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De Kleine Academie was founded in 1986 by Luc De Smet for theatrical education. Movement and play are the basis by which the future artist develops his individual and collective creative abilities, aiming towards a creative theatre. There are two phases at De Kleine: the first phase is a foundation year and the second is a continuation of two years but without time-boundaries, composed of a coherent succession of modules and projects, and permanently accessible to those who completed the first year.


Foundation year

This first year can be seen as a pre- or postgraduate education depending on on the participants former experience 

The objective of the first year is clear: getting to know as precisely as possible one’s own creative capacities and how to make  sound use of them. So doing the first year provides the participant with an orientation and a foundation for further choices in the artistic field.

In the first year theatre is not yet a goal but rather a tool to explore that hard to reach territory between impression and expression, between observation and creation, to rekindle through playing the candour and the freedom of childhood play where imagination spreads without limits.

The participant and his work becomes his own material and the attitude of De Kleine Academie shall be one of objective attention and support, without any apriori of taste, style or convention.

This explains the interest from other disciplines in art and humanities.

The first year rests on three pillars: movement, voice, play and personal work (individual or collective)

Movement: organic movement (the personal economy of movement), movement analysis (the link with time and space, rhythm)

Voice work: exploring breathing and sound.

Play: rigorous observation mirrored in movement and playing of human behavior, the dynamics of animals, materials, colors and elements. Creation and playing of every day life credible characters, an approach to text, discovering one’s own clown…

Personal work: in weekly assignments and study observations (individual and in depth work throughout the year on personal subjects)


Continuation - Modules

A two year program - 6 modules per year

The students wishing to pursue their journey, having accomplished the first year successfully may do so through separate and well-defined modules.

These modules are also accessible for alumni of the Kleine Academie and for professionals from other fields subject to interview and available places. 

Together they form a coherent development, a practical study of the main styles of theatre history and how they stage  the world..In short, tragedy and comedy in various formats, from the Greeks until present day: ancient tragedy, Shakespeare and Co, melodrama, commedia dell’ arte, mime and gesture language, clown, slapstick, burlesque, bouffons, eccentric characters, puppet and objects theatre, film, virtual reality…

The presentations developed from these modules are shown as a ‘work in progress’ to the public, which allows us to assess our work and the student’s progress

Movement and voice work continues throughout but includes from this point on theatrical acrobatics, choreography and singing (choir and solo) in relation to the modules and projects.

After successful accomplishment of the two years modules and projects the participants obtain the diploma of De Kleine Academie.



Academic year 2016-2017

Classes from the first week of October to the last week of June with exception of all Belgian national holidays.

Foundation year: Every weekday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

Continuation - modules: Every weekday from 2 p.m. to 6 p.m.


Foundation year

(Re-)discovering one's creative capabilities and how to use them.

Admission based on motivation, cv and preferably recommendations, to be sent by e-mail to


Continuation - modules 2016 - 2017


Module 1: “Play - re-play" (Nader Farman) 3/10/2016 - 28/10/16 & 7/11/16 - 10/11/16

Module 2: “Introduction to puppetry techniques” (Bernard Clair) 14/11/16 - 16/12/16

Module 3: “Primary emotions & major texts” (Yves Claessens) 9/01/17 - 10/02/17

Module 4: “Physical comedy” (Maxime Membrive and Johannes Vanbinnebeek) 20/02/17 - 24/02/17 & 6/03/17 - 31/03/17

Module 5: “Tragedy” (Luc De Smet) 24/04/17 - 24/05/17
This module has an open end and shall serve as a platform for participants who wish to continue with a more in-depth experience in outdoor conditions.

Module 6: “Writing for the stage” (Luc De Smet, Nader Farman, Caroline Donnelly) This module covers 5 weeks in between the acting modules and ends in a Grand Atelier.

1. 19/12/16 - 23/12/16
2. 13/02/17 - 17/02/17
3. 18/04/17 - 21/04/17
4. 29/05/17 - 09/06/17
5. “Grand Atelier”: 12/06/17 - 23/06/17

The movement and vocal training merge into the acrobatics of theatre, choreography and singing (choral and solo) and are in close connection to the modules and projects.

Admission: accessible for alumni of the Kleine Academie foundation year and for professionals from other fields subject to interview and available places. Motivation and cv to be sent by e-mail to

The modules for 2017-2018 will be communicated by the end of  january 2017.