Jurij Alschitz - online and stage courses
International Directing Programme
for theatre professionals
Courses in Online – Hybrid – Face-to-Face Formats
The International Directing Programme offers three modules on a regular basis, which can be attended individually in any order.
Each course comprises a five-day workshop with a preceding online introduction
The Director Prepares
The Director’s Tools
Hybrid (your choice: online or on-stage in Berlin)
Stage course in Berlin
Upcoming session 2024 – The Director’s Tools
11 February 2024 Online Introduction
21 – 25 February stage course in Berlin with the possibiloity to participate online
Preview – Rehearsal Tools
8 – 15 May stage course in Berlin
There are many ways of becoming a director …
This unique hybrid training programme is designed for those who have decided to pursue a directing career, as well as for all directors, theatre educators, actors and playwrights with professional experience, who wish to enhance their practical skills. It is aimed at those who want to learn important secrets of the profession.
Directors acquire essential knowledge how to develop and implement ideas for a performance, actors how to stage their roles, and theatre teachers how to use the art of directing in their pedagogical work. Here, directing is conveyed in its comprehensive meaning – as a world view, as an art, as a craft and as a tool.
The international directing programme is offered regularly in three modules over the course of one year. You decide which topic is relevant to you and when you would like to start. The courses will be held online, hybrid and face-to-face.
You will go through all the stages of creating a play: from the director’s independent work in preparing the image of the play, its idea, theme, style, etc., work on the text of the play, the laws of stage analysis of the text, the rules of selecting actors, rehearsal methods, etc. You will be given all the basics of the art of directing, which you will then have to develop further on your own. This is a life’s work. In other words, the course gives you a solid starting point for your independent journey into directing.
The Courses of the International Directing Programme in Detail
The Director Prepares
There are a thousand things to think about when you start a project, it’s easy to lose track of what’s really important. Besides all the practical things that you might have to arrange, it is above all the time in which your vision – the image of the performance – should crystallise. The clearer and more comprehensive your vision, the greater will be your ability to accept, guide and integrate all the ideas of your future collaborators. The more precisely we work in advance, the greater our freedom and flexibility will be during rehearsals with the actors.
But what does precise preparation mean? During the preparation phase of a director’s work, the most important tool is to ask ourselves the right questions. Self-preparation goes hand in hand with self-provocation, namely the activation of creative energy when we try to find the answers. The method of questioning works both for ourselves and later in the dialogue with the actors.
Jurij Alschitz holds an endless treasure trove of specific questions and tasks that are indispensable for the self-preparation of the director.
In this course, participants will learn to create their directorial vision, the overall image of the performance. They will think about the myth, the story they want to tell; they develop the so-called “spherical view” and train to verbalize their ideas. They will build up their professional toolkit: what questions do I really need to ask and answer during my preparation? What are the best working methods for myself? What tasks and questions will I ask the actors?
The Director’s Tools
This course is about the instruments of the director. Talent and imagination need to be realised with professional tools. That is why the director must undertake an in-depth text analysis, as the basis on which to work with actors.
Jurij Alschitz will pose many questions and tasks to the participants and open up the text as a source of energy. What does the composition of a scene, the play, the planned performance look like? Already we come across many compositions: composition of themes, of facts, of events, of atmospheres, of relationships and conflicts…. How do I build the network, the cosmos of events? How do I recognise and deal with open and hidden events? How do the lines of the events of the various characters intersect?
If we take a closer look at the text, we enter the world of words, which follow their own laws. How do the threads of individual words weave themselves across the whole play? How do I prepare the actors for the labyrinth of words? Or is it the pauses? What happens in the empty spaces? Perhaps they are the real carriers of meaning? Does the scenic life take place without words? Where does the meaning emerge without words?
We can look at the text, the play as a musical work – what about rhythm and melodic lines? In which genre do I want to move, how do I want to change and develop it? Which styles do I use and how are they reflected in the overall production?
The questions will multiply during this course – they are the ABC of the professional director, his tools. The individual mastery will be revealed in the finesse of their application.
The biggest challenge for the director is realising their ideas with the actors on stage. The actor is the most important, but also the most complex, the most unpredictable material that the director encounters and has to deal with in the process of working on a play.
Every director should master more than one method of rehearsal. What works well for one author or actor is a waste of time for another. Therefore, a director needs to have several methods in reserve for a good production, just as the actor needs to have several methods in reserve for his role creation. Each method requires time and practice to learn so that it can be used creatively in rehearsals.
Over decades of artistic practice, Jurij Alschitz has developed various directing methods that are based on classical practices on the one hand, while on the other he utilises scientific findings in a highly innovative way and transfers them to the stage. In this course, he introduces basic and completely unknown methods of working with actors and gives participants the opportunity to try them out in practice.
As fundament, students will learn the “Table-Stage-Table-Method”, a variant of the well-known method of K.S. Stanislavsky and Maria Knebel – the effective method of analysis through action.
They will be introduced to the “Method of Constellation”, a way of working in which the creativity of the actors is released through very sparse impulses and the material is opened up in all possible directions and allowed to fragment.
They will discover “storytelling” as a useful way for directors in developing scenes as well as a whole performance.
The “Big Bang-Method” will show a very promising way of working with actors based on the idea of the Big Bang theory, from which our civilisation, our galaxy and the whole universe emerged. Another name for this approach is “Method of Explosion” because we are specifically dealing with the accumulation and release of artistic energy.
Finally, students should understand how to work with the classical “Method of Improvisation”. Improvisation lives in the “fetters of freedom”, i.e. it benefits from the precise setting of tasks and from professional handling. The principles and elements of improvisation and free composition are in many ways present in the previous methods of work and therefore are so necessary to know.
The methods naturally overlap each other and in many ways complement each other. This is the lifelong journey of discovery that follows this course when you will recombine and personally develop the different ways of rehearsing with actors.
Number of participants
Minimum number of participants 10
The Director Prepares (October)
Five consecutive days online, 3 hours each + one online introductory lecture a few days before.
The Director’s Tools
One online introductory lecture of 3 hours on 11 February 2024
your choice: 5 days stage practice in Berlin or online participation from 21 – 25 February 2024
Rehearsal Methods (May)
One online introductory lecture of 3 hours a few days before
5 days stage practice in Berlin
If you have missed a session or want to listen again, you have the option of watching the recording for a month.
For each course participants receive a confirmation of participation.
A Certificate will be issued for the whole course by the World Theatre Training Institute AKT-ZENT | Research Centre of the International Theatre Institute.
The Director Prepares (October) 390 €
The Director’s Tools (February) 490 €
Rehearsal Methods (May) 490 €
We grant a 10% early bird discount for registration up to 6 weeks before the start of the course.
The early bird price for the Director’s Tools course is € 440 if you book by 31 December 2023.