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Fight master helping breed the next generation of action heroes at Olympus Theatre in Barton

By The Citizen  |  Posted: August 29, 2014

By Nick Webster

fight club

Fight club: Tutor Tom Jordan, centre, a Royal Shakespeare Company associate practioner, with Patricia Winker, left, and Thomas Aminfar-Antoniw, students at the stage combat course, which has been run by the Academy of Performance combat, at the Olympus Theatre on Barton Street

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Fancy yourself in Fight Club? Or how about a role in front of the camera as a Hollywood action hero?  

Making an onscreen fight look violent, but keeping it safe is an art form in itself.

And those skills are being taught to actors hoping to enhance their chances of a lucky break on the big screen at the Olympus Theatre in Barton Street.

The venue is proving the perfect place for the Action Emporium, an academy for martial arts based acting skills on the stage.

Wether it’s learning how to perform in a bar room brawl, or successfully master the art of sword fighting, performance combat is proving a popular pastime.

Danielle Jordan is a partner in the Action Emporium, a company training actors how to fight safely.

“Performance combat is an excellent way to learn martial arts, keep fit and also to help actors enhance their CVs,” she said.

“We can offer an industry recognised qualification, and professional training for actors.

“There has been an increase in demand since the popularity of TV series like Game of Thrones has increased.”

Danielle’s husband Tom, 30, is a senior instructor with Action Emporium, and vice chairman of the Academy of Performance Combat. He is a fully qualified stage instructor and a fight director with the Royal Shakespeare Company.

Tom has worked on film sets alongside actor Ray Winstone and his daughter Jamie during filming for 2012 horror flick Elfie Hopkins: Cannibal Hunter, helping choreograph action sequences.

Demand for his specialist knowledge has seen Tom travel across the UK.

“It is an art to make something look as violent as possible, yet ensure it is also done as safely as possible,” Danielle added.

“We get all ages wanting to sign up for taster workshops or the longer courses that we run. We have had a 60-year-old woman and a 20-year-old man in the same class, so it really is open to everyone.”

To sign up for a course at the Olympus Theatre, email Danielle at daniellenikki@googlemail.com.

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