Joseph Travers (Founder, Managing Director, Instructor) (SAFD Certified Fight Director/Teacher, FDC Certified Fight Director) has created fights, stunts and action sequences for stage and screen for twenty – five years, working with performers such as Mary Louise Parker, Peter Scolari, Mia Farrow, Julia Stiles, Peter Strauss and John Cullum, and directors such as Ann Bogart, Kristin Linklater, Eric Simonson, James Lapine, Leigh Silverman and Michael Greif . Recent work includes the Broadway production of Bronx Bombers at Circle-in-the-Square Theatre and the world premier of Billy Porter's While I Yet Live at Primary Stages. He also staged fights for the world premiers of Adam Rapp’s Essential Self – Defense and Sarah Ruhl’s Dead Man’s Cell Phone at Playwrights Horizons. His work has been seen at Irish Repertory Theatre, Primary Stages, Virginia Shakespeare Company, Harbor Stage Company, American Globe Theatre, Ensemble Studio Theatre, New York Theatre Workshop, Lee Strasberg Studio, NYU Experimental Theatre Wing, Seaside Music Theatre, Gallery Players, Attic Ensemble, Wellfleet Harbor Actors Theatre, New Repertory Theatre, as well as a variety of universities and colleges, the New York Renaissance Festival and on tour with the National Shakespeare Company and National Theatre of the Performing Arts. On film, he has served as stunt coordinator for The Depths, Lifted, A-Alike and worked as stunt coordinator and sword master for the fantasy epic Tower of Silence. As a teacher, he has helped thousands of students learn the principles of stage combat at high schools, universities, conservatories, and in private lessons. He teaches stage combat at Columbia University and heads the Stage Combat Program at the American Musical and Dramatic Academy in New York City. He founded Swordplay in 1995 to be New York City's premier provider of instruction in safe and effective stage combat techniques to professional actors. He is pleased and proud that so many performers have chosen to train at Swordplay.
Eugene Solfanelli (Instructor, SAFD Certified Teacher) A member of the SAFD since 2008 and stage combat student since 2001, Eugene has been a professional actor, combatant, fight director, choreographer and stuntman for the past 15 years. A martial artist for over 25 years, he has multiple black belts having studied 8 different martial styles, including tae kwon do, vee ju jitsu, brazilian jiu jitsu, tai chi chuan, kali/escrima, boxing and kickboxing. Eugene is the undergraduate stage combat teacher at Brooklyn College, where he has taught and fight directed multiple classes and shows for the past 8 years. He also teaches in the stage combat department at American Musical and Dramatic Academy and has taught at Tom Toderoff Studios. Recent work includes the role of Mohawk on the hit show Gotham on Fox TV, as well as fight directing, acting, directing and writing for GI60, the international one minute play festival now in its 11th year. His fight work has been seen on ABC, Spike TV,A&E, on regional stages and Off - Broadway. He is an elite certified personal trainer through the I.S.S.A., a certified MMA strength and conditioning coach through NESTA, and a certified group aerobics instructor through the IFA.