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This web-site will be updated later in 2016. I provide a list below of activities/news for 2016 AND 2017 and a review of productions in 2015. More information on each activity is provided in the NEWS section below.

2016 Activities
08 March: Directing world premiere of Kaite O’Reilly’s Cosy at Wales Millennium Center (Cardiff) and at Unlimited Festivals in London/Glasgow in September

05-12 June: Guest of the Dramatic Arts Centre, Tehran

14-18 July: Beginner’s intensive training announcement: 5 days of intensive training at the Tyn y parc Kalari/Studio

19-21 July: Phillip Zarrilli will be giving one of the keynote addresses at the Martial Arts Conference in Cardiff

23 July –August 3: Intermediate/Advanced Summer Intensive Training at the Tyn y parc Kalari/Studio

28-31 October: the 9 fridas in performances at Hong Kong Rep Festival

UPDATE ON 2015-2017
News about playing ‘the maids’ production in 2015, video link, and possible touring in 2017

News about the 2015 production of The Water Station with an international cast in Norway

2017 Preliminary announcement
Facilitated by Milena Picado in cooperation with The National Theatre of Costa Rica, I will be directing Milena and her acting colleagues in

Samuel Beckett’s Footfalls and Play

Tentative performance dates: January or early February, 2017. An introductory workshop will be offered for actors in Costa Rica early in January. Details about the workshop as well as production to follow later.

Kaite O'Reilly in association with Wales Millennium Centre supported by Unlimited presents:


March 2016 Wales Millennium centre

Photo: Sharon Morgan by Toby Farrow

"It's like I've disappeared. I walk down the road and throw no shadow."

"That's what getting older does for you."

Ageing is a lesson in humility - a time of reckoning. Rose wants an exit plan that is bold and invigorating, but her three warring daughters have other ideas. Rose's tumbledown house is suddenly a terminus of age-old sibling rivalry and smothered grief. We all have to die, but what makes a good death? Everyone seems to have an opinion, even Rose's precocious granddaughter and the strange woman taking refuge in the garden.

Cosy is a darkly comedic look at the joys and humiliations of getting older and how we shuffle off this mortal coil. Written by award-winning playwright Kaite O'Reilly, it tackles head-on our obsession with eternal youth, and asks whose life (or death) is it, anyway?

Written by Kaite O'Reilly
Directed by Phillip Zarrilli
Designed by Simon Banham
Lighting by Ace McCarron
Costume Designer Holly McCarthy

Cast includes Sara Beer, Llinos Daniel, Ruth Lloyd, Sharon Morgan, Ri Richards, and Bethan Rose-Young.

8 – 12 March 2016: Wales Millennium Centre, Cardiff, then touring.

Tour dates, plus updates on process can be found on the Cosy blog:

JUNE 5-12, 2016:
(affiliated with the International Theatre Institute)

In June Phillip Zarrilli will be a special guest of Dramatic Arts Centre of Iran where he'll be conducting acting workshops, giving talks, and having discussions with the professional theatre communities in both Tehran and Isfahan.

Martial Arts Studies Conference 19-21 July, 2016
At Cardiff University
The Martial Arts Studies Conference in 2015 brought together eighty researchers from a wide range of fields and from all over the world, for two and a half days of keynotes, special sessions, workshops and socialising. Many new relationships were formed and new collaborations initiated. The second conference in July 2016 seeks to build on these foundations, and to bring more martial arts studies scholars and more disciplinary perspectives together, into face to face dialogue and debate. Confirmed Speakers in 2016 Include:

Phillip Zarrilli – author of When the Body Becomes All Eyes: Paradigms, Pratices, and Discourses of Power in Kalarippayattu, a South Indian Martial Art (Oxford University Press)

Benjamin Spatz – author of What a Body Can Do: Technique as Knowledge, Practice as Research (Routledge)

Adam Frank – author of Taijiquan and the Search for the Little Old Chinese Man: Understanding Identity Through Martial Arts (Palgrave)

Benjamin Judkins – author of The Creation of Wing Chun: A Social History of the South Asian Martial Arts (SUNY)

Paul Bowman – author of Martial Arts Studies: Disrupting Disciplinary Boundaries (Rowman & Littlefield International)

The Call for Papers is here:

Registration is open now, here:

at the Tyn y parc kalari/studio, West Wales

'making the body all eyes'

Overview: beginner's intensive: This beginner's intensive will introduce practitioners to key principles and metaphors informing Zarrilli's use of yoga, the yoga-based Indian martial art, kalarippayattu, and taiqiquan (Wu style) to train performers. Covered during the workshop will be: (1) basic breathing patterns and principles from kalarippayattu; (2) selected hatha-yoga postures (asana) and their breathing patterns; (3) the beginning of Wu style taiqiquan, focusing especially on coordination of breath with movement; and (4) basic introduction to kalarippayattu including selected poses, steps, and beginning combinations through one preliminary sequence combining breath with each moment.
In three application sessions, the beginner's intensive will introduce practitioners to structured improvisations through which the principles of the training are applied toward performance. Place are LIMITED TO 5 to 7 participants!

