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Writers at school


Colleen Curran



Colleen Curran

Colleen Curran is an award-winning playwright, novelist and actor. She has taught people aged 5 to 85 How To Write a Play. She’s currently on the Faculty of the National Theatre School of Canada, where she teaches a course on Comedy. Her best known play Cake-Walk has been produced more than fifty times across Canada and the USA and was brought to the attention of Showtime Networks by Whoopi Goldberg. Her Sacred Hearts, most recently produced by Zeitgeist Stage in Boston, is the winner of the International Gabriel Award. She performed in her own play Ireland’s Own Carmel O’reilly Tonite which premiered at Theatre Ste-Catherine in March. Her stage adaptation of her first novel Something Drastic has been seen in Winnipeg, Toronto, Athens and Melbourne.

Suggested reading*

Sibyl And Sylvia
Whale Watch

*These titles have been suggested by the author based on the activities that he/she proposes to students.
It is, however, up to teachers to verify whether the titles are appropriate for their groups (age and education level, specific context, etc.).
Teaching staff are invited to contact the author for clarification on this aspect and assistance in preparing their groups for his/her visit.

Proposed approach and type of activities

Short & Sweet

Colleen’s first play Sibyl And Sylvia was produced when she was in high school thanks to her Drama teacher who encouraged her to write and perform. She intends to carry on this good work by mentoring young writers and actors in schools. The class would have been assigned some of her short plays  Whale Watch, Sibyl And Sylvia, The Pillbox Hat, or A Brave Girl if monologues were preferred, or perhaps even her full length play Cake-Walk, to read before she arrived. (Teachers could consult Colleen beforehand and decide what they determined was the best material to be used for their class.) There would be a reading in class done by some students, and Colleen would tell them how the play came to be. Then everyone would set out on the path to playwriting. Colleen would guide them in character development, style and setting, and students would then write their own short play or piece. Once this was done, they would be broken up into theatrical troupes that would be responsible for presenting the plays to the class. Public presentation has proven to be a great incentive. It’s great fun and who knows, some future playwrights may even emerge.

Special conditions

For information

Colleen Curran
Phone : 514 487-1216
Email :

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Primary 3, Primary 4, Primary 5, Primary 6, Secondary 1, Secondary 2, Secondary 3, Secondary 4, Secondary 5

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