Stage Combat


Download the Duello Theatrical Programs Brochure

Actors and stunt performers have special requirements when it comes to fighting: that it looks effective to an audience member, and that it can be performed repeatedly and safely in rehearsals and multiple takes on film. Stage combat keeps actors safe and audiences entertained using the illusion of violence: timing, measure, targets and victim-control.

Because stage combat is completely safe by necessity, students do not need to buy any protective gear. At the first level students learn the three core domains:

  • Unarmed – fighting that looks brutal and instinctual, including slaps, throws, strangulation, and much more.
  • Sword – a swashbuckling style that would be at home in any pirate movie. The fundamentals can then be applied to any historical sword without starting over from scratch.
  • Staff – the use of long weapons has its own problems and opportunities, and is appropriate for scenes from spears to pool cues.

Our programs combine training with swords, polearms and other weapons with the technical aspects of film and stage production, including acting, choreography and camera work, to foster a thorough understanding of the many dimensions of portrayed violence.

Studying Stage Combat at Academie Duello

See our Getting Started page to learn more about studying stage combat at Academie Duello.