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Course E: Finding Your Voice, Releasing the Creative Juices
Tutor: Sue Colgrave

Course Outline

“Without Wonder and insight the theatre is just a business, with it, it becomes creation” – Bette Davis

This is a workshop for experienced actors and directors. In a supportive and challenging environment, the course will seek to nourish the imagination, encourage spontaneity and unleash the artist’s creative spirit. The week is entirely practical and participants will be sharing their work throughout the project where feedback and further development will be discussed openly within the group.

Sessions will look at finding inspiration and fuelling the imagination through a variety of processes. Participants will work on a variety of theatre games and exercises designed to encourage spontaneity and “thinking outside of the box”. They will explore creative and intellectual responses to various stimuli and material the tutor will provide. We will experiment with montage, tableaux, storytelling and theatre-making and experience working with a range of stage configurations and locations.

We will also look to extend skills of theatrical communication, physical and vocal transformation and dramatic structure by exploring the actor/audience relationship. Garments and props play an important part in the creative process, all participants should bring simple “jumble sale” items- hats, scarves, gloves, and shoes (from slippers to stilettos!)

Most importantly, please recollect a personal experience/story- NOT INVENTED- that falls within the headings “My Most Humiliating Experience” OR “ A Rite of Passage”. These can be from any time in your history from age 5 onwards. Previous participants will find something familiar and something new. Everyone should be prepared to jump in at the deep end and laugh a lot!


About the Tutor

Sue has been a Theatre Practitioner for over 30 years. Trained as an actress under Jean Norman Benedetti, she has worked extensively in Theatre, TV and Radio. As a director, her work has encompassed A wide range of material from Shakespeare to Contemporary Opera. She spent/misspent her youth in various variety theatres of the UK and, as a result, has a passion for Popular Forms. Other passions include Ensemble Theatre, New Writing, Complicite, Caryl Churchill, Stephen Sondheim, and encouraging, facilitating and inspiring artists of all ages to find their voices and express themselves through Drama and Theatre.

For the last 12 years, she has premiered and revived shows for the Edinburgh Fringe including Piaf, The Overcoat, The Shoot Horses Don’t They ? and The Laramie Project. Other professional directing work includes the English Speaking Theatre of Vienna, Oxford Stage Company, Cheltenham Everyman, and Old Red Lion. Current projects are “Groomed to Perfection”, a 15-part podcast exploring coercive control, and “Alladin” for The Kenneth More Theatre.

Sue was part of the pioneering teaching team on the Community Theatre Arts Course at Rose Bruford College working with the likes of Paulette Randall and Bernadine Evaristo. She went on to lead, as Head of The School of Theatre the college’s degrees in Acting, Directing, and Writing, and to create the innovative Actor Musician Course with long-time collaborator Colin Sell. Notable Alumni include Roy Williams, Kerry Godliman and Stephen Graham. She continues to work at many of the UK’s leading Drama Schools as both Acting Coach and Director.

International work includes dissemination for The Project in European Theatre Arts, working with young professional actors from Romania, Belgium, France, Portugal, Germany and the UK culminating in a multi-lingual project written by Mathew Dunster. Six seasons directing graduating actors for the Conference of Drama Schools in New York. Drama Teacher Development for Lamda in India.