What people say about the Bare-faced Commedia dell'Arte ONLINE (four x 3 hour sessions)
This course is now also available IN-PERSON, working with a superb set of traditional handcrafted half masks (2 days)
'Thoroughly enjoyed the course!' - Course Participant
'I had such fun on Peta's course - she’s an inspirational teacher! It was great to learn about Commedia Dell’Arte through embodying each character, and then to reinforce this with visual references and discussion. I look forward to any future workshops Peta devises!'
- Cici Clarke, Actor
'I didn't expect to find it so energising and joyful' - Course Participant
'Having done some Commedia work before this course brought an opportunity to really get a better idea of the characters and their relationships to one another. It was quite fun to discover them through the body and play. Once again, Peta’s wonderful way of adapting her teaching to Zoom makes it possible to have a good taste of a particular type of theatre even as physical and embodied as Commedia dell’arte. She also knows how to share her knowledge with us and leads us to explore these characters with great pleasure. Thank you again Peta! I had a great time!' - Nadia Laverdière, Course Participant
‘I loved this course! Peta is an amazing facilitator and if she can teach this well on Zoom, I can’t wait to get in a room with her. I felt so free to play and was invigorated by all the exercises we did. I learned so much about Commedia dell’Arte and had an absolute ball of a time doing so. I laughed a lot and was engaged throughout the whole course. Thanks so much!!’ - Maria Corcoran, Circus Artist
'Spent an incredible 4 days learning about Commedia dell'Arte with the fabulous @peta_lily and feel more alive than in years. It really blew the cobwebs and stresses of the past year out of my head, and got all the cogs moving at full speed.' - Olly Mead on Twitter
‘Always when I do a workshop with Peta I learn new things, I had no previous experience with Commedia dell’Arte and I learned the essentials of each character, and I can link this with the art of character creation. As with all Peta’s workshops, there is a mix of theory, and practice and she works a lot with emotions and imagination.’ - Andrés Pastorini
‘The course was a fantastic opportunity to explore the Commedia characters in all their complexity. I’d studied Commedia a long time ago when at college and it was wonderful to be reacquainted with the characters again. Peta’s online classes are a great mix of the practical, the playful and the informative. Highly recommended.’ - Kevin Lewis Independent Theatre Maker
‘As a relative newcomer to Commedia dell’ Arte this course taught me so much about this ancient art of comedy. The course was fun, full-on and packed with information, exercises and practice. Did I mention it was all on Zoom? Despite not being in the room with other participants, all the exercises worked well on Zoom and I felt a fantastic connection with others on the course.’ - Caroline Vella, Actor
‘I have done a number of online courses with Peta and they have all been a delight and a revelation – both in content, and in her expert management of the Zoom room. Breakout rooms are used well to allow participants to engage in more intimate improvisational work with one or two other people. I have done a fair amount of Commedia dell’Arte previously, but Peta gave me new insights into familiar stock characters, and also introduced me to new aspects of the work. The mix of historical information and practical exploration is weighted towards the physical – which is how it should be! Her hands-on (from afar) approach used a fabulous melee of prompts and provocations. Her guided meditations/immersions into each character are particularly brilliant, giving participants the opportunity to really immerse themselves in each character, from the inside out.’ - Dorothy Max Prior, writer/dramaturg
‘I had watched Commedia a couple of times in Italy, but never tried it myself. It was the first time for me. I enjoyed the fact that we were always doing something, I often find some courses have too much speaking in between exercises, whereas here we were continuously experiencing things, standing up on our feet and acting. I discovered how demanding Commedia is, how much the physical work is important, how much dance training can help (and I might then seek it as well), how much you have to commit to make a character alive. I discovered how fun it is, how many layers there are to a character, and at the same time how obvious all the layers are, how they are all shown to the audience. I definitely think the goal is now to do it in person as soon as it is gonna be possible, and try on masks: I am aware of the fact that I rely a lot on facial expressions now. I honestly think the energy in the room was amazing and that Peta managed to keep me interested with her passion from the beginning to the end of the course. I want to do more!’ - Lucia Martinez, Actress
‘I was a newcomer to Commedia dell’Arte and I discovered a lot of new Characters and their physicalities.
Insights on timing and intention and how to embody a character which I can bring it back to my dance and choreographic practice. I think it was brilliant and very helpful also to not take myself so seriously and to keep allowing myself to play or finding new ways on how to play. I also discovered or rediscovered mistakes are the best, embrace them use them. Also great to have such a variation of people in class.’ - Laura Vanhulle – Co-director Vanhulle Dance Theatre (Choreographer - dancer)
‘Having only seen some brief glimpses of Commedia through people I have met along my journey I was intrigued to find out more. Knowing I would be in a safe and invigorating space to learn with Peta, I was able to dive straight in. Peta way of explaining the characters and how to access them means I will be able to continue exploring them long after this course having been left with a hunger for more.’ - Martin Huckle, IT Team Leader and Clown.
‘Through these ancient and still relevant characters, I have discovered the joy of comedy through timing and physicality devised centuries ago ... and still applicable to the 21st century actor.’ - Alejandro Postigo, Course Participant.
