Steven Wasson and Corinne Soum combine the experience of having been students and assistants of Etienne Decroux, and having taught, developed and directed Corporeal Mime with their Company and School for over 30 years. The White Church Theatre Project Training Program offers the possibility to study Corporeal Mime in depth from a creative point of view.

Training method goals

  1. Technical excellence
  2. Artistic and performing development

The White Church THEATRE Project Training is designed for the professional and pre-professional actors, dancers, mimes and performers wishing to give a physical reality to their own ideas. Corporeal Mime created by Etienne Decroux, is an innovative method and a precise technique focusing on the body and physical action in theatre.

Students will learn the precise and specific vocabulary and technique relevant to Corporeal Mime, giving them an incomparable tool to express themselves theatrically. They will be challenged in learning to develop their own personal performance material. Students work in a theatre company atmosphere, collaborating with one another and working towards a common goal: building shows and projects together.

The Training Program believes in the combination of technical achievement and artistic realization. Unlike other approaches to teaching, The White Church THEATRE Project does not offer a myriad of different theatrical disciplines disconnected from one another. The Training offers the possibility to study in depth one discipline: Corporeal Mime. Through a number of different approaches, from Technique to Improvisation, Repertoire to Composition and from theory to history, the participant will strive to experience a deeper understanding and assimilation of Etienne Decroux's conviction: Mime is the Art of The Actor.

The Thinking Body

A leap into transformation and dream...

Technique: “The Architecture of the Thinking Body”

The study of the Corporeal Mime Technique will include the gestural grammar, body articulation, counterweights, walks and displacements in space, Figures of Style, Mobile Statuary, Dynamorythm and the Musicality of Movement.

Repertoire: “A Modern Mythology”

Participants will study pieces from the Repertoire of Etienne Decroux such as The Factory, The Trees, The Touch, The Carpenter, The Washerwoman,The Chair of the Absent One, The Prophet, Love Duet in the Parc St. Cloud, A Woman like a Bird, The Meditation, The Combat, The Cunning Spirit, The Morning, The Statue, Love Duet II, The Passage of Man on Earth... and from the post modern repertoire pieces such as The Chair, The Newspaper, As I Remember, The Lost Angel ...

The apprenticeship of this repertoire is not only a challenging and valuable tool in the mastering of a physical theatre expression, but can become a constant source of inspiration for creation. In the history of mime, the pieces of Etienne Decroux stand unique as a sort of modern mythology of movement theatre from which performers and teachers may draw a theatrical dynamism and method for the creation of personal work.

Improvisation: “Theatrical Spontaneity”

Exploring a wide range of themes: “How to be” and “What to do” will stimulate the student’s imagination; learning to develop a corporeal interpretation in solo, duet and ensemble work.

Composition: “The Reverse Metaphor”

This is the practical approach to contemporary mime dramaturgy. The practitioner learns how to create pieces and put together a performance through the study of:

  1. The scenic recomposition of reality
  2. The theatrical phrasing of movement
  3. The relationship between time and space
  4. in the structure of a play
  5. The construction of a corporeal interpretation
  6. The interaction between spoken text and movement
  7. The use of music, costume and props

The creative process in Corporeal Mime is called by Etienne Decroux, “La Metaphor a l’Envers” (the Reverse Metaphor): trusting the action to progressively devise a play. This process allows space for intuition and imagination.

Theory and History: “Spontaneous Language, Elaborate Craft”

Lectures, archival viewing, discussions on Etienne Decroux and on the world of the Theatre de l’Ange Fou will be part of the program.

A pdf of The White Church THEATRE Project brochure is available here to download.

How To Enroll

Please print and fill in the application form for the White Church THEATRE Project, and send it to us with your deposit.

Where is the White Church THEATRE Project taking place?
Wyoming Valley Church,
6348 State Road 23
Spring Green, Wisconsin
53588 USA

(5 miles south of Spring Green off Highway 23).

Please contact the Spring Green and Dodgeville Chamber of Commerce for Motel, Bed and Breakfast, and camping facilities: (link opens a new page) (link opens a new page)

Alternatively we can put you in contact with people wishing to rent rooms during the Summer School period.

Closest Airports:
The closest major airports are in Madison, Milwaukee and Chicago. For further information please refer to the links below:

From Chicago O'Hare Airport, the Van Galder Bus has an hourly service to 800 University Av. Madison, WI:
(Look under Scheduled Services > O'Hare Airport for details, departure times, ticket prices and to buy tickets online.)

From Mitchell Airport, Milwaukee, the Badger Bus runs roughly every two hours or so to; 700 University Av. Madison, WI:
(Select Mitchell Airport as the departure point and Madison Area, UW Madison - Chazen Museum as the arrival point for details.)

if you need transportation from Madison to Spring Green, a car can be arranged to pick you up at the Madison bus stop.