When it comes to concepts and skills in terms of delivering a stage combat class. I constantly refer to two ‘spheres’ of knowledge. One is the art form I am delivering of course; stage combat and the second is naturally martial arts. Both with a series of skills, concepts, codes and practices which must be understood and honoured by the student. Eventually they will need to embody those skills and concepts in order to apply it when called upon.
From my experience of teaching actors there is a wide continuum of understanding in relationship to the two circles of knowledge I have mentioned. This ranges from the complete novice in both spheres through to those who have a great knowledge of both. Ultimately, I believe we are trying to bring both spheres together like a Venn diagram. The larger the cross over in intersection area of the Venn diagram then the better chance I have of creating an actor who has more versatility across multiple weapons systems.
So, the task when training actors is developing exercises that work to align both spheres to help increase the intersection of knowledge for the learner.
To be continued…