Class Central is learner-supported. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission.

Online Course

Physical Theatre: Exploring the Slap

University of Leeds via FutureLearn



This course introduces you to world-renowned Russian director Meyerhold’s technique of biomechanics. It invites you to study and experience first-hand his revolutionary biomechanical étude, ‘The Slap’.

Through a mixture of video, animation, discussion forums and practical exercises you will begin to understand Meyerhold’s Russian actor training technique – a two-minute repeatable exercise used to develop balance, awareness and expression. You will be invited to explore your own response to this unique approach to training and will share these responses with your fellow learners.

This course is part of the Going to University collection which has been specifically designed for students at schools and colleges. They provide a taster of undergraduate study at the University of Leeds and help students to decide which subject to study at university.

Completion of the courses will also enhance students’ university applications.

The courses can also be used as a teachers’ classroom enrichment resource.

Courses in this collection are also great for people that want an introduction in the specific subjects discussed in each course.

Taught by

Jonathan Pitches

Related Courses


4.4 rating, based on 18 reviews

Start your review of Physical Theatre: Exploring the Slap

  • Anonymous

    Anonymous completed this course.

    This course provides a wonderful and useful introduction to Meyerhold and biomechanics. It is useful and will allow students to discover new things about the usefulness of movement in their theatrical work-

    It is important to note that you don't have to be a dancer or gymnast to fully participate in this work and the instructor provides input along the way to make this a living experience for each member of the class.
  • Anonymous

    Anonymous completed this course.

    Our teacher recommended this course as we are currently studying Commedia dell’Arte. I'd never heard of Meyerhold but this course made it easy to understand, breaking everything down into small, manageable sections. It wss nice to be able to read other people's comments and discuss with other learners your thoughts on it. I would definitely recommend trying this course.
  • Anonymous

    Anonymous completed this course.

    I really enjoyed this course and found it very interesting. I really liked how it combined history and theatre and also asked thought provoking question and got me thinking. It was very enjoyable and i learnt a lot with the help of loads of resources and informative videos.
  • Anonymous

    Anonymous completed this course.

    This course gave a unique insight into Meyerhold and biomenchnics, encouraging you to explore the history and the meaning behind the etudes and also perform them before uploading your progress if you wish. It was informative and easy enough to complete in under a day, but detailed here it should be and also fun. Questions at the end of each "day" are thought provoking and encourage you to participate in the comments. This would be a great thing to put on a personal statement for drama/theatre studies :) Highly recommend!!
  • Anonymous

    Anonymous completed this course.

    Makes you think theatre,
    and helps you think - action
    makes you think me
    are you agressive or passive do both then
    you can act, express and communicate

    try the slap on a friend and see what the reaction is - scary, funny, strange what rection do you get because you will

    Gives you a feeling of what acting is all about

    Its helps to get into acting
    I think thats pretty excellent

    Thank you and the staff at Leeds University

    A happy and mindful New Year to you all
  • Anonymous

    Anonymous completed this course.

    I am only 16 and I did this course before going to sixth form and this course really helped me understand theatre more and its background/history. this course was really interested and I was looking forward to doing the work everyday! I strongly recommend this course to anyone who still deciding what they want to do and its appropriate for any age. thank you to the educators who made this course.
  • Anonymous

    Anonymous completed this course.

    Really interesting! I learned a lot. The course had a great balance of information about the context and methods as well as practising and physically embodying the information- the animation was a really useful learning tool as well . Thank you! I would really recommend this course!
  • Anonymous
    Very organized, well focused well structured and crystal clear. The theory and practice interconnection was thorough and helpful. Very good material for work forward. It remind us how things have started . A history of physicality for theatre practice from the master of the technique.
  • Anonymous
    This course was really motivating, because it gives you an introduction to biomechanics and the fundament to it, to learn at your own pace, and tickles you a little to find out more and experience it for yourself.
  • Anonymous

    Anonymous completed this course.

    Very good. Learnt so much which I can use later on in life. It was detailed and imformative. With I was able to have a completion certificate without paying. Recommend to anyone. Very well done
    Thank you
  • Guidopaoluzicusani

    Guidopaoluzicusani completed this course, spending 1 hours a week on it and found the course difficulty to be medium.

    The subject is appealing but this MOOC suffers, IMPO, from FutureLearn philosophy: "Not really deep or challenging... keep it short and simple!". It doesn't work for me, but maybe for others does.
  • Michael Thomas

    Michael Thomas completed this course.

    A really stimulating and enjoyable course about a practitioner I had little knowledge of . There is a pleasing balance of the practical and theoretical. Thoroughly recommended.
  • Anonymous

    Anonymous completed this course.

    It was a nice experience, short but with usefull information. I think is a good way to stay active and keep learning theater from home during this time around the world.
  • Anonymous

    Anonymous completed this course.

    Excellent course. Introduced me to an aspect of theatre i knew nothing about. Very well taught with interesting support materials and activities.
  • Anonymous

    Anonymous completed this course.

    This course is fantastic! Such a brilliant combination of history, theory and practice, and really opened my mind and made me feel empowered.
  • Anonymous

    Anonymous is taking this course right now.

    Really detailed, educational and interesting! It's also got interactive exercises to help improve your skills. Loving it, can't wait to do more!
  • Profile image for Tarık Dalkılıç
    Tarık Dalkılıç

    Tarık Dalkılıç completed this course, spending 3 hours a week on it and found the course difficulty to be medium.

    I am happy to have encountered this lesson. It was nice to meet and talk to people from different parts of the world.
  • Erik Schwind

    Erik Schwind completed this course.

Never stop learning Never Stop Learning!

Get personalized course recommendations, track subjects and courses with reminders, and more.

Sign up for free