Belltable:Connect is delighted to announce an open call for applications to its fifth workshop in Masterclass Series, supported by the Arts Council / An Chomhairle Ealaíon under the Theatre Artist Development Scheme.

For our sixth and final Masterclass, we welcome Simon Thompson.

APPLICATION FORM: Belltable Connect Masterclass Series Application Form, 6

This master-class is designed for professional artists, who are interested in working with physicality and embodiment to create engaging, dynamic and shared experience performances.

Throughout the week we will be utilising mask and clown as tools to unlock the performers’ own vulnerability and fragility. Concentrating on the body as a poetic instrument in order that it can reinforce the narrative, releasing the artist from the potential constraints of working solely with text.

Through experiential learning we will focus on complicite, shared experience, and the joy of finding play and beauty in everything.

Monday 11th June to Friday 15th June 2018, from 10 am to 4 pm, at Belltable (69 O’Connell Street, Limerick City).

Simon Thompson
Simon is a Clown, Bouffon a Pedagogue and Director. He trained with LeCoq and Gaulier, and has worked with many other leading professionals during his 30 yrs experience of performing throughout Europe, Asia and the USA in Theatres, Circuses and Festivals. In 2014 he embarked on a solo project to write a Clown Trilogy specifically to be performed as three separate one-hour long theatre shows. Part 1 was “Clown Noir, This is me” which toured Ireland, UK and Denmark. In 2015, he toured Internationally with part 2 “Peines d’amour perdues”, a clown adaptation of Shakespeare’s “Love’s Labours Lost”, and in 2016 he toured world-wide with “Nose Business”, the final part of the Clown Noir trilogy. His most recent work was a metaphysical mask exploration of the Australian Indigenous Peoples’ Creation Stories entitled “Altjeringa”, performed by Lucy Dawson as a gestural etude at the Irish World Academy. Simon is currently working on a clown adaptation of Chaucer’s “The Millers Tale” and a physical theatre piece entitled “Underground”.
Simon is also a Lecturer on the M.A. in Festive Arts at University Limerick and a PhD candidate in the Irish World Academy at the University of Limerick. Researching “A Creative Pedagogy through Mask and Clown”.

This 5-day, 25-hour masterclass is intended for Ireland-based professional artists interested in physicality. The masterclass is open to 10 participants. Successful applicants will receive a stipend to help cover their costs.


  • Submissions are welcome from professional individual Irish or Ireland-based playwrights and theatre artists interested in new plays, applications from collectives or groups will not be accepted
  • Applicants must be over 18 years of age
  • The masterclass takes place in Limerick City and applicants must be present for the duration, from Monday 11th June to Friday 15th June, 2018.
  • Applications are welcome from artists who previously applied for and/or are currently taking part in other Belltable:Connect programmes

Applications can only be made via email to Marketa Dowling, Belltable Programme Manager: and must include all parts of the application form completed.

Closing Date: Friday, 11th May 2018, 12 noon.
Late applications will be deemed ineligible.
Applications will be assessed by a panel, whose decision is final.
Application is by open call to ensure fair selection and a wide range of participants.
Applicants will be informed if they were successful on or before Friday, 20th April 2018.

Stipend: Successful applicants will receive a stipend to help cover their costs to the amount of €300 each – subject to terms and conditions.

Running in the first half of 2018, the Masterclass Series is an opportunity to engage, stimulate and motivate theatre makers to enhance and develop their skills in Limerick. The 6-months programme offers participants a vibrant and dynamic schedule of intensive masterclasses with renowned Irish and international theatre makers and companies. Each masterclass is open to ten professional Ireland-based artists and each has a different focus.