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Boulder International Clown Training 2015: THE RED NOSE

15 August, 2015  → 18 September, 2015 - Boulder, COLORADO

Welcome to the 11th edition of THE RED NOSE workshop:
a unique opportunity to study and practice the essence of Theatre Clown
and the roots of Physical Comedy.

 Boulder, Red Nose 2010. Credit:Jen Hyde

Join us to explore the Sublime Stupidity of Clown,

in an updgraded and revised edition of the intensive program

that Giovanni has been leading in Boulder for over 10 years.


Clown is about comic poetry : funny and touching, essential and rigorous. It's a dive into the mystery of laughter.

Deeply rooted in movement-based theater, this workshop  proposes an intensive training in Red Nose Theater Clown – a specific theatrical and poetical genre. The pedagogy focuses in particular on the analysis, amplification and play of the physical and emotional world of each actor, as revealed by her or his natural body. This will lead to the discovery of a unique individual clown, with a specific body, tempo, voice, costume, attitudes, emotions, and poetic world.

The journey begins with the exploration and analysis of the body within the theatrical space. In terms of movement, no body is neutral – every body carries profoundly expressive themes, embodied in everyday movement. There is a web of "non-neutral attitudes" and physical and emotional “background sounds" within each person’s movement and physical presence. If an actor is observed with an eye to movement, using the reference point of the Neutral State, this web appears like painting/markings on a white sheet. They are “dramatic” in the etymological sense: they contain a drama – an action.

The use of the smallest mask in the world, the RED NOSE and the amplification and articulation of these very personal themes allows the actor to enter the Clown State.
The clown is not a character – it’s a state of playing where everyone has access to the key question: what is so funny about me ?

To discover one’s own clown is to reveal one’s own unique comic persona and turn it into a universal comic form.

For the theater artist as a poetical human being, there is something fundamental about the discovery of her or his individual Clown: it's raw, pure, personal, emotional, unique, challenging, empowering, revealing, and extremely rewarding... It’s the exquisite pleasure of touching the empty space of complete comedy.
As a theatre territory, Clown has a unique poetic potential because it allows the performer to explore and play with the naiveté and the vulnerability of the child and with the rigor and the technique of the adult, thus revealing the poetry of the ridiculous, and a unique personal poetic power.

As a personal journey it's an ecstatic way to get in touch with one's unique humanity and play with it in a space of openness, vulnerability and poetical fun.

The sublime stupidity of the clown is her/his enduring openness to life and to the present moment, despite her/his radical imperfection.



 Boulder, Red Nose 2009.  Credit: Young



There are as many clowns as there are human beings.
There is one way to stand while there are infinite ways to fall.
Intelligence is limited. Stupidity is infinite.

Giovanni Fusetti





The pedagogical approach integrates the Pedagogy of movement-based theatre of Jacques Lecoq  with different principles and practices of physical and emotional awareness. In particular: Gestalt, Reichian Analysis, Bionergetics, Taoism and Process Work. The result is a deep artistic and emotional work, involving the body in a dynamic of play, technical training, awareness and performing folly.

This workshop is simultaneously an artistic process and a personal process.

The personal process within the pedagogy is based on the combination of three fundamental principles. The first two come from the bio-energetics field, first expressed in the West by Wilhelm Reich and then explored by many different approaches. The first principle says that

What is not expressed by the body remains impressed in the body.

The second principle states that

The expression of all emotions brings fluidity (flow) to the body and this fluidity brings physical pleasure.

The third principle is related to the archetypal nature of theatre as a ritual of connection and exploration of the different aspects of human nature:

The parts of ourselves that we don’t play with, will play us.

As a way of getting in touch with, and integrating different parts of the self, seen as a process, theatre becomes a powerful space of knowledge, awareness and personal and collective empowerment. Through the playful unfolding of the energies impressed in the body, a clown will appear, and through playing this form with the rigorous support of theatre technique, a unique poetic world will emerge, as well as a fundamental process of personal evolution.

The Way (Tao) of clown brings powerful and highly poetical insights, witnessed by the audience and celebrated with laughter, and generates the ecstatic joy of being who we are in a unique experience of letting go of all intentions (Wu-Wei).

Helikos 2012. Credit: Stefano Borghi





- Play, action/reaction and fun
- From the neutral state to the comic state: movement analysis of the body in space
- The Red Nose as a mask: amplification and articulation of movement
- The clown as a state of being on stage
- The empty space and the non-intentional mind
- Emotional presence and awareness and contact with the emotional body of the actor
- Awareness of awareness
- Contact and play with the audience
- Playing with space and with objects

Second Week: THE PLAY (le jeu)

- The relationship among clowns: hierarchy, masters and servants, levels of stupidity
- The Circus Clown Archetypes: Augustus, White Clown, Monsieur Loyal
- The Clown's Voice
- Clown acts and le bide (fiasco)
- Rhythmical space and time: entrance, crescendo, development of themes, climax and exit
- The actor’s skills in service to the clown: playing with music, singing, acrobatics, juggling, dance and unusual or unique skills


