From 2015 LegalAliens ha started running Theatre of the Oppressed workshops with young people, migrants and refugees.

Our sessions involve warm up games directly inspired by August Boal’s “Games for an actors and non actors” in which participants discover space and movement through group and pair work, followed by simple devising tasks like creating a group sculpture or a multi-voice poem, and finally by improvisation.

2015-11-28 16.54.41 2015-11-28 18.06.40

We run complete “forum theatre” sessions, in which participants are invited to share an example of “oppression”, the example is performed, discussed, then performed a second time but this time everyone in the audience is invited to “freeze” the scene and swap with one of the actors in order to change the dynamics and potentially turn the victim into a winner

We’ve run sessions in schools, youth centre and recently during IGNITE! the annual event organised by The Challenge UK to empower young people.

If you run a school, youth centre, refugee centre or charity and are interested in Forum Theatre or in a Theatre of the Oppressed session please contact us at

Between the Devil and the Deep Blue sea

With the refugees crisis becoming more and more prominent in the news, with threats or more war in the Middle East and further displacement of people, we feel, as artist, the need to use theatre to make sense of what is going on around us.

2015-09-18 17.54.01

LegalAliens’ project Between the Devil and the Deep Blue sea has two purposes

– Offer theatre workshops to refugees and asylum seekers, based on Augusto Boal’s Theatre of the Oppressed, in order for them not only to share their stories but to try and make sense of their experiences, the differences between expectations and the reality of their new “host” country, understand the real meaning of language and culture – there’s a lot of talking about “befriending” but what is really a friend? What does the word mean in different languages, which kind of responsibilities it carries?

– Create a play inspired by the stories we hear as well as multimedia events featuring photos, videos, audio contributions and art.


We’ve created a Facebook page, called Between the devil and the deep blue sea ( and we invite anyone who has a story to contribute

LETS HEAR THE MIGRANTS’ VOICE: a collaboration in search of stories

Migrants come and steal our jobs.

Migrants don’t speak our language properly and I can’t understand them.

Migrants speak their language on the bus and I feel intimidated.

I can’t recognise my neighbourhood anymore because migrants set up their shops.

Migrants’ children slow down the rest of the class at school

Migrants cause crime.

Migrants are terrorist

Migrants should go back to their country

Because of migrants hospitals are overcrowded.

A British politician recently, arriving late at a meeting, even managed to blame the traffic on the motorway on migrants.

But who are this headless, grey, threatening crowd we generally label as “migrants”?

As a company dedicated to explore the impact of multiculturalism on our societies, we thought it was hight time we gave “migrants” an identity and a voice. We want to discover people’s stories, journeys, dreams, experiences. We want to get to know them as individuals and listen to their point of view.

Thanks to the amazing charity MIGRANT VOICE ( we’ve been given the chance to do just that. On the 30th of January we’ll run a workshop with a group of immigrants from different countries living in the UK, encouraging them to use theatre to express their point of view and tell THEIR stories.

We’re incredibly excited and honoured to begin this collaboration.

Keep an eye on this blog for future developments. And if you’re a non British citizen living in the UK and affected by issues regarding immigration, please contact to get involved.

“Migrant Voice will transform how migrants are seen and heard in the media: from passive, disempowered and marginalised victims, to makers of their own media content. It will mobilise migrants who are concerned about the way their communities are portrayed by the media to engage in positively influencing the immigration debate and changing public attitude.”

London Theatre Passport is back

LegalAliens’ London Theatre Passport workshop is back at the Actors Centre on the 22nd, 29th and 5th of February.
An opportunity for international actors still new to London to explore the capital’s acting world, learn how and where to find work, places, venues, people, websites, CV presentation and all that jazz!

Three intense evenings, 6-9pm with Artistic Director Lara Parmiani and Associate director Becka McFadden

Fees: £60 (Actors Centre Members)
£85 (Non members)

For more info and bookings visit:

DX2R0586-22013-11-24 21.47.05DX2R0481-2

One month to go until our 3 day workshop!

A call for International actors based in London (long term or just visiting for summer)!!

