Media Information

About Academie Duello

Since 2004, Academie Duello has specialized in teaching the traditional martial arts of Europe including swordplay, archery, mounted combat, cane fighting, and wrestling for students ages 8 to 80. Academie Duello programs empower students to meet fitness goals, build martial skill, and engage their mind and body in a fun and unique way. The Academie Duello International Centre for Swordplay is conveniently located in downtown Vancouver at 412 West Hastings street and is directed by Devon Boorman, a veteran scholar and martial artist with more than 20 years of experience in practice, competition, and instruction.

Notable Media Appearances

  • Vancouver leads the renaissance in swordplay, The Province, published 01/26/2014
  • Medieval Bully Fighting Workshop, Global Morning News, published 02/16/2014
  • Game of thorns: Roseblade a longsword and the woman who wields it, published 10/17/2013
  • Camp inspires youth with ‘knightly virtues’, 24 Hours Vancouver, published 07/01/2014
  • Charge into fitness with swordplay or martial arts, published on 07/09/2012
  • En garde for the new fitness hybrid – SwordFit, The Globe and Mail, published 02/27/2011

Additional Appearances

We have also been featured in:
  • Globe & Mail
  • National Post
  • CTV News
  • Global TV News
  • 24 Hours
  • Vancouver Sun
  • The Province
  • Metro News
  • Georgia Straight
  • National Geographic Magazine
  • Rush
  • Go! Vancouver

A Brief History of Academie Duello

  • 2004
    • Academie Duello was founded by Devon Boorman and Randy Packer
    • Group of six individuals to practise the historical swordplay once a week
    • After a couple of months: Academie Duello began to rent regular spaces for classes, first at Capri Hall on Fraser Street, and later at Kennedy Hall in Surrey.
  • 2005
    • Academie Duello moved into its first permanent location: Second floor at 422 Richards Street, Vancouver, BC, V6B 2Z3
    • Membership continued growing
    • With the help of many dedicated volunteers, the space was refurbished and transformed into a martial-arts school
  • 2006 – 2008
    • Academie Duello increased diversity to its programs and workshops
    • New instructors and staff
    • The arms-and-armour store was opened to the public
    • Launch of Knight Camp, a highly-successful children’s spring and summer day-camp
  • 2009
    • Academie Duello moved to its present, street-level location at 412 West Hastings
    • Opened Stables for Canada’s first Mounted Combat program at Red Colt Equestrian Farm Co-op in Richmond at 12320 No. 2 Road.
  • 2010 – 2014

Facts about Academie Duello

  • Academie Duello is a school of Swordplay and Western Martial Arts devoted to teaching the traditional martial practices of Europe.
  • World’s largest school of Western Swordplay
    • More than 1,200 members
    • More than 200 active members in a given month
    • More than 2,000 people participate in classes and workshops every year
    • Even more people try one-free-lesson option each year
    • 30 Instructors across multiple disciplines
  • Based in Vancouver
    • The only swordplay centre in North America in a metropolitan downtown area
    • Downtown studio: 412 West Hastings Street, Vancouver
    • Richmond stables: 12320 No 2 Road.
    • 6000 Square Foot studio, 6 acre farm and stables
  • Areas of Teaching include:

Available Images

Fully licensed images of our programs, activities, and facilities are available on our Flickr site in our Media album.

About Devon Boorman

Devon Boorman
Director and Maestro d’Armi

Devon Boorman has practicing martial arts for more than 20 years. Starting first with Asian martial arts, including Kung Fu and Arnis, Devon discovered western swordplay through the Society for Creative Anachronism (SCA) which connected him with a burgeoning community of martial artists and scholars studying Historical European Marital Arts throughout the world. Devon has travelled extensively, first as a student, then as a competitor, teacher, and researcher. He has won more than 40 European martial arts competitions, and worked on both stage and screen as a stunt person and choreographer.

Devon is actively involved in the translation, interpretation, and revival of Western Martial Arts from surviving historical manuals, some of which are on display at his school. Devon’s expertise centres on the Italian swordplay tradition including the arts of the renaissance Italian rapier, sidesword, and longsword, as well as knife and unarmed techniques. He has taught workshops and seminars throughout the world on both the study and practice of historical techniques and on practical combat implementation.

Devon is the co-founder and director of Academie Duello, which has been active in the Vancouver area since 2004. Under his leadership the school has become a centre for swordplay with over 200 active students, a store, and an arms and armour museum. The Academie is currently the largest WMA centre in the world; a model that Devon hopes to help others achieve as the Western arts grow in popularity.

Media Contacts

Devon Boorman – devon@academieduello.com

Kimberleigh Smithbower-Roseblade – kimberleigh@academieduello.com