Spending every day at Accademia, Francesca became part of the team and started working in the Education Department as drama teacher and assistant.
Starting out as teaching assistant, Francesca began to develop training sessions, workshops and acting courses for children between 5 and 10 years old and young adults between 11 and 18 years old. Primi Passi was the first course developed at Accademia. The course was a one year program that included one 3 hours class each week. After a great success and enthusiasm from both children and parents, the course was further developed into different “levels”: Primi Passi (focused on new and younger students) and Playground (focused on second year students).
She developed her classes putting together movement, Commedia dell’Arte, creative writing and acting techniques while making the young performers approach authors such as Goldoni and Shakespeare.
The young actors were able to contribute to the creation of their shows: through improvisation, scene study and creative writing, the children wrote small scenes that helped shape their final performance.
Play & Learn was a later project that included a series of classes developed to join drama and language in order to allow the children to learn English through acting. Outside the Accademia, Francesca worked as a drama teacher for different local primary schools where she developed training classes and directed children performances both in English and Italian. Productions for the schools included the adaptation of texts such as Alice in Wonderland by L. Carroll, Dr Faustus by C. Marlowe and various Shakespeare’s plays.
During the summer, Francesca always worked at the Theatre Summer Camps organised by the Accademia.
She has worked with both children and teenagers coordinating drama classes and workshops. A day in the Summer Camp was divided into morning and afternoon activities, from Monday to Friday, with a final “show” day when the young actors would perform a play. Each week, the children where introduced to acting through drama games while familiarising with the play of the week. The afternoon activities involved painting, theatre make-up, dance and movement and other creative activities.