Canadian and international artists will lead a series of free public workshops in preparation for this year’s River Clyde Pageant, titled Wake the River Clyde, in New Glasgow, Prince Edward Island.
Members of the public can learn how to walk on stilts, build puppets, try their hand at playwriting, and participate in a week-long music workshop exploring the New Orleans Jazz Funeral tradition and its connections to PEI musical traditions. It’s all part of the early creation work for the Wake the River Clyde, co-directed by Megan Stewart and Ker Wells. Workshop participants can join the Pageant as performers for the five performances taking place July 29, 30 and August 4, 5 and 6.
Last year’s River Clyde Pageant was a collaboration between artists and volunteers from across PEI, who came together to create a travelling spectacle about the river at the heart of New Glasgow, and the environmental issues that affect its sustainability. This summer, Wake the River Clyde will use a similar model of collaboration but will tell a new story, featuring new and returning characters.
Stilt walking workshops run June 3-11 in Charlottetown and New Glasgow. These sessions are open to anyone age 12 and up, and are led by Ottawa-based stilt teacher and performer Laura Astwood. All participants receive a pair of stilts to keep.
Professional playwright Michael Geither, from Cleveland, Ohio, will teach a creative writing workshop called “Fifty Ways to Start A Play,” from June 11-17. This workshop will include sessions to develop personal creative writing as well as writing for the Pageant. It will focus on writing scenes, monologues and other material for the stage. Sessions take place at The Mill in New Glasgow.
An exciting new addition to this year’s Pageant is the River Clyde Jazz Funeral band that will process over the New Glasgow bridge in a solemn and celebratory scene. Local musicians of all ages, instruments and skill levels are invited to take part in a week-long workshop led by New Orleans performing artists Kathy Randels and Maurice Turner, who will explore the intersections of PEI music with jazz funeral music. This workshop runs July 4-9 at Gulf Shore School in North Rustico.
The Pageant will also feature puppet workshops, led by Nova Scotian puppet builder Ian McFarlane, and a choir led by New York musician and actor Marianne Rendón.
Members of the public are encouraged to get involved in the Pageant and take part in these workshops. To sign up, send us a message via our contact form!