Below are a series of answers to the most frequently asked questions
What is Scenic Combat?
Scenic combat is a discipline that has its roots in numerous theatrical and cinematographic techniques designed to create the illusion of physical violence, while maintaining the safety of artists and the public. Used to create an effective narrative of physical conflict, the stage fighting includes an endless variety of unarmed and armed techniques, these techniques can be applied and adapted to a variety of media including film, theater, opera, ballet and motion capture. Fights can vary a lot from true realism to pure fantasy depending on the needs of a particular production and / or vision of the director.
Is stage combat the same as in film combat?
Yes, but we are more specific. "Stage fighting" has become a common term, often used to refer to both names, but the actual techniques, in terms of safety and performance, are similar for both, although there are some differences in the application of each genre with requirements specific.
For the film, the fights must be carried out keeping in mind the MDP (camera) and there are many nuances to consider to get a variety of effects.
For the theater, fights often have to be performed show after show with no post-production editing options, so a solid foundation and lots of training are the key.
Stage fighting techniques can also be applied to motion capture work, again with some modifications.
Are there age restrictions for doing stage combat?
No, certified training courses for students aged 11 and over.
We can provide certification courses for children aged 11 or over. There is no maximum limit. The standard workshops are aimed at people aged 14 or over, with parental permission and healthy and robust health constitution with resting ECG.
Do I have to be a trained person and do a lot of sport to do stage fighting?
No previous skills are required, but a good "check" from your primary care physician, with resting ECG and a certificate of "healthy and robust constitution" should be performed. A general level of fitness is good for most classes.
If you have physical difficulties, they do not need to prevent you from performing certain elements of scenic combat as an actor.
If you have any doubts about your ability for a course: Simone Belli Education, do not hesitate to send an e-mail to
We handle all requests with confidence and will make all reasonable efforts to meet specific needs.
Stage fighting difficult?
Some elements are easy to learn while others are much more complex.
At a basic level, unarmed techniques like punches and slaps are relatively simple with the study and practice of in ARMIS DICET.
Weapons work is often more technical, but again with a little training you can get a basic understanding for most people.
With practice everyone can see improvements in their skill and safety levels.
There is always something new to learn, so you train up to the advanced certification level.
Workshops and test sessions are a great way to find out if you like fighting or to keep your skills up to date, you can sign up for the "Simone Belli Education" the first online video course for stage fighting in Italy.
For more information write to email@example.com
If you have doubts about the difficulty of a course do not be afraid to ask the organizer. Most courses are designed around specific skill levels, from beginner to professional courses.
As you progress towards activities such as performing complex choreographies (with weapons or unarmed) of 60 movements, maintaining the techniques safe and correct, stage fighting can become much more difficult.
It is often too late to learn and train your body and mind at work to learn and perform complex struggles (unless it is a project that is rich in time and money) so if you are interested in acting for Fighting roles, previous preparation can make a difficult task much easier and even more fun.
For every artist who expects to do a lot of fighting in their work (and you never know), it is advisable to try to reach at least one level advanced by a recognized training institution.
Being able to perform a sword duel at the speed and pace necessary to its credibility, maintaining the character, avoiding props, other actors, expensive cameras and even members of the public is not something to try without proper training.
Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information on training, qualifications, academies or what you can do after getting your third advanced level.
Where can I use these skills?
Theater, opera, ballet, circus, acrobatics and motion capture, cinema, TV and commercials. The higher your skill level, the more salable and versatile you will be and the more ambitious projects you can try.
Scenic combat is based on a variety of influence fields including martial arts, historical and modern weapon techniques, military training and fencing. As such, it can provide useful information on other training courses you may undertake, even if it is only to show how some real techniques may not be suitable for theatrical use.
Will the stage in combat help me as an actor?
Scenic combat is an artistic sporting discipline that helps all athletes, performers and actors who approach us in different sectors.
You learn how to build tension in a dramatic scene to the point where words are no longer sufficient. Character analysis, communication, timing, intention and motivation are also fundamental components of training.
This discipline also helps actors learn about their bodies and how to use them as an effective tool to tell a story. From finding the physicality of a character and showing the effects of pain and injury to being able to physically work with other artists, training helps athletes improve overall physical awareness. Posture, coordination, ability to quickly learn choreography and general reflexes can benefit from it.
Training will allow you to communicate more effectively with a fight choreographer or stunt coordinator that will allow you to act more effectively and to contribute, if the situation allows, from a more competent position. The higher your skill level, the more salable and versatile you will be and the more "high" projects you can yearn for.
Is it only for actors?
