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Artists at school


Philippe Cinq-Mars

Cinema and video


Philippe Cinq-Mars

Philippe Cinq-Mars holds a Bachelor’s Degree in History and Philosophy from Université de Montréal and studied film and television production at Loyola College, the first college to offer television courses in Montréal. After having worked for about ten years with the Canadian and Québec diplomatic service as the person responsible for relations with the world of television and film production in Los Angeles, the artist began a career as a documentary maker, producer and scriptwriter. Upon returning to Canada, he got a start in the profession by collaborating in the production of a documentary about Canada, which would air on the FR3 television station in France. He went on to do numerous reports, mainly for the Radio-Québec station (Télé-Québec), which in the 1980s showed a keen interest in news-related programs. A few years later, his productions were re-aired in France, in Québec on TVA and on Radio-Canada, as well as on the PBS in the United States. Recently, Philippe Cinq-Mars has mainly worked for the Astral television network and for TV5 in Montréal, as well as for the Discovery Channel in English Canada.

Proposed approach and type of activities

The artist’s objective is to convey to young people the passion that he has felt ever since his first film shoot, with the feverishness that drives every documentary maker to undertake each step in television news production. From a practical standpoint, students will discover the advantages of a good organization of work, the efficiency of team work, the importance of good preparation (preproduction) and the key role of the producer-director relationship. The activities will make it possible to notably show and to put into practice the principles that guide a good documentary maker:

  • How to tell the story well, based on the principles of composition: introduction, development and conclusion.
  • How to acquire a good sense of rhythm by using tools like words, images, sound and music.
  • How to start a project or a synopsis, a crucial phase, which most of the time is not taught properly.
  • How to ask good questions during an interview, while using the best camera views and angles during filming.

Other examples of activities

  • Watching a short film lasting a few minutes in order to highlight the three elements of the composition: introduction, development and conclusion.
  • Watching three short excerpts from documentaries produced by the artist on different themes (social, crime-related, historical, technological, scientific) in order to prompt students to criticize the use of the cinematographic language or the sense of rhythm.
  • Explanation of the role of the synopsis as the starting point for every documentary project.
  • Writing a synopsis on a subject that interests young people.
  • Review of the synopsis.
  • Reading script sequences in groups of five students in order to formulate questions on the subject being examined.
  • Simulation of an interview where each student is invited to ask questions.
  • Filming an interview in order to introduce young students to the best camera shots and the angles that should be used.

Special conditions

The workshop requires the rental of a tripod, a digital camera and a microphone at a maximum cost of $100 per day. The school must provide a DVD player or a computer with a large screen as well as a

For information

Philippe Cinq-Mars
Phone : 514 273-9998
Email :

Subject to taxes (GST, PST)



Secondary 1, Secondary 2, Secondary 3, Secondary 4, Secondary 5

Available in

In every regions

Other language(s)


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