Birmingham Conservatory for Classical Theatre

The Birmingham Conservatory for Classical Theatre at the Stratford Festival is made possible by the support of the Birmingham family, the government of Canada and donors to the Stratford Festival Endowment Foundation. Our thanks to them all. 

Canadian Heritage  Brian Linehan Foundation


History and Philosophy
 
The Birmingham Conservatory for Classical Theatre was founded in 1998 by the Festival’s then Artistic Director, Richard Monette, to prepare talented young actors for the rigours and specific requirements of acting in classical theatre. Originally conceived as an end of season five- to seven-week intensive program under its first Principal, Michael Mawson, it gradually expanded under its second, David Latham; the Conservatory now consists of three terms, from mid-September through mid-February, lasting from 18 to 20 weeks (with a hiatus over the holiday period). 

Martha Henry became the Director of the Birmingham Conservatory in February of 2007. Selected candidates are usually graduates of an accredited theatre training program with at least two years’ experience in the professional theatre. Participants are paid and offered a contract for the Stratford Festival’s following season upon completion of their Conservatory contract. 

The Birmingham Conservatory is unique in that, as an adjunct of one of the world’s most celebrated classical companies, the Conservatory interacts with many of the finest English-speaking actors in North America. The Conservatory is also proud to have access to voice coaches who specialize in classical text, highly experienced movement teachers, actors and directors grounded in Shakespeare (as well as in a range of playwrights up to the present day). The September-October overlap gives the Conservatory participants access to every production playing on the Festival stages before the season closes in November and the Stratford snow begins to fall. 

All Conservatory sessions (with the exception of one day on each stage) take place in the Tanya Moiseiwitsch Rehearsal Hall on the ground floor of the Festival Theatre. Voice, movement and classical text are explored daily. Simply put, Ms Henry’s mandate for the Conservatory participants is that they be able to stand on the Festival stage and be heard – with emotional nuance, intelligence, flexibility and power. And that they will be able to work in any theatre, anywhere in the world.

 

The 2013/2014 Conservatory participants:

 

Sara Farb

Josue Laboucane

Jamie Mac

Jennifer Mogbock

Derek Moran

Karack Osborn

Sarena Parmar

Andrew Robinson

Laura Schutt

Antoine Yared

 

The Conservatory selection process includes applications that lead to auditions, invitations from artistic staff to audition, and invitations to members of our existing company to join. If you would like to apply to the Conservatory, please email a resume and photo to:

Beth Russell
Casting Director
or
Jennifer Emery
Casting Assistant at:
casting@stratfordfestival.ca

Instructors and Directors for the 2013/2014 Birmingham Conservatory for Classical Theatre:

 

Annette av Paul

Frank Bach

Laura Burton

Janet Feindel

Kate Hennig

Lori Holmes

David Latham
Claire Lautier

David Ley

Kristen Linklater

Melinda Little
Keira Loughran

Kate Lynch

Kennedy C. MacKinnon
Jack McDonald

Kelly McEvenue

Seana McKenna

Valerie Moore
Thomas Morgan Jones

Hugh O'Gorman

Stephen Ouimette

Lucy Peacock
Janine Pearson

Chick Reid

E.B. Smith
David Smukler
John Stead

Richard Stewart

Terry Tweed

Nicolas Van Burek 


From Artistic Director Antoni Cimolino
Thirty-three members of the Stratford Festival’s 2013 company have come out of our professional training program, known as the Birmingham Conservatory for Classical Theatre. Founded in 1998, the Conservatory has helped to launch the careers of some of our leading young actors, many of whom I have had the great pleasure of directing. Providing opportunities for young Canadian artists is part of our mission at the Festival, and we hope you will find it as satisfying as we do to watch their growth as they share the stage with some of the finest actors in the world.

Under the leadership of Martha Henry, the Conservatory is made possible by the support of the Birmingham family, the Stratford Festival Endowment Foundation and the Department of Canadian Heritage. Supporting the 2013 in-season work of Birmingham Conservatory participants are Karon C. Bales & Charles E. Beall, The Brian Linehan Charitable Foundation, Robert Summers-Gill, and Alice & Tim Thornton. We thank them for helping us to nurture and support these talented artists in our 2013 company: 

 

Conservatory Alumni & Current Participants in 2013 season

Sarah Afful
Shauna Black
Skye Brandon
Shane Carty
Michelle Giroux
Jonathan Goad
Carmen Grant
Deborah Hay
Brad Hodder
Luke Humphrey
Bethany Jillard
Dion Johnstone
Ruby Joy
Josue Laboucane
Ian Lake
Keira Loughran creative associate for special projects
Kennedy C. MacKinnon coach
Mike Nadajewski
Paul Nolan
Gareth Potter
Christopher Prentice
Anand Rajaram
Andrew Robinson
Sabryn Rock
Tyrone Savage
E.B. Smith
Dorcas Sowunmi
Evan Stillwater tailor
Sara Topham
Dylan Trowbridge
Sophia Walker
Lee Wilson assistant director
Antoine Yared 


Alumni:

 

Under Conservatory            
Principal Michael Mawson


Winter 1999
Timothy Askew
Greg Bryk
Evan Buliung
Michelle Giroux
Jonathan Goad
Florence MacGregor
Thom Marriott
Sarah Mennell
David Snelgrove
Michael Therriault
Nicolas Van Burek
Andy Velasquez

