SCHOOLS – 2018 Bookings now available

Tempest WIS Pros-Mir 005“Whenever we have engaged Zen Zen Zo for a Teaching residency or Workshop, the students are amazed at what they can achieve, and by the originality of their own work and the skills they can take back into the classroom to apply to their own forming work. The instructors are passionate about their craft and this is apparent to the students who strive to create exciting new work. I have found Zen Zen Zo to be a supportive, affordable and thoroughly professional company to work with.” — Linda Statham (Head of Drama, Stuartholme School, Brisbane)

(Photo – The Tempest, West Island School, Hong Kong 2012)

Since day one Zen Zen Zo has pursued our mission to encourage creativity and inspire the next generation of young artists through our In-Schools Program.  With an extensive range of workshops and artist-in-residence programs, Zen Zen Zo looks forward to working with teachers and students to bring excellence, discipline, fun and a tool-belt of skills to your classroom!


In-Schools workshops 2018

Schools - Breaking BoundariesThe In-Schools workshops are taught by Zen Zen Zo company members to allow maximum interaction with your students.  All Zen Zen Zo trained Teaching-Artists are passionate educators and  professional artists with national and international performance and teaching experience.

DURATION: 90 minutes per workshop
COST: $16 per student (min 20 students – max 35)

School bookings outside of Queensland are an additional 10% ($17.60 per student) to cover school liaison and the coordination of interstate travel for artists.

International bookings are priced separately please email us to discuss.

For workshops in South-East Queensland, a travel expense of $35–$85 will apply to schools beyond Brisbane TransLink Zone 4
* A minimum booking of 2 workshops will apply to schools beyond Brisbane TransLink Zone 10.                                                                                                                                                               


Physical Theatre Training 

A series of exciting and challenging exercises which introduce the key performance skills of Energy, Focus, Physical and Ensemble Awareness. This is a must-do introduction to the wonderful world of physical theatre and will lay a perfect foundation for strong, dynamic performance work.

Creating Physical Theatre

Students practically explore the language and methodologies for devising and for creating powerful stage imagery, drawing from the Viewpoints system, with the workshop culminating in the creation of a short, dynamic physical theatre piece. The skills they gain will enable them to independently devise their own work with confidence in the future.

Preferred prerequisite: Physical Theatre Training

Making Contemporary Performance 

Zen Zen Zo’s work has always been on the cutting edge of both Physical Theatre AND Contemporary Performance. This workshop introduces 3 fabulous approaches that unpack Contemporary Performance by exploring the post-modern conventions of Collaboration, Juxtaposition, Fragmentation of Time & Space, and Hybridisation. 

Preferred prerequisite: Creating Physical Theatre

The Viewpoints

The Viewpoints is an extremely fun and dynamic training and creation method that focuses on communication and connecting the ensemble by awakening the students’ instincts through impulse work and play. It also provides a brilliant shared language from which to work when discussing and creating theatre.  This workshop focuses on applying the Viewpoints to ensemble improvisation.  Zen Zen Zo were the first practitioners to bring the Viewpoints from the USA to Australia (in 1998), so learn from the original experts in this field!

Japanese Theatre (Noh and Butoh)

A powerful introduction to heritage non-Western dramatic styles, this workshop explores the history and abstract/expressive movement from the Japanese Theatre, including Noh and Butoh. This workshop covers image work, mask work and character work.

The Suzuki Method of Actor Training

This unique actor-training method draws from Japanese Martial Arts traditions and develops extraordinary energy, incredible focus and absolute commitment to performance allowing the students to discover the elusive concept of stage presence and develop their “inner warrior”.

Greek Theatre

Greek Theatre is big, bold, extreme and perfectly suited to physical theatre! This workshop will explore how to physically interpret classic Greek texts through choral movement and speaking, creating a heightened stage language, and a 4-step process for staging dynamic scenes using the physical and vocal viewpoints. 

Preferred prerequisite: Creating Physical Theatre

Shakespearean Characters

Physical theatre as a style lends itself to bringing Shakespearean characters alive. This workshop will unpack 3 clear methods fir creating dynamic, heightened Shakespearean characters- using animals, image scores and the Viewpoints as the starting point.

