ROBB HUNTER; STAGE COMBAT INSTRUCTOR


DIRECTOR/CHOREOGRAPHER; Stage Directors and Choreographers Society
CERTIFIED FIGHT DIRECTOR; Society of American Fight Directors
CERTIFIED TEACHER; Society of American Fight Directors
PERFORMER; SAG/AFTRA, AEA


Teaching

Teaching stage combat entails far more than merely showing actors fighting techniques or instructing them how to fall safely. Certainly they need to know how to punch, kick, roll, fall and so forth, but they must also learn how to:

  • Perform with specificity and intention.
  • Work with their acting partners to tell the story of the play as well as each character’s personal story.
  • Make the physicality required in a scene integral to the character and the world in which he or she lives, whether that world is 18th century France, Feudal Japan or modern day New York City.

Above all the student/actor must realize that stage combat is a demanding performance discipline whose roots and goals are all based in acting.



What students (and teachers) say

"I just wanted to thank you for a great year of work. The class was fantastic on numerous levels. I've already made use of what I have learned in the class on several occasions, and know that the material we learned will continue to prove as invaluable. Thanks for all the patience, assistance, and understanding throughout both semesters."

“Robb is a thoroughly engaging teacher. His enthusiasm and passion for the work is infectious.”

"I wanted to thank you for an amazing guest lecture. My students cannot stop raving about it.”

“Robb is a great instructor. I wish every instructor was as dedicated as he is.”

“The man is awesome!”


Résumé in Brief

(For complete CV click here)

Training and Education

M.F.A. in Theatre Pedagogy, Virginia Commonwealth University
     Acting/Directing Focus
B.A. in Theatre Performance, Minor in Dance, Radford University
     Stanislavsky Based
Certified Fight Director, Society of American Fight Directors
Certified Teacher, Society of American Fight Directors


Teaching Experience, Academic (selected)

American University, Washington, DC (2009-current)
Artist in Residence: Responsibilities include teaching various acting, movement and theatre history course as well as stage combat each semester in addition to choreographing/directing movement for main stage and black box productions.

The Catholic University of America, Washington, DC (2005-current)
Forms of Movement III-IV, Stage Violence; Instructor: Teach the basics of safely and effectively performing staged violence within the context of a dramatic scene for students in CUA’s MFA program. The first semester is concerned with unarmed techniques while the second focuses on the use of the rapier and dagger. Also direct/choreograph movement and violence for those productions with these specific needs.

George Mason University, Virginia (2009-2010)
The History of Arms and Armor; Instructor: This recurring spring lecture course traces the often non-linear evolution of weapons and defensive equipment throughout the ages from pre-history and the early Mesopotamian civilizations to Ancient Greece, the Roman Empire, the European Middle Ages and the European Renaissance.

McDaniel College, Maryland (2008-current)
Unarmed Stage Combat; Instructor: Teach the basics of safely and effectively performing techniques of staged violence including falls, tumbling, punches, locks, strangulation and slaps within the context of a dramatic scene.

Broadsword; Instructor: Teach the basics of performing techniques of stage combat utilizing the medieval broadsword within the context of a dramatic scene.

Virginia Commonwealth University, Virginia (2007)
Stage Combat; Instructor: Teach the basics of safely and effectively performing staged violence within the context of a dramatic scene for VCU’s MFA candidates. This is a 60 hour course which will address unarmed and armed violence and culminate in a Skills Proficiency Test adjudicated by an SAFD Fight Master.

American University, Washington DC (2007 and 2008)
Stage Combat; Guest Instructor: Introduced students to the basics of “extreme acting” in a “master class” format.

University of Maryland, Maryland Opera Studio (2006)
Stage Combat; Guest Instructor: Instructed MA students in the art of “sword fighting” with panache, élan, and unimpeachable style.

North Carolina School of the Arts, NC (summer 2004)
Introduction to Stage Combat; Broadsword: Taught the basics of stage combat with the broadsword to collegiate level conservatory students as part of the NCSA summer session.

American Musical and Dramatic Academy, NYC (2002-2004)
Stage Combat I-IV; Instructor: Taught unarmed, single rapier, rapier and dagger and broadsword to students in NYC acting conservatory. Classes are taught as part of a two year acting program and focus heavily on acting within a combative scene as well as technique.

SUNY Purchase, NY (summer 2003)
Movement/Stage Combat; Instructor: Developed and integrated stage combat element into six-week acting intensive workshop culminating with an evening of performance in both classical and contemporary styles.

Brooklyn College, NYC (2003)
Stage Combat; Guest Instructor: Taught unarmed combat with emphasis on acting, partnering skills and physical awareness in MFA acting program.

Rutgers University, NJ (2002)
Stage Combat; Guest Instructor: Taught unarmed combat with emphasis on acting, partnering skills and physical awareness in MFA acting program.

Lee Strasberg Theatre Institute, NYC (2002)
Stage Combat; Guest Instructor: Taught unarmed combat with emphasis on acting, partnering skills and physical awareness in conservatory program.


Additional Classes and Workshops

Domingo-Cafritz Young Artists Training Program, The Kennedy Center (current)
Movement/Stage Combat, Instructor: Work with rising start in the Washington National Opera to gain an understanding of movement and embodying dramatic physical confrontation as part of their opera training.

