International Conference 
"Theatre Between Tradition and Contemporaneity"
Theatre - Dance - Music - Visual & Multimedia Art - Arts Administration - Performing Arts Training - Theatre Design & Technology

December 16 - 20, 2016


Theatre Biomechanics

Practical workshop on the principles of Biomechanics and the teachings of the Russian outstanding theatrical innovator, Vsevolod Meyerhold - by theatre director and teacher, Sergei Ostrenko (Russia). 

Sergei Ostrenko is a Russian director, choreographer and teacher, the Head of IUGTE "Russian Theatre Department". He has been working in professional theatre over thirty five years. His creative way has passed through the Cold War of the 1980s, collapse of the USSR in the 1990s, creative ordeals in the period of the interethnic tension in the Baltic and joining the New Europe. International theatre projects under the guidance of Ostrenko take place in different countries: Russia, Ukraine, Canada, Latvia, Lithuania, Italy, Slovenia, Czech Republic, Sweden, Austria, Hungary, Malta, and the United Kingdom. His creative work is the synthesis of the Russian Theatre School and the newest experiments in performing arts. Ostrenko has vast directing experience in different genres. He has dedicated many years to exploration of world theatre traditions working with performers from different countries and cultures. His approach in international theatre network is known as the effective method of growing cohesion and creation of live performances within limited rehearsal time. Students of Ostrenko, theatre workers from Russia, Europe, America, Asia and Australia, have been using his creative method in their own performance and teaching practice.

The professional career of Ostrenko in theatre started in 1976, after graduating from the Academy of Arts he begins working as a stage designer. Then Ostrenko continues his education as an actor and later as a director. Since 1988 Ostrenko has been teaching at different institutes of higher education - Latvian State Conservatoire (Riga, Latvia), Latvian Academy of Culture (Riga, Latvia), the Latvian branch of Russian Academy of Theatre Arts (GITIS), Rosebud School for the Arts (Rosebud, Canada), the University of Calgary (Calgary, Canada) and others. Since 1994 Ostrenko has been running the scientific research project "The Laboratory of Movement and Dance“ which is unifying professional actors, directors, dancers, choreographers and psychologists in the practical research of improvisation and spontaneity in performing arts, methods of cohesion in creative group and processes of creation. The results of the Lab research merge into Ostrenko’s directing and teaching methodology, contributing to the formation of an ideal working environment, safe, adventurous and exciting, inductive to take creative risks, during the training and the rehearsals process.

Ostrenko dedicated ten years of his activity to working in the field of dance theatre. Ostrenko Lab in Riga exerted great influence on development of contemporary dance in the Baltic and laid the practical foundation for the development of professional Dance Movement Therapy in Latvia. Since the end of 1990s Ostrenko has been travelling a lot researching traditional and contemporary performing arts techniques - Chinese Opera, Mak Yong, Butoh, Alexander technique, Laban technique, Pilates, Suzuki, Contact and Structural Improvisation, Kinetic Environment, Viewpoints, method of Eugenio Barba, physical action of Stanislavsky, Meyerhold's Biomechanics and others.  

Since 2000 Ostrenko has been running the International Lab for actors and directors in the UK, Austria and Italy - Ostrenko Performing Arts Lab (OPAL), and starts working at the International University "Global Theatre Experience" (IUGTE). Since 2009 he has been leading the "Russian Theatre Department" of IUGTE.

At present the principal professional interest of Ostrenko is investigation of world theatre traditions, promotion of Russian Theatre Tradition in different countries and development of the strategic collaboration programmes with theatres of Russia and CIS. More about Sergei Ostrenko...


The workshop is focused on the practical exploration of performer’s psycho-physical instrument in the teaching of the Russian outstanding theatrical innovator - Vsevolod Meyerhold

Meyerhold's passion to creating bold, imaginative and expressive theatre and unique understanding of performer’s nature inspire contemporary theatre makers all over the world. 

Meyerhold's Biomechanics is a living method which is being continually developed, transformed and applied by its contemporary followers. It can not stand still and should not be considered as a static museum exhibit from 1920s. The true value and efficiency of the living method consists in its constant ability to consider and sense the peculiarities of the contemporary performance, its rhythm, form, aesthetics, the perception and passions of today's audience. 

Participants will explore the principles of Biomechanics and analyze them practically on the example of one of Biomechanics Etudes, gain a deeper understanding of psycho-physical approach in contemporary performer’s training and its application to practical work - rehearsal process, performance and teaching.  

Organized by IUGTE in collaboration with "ArtUniverse"