Teaching Team

Thomas Prattki

Lead Teacher

Thomas is the Founder and Director of LISPA.

He is the former pedagogical director of the Ecole Jacques Lecoq in Paris. 

As a performer, he has toured the world with Mummenschanz, a world renowned company combining movement, puppetry and visual arts. He has directed, taught and lectured in over 30 different countries at institutions such as the Guthrie Theater in Minneapolis USA, the Aarhus Theater in Aarhus, Denmark, and the Ilkhom Theater in Taschkent, Uzbekistan, among others.

His most important reference point next to the pedagogy of Jacques Lecoq is the strongly Jungian and Zen based work of Maria Hippius and Karlfried Graf Duerckheim, where life, art and spiritual practice all serve the same purpose: to become transparent for the grand movements of Life and how they resonate in our body and personal life.

Amy Russell

Lead Teacher

Amy is the Deputy Director of Pedagogy at LISPA. 

She studied at the Ecole Jacques Lecoq from 1990 to 1992, and completed her pedagogical training with M. Lecoq in 1997-1998, as well as the course in scenography (Laboratoire d'Etude de Mouvement). She also holds an MFA from the University of Tennessee, and a certificate from the London Academy of Music and the Dramatic Arts(LAMDA). She has worked as an ensemble member with the Lecoq based Touchstone Theatre, and has toured the United States and Europe with several collaboratively devised shows.

As a playwright her credits include five professionally produced plays. For Company Ajar, which she co-founded, she wrote Je t'embrasse, Elvis, which toured to Avignon in 2000, and her award-winning show, Killing Lincoln, continues to tour in the U.S. Amy has taught Lecoq based theater in the U.S. and abroad, and is also inspired by her study of Topeng with I Made Djimat in Bali. She has studied mask creation with Donato Sartori in Italy, and I Made Muji in Bali.

Ariel Gutierrez


Originally from Buenos Aires, Ariel has a background in international politics, Literature and Performing Arts. He studied at the Ecole Internationale de Theatre Jacques Lecoq in 1996 and joined LISPA in 2011, where he completed the Advanced Devising Practice program as well as the pedagogical training.

An active collaborator with companies in the US, Europe and Latin America, he also holds a PhD in Modern Languages and Literatures from the University of Miami with an emphasis on Performance. His dissertation “Scenic Landscapes: The theater in the global city” explores the relation between globalization, theater and non-conventional performance spaces.

Cat Gerrard


Cat is a performance-maker, storyteller, director and teacher from London. She trained at Drama Studio London and LISPA.

Cat has toured Europe with solo work and with various puppetry, physical theatre and storytelling ensembles, including Theatre Témoin and Impronta Theater. She is Artistic Director of storytelling company TailSpin.

She has been exploring the depths and heights of voice, text and telling - as a practitioner and a teacher - since 2010, colliding her cross-arts interests with a movement towards wholing.

Kelley Soul


Kelley has worked professionally as an actor, director, stage manager and arts administrator.

She trained as an actor, director and dramaturg at the University of Northern Colorado (1994), before completing her MFA in Actor Created Physical Theatre at Naropa University (USA) in collaboration with LISPA.

Before moving to Europe, she performed with a number of US-based theatre companies, devising experimental work, whilst working as an arts-in-education activist with the Denver Center for the Performing Arts. Kelley completed the pedagogical year at LISPA in 2004, and has taught with the LISPA team since 2005. She is also a visual artist, working primarily in acrylic, ink and watercolour, and has a deep interest in the creative space that is opened when different artistic and educational practices meet and transform.

Patrick Soul


Patrick graduated from Cambridge University in 1991, following this with PGCE training. In the mid-1990s he founded and ran a music school in Bristol before joining the LISPA team in January 2005.

In 2006 Patrick completed an MMus in Jazz Performance from the the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, and he is a keen jazz musician and composer with over 20 years of experience both performing and writing in many different styles of music. In London he sang for seven years with the London Vocal Project, one of the top jazz gospel groove music groups in the country, and has performed with them at London's best jazz clubs as well as at the Royal Festival Hall and the Barbican.


Philipp Schaefer


Philipp is an actor, clown and licensed TaKeTiNa Rhythm Teacher. An alumnus of Jacques Lecoq, he has performed his show “stäx rhythmclown” in street theatre festivals all over Europe. As a teacher he has worked at theatre schools and universities such as LISPA, Universität für Musik und darstellende Künste (Vienna) and Bayerische Theaterakademie August Everding (Munich).

He is a drum circle-facilitator and works as well with Himalayan singing bowls. “Rhythm is my tool as a clown and as a teacher in order to create a space for new experiences and personal development. There is no need to learn a new instrument, since you are the instrument. You will find out how to play it in the best possible way.”

Valentina Bordenave

Valentina Bordenave is a freelance dancer, choreographer and, since 1998, a certified Alexander Technique teacher. She is a graduate in dance from the Folkwang University in Essen, Germany.

With over 20 years of experience as a dancer and movement teacher,  Valentina has been actively researching the integration of mechanics and poetry of the body.  Now based in Berlin, her work has a strong focus on the body support system, spatial and energetic awareness, intense physicality and utmost sensitivity.  As well as holding workshops and training for dance and theatre companies, she teaches Alexander Technique, dance and improvisation at Familie Flöz Summer Academy and for the past ten years at the Acting Department at Berlin's University of the Arts (UDK).

As a performer, Valentina has worked with the choreographers Mark Sieczkarek and Editta Braun among others.

In 2014 she founded the international Collective ANDERPLATZ with nine other actors and dancers, where she directs and performs.