The Why Not Institute Team

We have so many members of The Why Not Institute ‘family’, including many who have taken our courses and stayed in touch to help be a part of the Institute’s work. Here are details of some of our core team:

Artistic Director (and Chief Clown): ANGELA DE CASTRO
IT Geek (and Clown): JACK STARK

Angela de Castro

Chief Clown and Artistic Director

Angela de Castro has been performing since she was 17 years old, beginning in her native Brazil where she was a well-known actress in theatre, film and television and director of her own theatre company. She was a member of the original cast of the ground-breaking show ‘Macunaima’ (1977-1980), which changed the face of Brazilian theatre and played to an audience of over half a million people in Brazil alone, as well as touring internationally for over two years.

In 1986 Angela de Castro moved to London to pursue her dream to study, perform and reclaim theatre clowning as a modern art form. She has toured the UK and internationally with the major contemporary theatre and circus companies and is well known as a teacher of her master class ‘How To Be A Stupid’ .

Angela de Castro is one of the most loved women clowns. She is a leading theatre practitioner, actor, teacher, director and speaker. Her performances and methodology have been well recognised in the UK and abroad, awarding her, among a few, a Lawrence Olivier Award (UK), the Golden Nose Award (Spain), the Nesta Dreamtime Fellowship, an Arts Foundation Fellowship and an International Fellowship by Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama for her contribution on the art of clowning.
Angela de Castro has been teaching her master classes extensively all over the world. (See CV for more details)

The blend of actress work and theatre clown work makes de Castro a bold and complete actress / clown. For her, the combination of the work of the actor and the clown is of vital importance as it creates a new way of performing.

Angela de Castro has been recently performing and could be seen in ‘Treasure Island’ by Robert Louis Stevenson, (National Theatre, Olivier Theatre, London, England), ‘Under Glass’, by the Clod Ensemble ‘Laughing Matters’, work in progress, , ‘Luz Nas Trevas’ feature length film (Brazil), ‘Ionesco’s ‘The New Tenant’ for the Young Vic Theatre and is well known for her clown Rough, the green clown, in the award winning Slava’s ‘Snowshow’. She creates and tours her own shows under her own company Contemporary Clowning Projects. Her shows include ‘The Gift’ , ‘My Life Is Like A Yo Yo’, ‘only fools (no horses)’ a show about the Shakespearean Fools. ‘Laughing Matters’, ‘Foreigners’ and ‘Alone: All+ One’, are projects in development.

Theatre clowning is a life’s passion and way of life for de Castro. She doesn’t stop working. She is completely dedicated and committed to her work. She is always working on shows, directing and mentoring other companies, developing her own clowns’ personas and learning how to play the ukulele. When she has some free time, she can be seen browsing around street markets, riding her beloved motorbike and feeding the ducks in the park near her house.

Click here to download Angela de Castro’s full CV.

Jack Stark

Clown and IT Geek

Jack is a full-time Professional Idiot, who focuses mostly on clowning under his clown persona Kiki;. He works primarily on the variety circuit, and has therefore built up an extensive network of contacts around the UK and Europe. His routines draw upon his training and experience in a variety of skill-sets, including mime, physical theatre, puppetry, illusion, escapology and more.

As well as touring on the variety circuit, Kiki has spent the last few years working on and performing his 5 star clown show ‘The Weatherman’,  another solo show “Sheets” and a family show “The Man who Knows Everything”. He has recently returned from Cambodia, where he was teaching clowning to disabled artists.

Balt & Hannah

Admin Experts Extraordinaire

We have two additions to our Clown in Office Team!

Hanna Winter and Balt Roger are helping us keep the Institute running smoothly!

Stephen Sobal

Director, Performer, Teacher

Stephen is an multi award winning director, performer, teacher and the artistic director of All in Theatre.

As a director Stephen specialises in playful, physical and comedy theatre.  He has worked on solo shows and large ensemble pieces and whether a devised or scripted piece he always strives to make beautiful and powerful work.
Stephen teaches for many educational and performance based institutions including ALRA (acting tutor) Rose Bruford, Fourth Monkey (Acting through clown and Head of Ensemble 2018), Identity School of Acting (clown, improv and commedia), ICAT (clown and improv) RSC Open Stages, Doreen Bird College, Theatre Royal Bath, The Rose Theatre, The Actor Centre,…
In 2018 Stephen was the acting tutor for the P/T Foundation course at ALRA and was over the moon to hear that over 60% of his students were offered places at accredited drama schools.

He studied acting at ALRA and clown, bouffon and physical comedy with Philippe Gaulier, Complicite’s Jozef Houben, Aitor Basauri, John Wright and John Mowat.

Most recently directing credits include
Bon Ami – All In (Show of the Week – Vault Festival ).
Love Sick – All In (Best Comedy Award Brighton Fringe),
Hysterical – Hoax (Peoples Choice Award at Vault Festival)
and Father of Lies – Bête Noire Productions  (Highly Commended Award at Vault Festival).

“Director Stephen Sobal creates sharp lines of contrast, knitting together a piercingly modern Europe with traditional modes of storytelling to create a thoughtful and current piece of theatre” ★★★★ Broadway Baby

“Painfully funny and surreal. I was doubled up with hysterical laughter in the front row, lost for breath” Total Theatre