CLASSES & WORKSHOPS
The Mask Cycle
"I HIGHLY RECOMMEND THIS WORKSHOP FOR ALL PERFORMERS. NICK KNOWS HIS STUFF!"
– Royce Roeswood, director and improviser
Saturdays, 10:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m., October 20-December 8
The Mask Cycle is my basic, 8-week mask and movement workshop. The emphasis is on finding the means to support and animate an object—a mask or puppet—that is not a part of you. The progressive study of stillness, awareness, breath and ease is the key. The workshop will utilize Neutral Masks, Larval Masks, Emotion Masks, Character Half-Masks, and masks made from the actors' own faces. The purpose is to study movement on the stage, whether you continue to work with masks or not. The workshop is happening at The People’s Building, 9995 E Colfax Ave., Aurora. The cost is $250.
More information on The Mask Cycle:
The Challenge is to animate an object that is not alive. We have to support the object and carry it with a spirit of devotion and service. We have to live for the mask.
To do this, we must cultivate our own stability and vitality. We begin by examining and learning to articulate the levels of tension in our bodies. The Neutral Mask is a study tool that helps us with this. Then, we work on making and supporting masks using the muscles and sinews of our own faces, to begin the study of taking on someone else's face. Larval Masks—large, simple masks that intimate character without articulating it—are then used as a bridge toward emotions and characters. We will then use Emotion Masks to embody the emotions, and finally Character Masks—in this case, comic half-masks in the Commedia dell'Arte tradition—to explore character and comedy. Then, we cycle back to Neutrality to deepen our understanding of the Mask that underlies all other masks.
Participants who have taken previous 8-week Mask and Movement workshops can take this course at a $50 discount, and will receive advanced individual training along with a workout in the basics.
This edition of The Mask Cycle is being generously supported by The People’s Building.
Contact Improv Jam
The weekly jam has been cancelled. My apologies. We might start a monthly jam in the future if we feel there is sufficient interest...
Other Available Classes:
All of these classes and workshops can be combined or customized for nearly any event or length of study, from two hours up to two weeks (or more). I am also available as a movement and improv coach for theatre productions and schools. Contact me for more information and to discuss your project!
The Clown loop
The fundamentals of Rednose Clown. Discover your own eccentricities and put them forth for laughter. Note: at least one Mask Cycle is prerequisite for this course.
Discover the voice of this satirical, grotesque cousin of the Clown. Note: at least one Mask Cycle is prerequisite for this course.
A contemporary exploration of this Italian Renaissance form of comedy, using principles from The Mask Cycle and comic half-masks. Character is the name of the game!
The Heart of the game
An introduction to improv, focusing on games of all levels.
Voice for the Stage
Drawing on the teachings of Chuck Jones and Carlos Simioni, this workshop explores the grounded, expressive and emotional voice, as well as the use of resonators for character.
Based in improv and the study of classic vaudeville routines, this workshop explores the fundamentals of character, status and finding comedy in the use of space.
Fundamentals of mask design in papier maché.