Backstage

Performance Making Masterclass With Dr Ralf Rauker

Before formulating and trying out strategies of creating original contemporary performance material, this workshop will look at the shift from Theatre to Performance that has occurred throughout the 20th century. We will discuss and practically explore the work of some groundbreaking theatre and performance makers and challenge ourselves to formulate our own strategies of creating original performance material. It is not about copying the avant-garde of the past but expanding one’s own boundaries of perception and practice.

To find one’s artistic roots as a contemporary performance maker, it is essential to also look into the development of actors/performers training and those methodologies, which are still foundational today. Stanislavski’s Method of Physical Action, Meyerhold’s Biomechanics for the stage, Brecht’s Epic Theatre and Grotowski’s Poor Theatre will be our focus.

Performance Making is ultimately about being present in the moment, knowing yourself and the Zeitgeist of your time. Therefore, we have to break free from the past and dead Masters. This is one of the many fascinating paradoxes in artistic creation: study those who worked before you and be free from the feeling that they knew better.

This Masterclass is about being a student and a “master” of your own performance making at the same time. Together we will create some original work during those two days and finally present it to each other on Sunday at 6pm.

Dr Ralf Rauker is an internationally renowned specialist on “Meyerhold’s Biomechanics”, with 30 years of research & teaching experience in this field.

He studied acting in Berlin (1981-’85), worked with Jerzy Grotowski in Italy 1985 and in France 1987, took part in the “International School of Theatre Anthropology“(ISTA 86, 95, 96) and the “Actors Laboratory“ 1988 at the Odin Teatret, directed by Eugenio Barba.

Ralf received a two years postgraduate scholarship to research Meyerhold’s Biomechanics (1988 – ’90) at the University of Arts Berlin. He worked from 1991-96 in close collaboration with Gennadi Bogdanov from Moscow on a long-term research project, teaching and documenting Biomechanics at the Mime Centre Berlin.

In the nineteen seventies Bogdanov was trained by Nikolai Kustov, who was an actor and instructor for Biomechanics at the Meyerhold Theatre in Moscow, from 1928 until the theatre was closed in 1938.

1995: Ralf started his career as a theatre maker/director and has directed/devised more than 20 theatre/performance projects since then.

2003: Moved to Perth in Western Australia to work as a full time lecturer (later also course-coordinator), first in “Theatre Arts” at WAAPA and later in “Contemporary Performance” at the School of Communications and Art, Edith Cowan University.

2005: Enrolled in a PhD in Performing Arts at WAAPA and successfully graduated in 2011.

2013: Started his international teaching program Workshops on the Move.

2015 – 2017: He was a Senior Guest Lecturer in Drama at the University of Malaya in Kuala Lumpur.

He is currently working as a freelance coach/trainer in theatre/performance and film in Australia, South East Asia and Europe.

 

Read more about the Performance Masterclass here.

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