Artists, perhaps more than other professionals, expose elements of themselves when they show their work.
For those just beginning to work in any form of creative expression, it can be a nerve-racking experience to have the world looking at the inner workings of their mind.
Sometimes, it just takes a bit of support and encouragement.
“(Art) is something you can bring out to the light of day and not be ashamed of doing,” Matthew Heiti said with a laugh. The Sudbury Theatre Centre playwright-in-residence is once again leading the Playwrights' Junction at STC.
The 12-week program is designed to give aspiring playwrights guidance and assistance, as well as professional input so they can better their abilities.
“Initiatives like this provide support,” Heiti said.
This is the second time STC is offering the program. Last year, 10 playwrights were invited to develop a piece that would eventually be read before an informal audience.
Those who participated last season had rave reviews about the program.
“I really treasured the different voices in the room and on the page,” one participant said. Another said the experience was “an amazing period of growth.”
“We couldn't have brought it back if we weren't encouraged by last year,” Heiti said.
This season, six to eight writers will be selected to explore the art of writing a play.
“The group will come together in an exploration of the playmaking process, experimenting with different methods of inspiration and unearthing local stories,” a media release from STC stated.
“Each week, the writers will be given the chance to read their work aloud and discuss it in an open forum. During the 12-week program, writers will be encouraged to develop a one-act play.”
Once again, the program will culminate with a reading in front of an audience at STC.
Anyone is welcome to submit to the Junction. Those who take part should expect to attend weekly forums “prepared to talk honestly and openly about other people's work.”
Heiti said it's a great time for those thinking of dabbling in the arts to get involved. With so many young companies entering the theatre scene, there is a demand for pieces to bring to life on stage.
“We do have writers here whose work can be put on stage,” Heiti said.
Heiti has a BFA in acting from Ryerson University, as well as a master's degree in creative writing from the University of New Brunswick. His plays have been workshopped and produced across Canada.
Anyone interested in participating is welcome to submit a piece for consideration. The deadline is Sept. 28. A cover letter including contact information, a short biography and why the writer is interested in the program, as well as five to 10 pages of written work, preferably written for the stage, is required.
Applicants can send their submissions to email@example.com.
For more information, email Heiti or phone 705-207-7849.