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Playwriting Workshop

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Oct 3-4-5, 2014 Kwanlin Dun Cultural Centre – TO REGISTER –

A weekend excursion into performative storytelling within a personal context -facilitated by Dora Award winning artists of ARTICLE 11,
Tara Beagan and Andy Moro

The Specifics

Participants will mine their own life stories to find how personal experiences are reflective of the bigger picture of which they are a part. It will be an exploration of perspective – politicization of the personal – within a theatrical forum. The sessions will be framed by the facilitators’ belief that the work must have a vitality, a theatricality, and be of import. The basis of this is finding the core of a story that is important to the writer/creator. This workshop launches an existing idea on the right path – the writer can then work independently towards an end result that is performative, requiring space and physicality to be complete. In essence, we will take the initial steps to work towards truly theatrical scripts.

❑ No previous experience as a writer or playwright is required, however, the willingness to try and fail is essential.

❑ Participants must have a willingness to speak aloud, or contribute to the words that will be spoken by others. All will exercise an honest ability to allow for the free artistic expression of fellow participants. All opinions are welcome, and they are just that: opinions.

❑ Each participant will be asked to prepare a one to two paragraph statement outlining her/his/their personal artistic mandate. Guidelines/suggestions for this will come once the participation has been booked.


DAY ONE: Session One

A group session, checking in with the climate of the assembled gathering, experience levels, and assessing the directional interest of the group and each writer individually. A brief getting-to-know-you will be followed by sharing of each individual artistic mandate, and existing written work, even if it is in the form of an early idea. Each participant reads his/her/their own work aloud or requests a reader among fellow participants. Longer pieces may be excerpted for this session.

During this meeting, each participant will schedule a one-on-two session with facilitators Beagan and Moro. At this time, images for the work will be discussed, and Moro will begin a brainstorm with the writer as to what world will eventually be staged. Working in the ARTICLE 11 methodology, the design grows with the storytelling, as they are strongest interwoven.


DAY TWO: Meetings and writing time

An interlude of time is scheduled to allow each participant some time to write. As early as possible during this time is also when the facilitators meet with each writer separately. During this interlude, the facilitators remain accessible for set hours of contact – allowing for brief coaching sessions and counsel.


DAY THREE: Session Two

The shape of this day relies largely on the productivity of the participants. If there are several long pieces, smaller groups will be created to ensure each piece has its time to have a response from being read aloud. Questions will be discussed or merely noted, varying writer by writer. We will do some observational brainstorming on what the created worlds look/sound/feel like and compare that with the ideas gathered by each writer with Moro.



The workshop will conclude with a check-in and debrief.
1) What was your greatest discovery during this workshop period?
2) What is the biggest or most pressing question you feel compelled to work out in your writing?
3) Does your artistic mandate need alteration?
3) What are some suggestions as to how this workshop could be shaped differently?


To register call us at 393-2676 or email us.
Fees: $75/2,5 days (Please contact us if this fee is a barrier to you.)

(This workshop is included for New Yukon Voices 2014-15 participants.)



TARA BEAGAN, Ntlakapamux and Irish “Canadian” Beagan served as Artistic Director at Native Earth Performing Arts (NEPA) from February 2011 to December 2013. She has been playwright-in-residence at the National Arts Centre, NEPA and Cahoots. Her plays have been produced by UnSpun Theatre, NEPA, Factory Theatre, Urban Curvz, Crate Productions, KICK Theatre, Caravan Farm, Wrecking Ball, Praxis Theatre, mysterious entity, Theatrefront, Theatre North West, and she has directed her own work at Western Canada Theatre, Gateway, Saskatchewan Native Theatre, Persephone, SummerWorks and NEPA. Tara is honoured to work as a workshop facilitator for youth, and a mentor to emerging First Nations and non-First Nations playwrights. Beagan is a Dora and Betty nominated actor and Dora winning playwright.

ANDY MORO, Mushkegowuk Cree/European Andy is a Toronto based designer who has toured extensively, implementing and operating his own designs internationally since 1990. He is a core member of the creative team at the Banff Centreʼs Indigenous Dance Residency. He co-founded the multi-disciplinary community arts organization Red Pepper Spectacle Arts and the Production Mentorship Program at the Centre for Indigenous Theatre. Andy has worked with Native Earth Performing Arts, New Harlem Productions, Young People’s Theatre, VideoCabaret, Red Sky, Debajehmujig Theatre, Actor’s Repertory Company, Buddies in Bad Times, Sky Gilbert’s Cabaret Theatre, dada kamera, Kaha:wi Dance Theatre, and more. He is a multi-award winner and nominee and has twice been named among Toronto’s top-10 theatre artists. Most recent was the Talking Stick premiere of In Spirit via NEPA, Signal Theatre/DanceWorks/NAC’sA Soldier’s Tale, the WCT/Gateway/Persephone/SNTC Dreary and Izzy and new creation work with the Dancers of Damelahamide and another fulfilling session at the Banff Centreʼs Indigenous Dance Residency.


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