Saturday, December 27, 2014

Commedia del Arte

For the last seven years, I've been a member of a traveling comedy troupe called Commedia del Arte. Yes, it's spelled that way on purpose, and no, we don't use the character masks anymore.

The troupe has existed for over twenty years, located in Mobile, Alabama, though we'll travel just about anywhere there's a venue. We perform in an extemporaneous style that starts with a basic script, but each actor adds his or her own touches to the character and story as it develops. No two performances are the same.

We don't make any money.

Our proceeds go to charities. Our previous show (Here Wolf, There Wolf, Everywhere a Werewolf) benefitted the Animal Rescue Foundation of Mobile.

We do make everything else.

We take great pride in building our own costumes, finding or fashioning our own props, reusing or reimagining whatever is available. We've made beards out of tea leaves, a sarcophagus out of wrapping paper, and a crocodile out of soda bottles. Almost all of our shows are original pieces written by our director, who often gives us a handful of script pages to study while she finishes writing the rest.

And everyone who joins is welcomed like family.

We have all types of people, young and old, in the troupe. Some people join for a single show, while others stay for years. For me, the members of Commedia del Arte have become some of my closest friends. At one point, I drove 6 hours every other weekend to continue attending rehearsal. I was Wendy in our production of Peter Pan! No distance would have kept me away.

A week ago today, I got married. (I'm actually on my honeymoon as I write this.) Commedia del Arte was as important a part of my wedding as any family could be. They wrote and performed an original wedding play for my groom and me, a beautiful wedding gift and a true display of friendship and love.

Please look us up to learn more! Find us through Google or through our Facebook (Commedia del Arte of Mobile). Here you'll find more information and--best of all--hundreds of pictures of our characters and shows.

Thanks and all the best,

Stephanie
junequest[AT]gmail.com
Mobile, Alabama

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