Holly Stoppit
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Fooling + IFS five-day lab

What happens when Fooling meets Internal Family Systems (IFS)? Let’s find out!


This is a brand new advanced Fooling course for a small group of Holly’s returning students. 

What is IFS?

IFS is a therapeutic system which is based on the theory that we are all made up of many parts (ie feelings, sensations, thoughts, memories, dreams, fantasies…). In an IFS session, people are guided to investigate their inner parts, to find out where the parts live in or around the body, to discover what their roles are, how the parts feel about their roles and  how the parts feel about each other.

Through this exploration, people can develop a more compassionate relationship with their inner voices, which in turn can enable parts to let go of their burdensome roles, which frees up the bound-up energy in the system. You can read more on Holly's take on IFS here.

What's going to happen in the workshop?

In this workshop we’ll explore some of the components of Internal Family Systems:

  • We’ll get to know some of our inner masks / parts / voices through visualisation, artwork, embodiment and writing. 

  • We’ll explore their functions and their fears, discovering all the ways they try to keep us safe. 

  • We’ll explore the relationship between us and our parts and our parts and each other.

We’ll explore how this fits together with Fooling performance:

  • Perhaps knowing more about our masks / parts will bring new dimensions and qualities to our play?

  • Perhaps IFS can help to free up our performers from their binds with our inner protectors?

  • Perhaps developing more compassion towards our parts will help us get a clearer sense of what we want to put on the stage and what we want to keep private?

If you’ve done at least one of Holly’s 5-day or 3-day Introduction To Fooling courses, you are welcome to apply to join the Fooling / IFS laboratory.

Where does this work come from?

Fooling has formed the foundation for most of Holly’s performing / directing work since she began her training with Master Fool, Franki Anderson, 20 years ago. Over the years, Holly has woven in many strands of her professional training and experience, including mindfulness, dramatherapy, dance-movement exploration, playful voice work, communication skills training, creative writing and sacred clown to develop her own version of the form.

Holly is artistic director of Beyond The Ridiculous, a public performance company of fools.

Holly has recently trained in Internal Family Systems with IFSUK and has been integrating it into her one-to-one therapy, supervision, consultancies and group workshops with fascinating results. 

Holly has already started exploring what happens when Fooling meets IFS, through setting up experimental labs with various collaborators - including performers, therapists and IFS practitioners. You can read about that here

She is very excited to open this exploration up to the wider Fools Community where together we can continue to discover the scope of this melting pot!

This workshop will be co-facilitated by Saskia Solomons. 

Saskia Solomons is a Lecoq-trained clown-idiot, physical theatre performer, deviser, storyteller and facilitator. She/they are also a Mindfulness Hatha Yoga teacher and Internal Family Systems (IFS) practitioner. Saskia explored combining IFS with clowning in her/their recent Edinburgh Fringe solo show, ‘Fool’s Gold’ and is passionate about blending compassion-based embodied practices with dynamic, expressive play. 

Who is it for?

You need to have done at least one of Holly’s 5-day or 3-day Introduction To Fooling courses to apply for this course.

This course is booking on a first come, first served basis. It’s for a very small group of 8-10 participants, so that everyone gets a good amount of supported stage-time.


Dates: Monday 8th - Friday 12th April 2024

Times: 10am-6pm each day

Venue: St Werburghs, Bristol (venue details will be sent to you once your place is secured) 

Cost: £500 standard / £460 low income / £420 in education or on benefits 

Applications: This course is booking on a first come, first served basis. There is an application process to make sure you're a good fit for the course and to gather a bit of info to feed into Hollys' planning. Application form below.

Cancellation Policy

> If you need to cancel your place before the course begins, full refunds can only be given up until two weeks before the course starts.

> Should you need to cancel your place after this date, 50% of your payment will be retained, unless your place can be suitably filled.

> For drop-outs within 72 hours (3 days) of the start of the course, your full fee will be retained

> In the event of you needing to self isolate because of covid, you will be able to get your money back

> If Holly needs to cancel this course for any reason, you will be offered alternative dates. If you are unable to attend the rescheduled dates, then we will offer a refund.

BOOK A PLACE ON Fooling + IFS five-day lab


08 April 2024 - 12 April 2024

Apply now

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