Testimonials

Since the inception of Directors Lab North in 2011, over 200 directors from around the globe have participated in the Lab. We are so proud to have hosted these exceptional artists. We always end each year with a session asking the Labbies to share a reflection of their time spent with us. Here are some of their thoughts over the years.

Testimonials

Since the inception of Directors Lab North in 2011, over 200 directors from around the globe have participated in the Lab. We are so proud to have hosted these exceptional artists. We always end each year with a session asking the Labbies to share a reflection of their time spent with us. Here are some of their thoughts over the years.

“The Lab transformed my craft into a life’s work. That’s a very scary, beautiful and rare thing.”Samuel Wilson, Brooklyn
2016 Labbie
“The Lab transformed my craft into a life’s work. That’s a very scary, beautiful and rare thing.”Samuel Wilson, Brooklyn
2016 Labbie
“DLN has challenged, surprised and ultimately reinvigorated my practice not just as a director but as an artist. The connections made here have already profoundly impacted my creative world. The DLN is vital for both the local and global artistic ecology.”Jessie Fraser, Toronto
2016 Labbie
“DLN has challenged, surprised and ultimately reinvigorated my practice not just as a director but as an artist. The connections made here have already profoundly impacted my creative world. The DLN is vital for both the local and global artistic ecology.”Jessie Fraser, Toronto
2016 Labbie
“Directors Lab North is where we track the pulse of emerging theatre practice in Canada and abroad. It is an innovative think tank, a crucible for forging new visions and new voices that will shape the future of our theatrical culture.”Chris Jackman, Toronto
2014 Labbie
“My week with Directors Lab North was stimulating, challenging and transformative. What a rare opportunity to engage in discussion, debate and discourse with other directors. I came to this lab with my own ideas on the practice of directing and those ideas have been challenged , blown up and turned upside down- in the absolute best way possible. I’m leaving here inspired to get to work.”Charlie Johnson, New York
2018 Labbie
“The Lab has expanded my vision of what it means to be a director in the theatre of today – the pure joy, constraint, wonder and questioning that is required of me. I leave the lab dreaming of the artist I will grow to be, one that embraces what I already know and asks “What else?””Katrina Darychuk, Toronto
2016 Labbie
“DLN connected me with an International network of peers and equipped me with new approaches and tools for my craft. Every director should participate at least once.”Peter Pasyk, Toronto
2018 Labbie
“DLN will remind, inspire, frustrate, grow, challenge, motivate and expand your practice as an artist and a citizen.”Ann Kreitman, Chicago
2016 Labbie
“An exquisite crucible of creativity and learning. Thank you so much for this life changing opportunity.”Allegra Fulton, Toronto
2016 Labbie
“I’ve rarely felt myself grow artistically like I did in Directors Lab North.”Eric Taylor, New York
2018 Labbie
“Amazing explosion and exchange of ideas, practices and culture that will inform the questions I ask of my craft for the next 10 years or more.”Brendan Howlett McMurty, Toronto
2013 Labbie
“Eight days of raising the level of one’s practice in a gathering of diverse and generous colleagues from all over the world.”Isabella Stefanescu, Waterloo
2018 Labbie
“A fantastic opportunity for directors to network and exchange ideas and nurture their own creativity. Incredibly worthwhile! I absolutely support what is being developed within the theatre community by these folks – an act of generosity and love.”Sonia Norris, Toronto
2013 Labbie
“The organizers were masterful in their design of the event. Every workshop informed the other. This is an invaluable and vital resource for the development of theatre artistry in this nation and for global development through collaborations.”Jill Carter, Toronto
2013 Labbie
“This has been an incredible and inspiring week. As directors we can get so isolated personally and artistically in a box, and this reminds us to stay open and playful and inquisitive. There is nothing quite as valuable for directors who are actively practicing as connection.”Kendra Jones, Winnipeg
2018 Labbie
“These four days have been truly inspirational . They have relit my desire to keep learning. Really an invaluable journey for any director.”Alan Kinsella, Ireland
2013 Labbie
“The depth of process work and the sharing of fresh, contemporary ideas in the theatrical direction are fully realized at DLN.”Lois Hunter, Boston
2013 National Artist Teacher Fellow
Centre for Arts Education (Boston Arts Academy)
2013 Labbie
“I was so impressed with the leadership, the schedule, the amount and variety of workshops. DLN are an amazing organizational team. I don’t think I’ve been to such a well thought out and engaging conference or workshop.”Christine Brubaker, Toronto
2013 Labbie
“A way to grow, to get wonderful and interesting contacts. Something I’ll bring and keep with myself for a very long time.”Gianna Formiacione, Italy
2013 Labbie
“Without a doubt, this is exactly what I needed at this point in my career: to be with other directors, to work and learn together intensively and support one another collaboratively has been fanstastic. Hope to stay connected with these good folks for a long time.”Laureen Smith, Washington, DC
2013 Labbie
