
Clowns as intruders upon the well-made and meaningful play
Clowns as masters of ceremony and owners of the stage
Clowns as protagonists of the play with something to say
Clown drama: roles and dynamics
There’s nothing new about clowning in theatres, spaces that clowns have inhabited across their history. In our own times, theatre spaces often generate expectations of meaning and profundity, or ‘having something to say’. But then some clowns appear to have ‘nothing to say’, except perhaps for saying that meaning is ridiculous! On the other hand, some clowns appear to speak truth. To complicate things still further, clowns on stage can co-exist with ‘serious actors’, and seemingly in different modes of performance at the same time. Furthermore, clowns might be scripted into a play, or given free rein to intrude upon the narrative and across the fourth wall. Whole plays aesthetic movements like the theatre of the absurd or the epic theatre of Brecht have borrowed and stolen from clowns. Finally, today we find theatre shows made up entirely of clowning.