These FREE community based initiatives are excellent opportunities to both view art and also immerse yourself into the artistic process. Sign up for a workshop that will surely get your creative juices flowing, or attend one of the reading nights and just kick back, relax and take in the beautiful words from our talented presenters. Post-show talkbacks give audience members an opportunity to ask that burning question they may have once seeing one of the performances.

Readings & Workshops

  • Reading - KAUR by Agam Darshi (Vancouver)

  • Workshop - Breath, Voice, and Body Connection with Victor Ayala (Vancouver)

  • Workshop - Finding Your Core Essence (female acting workshop) with Agam Darshi (Vancouver)

  • Workshop - Digital Marketing with Amneet Athwal (Surrey)

  • Workshop - Strong Scenes, Stronger Characters (writing workshop) with Paneet Singh (Surrey)

  • Workshop - Comedy Class with Leena Manro (Vancouver)

  • Workshop - Art and Anxiety: Mindfulness and your Artistic Practice with Gavan Cheema (Vancouver)

*Workshops are limited to 20 participants, unless otherwise stated.

Please see below for detailed schedule and registration information!

 

 

workshop - Breath, Voice, and Body Connection WITH Victor Ayala

August 10th - 11am to 4pm
Playwrights Theatre Centre, Vancouver
(map)

**Playwrights Theatre Centre is not wheelchair accessible and is strictly a scent-free space.

This session focuses on breath, voice and body connection. You will explore exercises and games designed to connect you to the present moment, bypass your frontal cortex and access a physical and vocal vocabulary outside your comfort zone. These exercises present personal challenges unique to each participant that often shine a light on emotional blocks and hidden obstacles. 

NOTE: Please arrive to this session well-nourished. Wear clothing that allows for unrestricted physical movement. A small towel and water are also recommended.

Victor Ayala

Victor Ayala

Victor Ayala has been working as an actor for 16 years, and has a wealth of experience on camera and on the stage, including shows such as iZombie, DC’s Legends of Tomorrow, and Lucifer. 

Victor teaches at Vancouver Acting School touching on a variety of subjects, currently offering a voice class to help actors speak from a true place and to broaden their range. 

Victor’s classes borrow from physical theatre techniques such as Pachenko clowning, Grotowski, and Viewpoints, as well as a number of methods geared specifically for the voice. 

 

 

reading - KAUR by Agam Darshi

August 10th - 5pm to 7pm
Playwrights Theatre Centre, Vancouver
(map)

**Playwrights Theatre Centre is not wheelchair accessible and is strictly a scent-free space.

kaur2.jpg

KAUR is a story about five women from different parts of the world and different time periods, who are all connected through a mysterious pain in their right hand.

Maya seeks the help of a psychotherapist to ease a mysterious pain of in her right hand. When she is given medicinal psychedelics to initiate the treatment, she enters a surreal world where she meets four other women who harbor the same pain as her: Gurinder is a newly married woman from India in the 1940s, Virta is an aspiring doctor who must move to England from Kenya during the political turmoil of the 1960s, Sharan is a sexually charged woman from the 1980s who rebels against her parent’s traditional ways while living in England, and finally present day Priya is a thirty-something year old woman who is torn between the conventional terms of marriage and her own desires for a fulfilling and independent life. By connecting to these woman, will Maya be able to heal herself?

Written & Performed by Agam Darshi

Agam Darshi

Agam Darshi

Agam Darshi is an award winning actor and writer. Born in England and raised all over Canada, she currently resides in Los Angeles and Vancouver BC. Agam holds a BFA in visual arts and theatre from the University of Calgary, and a certificate in screenwriting from Langara College. 

With an acting career spanning over 15 years, Agam has worked internationally with legendary filmmakers like Emmy winners Jason Katims, Steven DePaul (The Good Doctor), as well as Charles Binamé and Chris Haddock, garnering awards and nominations along the way.

As a writer, Agam’s screenplay INDIANS IN COWTOWN was one of six scripts accepted into the Whistler Film Festival 2018 Praxis Screenwriter’s lab. To date she has written and produced five short films, including the Leo nominated film Fade Out, which received a Bravo Fact Grant, for which Agam wrote and directed. 

