More about The Rudes style

Commedia dell’arte & other influences

  • Since we first hit the road in 1999 The Rudes have gradually evolved into our own ‘brand’. This is partly because we have allowed different but related ‘historic’ influences to mould us & partly because actors who bring their own skills have become part of ‘the family’ & what we have created together has bit by bit stuck and become part of us. After a love lasting forty years of the great Italian Mediaeval & Renaissance theatre tradition, the  commedia dell’arte, finally encouraged our artistic director & writer, Pete Talbot, to go & train in Italy with the commedia maestro Antonio Fava, the seeds of our style were sown.

The Gold Rush - Grant Fiddle

Commedia parodia

  • We have never wanted however just to take the stock characters & stories off the shelf & recycle them. That is at best an intesting form of ‘museum theatre’. It has always been our intention to create new theatre for contemporary audiences – and to find our own style to perform it. This kind of development of the tradition we call commedia parodia.
  • Commedia remains a massive influence & broad aspects of the style remain key to our work, but we have had other influences too (most of which it has to be said were also influenced by the commedia), such as pantomime, the English music hall, the American Vaudeville, historic travelling mountebanks & medicine shows, even the ballet (which itself learnt a lot of movement from the innamorati of the commedia dell’arte) and, of course, silent movie.

More about key influences

If you would like to learn more about The Rudes’ style then follow the links below to a number of pages on aspects of the commedia tradition which have influenced us & which we have adapted for our purposes, and we will add more of these little essays on other influences too from time to time. So watch this space!

Click on the links below

What is commedia dell’arte?  

Just leather masks? 

Improvisation in the commedia dell’arte

The Rudes & all’improvviso

Lessons learnt from the commedia dell’arte

Learn by doing it: Workshops – Continue The Tour – Click here

Or if you want to go back to the Front Page click here