A professional development workshop by Convergence Theatre artistic directors Julie Tepperman (actor-playwright) and Aaron Willis (actor-director)
DATES: Monday July 23 – Friday July 27
LOCATION: Theatre Passe Muraille’s rehearsal hall (3rd floor) 54 Wolseley Street (just north of Queen Street West, east off of Bathurst Street)
COST: $375 (+ $48.75 HST)
20% DISCOUNT*: $300 (+ $39 HST)
DISCOUNT ELIGIBILITY: CAEA & TAPA members OR actors who’ve graduated from a recognized theatre school training program in 2011 or 2012.
CLASS SIZE LIMIT: 12 people
CLASS ELIGIBILITY: Actors who have graduated from a recognized theatre training program OR have been working professionally in theatre for at least three years.
If you are an actor who has never written or directed before, or are just beginning to explore writing and directing, this workshop is for you!
Actors tend to be curiously underused in a playwright’s development process. Actors are actually a huge asset to playwrights and ‘new-play-development’, AND often make good writers themselves! Together we’ll examine how actors can harness the skills they already have and apply them to writing. We will experiment with a series of writing exercises that are “ways in”, and we’ll explore strategies for generating material, individually and collectively, and look at where you might go from there. With every piece generated, rather than simply reading it out loud, we’ll get up on our feet and play with how staging the material can actually inform the direction of the writing. This ‘on-your-feet’ component will illustrate, through practice, how physicalizing as part of the process can be of great value to the playwright, and that the skills we have as actors when we break down scenes and monologues, absolutely applies to the playwright too.
Actors often make the best directors. Using the newly written material generated in the workshop, we‘ll look at how a director/dramaturge can usefully collaborate with a writer on new work, in both a workshop and rehearsal environment. We’ll also use previously published texts, in order to explore methods of research, script preparation, ways to speak to actors (and your design team) in a helpful and useful way, as well as how to ask yourself the questions that will lead you to a clear vision of the play.
Also of interest…
- practical tips for finding and establishing healthy playwright-dramaturge-director relationships
- a review of grants available for playwrights and directors
- how to put yourself out there / how your agent can best help you get work as a writer/director
- things to think about if planning on self-producing
- current opportunities that exist for playwrights and directors who are seeking professional development / mentorship opportunities in and around Toronto.
APPLICATION PROCESS: Please e-mail email@example.com with a headshot & resume, and a brief introduction outlining your goals for the workshop.
JULIE & AARON’S BIOS…
Julie Tepperman is an actor, playwright and educator; Aaron Willis is an actor, director and educator. Together they are co-artistic directors of Convergence Theatre, creators of the hit plays AutoShow, The Gladstone Variations and YICHUD (Seclusion). They have been working professionally as actors since graduating from George Brown Theatre School in 2001 and started to work as playwright / director respectively in 2006 with the founding of Convergence Theatre.
Aaron & Julie’s acting credits range from productions at The Stratford Shakespeare Festival, to Toronto mainstages such as Theatre Passe Muraille, Tarragon Theatre, Factory Theatre, Roseneath Theatre, as well as countless indie theatres and Toronto theatre festivals such as The Toronto Fringe, Next Stage, SummerWorks, Lab Cab, HATCH, Ashkenaz, Free Fall and TPM’s Buzz Festival.
As a Playwright, Julie wrote ROSY (for AutoShow), I Grow Old (for The Gladstone Variations – Dora nomination), YICHUD (Seclusion), which is published by Playwrights Canada Press, and a re-imagining of the August Strindberg play The Father, for Winnipeg Jewish Theatre / Manitoba Theatre Centre.
As a Director, Aaron recently directed Christopher Shinn’s play Other People (Mutual Friends Co-op), and Melody Johnson’s hit one-woman show Miss Caledonia (co-directed with Rick Roberts), which will be at Tarragon Theatre in the fall of 2012 and the NAC in the spring of 2013. He was part of The Stratford Shakespeare Festival’s inaugural Michael Langham Workshop for Classical Theatre Direction where he assistant directed Evita, as well as Much Ado About Nothing under the direction of the Shaw Festival’s longest-serving Artistic Director, Christopher Newton. For Convergence Theatre: AutoShow (co-directed with Rebecca Benson); The Tearful Bride (for The Gladstone Variations – Dora nomination), YICHUD (Seclusion) (co-directed with Richard Greenblatt).
Aaron & Julie combined have taught workshops for: The Stratford Festival’s Teaching Shakespeare School, Ryerson University / ACT 2 STUDIO, The Luminato Festival, The Toronto and Peel District School Boards, StudentWrites and The Sears Ontario Drama Festival. Julie has taught playwriting workshops with Diaspora Dialogues, twice facilitated The Paprika Festival ‘Creators’ Unit’ and teaches ‘The Business of Acting’ at George Brown Theatre School.
OTHER: Julie was nominated for the Ontario Arts Council’s KM Hunter Artist Award in 2009, and was Playwright-in-Residence at Theatre Passe Muraille for their 2010-11 season. Aaron was nominated for the 2011 John Hirsch Directing Award and the 2012 Pauline McGibbon Award. He is currently the Artistic Producer for Theatre Passe Muraille’s ‘Beyond Walls’ season. The Gladstone Variations was listed #2 in NOW Magazine’s “Top Ten Toronto Productions of the Decade”.
They have 5 Dora Award nominations between them. Convergence Theatre is currently a Resident Company at Theatre Passe Muraille.