‘A great course! I did some Commedia dell’Arte workshops, but this workshop brought a lot off new things, which I can also use in my acting and clowning. I like the way Peta teaches. High in energy and very positive. Her course is very well structured, so we learned a lot in a rather short time. Learning all these characters from Commedia dell’Arte has the danger of: the same riddle for every new character. By putting variation in the assignments, Peta manages to stay out of that ‘and again’ feeling. You not only learning the characters, but also the style off playing, moving, talking.’ - Wil Kamphues- Drama Teacher and Clown
‘This was an exciting and extremely well conducted workshop by Peta. I absolutely loved it. The pathways provided into embodying the world of the Commedia characters were brilliantly laid out in multi-dimensional ways. It was a real delight to move from liberating expressivity preparations to the demanding distinctness of each character’s physicality and psycho-social rationale through play and through set lazzi, gestures, postures or walks. Peta was wonderfully inspiring in giving us time to immerse ourselves in the stories of the characters, allowing us to revisit and transform between characters, always stepping out back to our ‘neutral’ selves, learning to let go and re-find our creative discoveries. The group was fantastic to work with, and Peta was superbly prepared to guide us through the virtual Zoom world in small interactive duo and group assignments. Overall a wonderful learning experience - and soooo much fun.’
- Thomas Kampe, Professor of Somatic Education and Performance
‘Brilliant teaching. Such lovely synthesis and break down of things into wonderful experiences. Such a fun and inspiring course.’
– Course Participant
‘I knew little about Commedia dell’Arte and I fell in love with all the characters! I fully enjoyed Peta’s skillful directions into embodying each character and delighted in the surprising bubbling up of my own feelings and resonance. I woke each morning excited and joyfully anticipating my play afternoons with my new hilarious friends! What a wonderful fun-filled experience …. And so many skills and methods taught along the way. There was such a rich and colourful array of talent and approach from the other participants – I learnt mountains from each and every one …. And I was marvellously entertained and entranced. I felt so supported by Peta and by the group – performing was play! Even the confusion of the numbered segments (which threw me into a bit of a spin!) was so kindly and sensitively handled by the people in my group. I could not ask for more.’ - Elspeth Furini, storyteller and songstress
‘I had a basic knowledge of Commedia before taking the course, this has given me confidence that I now have access to all the characters in my back pockets via my own body. I feel have a spectrum of characters and can hop in and out o
f them easily. A course full of joy, knowledge and fun. Thank you.’ - Course Participant
‘I was pretty much a newcomer to Commedia dell’Arte and it was a joy to delve into the different characters and to see how they endure in modern form (IMO because they capture aspects of our humanity that are universal, regardless of cultural or historic setting). The course was great fun and the learning style was very practical and playful, yet full of facts and information. Peta’s knowledge and love for the art-form is obvious and infectious. If you want to get out of your head and more into your body with characters, or you just want to learn more about CdA in a fun and safe environment, then this is the course for you.’
- Hannelie Jonas, Actor, Writer, Aspiring Filmmaker & Director
‘I loved this course, and found it a joy to play with the characters of the Commedia and with the other people. Peta uses the Zoom format so that you are safe, connected and engaged. I found that learning without the masks brought out the essence of the characters, which I hope I can take into my other performance work. The time went by so quickly in the lessons, and I have a lot to think about and practise.’
- Gerry Carroll, performer
‘I was a newcomer to Commedia dell’Arte and I discovered how relevant the characters and archetypes are to us today – all of humanity is there! I found it intriguing to focus on the potential of rhythm and different body parts to express different aspects of character and loved the playful experimenting with “Grammelot”. It felt a safe place to explore, play and learn.’ - Catherine, Course Participant
‘Invaluable learning for anyone who wants a taste of a life where imagined circumstances can generate thoughts, feelings, actions and most satisfyingly, transform your sense of self. With your creativity free to play there is joy as your ego floats away and a bemused awe as new personalities arrive in your room, vivid, complex and very funny.
Here is the most complete authority of the language of the motivated body acting in space that I have experienced. While you are so busy having fun Peta gets her knowledge to land into your being with such precision, care and love that it becomes your own. The work arrives into your particular physcho-dynamic landscape, smiles and takes up residence, you will be transformed.
Every workshop with Peta Lily will produce revelation. The insight from Commedia was unexpected. As a performer I had some understanding of how we can operate in space but the work suddenly clarified the sense that we operate in a temporal landscape and in this dimension, action in specific time, is where we create the necessary conditions for lucid performance. As the carrier of narrative, time in Peta’s world has an energized plasticity. With senses alive in four dimensions I began to find what my work had been missing.’ - Tim Dodd, Performer
‘This is an amazing workshop on Commedia Dell’Arte. At the same time very good for newcomers and at the same time going into nice depth on many characters. Peta Lily is a fantastic teacher. She managed to create a friendship and harmony in the group in the first few minutes of the workshop. The workshop expanded my horizon on imagination. Wanting to learn more now!’ - Balthazar Roger, Course Participant
‘Since I did your online course I’ve gone on to teach Commedia to my younger students and they are loving it! It’s been the most fun I’ve had as a teacher and such a good way to start the school year as they’ve shown a level of confidence and willingness to improvise that is so important at that stage. So … your course is very useful for teachers too!’ – Jane Williams