“I never would have had the opportunity to travel to Toronto, a new city in an unknown country, without Directors Lab North. What I’ve learned in a totally new environment, surrounded by a supportive yet questioning group of diverse peers will stay with me as I develop my practice back in the UK. In this way, the theatre sector- Ontario- will help grow and influence the cultural sector in the UK, leading to a lasting legacy and greater connection between me, Directors Lab North, Canada and the UK.”Catherine Paskell, Wales, UK
2018 Labbie
“The most meaningful thing I will take away from the lab is the relationships wth other directors around the world doing amazing work. The environment of the Lab was wonderful and the culture was immediately open and non-ego driven.”Jenny Montgomery, Quebec City
2014 Labbie
“This Lab was incredibly well planned and conceived and balanced. Great sense of community and amazing group of directors! I am so looking forward to working with some of the artists I met here – very wonderful –thank you so much!”Alisa Matlovsky, New York
2013 & 2014 Labbie
“The expansive toolkit of possibilities- the exercises, the systems for creaton and the dynamic community of peers created in this Lab cannot be overestimated. I feel much richer and more enlivened, connected, focused in my curiosity and supported than before.”Sarah Kitz, Toronto
2014 Labbie
“Through the work this week I have decided it is much more important to create the art I truly believe in. It really revitalized my “want” to create and contribute to this art form.”Kristy Chambrelli, Connecticut
2014 Labbie
“Participating in DLN has given me the confidence to continue my practice as a theatre maker and opened up my understanding of how other artists and countries approach the craft. From a spiritual standpoint, I will now include land acknowledgement when practicing my work.”Antonio Minino, New York
2018 Labbie
“This Lab was essential to me at this point in my artistic path. I feel so capable of going back to my artistic communities and just soaring forward because of the ideas I’ve been introduced to and the people I’ve worked with at the Lab.”Alex Randrup, New York
2016 Labbie
“This has been an invaluable experience. One of the most artistically – and humanly- inspirational weeks of my life.”Robert Motum, Oshawa
2016 Labbie
“This has been an invaluable experience. One of the most artistically – and humanly- inspirational weeks of my life.”Robert Motum, Oshawa
2016 Labbie
“This was an exquisite event. It allowed me to unplug from my daily life and set aside time for my craft. I was able to connect, learn and grow from an amazing group of peers who are now my colleagues for life. Directing is a solitary art and that makes this event even more important…community.”Wesley Broulik, Lincoln, Nebraska
2016 Labbie
“This was an exquisite event. It allowed me to unplug from my daily life and set aside time for my craft. I was able to connect, learn and grow from an amazing group of peers who are now my colleagues for life. Directing is a solitary art and that makes this event even more important…community.”Wesley Broulik, Lincoln, Nebraska
2016 Labbie
“Directors Lab North fills a gap in the Canadian theatre ecology by fostering a safe environment for a community of directors to connect, to grow, to question their need to craft stories or the way in which they now wish to try and do so.”Thomas Usher, St. Catharines
2016 Labbie
“I was blown away by the schedule – the range of experts, the variety of approaches, the supportive, positive and investigative culture that was modeled. There was great opportunity to connect with everyone, an expertly structured week, good mix of on-feet and panels. Really exceeded my expectations, was wildly inspiring and useful –an extreme generosity towards artists who are hungry to develop and learn.”Anita La Selva, Toronto
2014 Labbie
“The most inspiring part of the Lab was meeting so many directors. We were all eager to learn and share, and had so much respect for one another. We came together to learn how to be better storytellers and left with so many stories. The wheels in my brain are turning with possibilities for storytelling and re-imagining theatre. This has been a gift! You connected me to a generous, loving, beautiful community!”Alexsandra Marzocca, Toronto
2014 Labbie
“The Lab provided an opportunity not often present in Canada for directors to learn, collaborate and discuss together. To join and connect in a role that is so often solitary and to support each other in ways we don’t allow ourselves to normally do. It is a gap the is so vast and has been present in Canada for so long. The Lab is a much needed Initiative that is an essential first step to filling the missing pieces in Canada’s directing landscape.”Justen Bennett, Toronto
2013 & 2015 Labbie
“To come to Toronto and learn from my national peers is a truly invaluable opportunity.”Michelle Kennedy, Edmonton
2013 Labbie
“The most important forum for directors and necessary initiative I’ve discovered in years. DLN is essential.”Matthew Tiffin, Nova Scotia
2013 Labbie
“Directing is a solitary act in a collaborative art form. This opportunity to collaborate with our peers closes that gap in a meaningful way.”Rachel Peake, Vancouver
2013 Labbie
“There is so much to digest from these 4 intense days of discovery and inspiration. I feel I have a number of new ideas and techniques to try and integrate into my practice in many areas: research, relationships, table work and rehearsal techniques.”Jeff Pufhal, Saskatoon
2013 Labbie
“A vital artistic exchange with international artists sharing ideas and creating community.”Erin Brandenburg, Toronto
2018 Labbie
