As if February didn’t have enough going on, February 25th is Commedia dell’Arte day. Commedia dell’Arte is an Italian style of comedy theater that has set characters which are over the top exaggerated and has an emphasis on improv. That’s the short version of the explanation, in the long version you spend years studying and practicing it like some people do. You learn the stock characters along with their Italian names like Pantalone, the rich old man. The most famous Commedia character is Harlequin the court jester, also called Arlecchino. He never has much money but he’s always cheerful and can outwit anyone.

As you can tell from the picture masks are a big deal with Commedia dell’Arte. The masks are used so the audience can tell right away who is who and also because they’re funny.

I heard of a great way to celebrate Commedia dell’Arte day. Just randomly break into an Italian accent. If you need help all you have to do is add vowels or just channel Mario from the Nintendo games or my favorite Chico Marx. Don’t be afraid to give it a try, it’sa nicee and easye.