Nonverbal and Comedy Theater (B0215A310022)

Type of programme Mode of study Profile of the programme Standard study length Language Instruction Department
Bachelor's Programme full-time academically oriented 3 years Czech Nonverbal Theatre Department

Since this programme is designed for Czech-speaking students an English description is not available.

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Guarantor of study programme


Programme objectives

The aim of the programme is to develop versatile creative personalities capable of establishing themselves in the area of nonverbal theatre, which is understood to include all theatrical currents based primarily on the internal and external movement of the body, i.e. bodily or mime expression. The concept of nonverbal theatre underscores the bodily aspect of artistic production and the physical source of the impulse, but the emphasis on bodily expression does not exclude vocal expression.

The main objective of the Bachelor’s programme is for the student to master the interpretive and artistic skills of the craft. The training is based on instruction in the main techniques of nonverbal theatre in three superordinate lines. The first is the line of modern mime, the second is the line of clown and comedy theatre, and the third is the line of physical theatre.

The mime line, which is built on perfect control of the body through the technique of Corporeal Mime / Mime corporel, encompasses imaginary and Marceau mime all the way up to the latest forms of modern mime, such as physical mime interconnecting contemporary trends and influences in this field. Conceptually, the department builds on the legacy of the French pioneers of modern pantomime such as Étienne Decroux, Marcel Marceau and Jean-Louis Barrault.

The line of clownery and comedy theatre builds on the specific tradition of 20th-century Czech pantomime and comedy theatre with prominent representatives of pedagogy and production such as Ctibor Turba, Boris Hybner and Bolek Polívka. The department draws international inspiration for teaching modern clownery from, among other things, collaborations with foreign creators and pedagogues from the École Internationale de Théâtre Jacques Lecoq (such as Jos Houben, Ami Hattab and others).

The line of physical theatre builds on the anthropological approach of Eugenio Barba and Odin Teatret, the ideas and pedagogy of Jacques Lecoq, and the Viewpoints theory of Anne Bogart and Tina Landau. Within the scope of instruction of physical theatre, the department also focuses on mask work and object work.

All of the main instructional lines develop the prerequisites for authorial production, which is profiled in the third programme year in the main required subject Basics of Authorial Production. This subject focuses on the creative process of preparing an authorial performance, from identifying a topic, to searching for sources of inspiration, to grasping them and the subsequent authorial rendering. The principles of authorial production are an integral part of the graduate artistic performance (the practical part of the thesis project).

The disciplines of circus artistry, such as balancing techniques, acrobatics and juggling / object manipulation, are an integral part of the instruction, both as part of body preparation, and as an opportunity for individual students to focus in-depth on a specific artistic discipline. At the same time, the emphasis and focus of the instruction at the department is always on movement acting and on interconnecting acting skills with artistry.

The other main pillars of the instruction are improvisation and body preparation, during which the student receives daily training in dance and movement techniques, e.g. classical dance/ballet, Laban technique, floorwork, contact improvisation and movement research (movement laboratory).

The ability to improvise as an interconnecting element across all genres, and which is taught at the department, is a basic characteristic of an actor’s personality in the field of nonverbal theatre.

Musicality and the aptitudes for acting are developed in the first through third programme years in the subject Stage Speech and Acting Aptitudes. Students utilise the principles of sounding the body and acquire basic knowledge of how to work with breath and voice; they learn basic rhythmic patterns and how to create a melodic component in connection with a movement expression. Their sense for the semantic and acoustic aspects of words is enhanced, as are their aptitudes for lexical reflection, self-reflection and understanding a written text.

The Bachelor’s programme in Nonverbal Theatre focuses on a creative combination of practice and theory. The practical part is built on the teaching of the above-mentioned basic pillars aiming towards mastery of the basic techniques of nonverbal theatre, as well as towards professional interpretation and comprehensive authorial production in this artistic field. Students are encouraged to consult their own project production with pedagogues as well as with other Bachelor’s programme students. The theoretical part is based on in-depth study of reform theatre trends, with a focus on pantomime, movement theatre and circus, as well as their contexts and how they relate to the current theatre scene. The theory also focuses on studying the basics of the theatrical dramaturgy of authorial production. An essential prerequisite is the development of distinctive critical thinking skills based not only on knowledge of the history and theory of theatre, but also and above all on the ability to perceive connections with other areas of art and knowledge in the overall societal and cultural context.

