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Creating Characters Through Play Workshop with Laura Trenerry

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by Donna Sue Robson (subscribe)
Donna Sue Robson specialises in the communication- and healing-arts. Jamie Natural Health and Healing is her energy-healing consultancy. Her modalities, workshops and boutique natural products can be viewed and purchased from www.jamienatural.com.
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A 'play' is based on play- so play-up and play it out
Laura Trenerry Creating Characters Through Play Brisbane Anywhere Theatre Festival The Travelling Sisters Performing Arts Workshops Character Development Workshops
If there is a contemporary Australian performing artist who can help you to let go of inhibitions and make art fun, it is Laura Trenerry from The Travelling Sisters. Here she is playing a love-sick potato chip. Pic by Kate Pardey


Laura Trenerry, part of Australia's premier comedy trio The Travelling Sisters, presents a character-development workshop on the weekend of 6-7th of May as part of Brisbane's Anywhere Theatre Festival.

Trenerry's two-day theatrical experience is a not-to-be-missed event for emerging performing artists. Through exercises and facilitated discussion, Trenerry helps you to make choices about character selection, fundamental decisions that writers, producers and editors also need to understand. 'Creating Characters through Play', combines clowning and improvisation exercises with costume discovery to create multi-dimensional characters. It is attention to detail such as image, voice, habits, behaviour and quirkiness that helps actors, artists and sketch comedians able to fully deliver 'character'.

Comedic improvisation is Trenerry's mask for 'the joy of play', which she will deconstruct and teach to this year's festival workshop participants. Strangely enough, there is structure behind 'play': yet, the discipline rests on great technique rather than rules. Trenerry has impeccable actor, compositional technique and workshop-teaching credentials, having studied at the University of Southern Queensland (where she also met fellow Travelling Sisters Lucy Fox and Ell Sachs) and trained under Philippe Gaulier in France. Even listening to her own approach of character-creation is enlightening and inspirational.

Just consider the detail that Laura puts into her own character-development. With dogged research, insightful observation and performance discipline, Laura has already developed an on-stage presence, charisma and artistic confidence. She knows her own characters inside-out and with highly refined improvisatory reaction-time to both her fellow actor-ensemble and full-house audiences, Laura is comfortable to let those characters grow and develop. Laura tends to choose 'every-day' characters, finds what is likeable about them, balances their quirkiness with melodrama and ordinariness, and then layers and challenges those beloved characters with ad hoc changes of circumstances and pile-on dilemmas.

Laura Trenerry Creating Characters Through Play Brisbane Anywhere Theatre Festival The Travelling Sisters Performing Arts Workshops Character Development Workshops
Laura Trenerry (centre) with Lucy Fox and Ell Sachs, The Travelling Sisters, stretching the silliness and absurdity of sketch comedy. All have exquisite comedic-acting skills and have taken Europe by storm. Make the most of home-grown talent and register in Laura's Creating Characters through Play, part of this years' Anywhere Theatre Festival.


Play' is explored through games, exercises, scenarios and role-play. Through a collaborative workshop process, 'spontaneity' is energised when inhibitions fall away: participants find their voice and can unleash creative potential. Performances will be created through which participants can reflect on lessons learned and work to sharpen their speed-reaction times which ultimately drive character liveliness and connection. Trenerry's workshop has a well-thought-out component that helps participants to deepen and grow 'character' which, in essence, is similar to how real-life people develop through life experiences, its poignant moments as well as unpredictable twists, over-the-top turns and playful sub-plots. Adding these dramatic principles, in Laura's own words, is what is needed to be able to develop 'multi-faceted, complex and beautiful personas' which continue to grow-up and maintain favour with global audiences.

'Creating Characters through Play' is an opportunity to learn from a woman who has international runs on the board. Since 2015, Laura Trenerry has performed with The Travelling Sisters at The Edinburgh Fringe Festival and has delighted audiences across Europe, most notably, in theatrical hot-spots such as London and Berlin. Laura's other festival performance highlights include the Prague Fringe Festival, Bedford, Glastonbury, Bath, Hong Kong and closer to home, Woodford, Perth, Adelaide and Melbourne.

Laura Trenerry is a gifted mimic, well- versed in musical as well as physical comedy. She has well-rounded performance skills and is excited to be able to present a workshop weekend suitable for people over 14 years, of all levels of experience and ability. For registrations and bookings you are encouraged to contact Laura directly. Make the most of Laura's actor experience and hometown commitment before she leaves our shores once again, forever committed to learning from the best, living a creative life and perfecting her own craft.

Brisbane's Anywhere Theatre Festival

The annual Anywhere Theatre Festival promotes accessible art, for people - wherever they are. The focus is on performing and showcasing art in public and non-traditional spaces to opens up the city for artists to inhabit and to transform Brisbane into a total art-scape. Imagine a city where bookstores, bars and basements, hotels and hospitals, community gardens and cafes, streetscapes and studios, museums and galleries as well as lifestyle healing spaces become everyday amphitheatres. The Anywhere Theatre Festival has a broad vision of theatre: for 17 days Brisbane is a mixed canvas of cabaret, comedy, dance, visual art, circus, workshop-education, talks, poetry, music, drama and dance. With prices starting from $25, there really is something for everyone.

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Why? To make a booking
When: 10-4pm both days
Where: Queensland Academy for Creative Industries, 61 Musk Ave Kelvin Grove Brisbane
Cost: $140 concession or $150 full price for both days
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