What Are You Simulating?

In stage combat, we have three priorities: Safety: all movements must have built-in safety so the risk to actors is minimized. Simulation: every movement should look genuine and feature authentic-looking intent. Storytelling: the combination of movements should match each character’s personality, level of aggression, goals and further the plot of the story if possible. The…

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Theatrical Deaths with No Blood

Blood adds horror. That’s the single reason to add a blood effect to a death scene. So, the only creative question in whether to consider a blood effect is: does this scene need more horror? In Romeo and Juliet, for example, do we need Mercutio’s death to be horrific? I’d say yes. Do we need…

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A Month of Action with Film Riot

The team at Film Riot have just finished Action Month, during which they shot several short action films (and a lot of behind-the-scenes footage) with their production company Triune Films. Listen to host Ryan Connolly describe the reasoning behind decisions and choices of equipment made in the early stages of pre-production planning, through the process…

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Romeo and Juliet at Bard 2016

At the top of the year, I was approached to be the fight director for Romeo and Juliet at Bard on the Beach. Kim Collier is directing the play, and liked my work on her Hamlet two years ago. I was very proud of our results in that play, and was eager to put some…

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Pause for Effect

Recently, the most effective tip I’ve been giving actors again and again is “take a moment”. It’s very easy to go to the next move in the fight choreography. However, there are important times to pause for effect. Laugh Lines You shouldn’t build a pause into your performance expecting that the audience will laugh. However,…

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