Details of beginner's intensive:

14 July Thursday: arrive 13:00-15:00p.m.
15 July Friday: 10:00-13:00 Training 2
16 July Saturday: 10:00-13:00 Training 4
17 July Sunday: 10:00-13:00 Training 5
18 July Monday 10:00-11:30 Training 6
Lunch: 13:00-14:00 then DEPARTURES

16:00-19:00: Training Session 1
15:00-18:00 Training 3
15:00-18:00 Application 1
15:00-18:00 Application 2
11:30-13:00 Application 3

All inclusive fee: £400 or £350 (students/low waged applicants): Fees include house on-site at Tyn y parc for 5 participants (2 doubles and 1 single), plus 3 simple vegetarian meals daily.
Please email to apply.

(Jeungsook Yoo: 'tanjam steps')

at the Tyn y parc Kalari/Studio

Intermediate/Advanced Training: 05-16 July, 2016
Through these twice daily sessions participants will review and continue their annual psychophysical training, AND apply the elements/principles to specific performance problems. Folllowing the very successful co-teaching of last summer’s 2015 application sessions, playwright/dramaturg, Kaite O’Reilly will join Phillip Zarrilli for our 2016 application sessions, focusing on:

‘Sensorial writing’ or ‘Writing through the senses’
SOLO SCORES: Text, Monologue, Movement.
In addition to the daily training, like the 2015 workshop, O’Reilly and Zarrilli will facilitate a series of workshops focused on ‘writing through the senses’ that will generate original ‘material’ and starting points for solo performance scores through generation of text, monologue material, and psychophysical movement sequences. During the course of the workshop, each participant will develop a short preliminary score (psychophysical sequences/text/movement) which responds to the various stimuli and engages the performer’s imagination. Participants can come prepared to work on material already in development, OR start work from nothing except the stimuli.

23 July (Saturday)
Arrivals: Free Day until evening meal with all participants

24 July (Sunday)
Training Session 1: 10:00-13:00; Training Session 2: 15:00-18:00

25 July (Monday)
Training Session 1: 10:00-13:00 Application Session 1: 14:00-17:00

26 July (Tuesday)
Training Session: 10:00-13:00; Afternoon OFF
27 July (Wednesday):
Training Session: 10:00-13:00; Application Session 2: 15:00-18:00

28 July (Thursday)
Training Session 10:00-13:00; Application Session 3: 15:00-18:00

29 July (Friday)
Training Session 10:00-13:00; Application Session 4: 15:00-18:00

30 July (Saturday)
Training Session 10:00-13:00; Afternoon OFF (if good weather)

31 July (Sunday)
Training Session 10:00-11:00; Application Session 5: 15:00-18:00

01 August (Monday July)
Training Session 10:00-13:00; Application 6 15:00-18:00

02 August (Tuesday)
Training Session 10:00-13:00: Application 7/sharing 15:00-19:00

03 August (Wednesday)
Final Training 10:00-13:00; Departures 14:00

Cost: Fully waged Students/low-waged
On-site/Off On Site/Off

Advanced 700/640 600/540

To register: please email


by Kaite O'Reilly
directed by Phillip Zarrilli

Mobius Strip Theatre, Taiwan,
in association with Hong Kong Repertory Theatre.

Following its successful premiere at Taipei Festival in 2014, the 9 Fridas will transfer to Hong Kong Repertory Theatre in October 2016.

‘… the theatre becomes a haunted piece of canvas which reveals the heart breaking self-analysis of Frida Kahlo… the 9 Fridas stings our eyes with its colours…. silently mourning the entanglement and immortality of art and spirit.’

Review of performance at Taipei Festival, 2014.

