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June 12, 2013

Soulpepper’s Young Leaders Council Exhibit

Soulpepper’s Young Leaders Council Presents

The Restless Cabaret and art exhibit
Narrative, Structure

This week at the Young Centre, Soulpepper’s Young Leaders Council (YLC)* presents a free Cabaret and art exhibit to showcase the amazing talent of young artists in Toronto. Entry to both the exhibit and this Friday’s Cabaret are free, see more details below. We caught up with YLC member and Narrative, Structure curator (and – spoiler alert – new Soulpepper Academy member) Shannon Lea Doyle to talk about the exhibit.

Tell us about Narrative, Structure:
Curating Narrative, Structure has been a process of personal reflection. The exhibit falls on the week before I begin working in the design stream of Soulpepper’s Academy. I have seen it as an opportunity to consider how my training as a sculptor will influence the theatre I create. The bridge I see between these disciplines is the importance placed on movement and its traces in shaping structure, and a focus on communicating the sense of that movement to the viewer. For the past few months I have been aware of, perhaps searching for, work within the sculptural realm that transcends its object-hood to provoke or recall a narrative. Narrative, Structure is a sampling from Joshua Crawford, Palmer Jarvis, Amy Liden and Joel Staples’ recent series’. Each piece holds the intensity and textual layers of meaning that I will strive toward in my design for theatre. Individually, the artist’s practices carry particular and strong ideas. Their grouping aims to extend their engagement with the subjects of action and desire, convention and the unexpected, artifact and memory into a conversation including narrative and the agency of the viewer.

What can visitors expect to experience?
The site of this exhibition will draw an audience that may be expecting theatre rather than contemporary sculpture. Part of my work in the Academy will be sharing my knowledge of sculpture and offering possible ways to engage with it. I think it’s appropriate to share my initial thoughts on that subject here. Finding a connection to a piece of theatre or a sculpture is much the same, however sculpture can often seem indirect and cold. The text is not written or spoken, but suggested through signs. Imagine a sculpture as a phrase pulled from a hat, you must improvise the rest of the story, a story you do not know but that already exists inside of you; much like an improvised scene, a sculpture can be the catalyst for the recall/invention of your own story. And like a good scene partner, it will throw you bones along the way.

I am hoping that when you approach the sculptures in Narrative, Structure you do so on your own turf, from your place of knowledge as theatre artist, enthusiast, or supporter.

Amy Liden

Photo: She Used to Wear This by Amy Liden

Narrative, Structure includes work by Joshua Crawford, Palmer Jarvis, Amy Liden, and Joel Staples. The exhibit is open from 12 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Wednesday June 12 and Thursday June 13; 12 p.m. to midnight on Friday June 14. TD Studio, Young Centre for the Performing Arts. Free admission.

The Restless Cabaret
Running on the closing night of Narrative, Structure and curated by the Soulpepper Young Leaders Council, The Restless Cabaret will showcase a series of emerging artists from a variety of artistic disciplines including music, dance, theatre, aerial, and spoken word.

The Cabaret is a celebration of emerging artists; a platform to showcase the exciting and inspiring work of young creators in Toronto. This free Cabaret runs from 8:00-10:00 p.m. on Friday, June 14, followed by a reception in the Young Centre lobby. 

Reserve your free Cabaret tickets by contacting

*The Youth Leadership Council (YLC) is a residency program for alumni of Soulpepper’s youth outreach programs who are interested in emerging as creative leaders and advocates for youth and the arts in our community. The Council plays an important role within the Soulpepper Education Department and the company as a whole, where members contribute to youth programming and planning, as well as take a lead in their own development as artists, artist educators, and producers, depending on their area of interest. They are offered ongoing mentorship from company artists and opportunities to develop facilitation and teaching skills through hands-on experience. Each member of the Council is given opportunities with and encouraged to contribute to both Soulpepper and the greater Toronto community.