THE JOURNEY

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welcome

Expert practitioners of Embodied Poetics, an intensive physical theatre pedagogy based on the Lecoq Pedagogy, are excited to welcome you to the second of two pedagogic voyages! Beginning in London in September of 2019, this intensive physical theatre training will provide the performer-creator with skills, tools and a technical language, as well as experience and orientation within a universe of devised physical theatre. Our two voyages, one year after the other, introduce performers first to physical imagination - to the performer's ability to create theatre from physical inspirations - and then to big theatrical "territories" - classic styles that serve as reference points for further invention and creation.

“There are three masks: the one we think we are, the one we really are, and the one we have in common.
— Jacques Lecoq

This enigmatic statement by Lecoq can be tested through the experience of performing: 

- When does our idea of what we are performing not cohere with the actual performance? This is always a disappointing experience and can be painful, but there's no learning without this. This is creative failure.

- When does the audience respond to our performance, proving that the mask and the performance cohere? These are moments to celebrate. We feel like we've come home to ourselves.

- When does the performance touch on an even deeper coherence, uniting performer and audience in a shared experience? These are powerful moments for both performer and audience - moments of mutual generosity and recognition. These moments perhaps give us the "why" of theatre... when we find ourselves in others...

These three masks accompany us on our journey...

 

THE FIRST VOYAGE

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“Nature never did betray the heart that loved her.
— William Wordsworth

The First Voyage begins with Nature. Wordsworth’s confident statement inspires Nature Poets. Through close observation of phenomena as well as passionate identification with what we perceive, the First Voyage of Embodied Poetics is a journey towards life and its movements big and small. We imitate what we love. Mimesis becomes a way of understanding rather than a style of movement. In the First Voyage, we don't focus on form, but on feeling: the reactions and images that arise from our experience of the world.

Movement analysis, physical improvisation and group devising are the mainstay of the curriculum. We use masks of different varieties: the neutral mask, big "larval" cartoonish masks as well as fine, expressive masks, abstract masks that are dynamic shapes, "found" masks - objects that surprisingly turn into masks. We begin to consider many things as “masks”, such as poetic texts, and most importantly, we explore the "mask" created by the body moving in relationship to the space.

THE SECOND VOYAGE

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“…what causes us to look for our interest in one place rather than another, to fix our aims on a given path, convinced that this is where our chances lie –since love impels us in that direction…?”
— Gilles Deleuze and Felix Guattari

 In the Second Voyage, we take Deleuze and Guattari’s prophecy of the New Earth as a central question: what is your theatre, the one love impels you to create?

The creator’s first response to the world is to create another one! 

We make a grand tour of the “Geo-dramatic Territories,” Lecoq’s map of theatrical styles: the theatre of gesture; half masked comedy, epic storytelling, the tragic chorus, bouffons of mockery and mystery and the clown. These stylistic reference points are visited - not as a package tour - but as an invitation to further exploration. The actor-creator may find a home close to these ancient roads or use them to travel far beyond, into the wilderness of the uncharted imagination.

The proof is in the living. Maps and anatomical diagrams may predict outer and inner spaces, however the real experience of space unfolds in an entirely different way. As guides in a process of theatrical discovery, we set a course and assemble our materials, knowing that the real journey begins in the space together with you.