Ohio Shakespeare Festival is home to Monday Fight Night, a class that teaches stage combat to actors ages 14 and older. These classes help students learn how to safely mock-fight in a theatre setting.
“Despite violence being present in nearly every theatre production, stage combat training is hard to come by for many actors,” Fight Director Ryan Zarecki said. “I really wanted to change that in what little way I could.”
After realizing that Akron was lacking this unique training opportunity for actors, Zarecki began Monday Fight Night classes last November.
Since then, Zarecki runs and designs each class with a different theme. From knives, swords, to even being unarmed, Fight Night students are able to learn effective acting with martial arts skills. Every class begins with a warm-up, drills and time to meet fellow actors in the class. Then, students learn a routine and perform it at the end of the class.
“Stage combat training is about working together to achieve incredibly physical storytelling,” Zarecki said. “It’s great exercise for the body and and the brain.”
Monday Fight Night classes are held on the second Monday of every month. Classes are $15 or $10 for students and last about an hour and a half on Monday evenings. Students under age 18 will need to fill out a release form that can be found on the group’s website.
For the release form, the monthly class theme, or more info, visit www.ohioshakespearefestival.com/monday-fight-night.