Digital Dramaturgy Initiative — Apply to the Montreal residency

Logo of the Digital Dramaturgy Initiative on top of Montreal skyline
Playwrights’ Workshop Montréal is now accepting applications for a week-long residency, within the Digital Dramaturgy Initiative, to take place from April 26th to May 1st, 2021


Following the first iteration of the project at the Blyth Festival pre-pandemic, the Digital Dramaturgy Initiative (DDI) is a collaboration between Playwrights’ Workshop Montréal, Playwrights Theatre Centre, Manitoba Association of Playwrights and the Blyth Festival.

Logo of the Digital Dramaturgy Initiative

The pandemic has accelerated our use of digital tools.  However, knowledge and financial gaps are still with us. With this reality in mind, we designed three locally based residencies designed to investigate and expand our collective vocabulary with digital technology.

These three distinct week-long residencies have been designed to allow for a deep investigation and articulation of two main questions:

  1. Where are the literacy gaps in managing the processes and systems in the integration of digital components?
  2. How to best organize creative relationships to maximize expertise in the collaboration process?


Covid and its impact on live arts : how do we share and grow work in process. 

APRIL 26 – MAY 1, 2021

Creating theatre inside a pandemic – how to use the tools available, what is possible, and what have we learned so far? How can we use this knowledge to create a more accessible platform for theatre? What can we take back into live theatre?

Organized by Playwrights’ Workshop Montréal, the Montreal residency is looking for theatre performance projects that were conceived for the stage but that now need to be transformed for a digital audience; as well as projects conceived for the new Digital reality. The project may be at any point in the process of creation.

The residency will focus on working with collectives or individuals to discover the possibilities available for the transformation of the work through technology, to a digital platform. This project is funded by the Canada Council for the Arts Digital Literacy Fund, as such, an important component of the work is the dissemination of knowledge and expertise. To this end, applicants must be willing to share parts of their creative process and knowledge gained through the residency. DDI and participants will negotiate fair Intellectual Property rights for educational, non-commercial dissemination of exploratory work undertaken during the residency, an example of which can be found here.

Auxiliary programming over the course of the workshop week will include collective investigations into both traditional and emerging digital tools and technologies, exploring the vocabulary needed to collaborate in digital integration and exploration, and looking at case studies from Canadian and international initiatives.  

Each participating artist will receive a $750 honorarium and is expected to be available for the 5 days of the residency.

We are continuously working to make all of our programs accessible. We recognize that the identity of each person is fundamentally plural, multidimensional, changing and evolving.
We are committed to working with artists to create spaces within which Indigenous artists (First Nations, Métis, and Inuit), racialized artists (including recent immigrants), members of the 2SLGBTQQIPAA+ communities and/or neurodiverse and disabled artists as well as artists living with chronic illness and chronic pain can create.


To apply, please complete the online application form. During the application process, you will be asked to include the following:

  • A description of the project (max. 500 words);
  • An artistic statement in relation to the integration of digital tools;
  • The names of the project’s collaborators, and their creative disciplines;
  • The stage of the work in progress;
  • Your dramaturgical questions being investigated, or what you are investigating;
  • The technologies you are presently using for the project (if any);
  • The technologies you wish you had access to for this project (if known);
  • The knowledge gaps (if you know them) in relation to transforming the work to a digital platform;
  • Any documentation you deem appropriate to the project, sending video files as links.

Audio or video applications are welcomed.

The deadline to submit applications is March 8, 2021 at 5:00PM EST. All applicants will be notified of the results. 

This project is a partnership between
PWM logo
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APPLY NOW: Archipelago Dramaturgies — a world in process

Exploring Practice Intensive - Archipelago Dramaturgies hero image

Join us for a week-long, bilingual workshop of exploring dynamic practices with Jessie Mill and Katalin Trencsényi!

“Every archipelagic thought is a thought of trembling, of non-presumption, but also of openness and sharing.”

— Edouard Glissant, Treatise on the Whole-World

Playwrights’ Workshop Montréal (PWM), in collaboration with the Centre des auteurs dramatiques (CEAD) is announcing their third, week-long dramaturgy intensive workshop, Archipelago Dramaturgies/Archipel de dramaturgies, jointly led by Jessie Mill and Katalin Trencsényi. The aim of the intensive is to explore, exchange, share and innovate dramaturgical practices across cultures and art forms via collaboration, debates and discussion. The environment for our collective discovery (as has always been the case with these intensives) is a shared place where we feel supported to explore together, with a permission to fail and no pressure to deliver. Through these playful exchanges we hope to uncover things that cannot be planned, only found together. The format of the workshop will be hybrid (on-site and online) and bi-lingual (English and French).


(5-day mixed on-site and virtual workshop)

9:30AM to 5:00PM EST every day
Monday, March 8 to Friday, March 12, 2021.