The Studio Theatre Acting Conservatory (2010-2013)
Workshops in Stage Combat, Instructor: Teach students the fundamentals of unarmed stage combat and Elizabethan Rapier. This is a recurring workshop series.

Shakespeare’s Rapier and Dagger (2013)
SAFD Skills Proficiency Class, Instructor: This is a ten week course in Elizabethan Rapier and Dagger that culminates in a skills proficiency test adjudicated by a Fight Master from the Society of American Fight Directors. Students learn the fundamental of fighting in the two weapon style most commonly observed by Shakespeare’s audiences.

The Lincoln Assassination, Lincoln, NE (2011)
SAFD Regional Workshop, Instructor: Taught several classes as part of a Society of American Fight Director’s regional workshop. Courses offered were “Killing me Softly; The Art of Performing the Perfect Strangle,” “Spin-cycle Sword and Shield” and “Mixed Martial Arts-Random Tools of Destruction.” 

The Action Film Workshop, NCSA (2008, 2009)
Faculty: The AFW is a two week intensive workshop that introduces fight arrangers, directors and actors to the performance of action sequences for film. Students work with the faculty to create short films in a variety of genres including film noir, western, fantasy, Renaissance, horror, and contemporary. Duties include training students, serving as armorer and gun wrangler and supplying weapons. For more information visit www.actionfilmworkshops.com.

Cuts Like a Knife...but it Feels so Right, DC (2009)
SAFD Skills Proficiency Class; Instructor: Taught students techniques and methodology of fighting with a knife, primarily based in a western style which focused on pace, rhythm and telling the story. This visceral and intimate weapon was a rewarding challenge to students and instructor alike. The ten week class culminated in an adjudicated performance.

The Rhythm of Heavy Metal, DC (2008)
SAFD Skills Proficiency Class; Instructor: Taught students the history, techniques and style of fighting with the broadsword and shield, the most physically demanding discipline in the "canon" of staged combat. Specific attention was paid to producing visually and aurally engaging patterns of movement while telling particularly violent stories. The ten week class culminated in an adjudicated performance.

Restoration Swordsmanship, DC (2007)
SAFD Skills Proficiency Class; Instructor: Taught students the history, techniques and style of smallsword dueling popular in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. The ten week class culminated in an adjudicated performance.

Bashing Away with the Medieval Broadsword, DC (2006)
SAFD Skills Proficiency Class; Instructor: Taught students the finer points of smashing and bashing with heavy weapons all while fully engaged in a dramatic scene. The ten week class culminated in an adjudicated performance.

Theatre West Virginia, (summer 2006)
Two Week Stage Combat Intensive; Instructor: Taught 60 hour course focusing on “unarmed” and “single sword” techniques for cast and crew of Theatre West Virginia. Emphasis was placed on safety and storytelling. The workshop concluded with an adjudicated performance.

To Punch or Kick, that is the Question..., DC (2006)
SAFD Skills Proficiency Class; Instructor: Taught students to fight "unarmed" within a dramatic context. Techniques covered included including falls, rolls, tumbling, grappling, strangling, slaps, punches, kicks, locks and holds. This class culminated in an adjudicated performance.

National Stage Combat Workshop, Las Vegas (2005)
Instructor and Teaching Assistant: Taught “Acting Violently” master classes for the Actor Combatant Workshop, Skills Proficiency Test and renewal classes (Quarterstaff) for the Advanced ACW and assisted Fight Master Richard Raether during the three week NSCW, the largest workshop of its kind in the nation.

Summer Sling Regional Stage Combat Workshop, NYC (2005)
Instructor: Taught at the SAFD sanctioned New York regional workshop sponsored by Fights4 (a NYC based group of SAFD stage combat teachers and fight directors). Classes included; Anger Management, Takedowns, Smallsword, Broadsword, and Rapier & Dagger.

Swashbuckling, Hollywood Style, DC area (2005)
SAFD Skills Proficiency Class; Instructor: Taught students the style of fighting with the “Single Sword” made famous during Hollywood’s Golden Era by such actors as Douglas Fairbanks, Jr., Tyrone Power and Errol Flynn. This ten week course culminated in a performance adjudicated by an SAFD Fight Master.

Elizabethan Rapier and Dagger, DC area (2005)
SAFD Skills Proficiency Class; Instructor: Taught students the style of fighting with Rapier and Dagger popular among civilians and soldier alike during the 16th and 17th centuries. This ten week course culminated in an adjudicated performance.

Martial Arts in the Film Industry, NYC (2004)
Panel discussion with David Carradine: Discussed and fielded questions regarding the evolution of the Martial Arts (both Eastern and Western) in motion pictures. Panel included David Carradine, Robb Hunter, John Ficarra and Alex Richter.

Combat Incorporated, NYC (2003-present)
Beginning to Advanced Stage Combat; Instructor: Teach basic to advanced stage combat including unarmed, weapons work and basic stunts for theatre, film and television at stage combat school for professionals in the entertainment industry. Website: www.Combatinc.com

“Combat Opera” with the Regina Opera, NYC (2004, 2005)
Workshop, recurring: Worked with the members of the Regina Opera Company to introduce the concept of violence performed with safety and truth. Focus was on control, communication, and consistency. Participants’ ages ranged from 14 to 55.

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