Workshops are open to anyone willing and able to train, with any level of experience from beginning to advanced, unless otherwise indicated. In addition to our scheduled trainings, we can arrange a workshop for your group. Please see Offerings & Activities for scheduled trainings, workshops and jams. You can also Contact us for further information.
Introduction to Rasaboxes
Introduction to Rasaboxes workshops begin with a brief introduction to the ideas used to formulate rasaboxes yet the primary focus is learning the basic vocabulary of the work by means of drawing, breathing, sensing, physicalizing, vocalizing, regarding and relating to others.
Introductory training formats include:
Introductory Rasaboxes Session: 2 or 3 hours.
Introduction to Rasaboxes: 2 or 3 Days, 4 or 6 hours per day, 12 hours total
One-Week Introduction to Rasaboxes, 4 hours per day, 20 hours total
Rasaboxes Training Intensives and Retreats
Rasaboxes Training Intensives and Retreats are immersive programs in the training and application of rasaboxes and a suite of psychophysical exercises out of which they were devised. Daily training includes hatha yoga and extensive breath, voice and movement work. Rasaboxes exercises range from the very simple and personal expression of each rasa individually by means of drawing, breathing, gesturing, sensing, and vocalizing to complex combinations of rasas performed by several people simultaneously. From composing the body and guiding the breath, the work leads step-by-step to sound and movement exercises that may use objects and texts, music, masks, songs — and more. During each workshop, new ways of accessing and expressing the rasas are found. Participants learn to apply the rasaboxes work in performance compositions by mixing, layering, and scoring the eight rasas in ways that create complex expressions, dramatic characters, and psychophysical emotional relations. Workshops include discussions about the theories that gave rise to the formation of rasaboxes, and theories and researches that continue to foster its development as an approach to performer training.
Intensive and Retreat formats include:
5 Days, 7 hours per day, 35 hours total
10 Days, 7 hours per day, 70 hours total
The Performance Workshop
Richard Schechner’s/East Coast Artists’ Performance Workshops are based on the principle that performers, directors, writers, musicians — anyone wanting to train her/his creativity — can share a language of the body/mind that provides specific tools for making new work. The workshop also shows how to build a group/create an ensemble: how individuals through specific practices ranging from yoga and breathing exercises, through to slow motion enactments and the sharing of personal experiences and fantasies, and on to rasaboxes (an exercise Schechner devised in the 1980s and 90s that has since been further developed by Schechner and his colleagues in East Coast Artists). The Performance Workshop is a radical break from the canonical, “psychological” approach to acting and theatre-making. Rigorous daily training includes hatha yoga, breathing, vocal, and singing exercises, movement improvisations, and introductory training in rasaboxes. During the workshop, individuals create personae drawing on personal materials and aspects of themselves, environmental theatre staging, and both solo and ensemble performance compositions.
Performance Workshop formats include:
15 Days, 4-5 hours per day, 75 hours total
Rasajams are group facilitated rasaboxes practice sessions. They are held by experienced students or practitioners with others who have had at least a little exposure to the rasaboxes work. Guided by a set of principles and rules for running rasajams, the groups’ facilitators set their own rasajam agenda and exercises.
Running time: 3-4 hours
Rasaboxes Instructor Certification
Richard Schechner suggests to those who wish to become certified teachers of rasaboxes, that they participate in and (eventually) assist in teaching rasaboxes workshops. Once you have taken at least one intensive workshop, you may approach us about assisting. Because candidates’ backgrounds and interests differ, there is no single pathway to certification. It becomes clear through the working process, from each candidate’s apparent assimilation of the material, through assisting, etc., when certification for a particular individual is possible. This may be a fuzzy answer, but for now, that’s how it stands. We will eventually develop a formal ‘board’ of rasaboxes instructors to help others become certified. We are, however, trying to avoid being in the business of selling certifications. If we wanted to, there is definitely a market to exploit. Instead, we hope that those who are truly drawn to the work for the long haul will emerge to participate, practice, assist and teach.
The four rasaboxes instructors currently certified have worked with Schechner for a number of years in workshops, rehearsals and in performance. Each have learned the full suite of exercises and theories supporting the work over time, through practice, application and by assisting in workshops. Rachel Bowditch, Michele Minnick and Fernando Calzadilla also completed the Performance Studies PhD program at New York University. We have each added our own developments to the early exercises he devised and continue to do so. Schechner also develops the work, but infrequently teaches it.
This said, you don’t need a certification to practice rasaboxes with your own students, colleagues, friends, artistic associates, etc.. In fact, we encourage you to share and apply what you have learned! We simply ask that you do not charge for the work, do not advertise using the name “rasaboxes”, do not call yourself a rasaboxes instructor, do not teach extensive trainings in rasaboxes, nor do conference presentations/workshops without our permission. You get the idea. But we hope you will use and develop the work. We will help you to do so providing educational materials via this website and by offering training programs in the work.