On-site location

7250 Clark St., #103
Montréal, QC
H2R 2Y3

This year’s theme is inspired by the local geography and forces of nature. Combining geography, philosophy and dramaturgy, we want to investigate how thinking with the archipelago (paying attention to the power of cross-currents, connections and the dynamic form of constellations) can help us, performing arts practitioners, to negotiate a fluid balance between a variety of cultures, practices, and knowledge systems. With this workshop we would like to think about practices that evoke and rely on interconnectedness, and inter-relations.

The workshop will be rooted in our local (artistic) communities and will be made to measure to respond to the participants’ projects. The aim is to create rewarding circulations and navigations between the contributions of all the participants and the workshop leaders. 

For each day of the week, we’ll have a different entry to explore dramaturgy from that given perspective: space/time, body/physicality, text/translation, sound/silence/voice, and audience. Through these and the sharing of questions rising from the participants’ concrete and actual working processes and explorations, we want together to find out more about how thinking with the archipelago can inform and perhaps improve our work.

The format  will cover: 

  • work in the studio (as a group);
  • individual work and readings;
  • encounters with invited guests (online and in-situ);
  • discussions;
  • access to visual documents, recordings & films;
  • creating a shared virtual / online library;
  • one-to-one support;
  • one theatre outing;
  • and our week’s closing feast.

To join us on this collective journey, exploration, exchange and practice-improvement, PWM and CEAD are offering the opportunity to participate in this week-long intensive for eight dramaturgs (of any performance discipline) or working pairs (dramaturgs with artist practitioners-playwrights, devisers, designers, choreographers, etc.) from the Quebec community who are interested in this topic, and are currently working on a piece  or have a practice-related investigation that is challenging, innovative in its dramaturgy and resonates with our keywords.

Keywords and inspirations

  • in-between-ness;
  • interconnections;
  • connectivity;
  • dynamic forms;
  • cross currents;
  • sea changes;
  • constellations;
  • relationality;
  • hybridity;
  • metamorphosis;
  • transformation;
  • fluid states.


  • identify yourself as a dramaturg (of any performance discipline, including dance) or be part of a dramaturg/artistic practitioner pairing;
  • have a project that you are working on/part of, that is relevant from a dramaturgical aspect or have a project/a question in mind that you would like to explore in the near future and this workshop would be relevant and useful for developing it;
  • willingness to make a short (15-min) presentation about this particular project for the workshop participants;
  • competency in both English and French to be able to follow and participate in a bi-lingual conversation;
  • willingness to work collaboratively;
  • to be free for the entire length of the workshop week.

Application Instructions

To apply, send a short application in English or French to Harris Frost at with the subject line: Application – Archipelago Dramaturgies. Your application should answer these questions:

  • Applicant(s) name(s) and contact details;
  • What is the work-in process project you are bringing into our working space to examine;
  • How will this project benefit from your participation in the intensive;
  • Your short biography;
  • Confirmation that you are free during the whole period of the workshop, and that you are willing to (and in case of a collaboration have permission to) make a presentation about your work;
  • Any access requirements.

Apply before 11:59PM on January 11, 2021 to ensure that your application will be considered.

About the Workshop Leaders

Photography of Jessie Mill
Photo by Sandrick Mathurin

Jessie Mill has worked as an artistic advisor at the Festival TransAmeriques for its programming in theatre and dance since 2014. She is also responsible for organizing the festival’s artistic encounters and outreach activities, such as the “FTA Clinics”. She provides guidance and support to stage productions (Canada France, Burkina Faso), conducts interviews with artists and teaches on occasion. She is also part of the editorial board of Liberté, a cultural magazine in Quebec. Jessie writes about performances and critical issues in the performing arts. Between 2010 and 2014, she was the international projects’ advisor at the Centre des auteurs dramatiques (CEAD), where she currently serves as associate dramaturg. She currently works as a facilitator at the 2019-2020 edition of the Labo Elan, part of Récréâtrales, a Pan-African residency for writing, research and development in the field of theatre in Ouagadougou.

Photography of Katalin Trencsényi
Photo by Lilla Khoór

Katalin Trencsényi is a dramaturg and researcher of Hungarian origin, based in London. Her areas of interest are contemporary theatre and performance, in particular: new dramaturgy, collaborative processes, women in theatre, and epidemic and theatre. A freelance dramaturg since 2000, Katalin has worked with the National Theatre, the Royal Court Theatre, Soho Theatre, Corali Dance Company, and Deafinitely Theatre, and with many independent artists. As a theatre-maker Katalin has worked and taught internationally: in Belgium, Canada, Hungary, Lithuania, Poland, Romania, Russia, and the US. Katalin co-founded the Dramaturgs’ Network (d’n) in 2001, has worked on its various committees, and served as its President (2010-2012). Katalin is the author of Dramaturgy in the Making. A User’s Guide for Theatre Practitioners (Bloomsbury Methuen Drama, 2015), editor of Bandoneon: Working with Pina Bausch. (Oberon Books, 2016), co-editor with Bernadette Cochrane of New Dramaturgy: International Perspectives on Theory and Practice (Bloomsbury Methuen Drama, 2014). Since 2018 Katalin has been working as the editor of the dramaturgy section of the global theatre portal,

WITH THE collaboration of
This workshop is financially supported by
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Welcome to our Digital Dramaturgy Clinic!

