Artist Training

Odyssey regularly holds workshops for theatre professionals, often in specialized skills and theatre forms not taught elsewhere in Canada. Past workshops have included: mask, Commedia, improvisation, experimental puppetry, dance-theatre, and more. We have also provided training in international dance-theatre forms including Peking Opera, Indonesian Wayang Wong, Indian Kathakali, and Sri Lankan Kolam. Actors, directors, playwrights, designers, and teachers have participated in our workshops.




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Recent Workshops:

Storytelling and Mask Workshop

Over the weekend of January 10-12th, 2020, we offered a free workshop to members of the Four Nations Exchange, an Indigenous grassroots theatre group led by Suzanne Keeptwo. Our Artistic Director Laurie Steven partnered with Saskatoon-based Cree theatre artist Curtis Peeteetuce to guide participants through exercises in mask and physical theatre to uncover stories and characters within them to share with the group. We closed the workshop with a short presentation for friends and family.
Laurie and Curtis were both blown away by the creativity, honesty, and courage of all the participants. Everyone took such different directions with the masks and enormous steps forward in their artistic practices. Below is a sampling of what some of the participants had to say about what they learned from the workshop:
“I felt I learned so much more from this workshop than I could ever expect. It helped me focus on the art of live performance from the ground up from beginning to our conclusion.”
“I learned not to be afraid…that I can do this. I can use my voice and my actions to make a difference – make you laugh, think or cry!”
We offer many thanks to Suzanne for all her help organizing the workshop, to Curtis for sharing his theatrical approach, and to the incredible group of artists who participated. A special thanks to The University of Ottawa Theatre Department and Arts Court for their important support of this initiative.

Curtis Peeteetuce is a theatre artist from the Beardy’s and Okemasis Cree Nation. He is a former Artistic Director of the Saskatchewan Native Theatre Company and playwright of the popular Rez Christmas Story series. A descendant of Almighty Voice, Curtis is also a director, grass dancer, and storyteller.

Laurie Steven is a playwright, director, dramaturge, and the founding Artistic Director of Odyssey Theatre. Laurie has taught mask, Commedia dell’Arte, improvisation, and writing for physical theatre at the University of Ottawa, community theatres, and high schools, as well as to professional actors through Odyssey.


Artistic Directing for Independent Theatres – SOLD OUT
Six sessions – October 2019-April 2020

Designed to inspire and offer practical assistance to the leaders of Ottawa’s vibrant independent theatre scene, the workshop series will examine the role of the Artistic Director in a range of company models, and provide ideas for effective leadership of a Theatre. Open to current and aspiring Artistic Directors, the sessions will tackle topics such as: articulating artistic vision; creating an identity in the theatre community; having an impact on theatre and on the public; financing your vision; effective grant writing; developing a company structure, including Board of Directors and staff; sustainability; managing creative relationships; and much more.

Cost: Thanks to the subsidies of all presenting partners, the workshop series is offered at a modest rate of $150 (+HST) for all six sessions. A further reduced rate of $100 (+HST) is available for subscribers to Odyssey’s Theatre Professionals Network – sign up below.

Read the full workshop overview here.

Sign up here. Application deadline: October 1, 2019.

NB: To reserve your spot you must fill out the online application form above and pay the workshop fee. Call 613-232-8407 to pay by MasterCard or Visa, or mail or drop off a cheque to 2 Daly Ave, Ottawa, ON, K1N 6E2.

This workshop is presented in partnership with the Ottawa Fringe and Arts Court.

If you would like to join Odyssey’s Theatre Professionals’ Network and receive notices about: upcoming workshops; auditions; administrative, production and artistic jobs; and performance discounts for theatre professionals, please sign up here: