APPLY NOW: Script Analysis with Maureen Labonté

This workshop will be held physically in accordance to PWM’s COVID-19 safety procedures. Contact for any questions about the workshop.

This five-day workshop led by Maureen Labonté is an introduction to a script analysis method based on the belief that it is of supreme importance to take the time to read and analyze the play text well, and know it thoroughly before jumping to interpretation. 

It is essential to take the time to dig, to investigate, to question and to ponder what the playwright wrote before jumping to conclusions or interpretation. Maureen uses the term “archeological” to describe it. This investigative work is fundamental to a sound and imaginative take on the work. It is objective and detailed, but also visceral.

Participants will have the chance to : 

  • Learn how to slow down, be curious and enjoy discovering what makes the play work, what is really there versus what you might think is there or what you want to be there. It’s a way to free the imagination.
  • Put opinion on hold, at least temporarily, and grapple with what the playwright has put on the page. Cultivate curiosity and a spirit of inquiry. 
  • Develop a spirit of investigation. Learn to ask good questions in order to get at the mystery that’s at the heart of the script and discover its beauty, magic, musicality, passion
  • And finally, after a detailed analysis (micro) learn how to pull back (up) in order to arrive at a synthesis of your discoveries (macro) and move into pre-production and eventually the rehearsal hall and the stage. 

“The vision of a great play is inextricably bound up with the exact words of the text.”

Robert Benedetti


(5-day workshop)

Session 1: Monday, November 8th, 2021 10AM to 2PM

Session 2: Tuesday, November 9th, 2021
1PM to 5PM

Session 3: Wednesday, November 10th, 2021
10AM to 2PM

Session 4: Thursday, November 11th, 2021

Session 5: Friday, November 12th, 2021

Possibility of an extra 2-hour session on Saturday, November 13th, 2021.

NOTE: Participants will be assigned a play to read between the first and second sessions. This assignment is mandatory and central to the workshop.


PWM Studio
7250 Clark St., #103
Montreal, QC
H2R 2Y3

Application Instructions

  • Please send us a bio and/or artistic CV as well as a brief (1-2 paragraph) statement explaining why this workshop interests you, how it is relevant to your artistic practice, and what your expectations are.
  • The workshop is open to playwrights, dramaturges and other theatre creators with some professional experience.
  • Send applications and any questions to with the subject line: Exploring Practice with Maureen Labonté.

Apply before 1PM EST on October 4th, 2021 to ensure that your application will be considered.

About the Workshop Leader

Photo by Nasuna Stuart-Ulin

Maureen Labonté is a translator, dramaturg and teacher. She has translated over forty Quebec plays into English. And Slowly Beauty (Talonbooks) her translation of Lentement la beauté by Quebec City playwright, Michel Nadeau, was a finalist for the 2014 Governor General’s Literary Award in Translation.

Maureen has worked as a dramaturg and coordinated play development programs in theatres and play development centres across the country. She was the Co-Director of the Playwrights’ Lab at the Banff Center for the Arts from 2006 to 2012 and has taught at the National Theatre School of Canada since the mid-90’s.

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APPLY NOW: Creating Object Theatre with La Pire Espèce

Due to its hands-on approach, this workshop will be held physically in accordance to PWM’s COVID-19 safety procedures. Contact for any questions about the workshop.

*UPDATE – May 25, 2021*
Application deadline extended to Friday, May 28 2021 at 5 PM EST.

Open to playwrights, puppeteers and other theatre creators, this bilingual four-day workshop led by Olivier Ducas and Francis Monty, co-artistic directors of the Théâtre de la Pire Espèce will guide participants through a creative process where image and text intermingle, a process in which the form emerges from the tension between all simultaneously examined scenic elements.

The unique form of object theatre is built around three key aspects: clear and poetic language, the possibilities of the object itself, and the actor’s performance, both manipulator and storyteller. Through hands-on exercises and practical discussions, La Pire Espèce will immerse you in the exciting, specialized and minimalist art of object theatre.


(4-day workshop)

9:30AM to 3:30PM EST every day

Session 1: Friday, June 25, 2021
Session 2: Monday, June 28, 2021
Session 3: Tuesday, June 29, 2021
Session 4: Wednesday, June 30, 2021


June 25th:
PWM Studio
7250 Clark St., #103
Montreal, QC
H2R 2Y3

June 28th-30th:
Maison internationale des arts de la marionnette
30, Saint-Just ave.
Montreal, QC
H2V 1X8

Creating Object Theatre is presented in collaboration with the Association québécoise des marionnettistes (AQM). The workshop is open to playwrights, puppeteers, performers and interdisciplinary creators. Members of the AQM are encouraged to apply. Please note that this is a hands-on workshop with some performance-based exercises. The workshop will be led bilingually in English and French, participants will be encouraged to express themselves in either language.

Application Instructions

  • Please send us a bio and/or artistic CV as well as a brief (1-2 paragraph) statement explaining why this workshop interests you, how it is relevant to your artistic practice, and what your expectations are.
  • Send applications and any questions to with the subject line: Exploring Practice with Pire Espèce.
  • You may send your application in English or French.

Apply before 5PM EST on May 28, 2021 to ensure that your application will be considered.