The goal is to develop a personality both in the interpretative and authorial areas of nonverbal theatre, but above all to create a living theatrical language, which is an essential communication tool for contemporary society. In this sense, nonverbal theatre must be understood to take place in a continuous process, in development, with social overlap and in its societal meaning.

The collaborative character of production in the programme is a matter of course, as are the intermediating and interactive aspects of theatrical synthesis. Graduates of the Bachelor’s programme in Nonverbal Theatre are versatile creative personalities capable of integrating the distinctive theatrical thinking specific to nonverbal theatre with conceptual and performative skills, and of applying them in the broader societal context.

Profile of a programme graduate

The graduate of the Bachelor’s programme in Nonverbal Theatre has mastered the specialist technique and craft of nonverbal theatre with emphasis on mastery of the interpretive and artistic skills of the craft. He or she is able to work independently in the authorial process, understands all stage components and is able to procure them, including a functional team and everything required to create an authorial project of nonverbal theatre. As an author or member of a creative team, he or she is able to work with the societal context and can reflect on the impact of his or her work. He or she is well oriented in the various currents of nonverbal theatre. The graduate understands the societal and historical connections with respect to the present, which forms the basis for his or her creative activity. The graduate is familiar not only with the aesthetic aspects of his or her work, but also with the ethical ones. He or she understands theatre as a reflection of society, as an exchange and a dialogue, as a challenge and an appeal.

Specialist knowledge

The graduate of the programme in Nonverbal Theatre:

Specialist skills

The graduate of the programme in Nonverbal Theatre:

Students also have the opportunity at any time during their studies to sit for a state examination in pedagogical competency. A prerequisite for taking this state examination is completion of the relevant optional subjects: Pedagogy, Psychology and Didactics / Teaching Practical in Nonverbal Theatre.

Rules and requirements for creating study plans

General information about admission process

An admissions proceeding has been organised for the Bachelor’s programme in Nonverbal Theatre, which consists of three rounds. Each round will take place in person.

Round 1: A written test on the applicant’s general cultural overview with emphasis on the history and present of the fields of pantomime, movement theatre and new circus

The applicant shall answer selected questions with three possible answers, of which one is correct. If the applicant fails to achieve the set minimum score for advancement to Round 2, then the admissions proceeding shall be concluded. If the applicant advances to Round 2, then the points from Round 1 shall not be counted.

Rounds 2 and 3: An aptitude test

For the programme of study in Nonverbal Theatre, the precise requirements of the aptitude tests are published for each academic year. These requirements are updated each year and posted in the relevant parts of the Studies section on the faculty website, and thus they are also available to prospective HAMU applicants.

Both aptitude tests will take place in person before the examination committee. The examination committee has the right to interrupt the course of the entrance examination at any time.

Course of Round 2:

  1. A test of movement technique: pantomime, modern dance, clownery and improvisation, basic artistry, acrobatics
  2. Aptitude test – an interview, performance of the applicant’s own movement etude of c. 5 minutes in duration, or an improvisation on another assigned theme

If the applicant fails to achieve the set minimum score for advancement to Round 3, then the admissions proceeding shall be concluded. If the applicant advances to Round 3, then the points from Round 2 shall not be counted.

Course of Round 3:

In the event of a Round 3, it will consist of an assignment to authorially elaborate tasks in solo, pair or group movement etudes.


The admissions committee shall assess the applicant with a summary score, which reflects above-average movement skills, creative potential and originality, aptitudes for acting, improvisational ability and ability to reflect artistically, as well as aptitudes for university education.

After completion of Round 3, the admissions committee shall rank individual applicants and shall recommend for admission those applicants who ranked within the admissions target and who earned the minimum score for the Nonverbal Theatre programme of study.

The requirements of the admissions proceeding, including a designation of the method by which points are awarded, their range and the admissions target, are defined for each academic year by a relevant Decree of the Dean, which is subject to approval by the academic senate of the faculty.

If not enough applicants receive the required number of points, the admissions target will not be met.

Applicability to other types of academic programmes

Parts of the state final examination and their contents

Other academic duties

Characterisation of professional practice

Anticipated job placement for graduates (typical employment)

Accreditation validity

Study programme valid from Study programme valid to
2020-10-08 2030-10-08

Programme study plans