In 2017 Agam returned to the stage with a one-person show she wrote entitled, BURNING POINT at the Railtown Actors Studio to sold out audiences.  

As an advocate for race equality in media, Agam Darshi co-founded the VANCOUVER INTERNATIONAL SOUTH ASIAN FILM FESTIVAL (VISAFF) in 2008.

 

 

workshop - finding your core essence (female acting workshop) WITH Agam Darshi

August 11th - 12pm to 3pm
The Cultch (Green House), Vancouver
(map)

An acting workshop for females or those who identify as female. 

In this 3 hour workshop, learn how to make strong choices, find your inner voice, and discover some truths about the industry. This workshop is designed to enhance your craft by creating a supportive environment where you can shine and learn.

For beginner to advanced actors. You will receive a scene or a monologue that you must prepare beforehand. During the three hours we will warm up, present our scenes, discover our personal essence, and how we can bring that into every audition. We will address the challenges that women (in particular women of color) in the industry face in safe, supportive environment. 

Agam Darshi

Agam Darshi

Agam Darshi is an award winning actor and writer. Born in England and raised all over Canada, she currently resides in Los Angeles and Vancouver BC. Agam holds a BFA in visual arts and theatre from the University of Calgary, and a certificate in screenwriting from Langara College. 

With an acting career spanning over 15 years, Agam has worked internationally with legendary filmmakers like Emmy winners Jason Katims, Steven DePaul (The Good Doctor), as well as Charles Binamé and Chris Haddock, garnering awards and nominations along the way.

As a writer, Agam’s screenplay INDIANS IN COWTOWN was one of six scripts accepted into the Whistler Film Festival 2018 Praxis Screenwriter’s lab. To date she has written and produced five short films, including the Leo nominated film Fade Out, which received a Bravo Fact Grant, for which Agam wrote and directed. 

In 2017 Agam returned to the stage with a one-person show she wrote entitled, BURNING POINT at the Railtown Actors Studio to sold out audiences.  

As an advocate for race equality in media, Agam Darshi co-founded the VANCOUVER INTERNATIONAL SOUTH ASIAN FILM FESTIVAL (VISAFF) in 2008.

 

 

WORKSHOP - Digital Marketing with Amneet Athwal

August 12th - 3pm to 5pm
Kwantlen Polytechnic University, Surrey (map)
Fir Building, Room #1364

Whether you're a marketing novice or a seasoned vet, take your marketing game to the next level with this digital marketing workshop. The world of marketing and promotions has changed, and will continue to change rapidly, so it's important to stay at least one step ahead. Artists often find it difficult to manage the task of marketing themselves, while continuing to be immersed in their artistic practice. Learn some simple tricks, ideas, and philosophies of marketing that will surely help you expand your profile! 

Amneet Athwal

Amneet Athwal

Amneet Athwal is a personal stylist who utilizes her skillset for the purposes of marketing lifestyle and businesses of varying sizes. 'Created by Amneet' is a venture where she explores new companies and their best version of themselves by marketing them in her style choices. She graduated with a major in entrepreneurship and a minor in bio-chemistry. She is actively involved in her community as a young role model, having co-founded SOAR Philanthropic Society, Youth Transforming Society, National Battle for Change, and 'I AM.' She also works to provide support for students via mentorship programs and fundraising efforts that raise thousands of dollars for multiple causes. Amneet is a recipient of the Top 25 Under 25 Award by the Surrey Board of Trade for her philanthropic initiatives and being a young leader in the community. In 2015, she was recognized at the annual Shakti Awards for being one of the top leaders in Greater Vancouver. She has a strong ambition to always be present and available to serve her community, and thus, has taken on the important responsibility of driving SOAR Philanthropic Society into the future.

 

 

workshop - Strong scenes, stronger characters (Writing workshop) with paneet singh

August 12th - 6pm to 9pm
Kwantlen Polytechnic University, Surrey (map)
Fir Building, Room #1364

This interactive workshop focuses on the development of a powerful scene by examining how to create dynamic, well-rounded characters, strong motivations, balanced scene structure, and cultivate authentic conflict with real stakes and tension. Attendees will examine and analyze existing scenes from playwrights as well as have a chance to develop and workshop scenes of their own.

