Ian Watson large

Ian Watson

Fifth season: Text coach. Training: A native of Winnipeg, Ian studied at the Vancouver Playhouse Acting School under David Latham and voice teacher Jo Jo Rideout. Acting: In 1981, Ian joined the National Arts Centre’s English Theatre company (under Artistic Director John Wood), appearing there in over 11 major productions through three seasons. Ian was a member of the Stratford Festival’s acting company for four seasons (1984, ’86, ’89 and ’90), appearing as Puck, Firk, Lennox and Silvius, among others. He has also performed with Manitoba Theatre Centre, The Grand Theatre, Centaur, Persephone, The Piggery (North Hatley, Quebec) and Theatre Lac Brôme, among others. In 1988 he was a member of Gilles Maheu’s company Carbone 14, and participated in the creation of their seminal production Le Dortoire. Teaching: From 1996 to 2001, Ian was a text teacher at the National Theatre School. While there he taught Shakespeare to all three years in the acting program, assisted Michael Mawson on second-year studio Shakespeare productions and coached and/or assistant-directed on third-year productions. From 2001 to 2006, he was a text teacher and coach with Stratford’s Birmingham Conservatory for Classical Theatre, under principal David Latham. He frequently teaches and coaches there part-time under the current director, Martha Henry. He also teaches for the Festival’s Education Department, and is a guest instructor for the Festival’s Michael Langham Workshop for Classical Direction. Since 2003, Ian has been a faculty member at Ryerson Theatre School, teaching Shakespeare to both second- and fourth-year acting students. There, he has directed second-year productions of As You Like It, Romeo and Juliet, Richard III, King Lear, Love’s Labour’s Lost and A Midsummer Night’s Dream. He has been a frequent Shakespeare instructor at George Brown Theatre School. He has also taught at the University of Waterloo, CEGEP John Abbott College and Concordia University. He conducts regular workshops with Shakespeare by the Sea Festival in St John’s, Newfoundland. In February-March, 2011, he coached text for Theatre Calgary’s production of Much Ado About Nothing, directed by Artistic Director Dennis Garnhum. This past year he returned to the National Theatre School, to teach and coach Shakespeare under newly appointed Director Alisa Palmer.