Troubleyn | Jan Fabre


5 hours / day - 1 pm > 6 pm



> Questions email
> The participation fee is 150 € (incl. 21% VAT).
> The masterclass will take place @Troubleyn/Laboratorium, Pastorijstraat 23, 2060 Antwerp, Belgium.
> The masterclass will take place in English.



You have to wear a mask, if you want to take off your mask!

The workshop will focus on the fundamental basis needed to activate the expressive code of masks in order to bring back to life the characters of Commedia dell’Arte, a noble tradition invented by Italian actors during the 16th century that spread throughout all Europe to Russia. We’re going to learn that every single character represents a different human type and a clear social category, the same ones that we’re still able to find and recognize in contemporary society. The encounter with the mask has something magical, because it deals with energies, with amplification and transformation, asking the body to be ready and available. During the workshop, we’re going to stimulate the development of an imaginary body that only the acting experience itself will be able to elaborate and represent. Starting from the expressive techniques of the mask of the Commedia dell'Arte, we deepen the study of the expressive potential of the performer’s body, through a path of vertical research that binds the body to the sensitive imagination. The work aims to give more creative possibilities to the performers, not only as interpreters of a scene but as authors/creators themselves.

The mask covers the face to give greater importance to the totality of the body and the imagination: it brings out all the deepest, archetypal, contradictory and grotesque aspects of the human being. Thanks to the mask the performer can take greater awareness of the expressive and creative potential and root their action in the truth of the body.





Actor, dancer and director. He mainly plays in physical and image theatre through the expressive language of the mask, the new circus, and the performing arts. His artistic research is rooted in the tradition of physical theatre and comic theatre. He deepens the study of techniques and principles of great masters of theatre and dance such as: J. Lecoq, J. Grotowski, C. Carlson, E. De Filippo, Dario Fo, A. Vasil’ev; thanks to the meeting with artists and masters as: Claudio De Maglio, Pierre Byland, Carlo Boso, Giorgio Rossi, Pilobolus Company, Michele Abbondanza, Anatolij Vasil'ev, Michele Monetta. He has taught at theatres, Universities and Academies in Italy, Russia, Canada, Poland, Albania, Egypt, Germany and France. Starting from the expressive techniques of the mask of the commedia dell'arte, he carries on artistic research that, on the one hand, aims to bring out the contradictory aspects/grotesque, moreover he aims at overcoming the classic concept of mask and classification of theatrical genre. On the other hand, he further explores the study and creation of the performer intended as a core-actor on stage, starting from the physical body, animal, and sensitivity to find the artistic body.


After completing his studies in Political Science at the “La Sapienza” University of Rome, Pietro Quadrino began his career as a theatre performer. He moved to Paris where he graduated at the AIDAS, directed by Carlo Boso, specializing in Commedia dell’Arte. In 2012 he first joined the National Theatre of Rome.

The same year he joined the theatre-dance company Troubleyn/Jan Fabre, with which he performs in the most important theatres between Europe, America, Asia playing in iconic performances such as The Power of Theatrical Madness (2012), This is theater like it was to be expected and forseen (2012) & Mount Olympus. To glorify the cult of tragedy (2015). Pietro is currently performing in the latest Troubleyn/ Jan Fabre production Peak Mytikas (On the top of Mount Olympus) - An 8-hour production (2023).

In 2016, he worked in the National Theatre of Venice, under the direction of Alex Rigola. In 2019, Pietro joined the company of Angelica Liddel. Pietro Quadrino has also worked with internationally renowned directors, such as Ariane Mnouchkine, Omar Porras, and other younger theatre groups.

Alongside performing, Pietro is part of the Jan Fabre Teaching Group, training new generations of performers.


An interesting aspect of research is to find out, who is masking whom, who is demasking whom. The history of the unmasking of the symbols has shown the following: not every one choses his mask himself. Demasking the actor and setting him free from social boundaries or rules of convention has fascinating parallelisms with the satyr masks, devil-masks or commedia masks: The physical impulse, the animal impulse, the instincts, oppressed in human nature – classic topics for masks – should be shown in the demasking – but instead of finding a real face, we only find signs of authenticity: sweat, blood, shit, exhausted bodies, based on a true event: the play of Theatre.

New life for traditional masks.
Any commedia character has to prove its relevance and contemporaneity to verify and embody it.
e.g. Zanni: Traditionally drawn by hunger and sexual lust. Might his hunger today come from anorexia? Or is he a refugee? Is he a worker in a textile factory in Bangladesh?
e.g., Pantalone: The Scrooge, the father, the master, the impotent granny-playboy: today a banker or a manager? Berlusconi, Schröder, Ackermann? Who are the masters today? Who – do we think – rules our lives?
e.g. Brighella: Is he a good character for the average individual in Western society—free but dependent? Opportunistic, cynical but also artistic? He depends on the masters but can also trick them with his wit, like when we trick with taxes.