Discussions

Clarity and Compassion: how to do more good than harm

2022 Festival
30 SEPT – 17h @ Gesù ​
Led by: Barry Bilinsky
With Hilary Wear, Bill Yong, Vanessa Rigaux
with verbal translation by Ilya Krouglikov

This festival discussion in the round led by Barry Bilinsky, features 4 performance artists’ varied processes and personal approaches to work that centres on difficult conservations in clown, comedy and beyond. With Indigenous worldviews guiding the discussion, speakers will share their relationship to the territory, its importance to their work, and the responsibilities we carry for our communities. Everyone is welcome to join the discussion.

2022 Festival
30 SEPT – 17h @ Gesù ​
Led by: Barry Bilinsky
With Hilary Wear, Bill Yong, Vanessa Rigaux
with verbal translation by Ilya Krouglikov

This festival discussion in the round led by Barry Bilinsky, features 4 performance artists’ varied processes and personal approaches to work that centres on difficult conservations in clown, comedy and beyond. With Indigenous worldviews guiding the discussion, speakers will share their relationship to the territory, its importance to their work, and the responsibilities we carry for our communities. Everyone is welcome to join the discussion.

Send In the Clowns – But Keep Your Distance!

Sonia Norris, Yves Sheriff, Vanessa Kneale, Dominique Marier, Tyler West, Justin Miller. Photo Emelia Hellman.

2022 Festival

1 OCT – 14h @ Gesù
Led by: Sonia Norris
With Vanessa Kneale, Dominique Marier, Justin Miller, Yves Sheriff, Tyler West

“I’m interested in how we create/provoke intimacy at this time and how the clown is even more important now, bringing people alive and interactive with each other after so much time keeping our distance.” – Sonia Norris

​Clowns don’t keep their distance. They don’t follow rules and stay six feet apart. They cross boundaries and touch people—not just metaphorically, but literally. They clamber through audiences sharing not just joy and laughter, but also breath, sweat and bodily fluids. They play with the risks of making contact. During the pandemic, clowns became life-threatening with their audience-interactive intimacy, the first to be kicked out of the circus tent and the last to be allowed back on the stage. Now that we’re back in the theatre, what has changed for both clowns and audiences? Join this discussion with six artists sharing their experiences and perspectives about risking contact amidst new rules.

Knowing Pochinko

With: ​John Turner / Miriam Cusson / Elsa Menendez / Vanessa Rigaux / Jacqueline Russell / Jed Tomlinson

2020 Digital Festival

​Featuring John Turner of the Manitoulin Conservatory for Creation and Performance (The Clown Farm) and several students/colleagues in a round table discussion. Fostering an intergenerational, intercultural, and interdisciplinary dialogue around passing down knowledge of Pochinko training. This discussion was live streamed via zoom and was part of the 2020 digital festival: “Nouvelles Recettes / New Recipes”.

Clown, Resilience and Community

Sarah Deshaies, Bill Yong, Melissa Holland, Bruce Naokwegijig. Photo Vanessa Rigaux

2019 Festival

Moderator: Sarah Deshaies, Arts Journalist; Speakers: Melissa Holland, Co-founder of Fondation Dr Clown; Bill Yong, Drama therapist & Clown; Bruce Naokwegijig, Artistic Director, Debajehmujig Storytellers.

The clown as a figure of resilience can help us laugh, reflect, reconnect with our inner joy, our stories and creativity. It can help build tools to connect with community and to share different ways of knowing. This discussion explores some of the ways in which the clown figure is used in today’s society, including as a way to build bridges between cultures by sharing Indigenous world views, and through encouraging resiliency and healing in healthcare settings.

Women in Clowning

Sonia Norris, Francine Coté, Dolorèze Léonard, Jon Davison, Christine Lesiak, Miranda Warner, Soizick Hébert.

2018 Festival

Led by Sonia Noris
In conversation with Francine Coté, Jon Davison, Soizick Hébert, Dolorèze Léonard, Christine Lesiak, and Miranda Warner.

A panel discussion of the myths of the past and present-day realities of women clowns.

Looking for a Feeling: A Study of Relations Between Clown and Mask and Land Connection

2017 Festival

Megan Hyslop in english

PhD candidate Megan Hyslop shares her experience and practice in Pochinko Mask and Clown, and practising clown in nature, leading participants through exercises and a round table discussion about her research. “Nature as a world view, or interconnection and fluidity for the wellbeing of individuals, communities, and the land and all its elements, is held as paramount by many Indigenous cultures, including the old European ones. Communication with land takes place through listening as well as through a sensory and emotional plane (Watts, 2013; Buhner, 2004; Abrams, 2010) that engages our hearts, minds, and bodies. It situates humans in a learning place as the youngest, most stumbling beings in creation (Geniusz, 2015).

​”I believe that art, and specifically clowning, is a powerful way to connect with the dynamic, interconnected core concept of land and all its relations. ” – Megan Hyslop

Les Bouffons

2016 Festival

Causerie /Artist Talk: ​Massimo Agostinelli
moderated by Vanessa Rigaux