“I found the DLN to be a very positive experience.  It was informative, well organized and engaging. The organizers put together an excellent mix of workshops, discussions, master-classes and guest artists chats. The cumulative effect of the 4 day intensive really bonded the group of 25 directors, chosen from an international pool, into a real community of artists ready to support and encourage each other. It is so rare for directors to feel connected to other directors and to see the communality in our experiences . DLN provided that kind unique and very needed experience. From our last session, where directors shared their reflections on DLN, it was obvious that everyone felt re-charged, motivated and inspired. I would highly recommend it to other directors.”Jordy Merkur, Toronto
2013 Labbie
“Eight days of raising the level of one’s practice in a gathering of diverse and generous colleagues from all over the world.”Isabella Stefanescu, Waterloo
2018 Labbie
“Thank you for providing me with an incredible space to learn and grow as a professional in this industry.”Stephanie, Toronto
2018 Labbie
“Directors Lab North is an invaluable space to explore the complexities of a range of theatre practices from across communities and from across the world. Got to ensure the voices at the table are diverse exciting and relevant. Community makes change happen.”Vici Wreford-Sinnot, UK
2018 Labbie
“Directors Lab North has been a unique opportunity to share ideas and space with peers and mentors. I was exposed to new concepts and pushed out of my comfort zone to explore techniques and ways of working.”Heather Annis, Toronto
2018 Labbie
“This has been an invaluable laboratory for exchanging ideas, practices and inspiring each other for the work we will create in the future.”Allegra Fulton, Toronto
2018 Labbie
“A great opportunity to meet like minded people, but also to be challenged with theatrical viewpoints that spark debate both social and political.”Alix Harris, United Kingdom
2018 Labbie
“As an independent artist from a relatively isolated community, this was a rare and priceless opportunity to engage with artists from a variety of practice and cultures.”Kevin Klassen, Winnipeg
2018 Labbie
“Directors Lab North was a wonderful unique opportunity – a rare time to have honest, inspiring dialogue with fellow artists who are working across cities and countries and theatrical practices. I left creatively refreshed and inspired.”Elizabeth Newman, Austin, Texas
2018 Labbie
“The art of the director is transient. It has little form or visibility. We need communities like this to validate the craft and share ideas. To keep it alive. And the theatre needs it to exist.”Anna, New York
2018 Labbie
“Inspiring, challenging, thought provoking…I am now questioning my entire artistic practice in the best possible way.”Julie Tomaino, Toronto
2018 Labbie
“I’ve rarely felt myself grow artistically like I did in Directors Lab North.”Eric Taylor, New York
2018 Labbie
“Getting to have a week long conversation about theatre has been one of the most valuable things I have experienced since college. I met so many people that will be life long collaborators. This really has been one of the best weeks of my life. Getting to experience so many cultures and shows has really expanded my mind and how and why I do theatre.”Bo Powell, Los Angeles
2018 Labbie
“The simple fact that directors so rarely have a space to communicate together speaks to how valuable DLN is. It is a unique experience where we can investigate our ideals, practices, methods and backgrounds. It was a week unlike any other I’ve had.”Conrad Kluck, New York
2018 Labbie
“The lab is a truly unique and needed experience for directors. In a very individual and often isolated job, it is a breath of fresh air to be surrounded by peers and future colleagues in such an intensive way.”Ara Glen-Johanson, Toronto
2018 Labbie
“The Lab is an excellent opportunity between the pedagogies and practical of theatre and performance as well as a cross point for international artistic thought….And it’s hella cool!”Mimi Kammer PhD, Iowa
2018 Labbie
“The Directors Lab North introduced me to new ideas, ethos and practices that I can directly apply to my work. I also met 27 wonderful other directors that I can turn to, lean on and question when I need assistance. This was immensely invaluable and could not be achieved anywhere else. I’m so grateful for Directors Lab North and cant’ wait to do it again!”Mandy Roveda, Toronto
2018 Labbie
“I never would have had the opportunity to travel to Toronto, a new city in an unknown country, without Directors Lab North. What I’ve learned in a totally new environment, surrounded by a supportive yet questioning group of diverse peers will stay with me as I develop my practice back in the UK. In this way, the theatre sector- Ontario- will help grow and influence the cultural sector in the UK, leading to a lasting legacy and greater connection between me, Directors Lab North, Canada and the UK.”Catherine Paskell, Wales, UK
2018 Labbie
“Directors Lab North brought me into contact with an incredible group of passionate, driven and extremely varied directors. Simple questions encouraged heated debate and complex problems were delicately pulled apart. This is so uniquely useful for directors that often feel alone in their craft in the room.”Jamie King, Vancouver
2018 Labbie
“Participating in DLN has given me the confidence to continue my practice as a theatre maker and opened up my understanding of how other artists and countries approach the craft. From a spiritual standpoint, I will now include land acknowledgement when practicing my work.”Antonio Minino, New York
2018 Labbie