Guy Masterson English Theatre Milan

Guy Masterson: Animal Farm

Tuesday 9 March 2021 at 6pm

on Zoom

Writing and Performing One-Person Plays.

Curated by Maggie Rose


At ENGLISH THEATRE MILAN, we are planning four monthly masterclasses, devoted to the one-person play, led by well-known British writers and performers. Guy Masterson, a celebrated exponent of this theatrical form, will be leading the first masterclass. The following sessions will be led by Gareth Armstrong, Rani Moorthy and Matthew Zajac.


The one-person (or solo) play is an extremely popular theatrical form that allows actors to produce a show on a shoestring. Without the constraints of a big company and often a director, an actor can easily take her or his one person show far and wide, in theatres and site specific venues. This series of masterclasses will share the working practice of four celebrated writer\actors who have succeeded in this genre:

Guy Masterson (Animal Farm)

Gareth Armstrong (Shylock)

Matthew Zajac (The Tailor of Inverness)

Rani Moorthy (Curry Tales)

These will be held monthly from March to May, on Thursdays at 6 pm. The first Masterclass will be Tuesday  9 March, 6 pm (duration 90 minutes, with a 20 minute Q&A). Maximum 20 participants.
In each masterclass, the soloist will explore why and how they created their one person play/s:  the genesis of the idea; the writing of the script (from a classical text, a biography, a contemporary issue or personal story); their chosen performance style (illustrated with extracts); analysis of setting, costumes, props and sound; the relationship to the audience; the ambition and promotion of the show. At the end there will be a twenty-minute Q&A, where you may ask questions.

If after attending the masterclasses you feel inspired to write your own five-minute one-person play, please send it to us. We will select three plays and – later in the year- ETM actors will perform them in online streaming.

Guy Masterson is an Olivier Award winning producer, director, writer, actor, solo-performer and voice artist. A veteran of 26 Edinburgh Festivals since 1994, of the 150 shows he has presented, 81 of them were solo works, of which he wrote and performed 10 and directed 25. His 2009 solo production, “Morecambe”, which he directed, transferred to the West End and won the Oliver Award for Best Entertainment. Having given over 5000 solo performances himself globally since 1992, he is rightfully regarded as one of the leading exponents of the solo genre in the world. Guy has twice performed in Milan with “Shylock” and “A Christmas Carol”. He also directed Justin Butcher’s acclaimed productions of “Scaramouche Jones” and “The Devil’s Passion”.

“Animal Farm”, Guy’s 3rd solo work, premiered at the Traverse Theatre, Edinburgh on January 25th 1995. It was the first ever licensed solo adaptation of the book by George Orwell. Guy went on to give over 1500 performances, including a West End run in May 1997. The show was later performed by Lizzy Wort between 2000-2005, and Gary Shelford between 2006-2010 – over 3000 performances. In May 2014, Guy adapted his script for 30 actors at the Tumanishvilli Theatre of Tbilisi, Georgia, which won several awards at the Edinburgh Festival later that year.

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