Paneet Singh

Paneet Singh

Paneet Singh is a playwright and filmmaker whose work is largely inspired and informed by Sikh and South Asian culture and history. His best known works are his two stage plays The Undocumented Trial of William C. Hopkinson (Monsoon Festival of Performing Arts), and the critically-acclaimed A Vancouver Guldasta (Diwali in BC/The Cultch), which received an honourable mention in “The Best of Vancouver Theatre in 2018” by Vancouver Presents. Paneet was also picked as one of 2018’s “most exciting fresh faces to watch” by Colin Thomas.

Other film and theatre credits include All's Well That Ends Well (Apprentice Director, Bard on the Beach), Flowers From Venables (Director, Woodenbull Films). Outside of theatre and film, Paneet co-hosts The Nameless Collective podcast and was a founding member of the South Asian Canadian Histories Association.

 

 

workshop - comedy class WITH leena manro

August 13th - 3pm to 6pm
Playwrights Theatre Centre, Vancouver
(map)

**Playwrights Theatre Centre is not wheelchair accessible and is strictly a scent-free space.

Turn that Funny Bone into a HILARIOUS bone by taking Comedy Class with Leena Manro!

Do you want to spruce up your boardroom talks with a little humour? Do you want to be THAT funny guy/gal who gets all the attention at parties? Do you want to have your own Netflix comedy special? (Um, that might be a bit too ambitious for this class; but good luck with that!) Then you must attend this special three hour workshop with comedy veteran Leena Manro. Join this beginner level class to activate your funny bone, and elevate your spirit as you make yourself and those around you laugh and laugh and laugh!  

Leena Manro

Leena Manro

As one of the creators, writers and actors for the hit comedy play series: "I Can't Believe It's Not Butter Chicken", Leena has spent years honing her comedy chops on stage.  Recently, she's been diligently studying and performing standup comedy.

Leena is currently a Founder and Director at All Purpose Creative; a design agency that creates compelling media design experiences where, for the last five years, Leena has been busy using her comic skills to create hilarious promotional and training videos for clients such as IBM. 

Leena believes that humour is a universal language that translates into many mediums and reaches many people; and she is committed to doing just that.

 

 

workshop - art and anxiety: mindfulness and your artistic practice WITH gavan cheema

August 13th - 7pm to 9pm
Playwrights Theatre Centre, Vancouver
(map)

**Playwrights Theatre Centre is not wheelchair accessible and is strictly a scent-free space.

Feeling burnt out? Feeling caught up in the highs and lows of life as a contractor or artist? Need help grounding yourself in your art? Join Gavan Cheema in her workshop on how to incorporate mindfulness and meditation into your daily life and artistic practice. This workshop is for people who are hoping to work through the anxieties that come with being an artist, whether they be emotional, physical or time management based. Together the group will support one another in grounding their work and inspire each other to create art from a more mindful and self aware place. Life is stressful, creating art doesn't have to be! Join us as we navigate ways to get into a more productive and creative headspace! This workshop is open to artists of all disciplines and backgrounds.

Gavan Cheema

Gavan Cheema

Gavan Cheema is a Vancouver based director, creator, community connector and writer. She is currently the Artist-in-Residence at Theatre Conspiracy where she is developing her new piece Jazzy, while also working on her skills as a producer. Gavan is an avid researcher and freelance creative cultural consultant, most recently working on Marie Clement’s play, Iron Peggy and Sarena Parmar’s play, The Orchard (After Chekhov).

Some of her recent directing credits include Burqa Boutique (Revolver Festival), da’ kink in my hair and Marie's Letter (Envision Festival), Danceboy: Shots Edition (Fuse), The [Organization] (Unladylike co), and Disgraced (UBC Players Club).

She has also been an assistant director for The Orchard [after Chekhov] (Arts Club), Victim Impact (Theatre Conspiracy), Foreign Radical (UK tour with Theatre Conspiracy), Men in White (Arts Club) and Bombay Black (Vancouver Fringe Festival).

As an artist Gavan feels deeply passionate about telling stories that are diverse and that celebrate all members of her multicultural Canadian community.

 

 

post-show talkback with playwrights, actors and directors

  • August 10th - KAUR Reading at Playwrights Theatre Centre, Vancouver