MATTHEW BURTON

Born in Perth, West Australia. He completed theatre studies at the National Institute of Dramatic Art, Sydney Australia. There followed 3 years of engagements as actor with the Melbourne Theatre Company, South Australian Theatre Company and a number of Australian film and television productions.

He voyages to South East Asia and India and experiences for the first time asiatic theatre forms of mask and dance dramas.

There follows two years engagement as actor at the Half Moon Theatre in London and the Duke´s Playhouse in Lancaster, North England.

With a desire to acquire new acting skills, he decides upon further studies at the Ecole Jacques Lecoq, Paris, whose teachers also included Monika Pagneaux, Philippe Gaulier, Pierre Byland and Serge Martin.

Completing these studies, he decides to further the discoveries made in Paris, especially in the forms of Commedia del ´Arté and clown, by moving to Florence, Italy. Cacofonico Clown Theatre is created and the fruits of the projects were performed firstly throughout Italy, (especially Milan and contact with Dario Fo ), and then to France, Holland, Norway, Germany and with an invitation to the London Mime Festival.

Since living and working in Berlin he has been involved in many varied theatre and international film projects either as actor, director or as teacher. He was early member of the ensemble with Teatr Kreatur ( Andrej Woran ) and later created works and performed with Theater Ton und Kirschen. Both of these ensembles explored and developed theatre techniques and forms that were physical, expressive, taking the Commedia dell´Arte as a source for the many different productions. Both companies were invited to International festivals and toured throughout Europe.

Since 1988 he has conducted seminars relating to the actor and the mask,- Commedia dell´Arte, neutral mask and expressive masks- in Italy, Holland, France and Norway. He has taught and created pieces with young german -turkish performers, creating productions of Moliere and Shakespeare which were invited to perform at state theatres of Cottbus, Schwedt and the Shakespeare Festival at Neuss, in Germany.

Since 2002 he has been a regular guest teacher at the University of Arts in Berlin in the department for theatre pedagogy.

From 2008 – 2011 he was director of acting at theatre school Die Etage, Berlin, and lately conducted mask classes at the Theater Akademie Vorpommern.

2011 he establishes with Alberto Fortuzzi the International School of Commedia dell’Arte Berlin.

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