Here’s your chance to join artistic directors Becka McFadden and Lara Parmiani at the City lit, in the heart of London, for three days as we unravel the secret of the London theatre scene.

On the 14th, 15th and 16th of July from 2pm-5pm we’ll run an exciting workshop provide practical skills, professional guidance and support to help you develop your career as an international performer in London.

More exercise2013-11-24 21.47.05 DX2R0507-2

Topics covered:

Audition and rehearsal techniques for both text-based and devised theatre including cold readings, improvisation, and collaborative devising. Additionally, we’ll discuss how to position yourself in the market as an international performer, looking at CVs, casting websites, show reels and agencies. Finally, we’ll get you plugged into London’s creative economy with an orientation to London venues, artist development opportunities and networks.

Visit the City Lit website to book:

See you soon!

WORKSHOP 2: New Paradigms for Collaboration: European Writing for Global Audiences

In the simplest terms: how interested, as a nation, are we in what other people, nations and cultures have to say? […] In an increasingly shrinking world, do the neighbours of the global village really understand one another and what are the arts institutions doing to enhance that understanding?”  (Jack Bradley in Baines, et. al. 2011: 187)


“[Theatres] will lose credibility if they perpetuate indifference towards the cultural diversity issues and continue to evade the inclusion of other ethnic, cultural and linguistic groups on stage, behind the stage and in the auditorium.” (Dragan Klaic 2008: 227)



This practical workshop will introduce participants to LegalAliens’ work on the translation and English-language premiere of Sergio Pierattini’s The Return (Il Ritorno), recipient of the Italian Critics’ Award for Best Play.  Set in Bergamo, in the north of Italy, the source text is rooted in a highly specific cultural and linguistic context, which increased the complexity of the translation process. In preparing a production for English-speaking audiences, LegalAliens combined well-established translating practices (a literal translation further developed by a British playwright) with extensive work on the text in rehearsal as a result of on-going dialogue between the Italian text and developing English version. Central to this process was the casting of bilingual actors, who were able to access both the source and target languages and cultures. The resulting production, at the 2012 Camden Fringe, successfully communicated to the audience a sense of the Italian text, with spectators commenting that they felt as if they had seen the play in Italian. Our methodology, with an emphasis on bilingual casting, diverges from mainstream approaches to translation, including those practiced by National Theatre and Royal Court (Baines, et al. 2011). Starting from the premise that the practice of theatre-making creates a space for social cohesion, the workshop will explore the ways in which collaboration with performers and other artists attuned to a given text’s source culture grants access to cultural specificity and allows this knowledge to be shared with all collaborators and, eventually, with spectators.

Target participants: University and post-graduate students studying Italian language and literature and/or theatre and performance.

Outcomes and objectives: Starting from an Italian playtext, participants will work in groups (comprised of students from both cohorts and members of the LegalAliens company) to get a short scene on its feet in English. Students of Italian will gain exposure to contemporary Italian theatre, as well as practical experience in using their language skills in a professional environment to identify different registers and nuances to non-speakers. They will encounter the field of dramaturgy as a potential career and/or field of study. Theatre students will gain experience working in a multi-lingual rehearsal environment and see firsthand the opportunities presented by collaboration with a bi-lingual dramaturg and cast. For both groups, the workshops will open up possibilities for new ways of staging contemporary European theatre.


LegalAliens offer short extracts from contemporary Italian theatre for advanced student of Italian.


The aim of the show is to give students of Italians an overview of Italian contemporary culture and to expose them to modern spoken language.

Audiences are provided beforehand with synopsis, introduction to the play, vocabulary list, and activity booklet.

The extracts are from:

Grazie Maria, by and with Jean Paul Dal Monte

Il Ritorno, by Sergio Pierattini

and Ne’ qui ne’ la’ by Maggie Rose.

All the extracts are acted in Italian and present characters facing issues – immigration, racism, family relationships – relevant to modern Italian society (and also part of the curriculum).

We specifically chose plays offering an image of Italy different from the usual stereotypes. Plays depicting the country’s real problem, the degrade of industrial areas, the degeneration of traditional family structure etc.