BOUFFON INTENSIVE

August 1th → 20th , 2022

BOULDER, Colorado, USA

BOUFFON INTENSIVE

IT’S TIME FOR SATYRIC TIMING !


Bouffons have been watching the news coming from planet Earth lately
and they have decided to come for a ride to North America.

Their eyes are buzzing with jubilation for the pristine insanity of human race.
From sea to shining sea
it’s time to have some fun.

Hey fellow Fools, Bouffons and Jesters
step up now and join the mocking !

A workshop organized in collaboration with

Eric Davis / The Red Bastard

WHO ARE THE BOUFFONS?

The word Bouffon comes from a latin verb: buffare, to puff, to fill the cheeks with air, to deform oneself, to swell in  order to provoke laughter. It appears to be a very old human practice. In fact, bouffons are direct descendants of the satyrs from Ancient Greek Satyric Drama, whose task was to balance the Tragic Space through mockery and grotesque play. The actual word “Bouffons” comes from French and it entered English theatrical language through the work of Jacques Lecoq

The essence of the Bouffon is in the dynamic of MOCKING. The MOCKER is a specific role, existing in all human societies. Bouffons represent elements of their society in an amplified, distorted or exaggerated way, thereby provoking laughter and outrage. Their Mockery doesn’t have an agenda in itself, because the Bouffons don’t have opinions, and they don’t protect any side from their mocking. They just mock everything and everybody. Their purpose is to have fun playing at being humans and therefore they use everything they find, with  ferocious ecstasy and jubilation. This is their power: they see and play with everything, they feed on human dynamics in order to play with it. Bouffons never touch on individual or private themes, instead they take on big collective dynamics and roles –  involving the social complexity and  the very essence of society and culture. Politics, religion, economy, power, money and finances, morality, war and the military, science,  gender and race, ecology, family, education and school, cultural institutions…

For Bouffon work to be possible, we need to be very well and precisely informed about the situation or themes that we are mocking,  in order to see and then reveal what is hidden, what lies underneath –  on the other side, in the shadow or the unspeakable. Nothing can be invented – all the movements and dynamics are documented and are based  in authentic behaviors. The actors need to collect facts, not opinions. Bouffons have no opinions or values. Actors, directors, writers and members of the audience do. That’s why, as a theatre genre, Bouffon is often very provocative, because its very nature is to bring hidden things to the surface and to unmask the collective games lying behind events. This often includes the fact that the role of oppressor and victim are always intertwined.
Everybody in the audience gets scrambled by a Bouffon piece, which can be often a bit difficult and or even unbearable. It’s not the  Bouffons who are unbearable but the truth that they reveal about  humanity, what is hidden, what lies underneath, on the other side, the grotesque of human society (grotesque comes from greek cryptos =  hidden). 


Boulder Bouffon Intensive 2010

THE PROGRAM

First Week: THE BOUFFON FOLLY
– Play, action/reaction and fun
– Flocking and collective movements: the shapeshifting chorus
– From children playing to Bouffon games
– Engaged Madness: the “buzz”
– The Bouffon “state” and the mocking eyes
– The grotesque body: amplification, deformation, swelling and puffing
– The white bodies  
– Altered states of play: bands of Bouffons, rhythm, rituals and mocking dynamics.
– The shapeshifting body.
– How the Bouffons see the world: themes of play
– Bouffons impro: non-linear and non local writing.
– The Bouffons mocking the great themes of humanity.


Second Week: THE DYNAMICS OF MOCKING
– How Bouffon relates to Tragedy, Melodrama and Clown.
– Groteque Characters and Grotesque Bouffons.
– Grotesque Writing
– The devising of a Bouffon piece
– Staging of “bands of Bouffons”
– Dancing, singing and instruments


Third Week: DEVISING WITH BOUFFONS
– Writing and directing Bouffon: participants will work and rework on some acts, which will  be presented in a public performance.
– Devising, rehearsing and performing an evening of Bouffons.

PRACTICALITIES

LOCATION
The training will take place in Boulder, Colorado, at the BOULDER CIRCUS CENTER


Bouffon Training at the Celebration Barn Theatre, 2017

SCHEDULE
The workshop is an intensive three week Masterclass, from Monday August 1st to Saturday August 20th.
Each day include 6 hours of class, with lunch break from 1pm to 2pm

Monday August 1st to Thursday August 4th: 9:30am to 5:30 pm
Friday August 5th: 3:00pm to 10:00pm
Saturday 6th and Sunday 7th: Days Off
Monday 8th to Friday 12th: 9:30am to 5:30 pm
Saturday 13th: 5:00pm to 10:pm
Sunday 14th: Day Off
Monday 15th to Thursday 18th: 9:30am to 5:30 pm
Friday 19th: 12:00pm to 10:00pm. PUBLIC PERFORMANCE
Saturday 20th: 12:00pm to 6:00pm

ADMISSION

This workshop is addressed to theatre practitioners with previous experiences in movement based theatre and in the Pedagogy of Jacques Lecoq.The aim of this course is to give participants professional theatre tools, in order to play and devise
in the genre of Bouffon and Grotesque. It is a training based on generosity, poetic ruthlesness and a commitment to exploring extreme states of physical excitement, madness and play.

To apply, you need to email a brief bio, and a letter of motivation.

Please include in the letter  the following topics :    
-how did you come to know about this work?    
-what is your experience with movement-based theatre?    
-what is your previous experience with Bouffons?    
-for what purpose do you apply for this program?

Please send your application to giovanni.fusetti@helikos.com

APPLICATION DEADLINE: June 15th 2022


Bouffon Performance at Dell’Arte School , 2007


TUITION

Full Tuition: US$1.700.

Once accepted, to confirm the enrollment, a deposit of $500 is due.
Please note that the deposit is non-refundable.

Once the application is accepted, places will be given in order of email submission.
Once Giovanni has selected 18 students, the workshop is full, and a waiting list will be created.

ENROLLMENT SITUATION as of June 15th: The workshop is confirmed and there are still spots available

Please note that the tuition does not include accommodation and that participants will be responsible for organizing their staying in Boulder. You can find some useful information about housing in Boulder in the document: Boulder Information Kit.

Once completed the enrollment, participants will receive a message containing further practical details about the workshop, as well as the most updated details of the anti-covid health and safety protocols that the group will have to comply with.

LANGUAGE
The workshop will be taught in ENGLISH and a basic understanding of this language is required.


Helikos School, 2013

INFORMATION AND APPLICATIONS
For further information about the content of the workshop and for applications, please contact Giovanni Fusetti at



A SAFETY MESSAGE IN TIMES OF PANDEMICS

The training will happen in the rigorous respect of the Federal, State and Local anti-Covid guidance and restrictions, as well as the rules applied by the venue that will host the workshop.
All participants will have to agree in engaging with these rules.

Given the extraordinary circumstances of the coronavirus global crisis as well as the current geopolitical turmoil, the training will be confirmed ONLY if the scenario will allow the safety necessary to travel and to practice. In case of cancellation due to force majeure, all paid deposit and tuition will be refunded.

See you in Boulder, under the gentle and powerful spell of the Rocky Mountains !