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Photo by William Yong

Legacy Voice Montreal Workshop
Montreal 3 Day Workshop 
Friday April 17 - Sunday April 19, 2020
10:00am - 6:00pm
Location: John Molson School of Business, 1450 Guy St., 7th floor  

What are the legacies we carry and those we leave behind?  Diane Roberts, in collaboration with David Smukler and Gerry Trenthaminvite you into an exploration of root cultural voice, rhythm and performance. Participants will have an opportunity to develop a deeper understanding of their unique breath and ‘core’ voice in order to foster a tangible awareness of vocal, physical and rhythmic potential.

This workshop is for anyone interested in expanding their vocal capacity; i.e. actors, dancers, singers, students, writers, directors,

change leaders, facilitators, etc.  We welcome all levels of experience and will gear our work to the needs of the group.
More Information
In the Legacy Voice workshop, we will consider our bodies (including mind, body, voice/breath and spirit) working in and as a creative village. Together, we will discover tools to bring our emerging stories, memories, gestures and movements to life within the structure of a village circle. Using call and response repetitive song cycles from Caribbean and African traditions, exploration of free and dynamic breath, rhythm posture and gesture we will investigate how our voices are rooted in our own ancestry and how our particular ancestry moves through our bodies.

At the centre of this process is the acknowledgement that everything we need to draw on for inspiration is stored in our bodies as stories and fragments of stories: mingled in our blood, buried in our bones. In the performer’s village the witness is as important as the performer and there are several layers to witnessing. As witnesses and performers you are in the village circle witnessing yourselves, your fellow villagers and the shifting and changing environment around you as you collectively move closer to the creative fire.
What is our responsibility and role as performers as vessels for the many stories that we inhabit and that flow through us, that take root and inhabit us? What are the legacies we carry and those we leave behind?

Our goal in the workshop is to reach deep under our feet under the earth below. To draw up the power of our mother tongue rooting which is: cultural, physical, spiritual, historic and mysterious; and fire it into passionate urgent expressions through embodied breath, voice, rhythm and language that leans towards true liberation. Our experiment in these sessions is to work inside and outside rhythm, to work from free and vibrant voice, to work with the natural impulses within the village and to find out how we might enliven our performances so that they are relevant, connected, alive and spontaneous. We seek to train intuitive thinking and to perform with the whole body, fully.

We enter the circle of the dance with joy and the knowledge/assurance of connection, understanding, acceptance. We hear the resonance of our unsung songs in relationship to the many songs that surround, intersect and envelop us. We awaken our story bodies to possibilities for spontaneity, for ceremony, for play that we may tap into the certain something that surges up inside from the soles of our feet. By stepping into the unknown and allowing for fresh sensations to surge up, we let the poetry speak to our soul’s desires.
Building blocks to bring into the workshop: We invite you to choose an Ancestor to bring in to the workshop—someone who pops into your head when you read this or someone who you have a lot of curiosity about. 

We also invite you to bring in a text - no more than 8 lines long - from your ancestral or root cultural tradition. This will be spoken word so memorized, if possible. It can be a myth, a story, a poem, a proverb, a passage from a speech. This should be a piece with which you resonate and feel a deep personal connection, and that you wish to explore further.


Work in the studio will begin promptly Friday, Saturday, and Sunday at 10:00am. There will be an hour lunch break from1:00 – 2:00pm and other breaks as needed during the day.


$280 / $210 (early bird rate before March 6)

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