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International Workshop

The Art of Mask

A Master Class in mask making with the Sartori family

Hosted by Bad New Days

On February 17-24th,  2019 Bad New Days is hosting a master class with world renowned mask experts Paola Piizi and Sarah Sartori, from the Sartori International Museum of Mask in Padova, Italy.


Paola & Sarah will lead an 8 day master class on the theory, history and fabrication of theatrical masks. This will result in the students creating their own masks.


The Sartori have amassed an incredible historical, practical and theoretical knowledge of mask from over forty years of research, taking them all over the world. Some of the masks they will be be bringing to Toronto for the lecture and workshop have never been seen before in Canada.

This is a rare opportunity and the first time the Sartori have taught in Canada.


Mask is possibly the oldest form of artistic expression in the world. It traverses most known cultures and lies at the intersection of ritual and art; anthropology and performance practice.

Working with the mask has incredible practical value for the performer’s artistic training, and for the general public, as well, as an anthropological phenomenon through which contemplate our cultural evolution:

the mask invites us to imagine who we are and where we’ve come from.



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Paola Piizi with an expressive mask by Amleto Sartori 

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The Art of Mask: Sartori Mask Making Workshop

February 17-24th, 2019

Inscription fee $500 + HST + materials (roughly $50)


*workshop will be taught in Italian with English translation

*those with a background in mask making, puppetry & puppet making, sculpture, design and performance are encouraged to apply

For more information or to sign up please contact Adam Paolozza at 

Come learn from two world class teachers about a cultural phenomena that belongs not only to Italy but to the world.

Hosted by Bad New Days

in partnership with the University of Toronto Drama Centre, The Italian Cultural Institute and the Italian Chamber of Commerce of Ontario. 


Funding for this workshop is made possible by the generous support of the Canada Council for the Arts.



Paola Piizi and Sarah Sartori are widow and daughter to Donato Sartori, son of the famous sculptor and mask maker Amleto Sartori. In the the wake of the second world war there was a renewed interest in Italy in the traditional commedia dell’arte. Giorgio Strehler, famous director and leader of the Piccolo Teatro di Milano, brought together many artists with the aim of re-discovering the commedia. He asked Amleto Sartori to make masks for his productions of Goldoni’s Servant of Two Masters starring Marcello Moretti as Arlecchino.

This started a lifelong love of mask for Sartori. His research produced the first modern technique of making half masks out of leather, as they would have been made during the renaissance. This was an incredible re-discovery (or re-invention depending on how you look at it) of a piece of Italian cultural patrimony.

Dying young from cancer Sartori’s son, Donato continued the research, production and fabrication of the masks along with the aid of his wife and daughter.

Sadly Donato, after a long battle with cancer, passed in summer 2016 and left the legacy to his wife Paola and daughter Sarah.

In addition to running a unique museum of Sartori’s masks in Abano Termo, Paola and Sarah continue to run the yearly month long mask making workshop at the Sartori atelier and Paola lectures and teaches the theory and practice of mask, with a very interesting perspective on the role of women in the history of mask.

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