1999 / 2000
Molly Jane Atkinson
Andrew Burr
Wayne Davis
Aaron Franks
Michele Graff
Robert Hamilton
Deborah Hay
Haysam Kadri
Laurie Anne Levier
Kennedy C. MacKinnon
Rami Posner
Michel Protti
Michael Wacholtz

Under Conservatory
Principal, David Latham


2000 / 2001 
Marc R. Bondy 
Paul deJong 
Caleb R. Marshall 
Jason Mitchell 
Brendan Murray 
Ian Novak 
Andy Pogson 
Philip Riccio 
Tara Rosling 
Amy Rutherford 
Michael Schultz 
Jane Spence 
Sara Topham 
Jeff White 

2001 / 2002 
Kyle Blair 
Samantha Espie 
Gary Folka 
Stephen Gartner 
Tara Hughes 
Anthony F. Ingram 
Ieva Lucs 
Sarah McVie 
Aaron Olney 
Courtenay J. Stevens 
Jeffrey Wetsch 
Bart Phillip Williams 

2002 / 2003 
Tom Albrecht 
Jason Beyak 
Lara-Jean Chorostecki 
Paul Fauteux 
Adrienne Gould 
Dana Green 
Darren Hynes 
Kevin McKillip 
Gordon S. Miller 
Philip Griffith Pace 
David Phillips 
David Shelley 
Julie Tepperman 
Danielle Irvine 

2003 / 2004 
Brendan Averett 
Shane Carty 
Dan Chameroy 
Nazneen Contractor 
Sophie Goulet 
Jacob James 
Dion Johnstone 
Jean-Michel Le Gal 
Tanya Low 
Andrew Muir 
Gareth Potter 
Sarah Willson 
Michael Waller  

Under Conservatory
Principal David Latham


2004 / 2005 

Nicolas Billon 
Laura Condlln 
Glenn Davis II 
Martha Farrell 
Lawrence Haegert 
Paul Hopkins 
Anthony Malarky 
Jennifer Mawhinney 
Shaun McComb 
Adam O'Byrne 
Parnelli Parnes 
Evan Stillwater 
Peter van Gestel 
Lee Wilson 

2005 / 2006 
Sean Baek 
Shauna Black 
Nicolá Correia-Damude 
Jonathan Gould 
Melissa Haller 
Brian Hamman 
Stephen Kent 
Keira Loughran 
André Sills 
Tova Smith 
Severn Thompson 
Sophia Walker 
Adam Waxman 

2006 / 2007 
Paul Amos 
Ins Choi 
Aidan deSalaiz 
Raquel Duffy 
Shannon Eizenga 
Edouard Fontaine 
Eli Ham 
Madd Harold 
Sophia Kolinas 
Erin Neal 
David Lefort Nugent 
Daniel Roberts 
Jamie Robinson 
Brendan Rowland 

Under Conservatory
Director, Martha Henry
 

2007 / 2008 
Dalal Badr 
Jon de Leon 
Jesse Aaron Dwyre 
Alana Hawley 
Melanie Keller 
Ian Lake 
Trent Pardy 
Stacie Steadman 

2008 / 2009 
Quincy Armorer 
Dalal Badr - 2nd year 
Skye Brandon 
Jon de Leon - 2nd year 
Jesse Aaron Dwyre - 2nd year 
Alana Hawley - 2nd year 
Ian Lake - 2nd year 
Trent Pardy - 2nd year 
Jennifer Paterson 
Christopher Prentice 
Suzanne Roberts Smith 
Matt Steinberg 

2009 / 2010

Quincy Armorer – 2nd year
Skye Brandon – 2nd year
Bruce Godfree
Chilina Kennedy
Amanda Lisman
Paul Nolan
Jennifer Paterson – 2nd year
Christopher Prentice – 2nd year 

Suzanne Roberts Smith – 2nd year
Andrea Runge 

 

2010 / 2011

Victor Dolhai 
Miranda Edwards 
Josh Epstein 
Bruce Godfree  – 2nd year
Carmen Grant 
Ashleigh Hendry 
Sarah Kitz 
Tyrone Savage 
E.B. Smith 
Dylan Trowbridge

2011 / 2012 

Alden Adair

Sarah Afful

Victor Dolhai – 2nd year
Ryan Field

Carmen Grant – 2nd year

Brad Hodder

Luke Humphrey

Bethany Jillard

Ruby Joy

Ngozi Paul

Tyrone Savage – 2nd year
E.B. Smith – 2nd year

 

2012 / 2013 

Sarah Afful - 2nd year

Brad Hodder - 2nd year

Ruby Joy - 2nd year

Josue Laboucane

Mike Nadajewski

Andrew Robinson

Sabryn Rock

Dorcas Sowunmi

Dylan Trowbridge - 2nd year

Antoine Yared

Ann Stuart (Conservatory Coordinator) Annette Av Paul Antoni Cimolino (General Director) Martha Henry (Director of the Conservatory) Des McAnuff (Artistic Director) Bonnie Green (Assistant Producer) Louis Spritzer Alden Adair E.B. Smith Ruby Joy Victor Dolhai Carmen Grant Ryan Field Brad Hodder Bethany Jillard Tyrone Savage Ngozi Paul Luke Humphrey Sarah Afful