Panamerican Routes offered four dynamic workshops with a rare opportunity to learn skills and techniques from some of the most brilliant theatre makers from around the globe.


Dance Puppet Theatre with Federico Restrepo

Colombia + New York
English + Spanish

photo Lee Wexler

Loco7′s 5-day highly physical and visual workshop is geared toward actors, dancers, puppeteers, designers, directors, and educators. You will learn to design and construct your own puppet from paper and to feel and differentiate the movement of each part of the body geared to the performance with the completed puppet.  Choreography is created with the puppets using mime techniques based on the creation of an illusion of space and objects. Each participant will create his or her own character.  Puppets and objects become instruments for the dancer/actor, a style incorporating movement and design, which are hallmarks of Restrepo’s work.

May 7 – 11, 2012

Originally from Colombia, Federico Restrepo is the internationally acclaimed Artistic Director of Loco7 Dance Puppet Theatre Company in New York. He is also a resident puppet designer, choreographer, performer and director of La MaMa ETC. He has taught this popular workshop in Europe and Latin America. Utilizing rhythmic music, dancers, body puppets and larger than life marionettes, Restrepo experiments with choreography which extends beyond the body of the dancer.

Playwriting: Getting Close to the Scene with Carlos Satizábal

English + Spanish

This is a unique experience for artists who wish to explore playwriting through Creación Colectiva (Collective Creation).  Learn hands-on exercises to generate writing and develop “process”, exploring innovative dramaturgical approaches to create experimental and socially motivated theatre.  We are working with a theatre of “presentation” rather than of “representation”.  We will explore the territory of memory to find characters, circumstances and a chain of actions. We will concentrate on both personal and collective work in the space, getting on our feet to improvise with the Creación Colectiva. This is a great learning opportunity for those artists who also wish to work and create with at-risk communities.  We will present a public reading on the final day.

May 18- 21, 2012

Carlos Eduardo Satizábal is Associate Professor at the Universidad Nacional de Colombia, Faculty of Arts / School of Film and TV – MA in Creative Writing, and a member of the prestigious Corporación Colombiana de Teatro in Bogota. He is a writer, playwright, director and actor. He teaches writing for theatre, film and television at the Universidad Nacional, and teaches playwriting at the Canadian La Salle College in Bogotá. For 18 years he has been a researcher and editor for “Workshop of Theatrical Investigation” under the direction of the master Santiago Garcia, founder of La Candelaria Theatre, one of the most important Latin American contemporary theatre groups creating under the approach of Creación Colectiva. Satizábal works extensively with victims of the war in Colombia and has published numerous articles on forced displacement and the armed conflict.  He has given workshops and conferences around the world, and collaborated artistically with many international artists and companies.

La Pasarela with Patricia Ariza

Spanish + English

Co-produced with Nightwood Theatre, Aluna Theatre is proud to offer a rare opportunity to discover and create with Patricia Ariza, one of the leading Latin American women theatre-makers and activists with a deep-rooted commitment to the empowerment of women and victims of war around the world.

First created in 2007 with 45 women in Colombia, La Pasarela has since been presented and staged in Norway, Japan, Mexico and Peru. Aluna Theatre has a long history of artistic exchange with La Corporación Colombiana de Teatro, and is pleased to have Patricia come and develop the Canadian La Pasarela, with women of all backgrounds and diverse disciplines. A maximum of 35 women – actors, dancers, singers, musicians, poets, rappers, spoken word artists, videographers, performance artists, elders, survivors of violence and community leaders will learn from this master, tools to empower women and communities through the process of the Colombian Collective Creation. La Pasarela uses the form of a “fashion show catwalk” and turns it into a feminist argument by using a tool of oppression as a medium of expression. La Pasarela will be presented as part of the Panamerican Routes / Rutas Panamericanas Conference on May 26 at 2 PM at Theatre Passe Muraille.

May 21 – 26, 2012

Patricia Ariza, Artistic Director of La Corporación Colombiana de Teatro, is a beacon of hope and awareness in engaged theatre in a context of civil war. As a child, Ariza became one of Bogota’s million refugees. Later at university, she initiated student involvement in social issues through artistic expression. Upon graduating she began producing high quality independent theatre and in 1966 co-founded Colombia’s first alternative theatre – Teatro La Candelaria. Ariza has formulated a special approach to theatre making that promotes social interaction and thereby reduces conflict. She focuses on specific group such as women displaced by violence, the elderly or market vendors, and through testimony and re-enactment, develops a script centered on the issues in their collective lives.

Personal experience is then transformed into matter for public dialogue through performance. Ariza is the Founding Director of projects such as the Cultural Theatre Movement, National Festival of New Theatre, Festival of Alternative Theatre and the Women on Stage Festival. Patricia Ariza has been honoured with the 2007 Prince Claus Award (Denmark) for her outstanding work over decades to empower the disadvantaged, enabling them to transform their lives through cultural activities, for her efforts to counteract injustice and restore social memory, and for her energetic commitment to the reduction of conflict.

Performance Development with Violeta Luna – El Cuerpo: Territorio y Frontera, The Body: Territory and Border

Mexico + San Francisco
English + Spanish

This three-day workshop is geared toward students and professionals in theatre, dance, spoken-word, performance art and the visual arts who are interested in arte-acción (performance art) and in paratheatre (a highly dynamic and visceral approach to performance that aims to erase traditional divisions between spectators and performers – Jery Grotowski). Participants will use their body and voice as the territory for creation and will develop actions from their personal complexities of memory, identity and their individual and social understanding of race, gender and sexuality. Some of the themes we will investigate include:

  • The Body – experiential exercises, presence and internal strength
  • The Space – in relation to your environment, intervention in public and private spaces
  • Time – real, fictitious, ritualistic
  • Action – creation in situ, reaction, real and fictitious stimuli, audience interaction and how to handle the accidental

Applicants will be required to submit a resume and a paragraph describing why they are interested in this workshop.

May 22 – 24, 2012

Mexico’s Violeta Luna, now living in San Francisco, is an electrifying performance artist and activist from the famous Conceptual Institute of Hybrid Art in San Francisco, Pocha Nostra – an interdisciplinary performance collective under the direction of Guillermo Gomez-Peña. In 1995 she founded Grande y Pequeño (Big and Small), a women’s theatre company that develops original works and experimental stagings of classical plays. She has presented her performance art work and workshops in Cuba, Argentina, Peru, Brazil, Spain, France, Portugal, Norway, Slovenia and Egypt as a solo artist and as a member of La Pocha Nostra. Luna’s work in San Francisco includes a residency at CounterPulse, and the development of a performance group with Latin American immigrant day-labourer women. Her work is deeply provocative, dealing with notions of immigration, cultural identity, traditions, authenticity, rights, cultural access and ownership, in the age of globalization. She uses text, movement, video, visual arts, and installation to create pieces that challenge our notions of this place we call America.