Do you have a performance piece you have been working on for some time, with concepts you want to fold into your work but do not know how to accomplish technically or digitally?

Perhaps you are at the early stages of your next creation, and want to gather information and knowledge on what is possible on a technical and digital level?

Or maybe you had a piece originally intended for live performance, and want to carry it over in a digital format?

“I want to write holograms into my piece, how would holograms work on stage?”

This digital dramaturgy “first-aid” program offers creators a one-time session (up to 2 hours) with tech and digital specialists Emily Soussana & Andrew Scriver (otherwise known as potatoCakes_digital), to discuss their creation and the technical questions they might have. 

After learning about your goals, Emily and Andrew will help you brainstorm and offer possible technical or digital solutions to your needs. They can discuss the technical processes required, as well as potential story-driven digital concepts to best translate your piece digitally. 


The Digital Dramaturgy Clinic is an ongoing program, artists in need of assistance should contact Emily & Andrew at with a short synopsis of their work and the question they wish to address, so that the session can be prepared in advance.

Further consultation can be scheduled if appropriate. This program is set up to help you identify the expertise and technology you need to realize your vision.

project supported by
the FOUNDATION OF GREATER Montréal COVID-19 Collective Fund

Seeking Participants: Interdisciplinary Dramaturgy Lab

Lire l’annonce en français.

A five-day exploration of the art of dramaturgy across three disciplines

Dates: February 4-8, 2019  (Mon.-Fri.)
Times: 9:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. 
Location: Studio 303 (372 Ste-Catherine West, Montreal, QC)
Participation fee: $80

This lab is open to creators, writers, choreographers, dramaturgs and interdisciplinary performance artists.

This 5-day laboratory is a gathering of dramaturgs from various disciplines to exchange best practices and fundamental aspects of live art. Led by Kathy Casey (dance), Dana Dugan (circus) and Sarah Elkashef (theatre), the lab is a space to exchange dramaturgical tools and challenges from an interdisciplinary perspective. It is an opportunity to acknowledge dramaturgy as an art form.

Application guideline: To apply for this training, please submit a bio, your CV, and a short (1-2 paragraph) statement explaining why this training interests you, how it is relevant to your artistic practice and what your expectations are for this lab.

Please send applications to and
Subject line: Interdisciplinary Dramaturgy Lab
Application deadline: January 21, 2019


Born in North Carolina, Kathy Casey began her dance career in 1979 with the Chicago Moving Company. Settled in New York in 1980, she danced for many choreographers before joining the Lar Lubovitch Dance Company in 1984. In 1989, she became a member of Susan Marshall & Company, with whom she had collaborated since 1981. From 1985-1989, she also assisted Mr. Lubovitch and Ms. Marshall in creation. Kathy Casey has danced in Europe, Asia, and North America and continues to give numerous workshops across Canada and the United States. Welcomed by Montréal Danse in 1991, she was appointed Artistic Director of the company in March 1996. A major portion of her work now is collaborating with choreographers on the dramaturgy of the works created for the company. In addition to her work with Montréal Danse, she also works as an artistic advisor with independent choreographers in the city.

Dana Dugan is an American circus artist, performer, pedagogue, and scholar based in Montreal. She was a founding member, programmer, project manager, and producer of the Chicago Contemporary Circus Festival and CirqueOFF. Dana recently completed her Master’s Degree at Concordia University under fellowship researching the circus body and its embodied knowledge. She will continue her research explorations and performance of the circus body and speculative performance narratives as a PhD student at Concordia, Fall 2018. Dana’s work reflects an agenda that advocates for socially conscious performances and alternative, queer, feminist, political narratives that cultivate agency on the circus stage.

Sarah Elkashef is a theatre artist, primarily a dramaturg, working in new play development and interdisciplinary creation. At Playwrights’ Workshop Montréal she leads the Interdisciplinary Writer’s Lab in addition to various other projects. At the National Theatre School of Canada she often works across programs as a dramaturg, creator, and teacher and in 2016 received their Bernard Amyot Award for Teaching. Sarah recently co-created a circus show for families Eat Sweet Feet, and continues to work on High Z, an immersive performance installation for planetariums based on the 2011 Nobel prize winning discovery of the accelerating expansion of the universe. Prior to settling in Canada she was the Senior Reader at Soho Theatre in London, U.K. Sarah has also been an associate producer, company manager, literary associate and more in New York City. She is a graduate of Warwick University in English Literature and Theatre (U.K.), has an M.A. in Theatre from Hunter College (CUNY, NYC), and a Graduate Diploma in Communications from Concordia University (Montreal, Canada).


Presented in collaboration with Studio 303

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Training made possible by

Emploi-Québec and Compétence Culture Logos