Alice Nelson

About Me

I am an actor-creator, playwright, director, producer, puppeteer, improvisor, mask maker and clown. Under my company, Underdog Theatre, I have written and toured solo shows regarding social and political issues and co-created feminist theatre productions

Aside from being a road warrior on the Fringe Circuit, my shows have been produced by various theatres across Canada. As an improvisor, I was a company member with Loose Moose Theatre, frequently directing for their Kid’s Season. As a mask maker, I have supplied masks (Commedia and Character) internationally for theatre troupes, High Schools and Universities.

I hold an MFA in Ensemble Based Physical Theatre from the Dell’Arte International School of Physical Theatre, a BEd from the University of Calgary and a BFA in Dramatic Arts from University of Lethbridge. In 2018, I moved across the country to join the University of Windsor’s School of Dramatic Arts as an Assistant Professor in Drama in Education and Community. Currently, I teach courses in TYA (Theatre for Young Audiences), Theatre for Social Action, Applied Theatre and Improvisation.

As a theatre educator, I have taught at Mount Royal University, Red Deer University, Ambrose University and Rosebud School of the Arts. As well, I have taught numerous workshops for community theatres, High School arts programs, and theatre festivals.

As an applied theatre practitioner, I have worked extensively as an artist-in-residence, creating original plays with children and youth in educational and community settings. Highlights include creating physical theatre plays with Trickster Theatre and bringing children’s storybooks to life with Quest Theatre. I worked for over a decade simulating real life medical situations with the Medical Skills Centre, University of Calgary. In 2017, I was part of national museum tour with Journey of a Lifetime, a performance (both in French and English) representing the stories of Canada’s early immigrants. Close to my heart has been attending expeditions as a volunteer clown and workshop leader with the international humanitarian organization, Clowns Without Borders.

My current research focuses on two areas: examining how the theatrical styles of clown and bouffon can be used as conduits to address taboo issues in society and addressing issues of social justice in TYA through physical theatre practices.

Above photo by Sean Dennie