About the Workshop Leaders

Headshot of Olivier Ducas
Photo by Mathieu Doyon

Olivier Ducas studied acting at the National Theatre School of Canada. His decisive encounter with Francis Monty led in 1999 to the founding of Théâtre de la Pire Espèce, for which they act as co-artistic director. He also cofounded Théâtre Aux Écuries (2005) a creation center and theatre venue in Montreal and was one of Carte Premiere’s initiators. A playwright, actor, director and object/puppet manipulator, he is the co-creator of the company’s productions (Ubu on the Table, Perseus, Gestes impies et rites sacrés, Die Reise, Futur intérieur and L’Effet Hyde) that have toured across Canada, Europe, Mexico and Brazil over the last 20 years. In 2008, he single-handedly wrote and directed Roland, la vérité du vainqueur, a show for two actor-storytellers for teen audiences. In 2014, he repeated the experience with Cities, adding solo performer to his list of credits. He is currently working on the Contes zen du potager, a series of short, minimalist forms, where vegetables display all their substance. Ducas is a leading object theatre director in Canada. Research in object and image-based playwriting is at the core of his actions as a creator. In addition to his creative work, Ducas also gives object theatre classes for professionals, theatre school professors and theatre students.

Headshot of Francis Monty
Photo by Mathieu Doyon

A 1997 graduate of the playwrighting program at the National Theatre School of Canada, Francis Monty is a theatrical jack of all trades – directing, clowning, puppetry and his many writing projects all intertwine. In 1999 he co-founded Théâtre de la Pire Espèce with Olivier Ducas, and both share the position of artistic director. He has co-created many of the company’s plays, including Ubu on the table and Perseus. A number of his plays have travelled across Canada, and to Brazil and Europe, including Par les temps qui rouillentDéclownestrationTraces de clouneLéon le nulErnest T.Petit bonhomme en papier carbone and Nous sommes mille en équilibre fragile. He received the 2005 Masque award for best original script for Romances et karaoké, the 2014 Cochon dramatique for best original script for Petit bonhomme en papier carbone at the Gala des Cochons d’or and Ernest T. was nominated for best original script for young audiences for the Louise LaHaye Award.

WITH THE collaboration of
This workshop is financially supported by
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Apply Now: Writing and Devising For Puppetry With Clea Minaker

Lire cette annonce en français

Dates: November 5-8th, 2019 (4-day workshop)
Time: 10 AM – 3 PM Each day
Location: Maison internationale des arts de la marionnette: 30 Avenue Saint-Just, Outremont, QC
Fee: $60 (please contact us if this fee would be an obstacle to your participation)

Writing and Devising Puppetry: Interdisciplinary Approaches to Creation

Presented in collaboration with the Association Québécoise des marionnettistes (AQM)

This  four-day workshop is designed as a laboratory to explore and experiment with puppetry and the interdisciplinary creation methods it employs as unique form of scenic writing.

In puppetry, narratives unfurl as interrelated threads woven from; objects and materials, movement and presence, light, sound and/or text. As performers activate these elements: bringing them into relationship with each other, with time, and with space: a singular poetic language is formed.

This workshop asks the question, what does it mean to create and compose in a language that is both material and time based? What are visual dramaturgies? And, where do we begin when we wish to ‘write’ with images?

Throughout the workshop, participants will be invited to engage in puppetry and performance exercises, as well as to experiment with visual mediums and creative writing techniques, in the construction of performed visual narratives.

This workshop is not designed as an introduction to technical aspects of creating or manipulating puppets, but views the puppetry arts as a large family of theatrical forms wherein material and performer meet. The workshop invites participants of diverse backgrounds (performance, puppetry, design, writing, stage technique, visual arts etc…) to gain greater perspective on the unique storytelling opportunities that puppetry presents.

In addition to structured improvisations, individual and group exercises, participants will be given (some) opportunities to explore projects of personal interest within the context of the workshop.

Note: This workshop will take place primarily in English, but many of the exercises and discussions will be led in English and French in order to best accommodate all participants.

How to Apply:

Please send your CV and/or bio as well as a brief paragraph explaining why you are interested in this workshop, and your experience with puppetry, and/or interdisciplinary approaches to creation to using the subject line: Exploring Practice with Clea Minaker.  The deadline to apply is Thursday October 3rd, 2019 before 1pm

Biography of Clea Minaker

Clea Minaker is a puppeteer, designer, director, and interdisciplinary creator who graduated from the sixth promotion (2002-2005) at L’École Nationale Supérieure des Arts de la Marionnette in Charleville‐Mézières, France. Through her personal creations, Clea has explored an interest for shadow, light, live video projections, as well as the poetics of manipulation and corporeal gesture.

She has collaborated across artistic disciplines: in theatre, live music, opera, dance, film, and visual arts, including collaborations with Feist (The Reminder Tour 2007/2008), Atom Egoyan, So-called, Kid Koala. She has created works for: the National Arts Centre Orchestra, Convergence: an International Summit on Art and Technology at the Banff Centre, IF! Istanbul, The Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego, and Festival Casteliers. Clea premiered her first full-length solo performance The Book of Thel, at Théâtre Lachapelle, Scènes Contemporains in 2013.

Clea has taught puppetry, shadow puppetry, and interdisciplinary creation at; U.Q.A.M ‘d.e.s.s marionette contemporain’, Concordia University, National Theatre School of Canada, Playwright’s Workshop Montreal, U.B.C.O, Mcgill University. She is currently co-director of the Banff Centre Puppet Intensive offered by The Old Trout Puppet Workshop.

In 2009 Clea was awarded the Siminovitch Protégé Prize for Theatre Design by prize Laureate and puppeteer Ronnie Burkett.

This workshop is presented in collaboration with:

Association québécoise des marionnettistes

Our exploring practice series is supported by:

Emploi-Québec and Compétence Culture Logos

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