Staging Shakespeare

This workshop leads students through a step-by-step method to stage key scenes from your choice of Shakespeare’s plays. Drawing on physical theatre techniques and Zen Zen Zo’s unique methodology, we look at how to marry narrative with theatrical poetry to make Shakespeare accessible to high school students.
Prerequisite: Creating Physical Theatre Workshop

Brecht & Physical Theatre

The workshop looks at some of the central ideas in Brecht’s Epic Theatre including the Verfremdungseffekt or Alienation Effect. The aim is to make Brecht interesting and accessible, with the students  drawing on all the techniques introduced (including Transformation, Gestus, Montage and the Breaking of the 4th Wall) to create their own short piece of Epic Theatre by the end of the workshop. 


Teaching-Artist Residencies

“Our students have had the privilege of Zen Zen Zo’s Teaching Residency program for four years and I cannot speak more highly of the benefits. Our students have become more dynamic performers, focused theatre-makers and brave improvisers. For a week each year, Zen Zen Zo becomes a part of our College and it is the highlight of the year for our students, developing their creativity along with their appreciation and understanding of drama.”
— Janne Sverdloff  (Co-ordinator of Drama, Santa Sabina College, Sydney)

Zen Zen Zo offers short or long-term Teaching Residencies for anywhere between 4 hours to 15 weeks! From in-depth physical actor training (in Zen Zen Zo’s specialty areas of The Viewpoints, the Suzuki Method of Actor Training, or Butoh Dance-Theatre) to assisting students to create, develop, rehearse and direct their own performance work or any combination in between, we can structure an ongoing program to suit your needs, time-table and budget.

You can have a Zen Zen Zo Teaching-Artist in Residence at your school for:

Per Hour:   $175 (Minimum booking of 5 hours – can be spread over a period of time; minimum 90 min session.)

Per day:      $650 (Minimum booking of 2 days; 5 hours teaching + 1 hour lunch break per day)

Per Week:  $1750 (5 hours teaching + 1 hour lunch break per day, 5 consecutive days)

* A travel expense of $20–$60 will apply to schools beyond Brisbane TransLink Zone 4

* A min. booking of 3–hour sessions will apply to schools beyond Brisbane TransLink Zone 10

* Per diems, airfares, and accommodation costs will also apply for schools in regional Queensland, interstate (plus 10%) and abroad (by negotiation).


Youth Productions: Directing Residencies

**Subject to Availability of Senior Zen Zen Zo Teaching Artists

TRAINING---Schools---Youth-Productions-photo“The directing residency is a powerful process led by generous and extraordinary teaching-artists. For over 6 years through Zen Zen Zo our senior drama students have produced whole class professional performances which exhibit a very deep understanding of the chosen text and technique and immense respect for their art. All my past students and present students treasure this memory.” — Maureen Billiau (Corinda SHS)

“Our directing residency was absolute gold. We are a school with a high profile for performance, but Zen Zen Zo raised that bar even higher. A fabulous experience for the student actors as well as for the wider community.” — Ian Baker (King George V School, Hong Kong)

Since 2005 Zen Zen Zo has directed 40 productions in schools in Brisbane, Melbourne, Canberra and Hong Kong through the Directing Residency program. This unique and exciting program provides a highly experienced Zen Zen Zo Director and an Assistant Teaching-Artist to direct and manage a full-scale physical theatre production. This is an extraordinary opportunity for your students to experience the challenges and rewards of creating and staging a professional theatre production adapted from a script of your choice. Each project will be specifically catered to your desired outcomes, including assessment requirements. The Zen Zen Zo Teaching-Artists will train the students in Zen Zen Zo’s specialty areas, teach them how to devise their own work, and develop and manage all the creative aspects of a one-hour production to facilitate a truly memorable and professional experience for all involved.

Directing Residency:      contact Zen Zen Zo to discuss pricing and rehearsal     options

* A min. of 100 hours rehearsal time is required. Weekly rehearsals need to include either one full weekend day OR a min. of two 3-hour sessions after school. Additional sessions (min. 90 mins) can take place in class time.