Luxembourg European Annual Theatre Summer School

2019 THEME

Theatre demands different muscles and different aspects of one's personality.

Victor Garber (actor)


The theme for 2019 will look at some of the ways in which transformation can affect dramatic performance, as well as the transformative power of theatre.


Graeme Du Fresne: Shifting Styles
(Transformation ideas and techniques in songs)

This option will be predominantly an ensemble singing course with solo opportunities for volunteers. The material will be derived from various transformation ideas and techniques in songs. We’ll take a look at Bruce Springsteen’s Across The Border, a song which has particular significance in 2019. We will look at how change affects poetry in the Art Song genre of setting poems to music. I’ll be taking two examples of choral re-imagining of pop music (The Beatles and Miley Cyrus). We will also be working on various covers including the genre shifts of Scott Bradlee’s ‘Postmodern Jukebox’ where popular music is played and sung in period styles such as The White Stripes redefined as ‘New Orleans 1920’s style or Taylor Swift sung in ‘Motown’ style. We will also work on some of the ‘Swingle Singers’ jazzed up Bach and in anticipation of collaborative work with Peta Lily’s course David Bowie’s ‘hanges.  


Peta Lily: Between Worlds
(Different perspectives)

Transformations, ch-ch-ch-changes – our world is going through major shifts and times such as these invite us to consider things from different perspectives. 
This course takes a wide and loose look at identities, lostness, marginalized voices, place and displacement, blurred boundaries and strange realms.
We will be working with an eclectic range of texts and devising sources including film scripts, plays, poems, novels and songs – for example: Bosnian Poet Goran Simić; Yoko Ono’s book of ‘instructions for art and life’ Grapefruit; song lyrics by Dylan, The Beatles, Bowie and Serge Gainsbourg; scenes from Tarkovsky’s films Stalker and Solaris; Harold Pinter's Mountain Language; Tim Crouch’s plays I Caliban and The Oak Tree, stoning mary by debbie tucker green (author prefers lowercase); Che Walker's play The Frontline; plus texts by writers such as Ursula Guin and Jeanette Winterson exploring blurred borders between genders.
Themes include lostness and exile but also connection and meaning – allowing us to embrace the potential for catharsis and empowerment as we put ourselves into action to express human experience in the creation of/practice of theatre.


Freddie Machin: Le Pain Maudit
(Exploring an actor’s transformational process)

In August 1951, still reeling from the aftermath of war, a sleepy village in the south of France changed forever. Five people died, and many more were injured when an outbreak of mass hysteria struck Pont St Esprit, just north of Avignon. It didn’t take long for the local bakery to be accused of mass poisoning, but the truth behind the outbreak remains a mystery to this day. 
This course will use my new play, Le Pain Maudit, as the basis to explore an actor’s transformational process. The text makes physical and linguistic demands of the actor, which will be interrogated in a practical workshop as we explore this extraordinary, true story. The course is also an opportunity to work with a living writer on a previously unproduced work. Part of the course will deconstruct the play’s development process, so that actors will also get an insight into how a play transforms from idea to reality.