Spring Series: Foundation Masterclass

04/09/2017 - 25/09/2017

‘A company with a stark and original creative vision’ – John Bailey on OpticNerve, The Sunday Age

This is a 4-week workshop series introducing the OpticNerve training process to actors, physical performers, theatre makers, directors and dancers.
For those familiar with OpticNerve’s work and/or training process it offers them an opportunity to extend their skills and to build a relationship with the company.
Artistic Director Tanya Gerstle and Ensemble members Stephen Phillips and Hannah Liddeaux will run the training.


Dates: Monday 4th September · Monday 11th September · Monday 18th September · Monday 25th September // 6.30pm – 9.30pm

After booking your place please send your current CV to marketing@theatreworks.org.au


Tanya Gerstle initiated OpticNerve Performance Group to create text-based works with a dynamic staging approach using Pulse, a physical approach to the staging of narrative text.

Tanya has worked in professional theatre in Europe and Australia for 30 years in a variety of roles: actor, director, performance maker, dramaturg, company manager, festival curator and teaching artist. While based in Amsterdam she made, performed in and toured her own work with multi-lingual, physical performers and began her evolving practice into improvisational performance structures and their application to the making of theatre. She has been using this approach in the training of actors, making performance and directing theatre for twenty-five years.

Tanya has been training actors since 1999 in the Theatre School VCA, University of Melbourne. She was a Senior Lecturer in Theatre (Head of Acting 2007-11, Head of Theatre 2010-12) and is currently an Honorary Senior Fellow of the University. Tanya received an award for ‘Teaching Excellence’ in 2002 and has a Masters Degree in Dramatic Art – Direction (by Research) Most recently she has been teaching at the University of York, UK, University of Caen, France and Penn State University, USA. Tanya is co-authoring a book on her training and rehearsal process entitled “Physical Acting” to be published by Bloomsbury Press.

Her body of work includes directing texts by Barker, Barton, Churchill, Kushner, Wertenbaker and Shakespeare. For OpticNerve performance Group she has adapted and directed Five Kinds of Silence, a radio play by Shelagh Stephenson; Yes based on a film by Sally potter; Manbeth after Shakespeare’s Macbeth; an original work Pale Blue Dot; and George Eliot’s The Mill on the Floss by Helen Edmundson.