ARTIST: Laura Quigley is a Canadian performer, playwright, director, and theatre educator. She holds a Masters in Theatre Studies from the University of Guelph, a BFA in Acting from Simon Fraser University, and she is an Associate Teacher of Fitzmaurice Voicework®. Laura teaches voice, acting and performance creation, and has taught at Concordia University, Ryerson University, The University of Windsor and St. Clair College. In her research Laura explores the human voice: as an instrument, as a tool for creation, and as activism. Her performance work confronts the boundaries of conventional vocal expression on stage, exploring sound that is intimate, often beautiful, sometimes uncomfortable and timelessly familiar (grunts, growls, broken clicks, howls, operatic song) creating an immersive sonic experience that is felt, literally, in the bodies of audiences. The aim is to explore what might be buried beneath the surface of silence and speech in order to connect with audiences in a visceral way. Laura’s work has been performed in Vancouver, Toronto, Guelph, Montreal, New York City, and Wellington, New Zealand. She was Artist in Residence at Concordia University from 2017-2019 where she directed several Contemporary Canadian plays including Erin Shield’s If We Were Birds, a new work called Love in Seven Languages based on the writing of Jeanette Winterson’s and Charles Mee’s Big Love, and Judith Thompson’s Lion in the Streets, and she dramaturged and directed twenty new solo performances created by graduating BFA students. Laura lives in Belle River, ON with her husband, her two daughters and their dog called Goose.
PROJECT IN INCUBATION: The Waves: The Waves is a play that has been in development for a little over five years. It is deeply personal and decidedly feminist. It dives into underrepresented territory: loss-of identity in motherhood, post-partum depression, and the rebuilding of self after giving birth. The text is poetic, raw and urgent, and explores ways the human voice can initiate understanding and connection between performer and audience, between humans. In this way, the text contains detailed description of vocal sounds that depart from language, invoking the performer to explore relationship and communication beyond the conventions of speech and silence. The Waves was originally performed and produced as part of the incubator series, Summerworks 2018, directed by Clea Minaker, with dramaturgy by Judith Thompson and Fides Krucker, written, produced and performed by Laura Quigley. The Waves also had readings and talk-backs at The University of Toronto, The Festival of Original Theatre conference (FOOT) in 2017, in New York, NY at the Martha Graham Studios, Fitzmaurice Voicework Symposium in 2018, and as part of the Revolution They Wrote Festival in Montreal in 2018. Playwright Laura Quigley will work during Femme Folks Fest to complete a draft of The Waves for publication in The Canadian Theatre Review for their Fall 2023 issue that will focus on voice in live theatre in Canada.