No. If you like meeting people and learning a new skill, then stage fighting is just as good as attending a dance class. Acting will help you be good at "selling" techniques for an audience, but this can come with practice and our National Referent is able to provide you with the most suitable support, but athletes and sports and cinema action enthusiasts are absolutely some of the beneficiaries. Performers, opera singers, youtuber (Maurizio Merluzzo), dancers, dancers, directors, authors, amateurs, amateurs, sportsmen ... who has more, more or less "scenically" I dare say.
Need some previous experience for stage combat?
You don't need any previous experience. Some courses as intermediate and advanced, require some previous experience or basic level requirements to ensure that they are properly addressed by students. All the requirements of the preliminary course will be listed under the individual details of the course or module, for those who decide to take the instructors course.
Why do stage combat exams involve dialogical scenes?
Every story has a beginning, a development and an end. Accumulation in combat is as important as combat itself; setting the scene, the mood of the characters, the stakes, the motivations and, ultimately, the "final drop" that transforms a conflict from verbal to physical, is necessary.
Mistakes, choreographic difficulties, mnemonics or fatigue are all aspects that an athlete might have to face in a performance and the work on stage helps to prepare athletes for such eventualities by ensuring that the show goes on.
Is the discipline safe?
Safety is at the center of our training! It adapts real martial art applications, historical and modern weapons techniques and specific military performance training designed to create the illusion of physical violence while maintaining the safety of artists and the public. It is rare for anything in life to be 100% safe, but effective knowledge, training and skills will greatly reduce the chances of accidents and potentially reduce the severity of injuries should something go wrong. Being aware of security also means that people are more likely to want to work with you.
Combat itself is inherently dangerous - this is its purpose! Without proper training the actors can hurt themselves or others because they are not prepared and have not learned safe techniques, do not have the appropriate skill level for the task they are performing, are working with unsafe equipment or are run by people without training .
Stage combat is like motorcycle racing: it's fast, adrenaline-filled and fun even if potentially dangerous. It's not a good idea to get in the saddle without driving lessons, lots of practice and overalls and helmet.
Scenic combat is just about fighting?
No. The real moves and techniques of stage fighting are just the tip of the iceberg. Being able to apply them to a dramatic scene at the right intensity, keeping the character alive and avoiding danger, this is the real test!
In the education phase, combat can be used to create a fun and interesting way to learn history (Romans, Egyptians), culture (Greek, medieval), technology (weapons and evolution), geography (war), religion (crusades) , philosophy (violence), psychology (domestic violence), current events (crime with weapons and knives), literature (Shakespeare), sociology (teamwork and collaboration) and many others.
Simple stage fighting can also improve social and life skills such as teamwork, discipline, self-control, responsibility and trust.
But is it like martial arts or fencing?
Yes and no. Yes, at that stage the combat draws inspiration from martial arts and fencing. However, while the techniques may seem similar, there are significant differences in their execution with regard to safety and illusion. If you are a martial arts expert or fencer you may find yourself unlearning many aspects of your art to learn scenic combat correctly.
I have a black belt in martial arts. Does that mean I can start from the advanced level?
Unfortunately no. Although you can be highly qualified in your martial art, the act of scenic learning combat relates to safety and illusion and employs some significant strengths in addition to acting. So you have to learn the skills necessary for phase combat from the bases and get ahead, maybe down fast thanks to your skills.
Is the stage fight Stunt?
It is a useful skill that can be used in the Stunt but stunt training covers a wider range of activities. Fighters (at least advanced combat stage trained players) are often some of the most skilled sword fighters in the entertainment industry while constantly training in this specialist field. However, there are other special abilities that fall into the stunt category. Each country has different regulations regarding the qualifications of the stunts, so it is necessary to check with the appropriate bodies. Alternatively, if you want to be an actor who does his own fighting, then the stage fight is your "Start".
What is a fighting actor?
A fighting actor is an individual who can "act in battle". They trained in theater fighting techniques that include safety, staging and acting.
What is an extra fighter / stunt?
An extra is a fighter often used in big fight scenes to play generic roles. This role has been used in many major successful films.
What is a Fight Choreographer or Fight Director?
Fight Choreographers and Fight Directors are specialists who facilitate the process of creating dramatic actions that are safe and appropriate to the abilities of the participants involved. They have knowledge of dramatic theory, history, direction, teaching and acting, as well as stage fighting skills.
When should you hire a Fight Choreographer / Fight Director?
If you have any kind of violence on the scene from a simple fall or a slap, to a massive battle with weapons, you should hire a Fight Choreographer / Fight Director.
Simone Belli works on large productions, but he is also happy to help productions with different budgets.