IN 2017:


this critically-acclaimed performance 2015 performance will be available for international touring

playing 'the maids'

THE LLANARTH GROUP (Wales, U.K.), GAITKRASH (Cork, Ireland), and THEATRE P'YUT (Seoul, Korea).

an intercultural ‘collaboration…[of] rare complexity, beauty and conviction’…’an aesthetic feast from the belly’…’stunning’ performances’  [***** Denis Lennon—The Public Review, 21/02/2015]

‘…wonderfully self aware…fearless…experimentation with style and form…’
[Chelsey Gillard—Arts Scene in Wales 04/03/2015]

‘…a dazzling intercultural collaboration…[the] cast…imbue the performance space with a concentrated energy that is utterly riveting…’
[Phil Morris—Wales Arts Review 09/04/2015]

playing ‘the maids’: a dynamic meta-theatrical montage of newly devised spoken text (primarily English with some Mandarin and Korean), psychophysical scores, choreography and live sound composition realized by an international ensemble of seven artists from four small countries working with Kaite O’Reilly (playwright/dramaturg) and Phillip Zarrilli (director). Sound artist (Mick O’Shea) and cellist (Adrian Curtain) respond to and interact with five female performers throughout the performance: a Chinese ‘madame’ (Jing Hong Okorn-Kuo) and two sets of ‘sister-maids’ (one Irish: Bernadette Cronin/Regina Crowley; one Korean: Jeungsook Yoo/Sunhee Kim).

This new multi-disciplinary performance is created between languages, cultures, and art forms to address issues of power/oppression embedded in complex human relationships—social and familial. Inspired by Genet’s  The Maids (1947) and its three figures--madame and her two sister-maids--our production is not a performance of Genet’s play. We have re-imagined the source in response to the hierarchy and dynamics of power and ‘servitude’ from the unique social, cultural, aesthetic and artistic perspectives of the creative team.

playing ‘the maids’previewed on invitation of the Cork Midsummer Festival, 2014 and pmiered at Chapter Arts Centre (Cardiff) 19-28 February 2015 with additional performances on tour i n Wales. The production has received seven outstanding reviews and enthusiastic responses from audiences.

For a 15 minute on-line video ‘overview’ of playing ‘the maids’ visit:

News about:
Nordland Teater (Norway) 2015
Scandinavian Premiere
Directed by Phillip Zarrilli
with an international cast of ten

Scene 2: Man A (Ivar Furre Aam, Norway) and Girl (Hilde Strensland, Norway)

Armund Grumstad in Klassekampen (Oslo)

‘…a performance that surpasses almost anything I’ve ever seen…’
‘With wonderfully precise direction and focus on the tiniest of details, Zarrilli has managed to create a truly remarkable experience.’

‘…an incredibly sensual, beautiful, well-played and rich performance.’

Jostein Pedersen in Helgelands Blad (Helgeland)

‘…like a deep sea dive into your own soul…[a] truly […] extraordinary experience. After 100 minutes of roaring silence you silently get up from your seat, leave the auditorium slowly, whisper quietly to the person next to you, and realize this is a memory for life.’

The Water Station was originally created and performed in Tokyo in 1981 by ?ta Sh?go and his theatre company--Theatre of Transformation (Tenkei Gekijo). The production subsequently toured central Europe and the US in the 1980s. ?ta and his company were searching for a way to turn down the volume or “noise” in our everyday lives in order to be present to the realities of our immediate environment. In that moment of quiet the audience become 'witnesses' to what is before us today in the immediate present...people on the move toward somewhere else. 

Scene 3: Girl (Hilde Stensland, Norway) and Woman with Parasol (Jeungsook Yoo, Korea)

The Water Station is a non-verbal psychophysical score in nine scenes with incidental music. It has a very simple structure: a series refugees/migrants/travellers are on the move coming from a far distant place, and are continuing on the still longer journey toward some place beyond. Some are individuals traveling alone such as a Girl or the Woman with a Parasol; others are in pairs (Two Men in or Husband and Wife with Baby Carriage); or in a group (The Caravan). These travellers appear on a bridgeway. Just behind the path is a huge heap of discarded ’junk’—objects left by those on this long journey. Once they appear each individual, pair or group encounters and interacts with a constantly running stream of water flowing from a broken water faucet into a pool of water in a catchment area. Each of the travellers encounters the water in their own way. Some observe or encounter another traveler. All eventually continue their journey toward whatever lies beyond. From the audience’s perspective, where these travellers have come from and where they are going we do not know. They eventually pass out of view…heading somewhere.