- Devising of Clown Acts based on the previous weeks' improvisations
- Accidents and comic routines
- Devising a clown variety show
- Staging and directing clowns: each clown will work and rework on some acts /routines to be presented in 3 public performances
- Rehearsing the Clown Variety Show

Fourth week : PERFORMING

- Public presentation of a Clown Variety Show, devised by the participants under the direction of Giovanni Fusetti
- Feedback on the performance and re-work for a second and a third performance
- Feedback on the whole process and final celebration of the clowns and their world



 Boulder, Red Nose 2010. Credit:Jen Hyde




August 15th to September 8th, 2015

Saturday August 15th: Registration at 12pm. Classes 1 to 6. Public lecture-demonstration by Giovanni from 7:30 to 9:30pm
Sunday August 16th: 3 to 9pm

Monday 17th: 12 to 6pm
Tuesday 18th to Friday 21st: 3pm to 9pm
Saturday 22th and Sunday 23rd:  DAYS OFF

Monday 24rd to Friday 29th: 3pm to 9pm
Saturday 29th: DAY OFF
Sunday 30th: 3pm to 9pm

Monday 31st: 3pm to 9pm
Tuesday September 1st: 3pm to 9pm
Wednesday 2nd: 3pm to 9pm
Thursday 3rd: DAY OFF
Friday 4th: 10am to 7pm
Saturday 5th, Sunday 6th, Monday 7th at the Nomad Theatre, 11am to 10 pm with three Public Performances at 7:30 pm.
Tuesday 8th: 12to4pm. Closing

The location of the workshop is the Boulder Circus Center



 Helikos 2013. Credit: Stefano Borghi




The aim of this course is to give participants professional theatre tools and emotional poetical awareness, in order to play and create within their own clown world. It is addressed to people with previous performance experience (theatre, circus, dance, music, etc.) who feel a strong poetic urgence to be on stage as well as a strong desire to create art from a space of emotional opennes and vulnerability.
It is a training based on generosity, and the commitment to turning one’s own genuine humanity into play. It requires the participants a genuine curiosity about self-discovery through the healing power of humour. 
The emotional work will be intense and ecstatic: the body will reveal what it needs to experience and express, in a dynamic of amplification, play, letting go, insight and theatrical transposition.
 Shadows, archetypes, physical symptoms, dreambody processes will appear and will be welcomed in the alchemical space of the stage.
All will nurture the sublime human poetry of each clown.

This is not just a theatre workshop. If you are only interested in the technical/theatrical aspect of clown and physical comedy, this might not be the work you are looking for.  Please read the attached  document by Giovanni, as well as Giovanni's bio and the page my roots, to learn more about the ingredients of his approach to clown and theatre.



There is no application form.
To apply to THE RED NOSE, please email
- a CV (Resume), including a recent photograph
- a letter of motivation sharing the essence of your story, vision, dream, desire, fear or un-explicable intuition that leads you to this training. Please include in your letter these themes:
    -how did you come to know about this work;
    -your experience with movement-based theatre;
    -your previous experience with clown
    -for what purpose you apply for this program
   -some notes about your personal journey in terms of healing or therapeutical practices, or other relevant inner experiences.

Giovanni will choose students from the applications received, forming the group. In some cases Giovanni will ask the applicants to have a skype conversation. Giovanni will  choose students from the applications received, forming the group.

Once accepted, to confirm the enrollment, a deposit of US$500.00 is due.
Please note that the deposit is non-refundable.

ATTENTION: our administration is in Euros, so if you pay in US$ bank will make the conversion. Unfortunately, most bank hide an extra transfer fee, by applying a different exchage rate then the current one. In order to avoid exchange fees on both sides of the transfer, you can make the payment directly in Euros.  Check online the exchange rate of that day (www.xe.com), and then you can wire that amount in Euros. If in doubt contact us.

Once the application is accepted,  spots in the class, will be given in the order the application was received. Once Giovanni has selected 14 students, the workshop is full, and a waiting list will be created.  Please note that this workshop tends to fill up fairly quickly so if you intend to participate, we encourage you to apply as soon as possible.

Enrollment situation on June 26th, 2015: 1 spot is still available.



  Helikos 2013. Credit: Stefano Borghi



Early Bird Discount: US$ 1,900, if tuition is fully paid by June 15th, 2015.
Full Price: US$ 2.200.

Please note that tuition does not include accommodation and that participants will be responsible for organizing their staying in Boulder. Upon request, we can  provide a list of useful information and contacts on how to organize your staying in the beautiful Boulder.



Helikos 2012. Credit: Stefano Borghi


The workshop will be taught in ENGLISH
and a basic understanding of this language is required.



Helikos 2013. Credit: Stefano Borghi




For any question regarding the pedagogical content of the workshop please contact:

 Giovanni Fusetti 

giovanni.fusetti  @  helikos.com

If you are interested in attending the workshop, please send your application to

Teresa Scaletti

teresa.scaletti  @  helikos.com




  Boulder, Red Nose 2014


See you in Boulder, Colorado !


Design & programming : DomRadisson.net