Contact us whatever the size of your production, email@example.com
Simone Belli works closely with a creative production team and will facilitate the process of creating dramatic actions that are safe and appropriate to the abilities of the participants involved. It is a good idea for Simone as Fight Choreographer involved as soon as possible on a production to allow the time necessary to satisfy the production requirements of a range, including:
Hire appropriate and safe weapons
Planning and training for the cast
Choreography and fight for the crew
Consult with the costume designer about the safety problems of the costumes
Consult the scenography to take into account the potential dangers for possible battles
Provide casting service for experienced fighters if necessary
Who is a scenic combat teacher?
A stage combat teacher is a person specifically certified in the teaching of stage fighting in a recognized academy. Teaching is a different skill than performing and we use only certified teachers. The certification and qualification process is intense and requires sacrifice, but thanks to FISAC (Italian federation of acrobatic choreographed sports) it can offer you the knowledge and the right path: www.fisacgym.it/combattimento-scenico/
There are a number of respected academies around the world that have training courses for complete and demanding teachers, often a year or more. These include the British Academy of Stage & Screen Combat, the British Academy of Dramatic Combat, the Nordic Stage Fight Society, the Society of American Fight Director, the Academy of Fight Directors Canada and the Society of Australian Fight Directors.
Where can I find weapons for use in the theater or film?
Weapons used on stage or on a set are significantly different from those purchased for decorative or martial arts purposes and are designed specifically for theatrical and / or cinematic use. For the stage they must withstand repeated use, be unbreakable and must be rounded. The guns also have specific safety considerations.
What should I wear for your course?
Please wear comfortable clothes where you can move. It is advisable to wear leather or gardening gloves for working with swords. (We can provide additional props you will need)
Tip: bring a change of clothes if you go somewhere after training.
If not, you can always wear one of our SB t-shirts and sweatshirts available.
If I can't do all the hours of a course, can I still participate?
Attendance at all sessions is very important. If there is a date that cannot be made, let us know as soon as possible. We will try to facilitate reasonable requests, but it is not always possible to recover the missed work and other students can be influenced by the absence.
Failure to comply with the minimum hours required will result in failure to take the exam.
If absences lead you to not being able to complete the course, we reserve the right to cancel or postpone your place and you may lose the deposit or the full cost of the course.
How long is my qualification?
Once the qualification is completed, the certificate lasts 2 years from the day of issue. This means that you are encouraged to keep the training and update your qualifications so that you are always up to the standard you should be, especially if you want to keep these skills in your CV.
After 3 years do I have to start over from the initial level?
As already mentioned, all qualifications must be renewed every 2 years to maintain their current status. It is not necessary to repeat the complete courses just an update.
We will always be able to advise you and, at times, it might be better to participate in some sessions or workshops to update your skills before considering renewal if you have not done any combat since your initial exam.
I have completed my basic certificate, so can I teach my friends now?
My advice is ... no !!! Teachers spend many, many years studying styles, techniques, theory, direction and safety, as well as taking additional exams and acquiring insurance. If you wish to become a teacher, once you have obtained the advanced certification, along with other qualifications, you can then enroll in the national course with FISAC, info and program on: firstname.lastname@example.org
Can I get a refund for the course if I can't suddenly attend?
All our courses provide a non-refundable deposit, because each class is organized well in advance.
In serious cases, illness or impossibility for family reasons, if received by our secretary, the refundable part of the course will be reimbursed.
I want to hire an actor who can fight, can I find them on your site?
Yes, I have a selection of qualified fighters in my archive and we will be able to help you choose the best person for your project.
How much does it cost to hire one of your fighters?
Each role will be quoted individually for you based on what you request. Please contact us and we can provide personal quotes for your needs. No production is too big or too small.
Where do I find your courses?
Simone Belli works throughout Italy and internationally. Our main office is in Milan, but we also teach in Switzerland in Lugano, in London in England, in Sweden in Stockholm, in Las Vegas (Nevada), in Manhattan (New York) and soon also in Germany and Austria.
How can I request Simone Belli's casting?
Of course, by writing an email to: email@example.com
Or sign up to the Simone Belli Education page on facebook, and participate in at least one of the certified seminars and you will be immediately directed to several casting directors.
How do I become a member of Simone Belli Stunt & Film Fighting Team?
Joining the team is a great way to sell yourself as an experienced fighter, stage combat teacher or action coordinator, and gain access to casting services and other benefits, but the road is hard. Only a few can do it and the journey lasts 5 years, or less, if you are motivated and stubborn. The luxury of working with your own passion is that you will never work one day, but to get that luxury you have to work more than 10 shirts. Start seeing when the certification seminars are and you'll already be one step ahead of the others.
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