Scene 6: A man (Navtej Johar, India)

Set Design: Serge von Arx; Costume Design: Nina von Arx; Produced by Nortland Teater (Birgitte Strid, Artistic Director)
Photographs: på Ketil Born

Publications ...
Psychophysical Acting: an intercultural approach after Stanislavski has been selected as the recipient of the 2010 ATHE Outstanding Book Award. Jonathan Chambers, Chair of the Review Committee said: "we found your melding of scholarly, artistic, and pedagogical concerns to be incredibly useful. We are certain that your study will find a wide and welcoming audience."
The award will be made on August 3, 2010 at the ATHE Awards Ceremony in Los Angeles.

Psychophysical Acting: an intercultural approach after Stanislavski

Zarrilli’s long-awaited book on the process of training actors through a psychophysical approach based on Asian martial arts and yoga will be published in September, 2008 by Routledge Press (London). The book will include a DVD-ROM by Peter Hulton.

Psychophysical Acting

THEATRE TOPICS (19, #2, 2009: p. 223), review by Keven McFillen.
Psychophysical Acting is "a powerful tool for those interested in exploring the theory, philosophy, and practice of methods of psychophysical acting. The detailed case studies by themselves should warrant critical attention for the volume from theatre scholars and practitioners alike, and accompanied by both Zarrilli's insights into teaching and practice of psychophysical acting and the supplementary materials provided by the DVD-ROM, the volume as a whole is an immediate, important, and vital addition to discourses on psychophysical theory and practice in performance."

NEW THEATRE QUARTERLY (25, #3, 2009: p. 296), review by Sarah Gorman.
Psychophysical Acting "...provides a detailed and fascinating insight into the potential benefit of psychophysical training for the contemporary actor...[It will] appeal to a wide range of readers...Each case study provides a detailed and simulating overview of the production and an insight into how Zarrilli implemented his chosen techniques in rehearsal. The introductions to The Beckett Project and 4:48 Psychosis in particular, provide an insightful and intelligent way of contextualizing what is important and difficult about the work of Samuel Beckett and Sarah Kane."

2008 “ Embodying Imagining and Performing Displacement and Trauma in Central Europe Today
in Theatre Quarterly Review, Volume 24, Issue 01, Feb 2008, pp 24-40, ed. Maria Shevtsova, Simon Trussler. Cambridge University Press .

Recent production ...
The World Premiere of Kaite O’Reilly’s
The Almond and the Seahorse

Phillip Zarrilli directed the world premiere of Kaite O’Reilly’s most recent play, The Almond and the Seahorse, at Sherman-Cymru Theatre (Cardiff and on tour). The production previewed February 29, ran until March 15, and then is on toured Wales and England.
See the video-trailer, photographs (coming soon), and production reviews.

“Unmissable drama...Tremendous... extraordinary scenarios are tenderly drawn and powerfully realised in Phillip Zarrilli's beautifully judged production." ***** The Guardian

“A powerful drama, beautifully written…Phillip Zarrilli's insightful direction ensures that the performances have absolute authenticity.”
The British Theatre Guide

“A fascinating work, totally engaging… The cast is faultless, giving impeccable performances, sympathetically given and true.”
**** Western Mail

“…Wonderful…a masterly and captivating performance…writing with such sensitive beauty and delicate understanding….what real theatre is all about.”
Michael Kelligan Theatre Wales website

For Gwennan, it’s always 1985. The face in the mirror is unfamiliar and there’s a strange man at the door claiming to be her husband. Joe’s past is coming undone and his partner, Sarah, fears she will be forgotten. What happens when you’re ambushed by time – your memories deleting, relationships erasing?
The play focuses on those who have survived Traumatic Brain Injury, informed by a Disability perspective.

almond and the seahorse

Korean Production of 4:48 Psychosis opens in Seoul
Phillip Zarrilli was in residence at KNUA in Seoul, Korea from early March through mid May. He taught his psychophysical approach to acting, applied to directing a new translation of Sarah Kane's 4:48 Psychosis. The production had six performances, May 15-17, 2008.

poster Seoul

Also ...
Resident Fellow in Berlin: Phillip Zarrilli has been invited to become a resident Fellow for a major new research project on intercultural theatre (“Interweaving Theatre Cultures”) at the Institute for Theatre Studies, Freie Universität Berlin, led by Professor Erika Fischer-Lichte. The project begins in 2008-09. Zarrilli will be a resident in Berlin for two or three substantive periods between 2010-11.