The Summer Company
The Summer Company is a training and performance initiative for artists under the age of 30. Funded by the Canada Summer Jobs initiative, this project brings together a group of talented artists for 8 weeks of full-time seasonal employment. This project is driven by our desire to give back to the arts community by supporting new and emerging artistic voices in the GTA; it is our response to the challenge of youth unemployment and an investment in the future of the arts in our community.
During the summer months, this selected group of artists create new work, gain professional performance experience, lead educational outreach and participate in paid professional development with classes led by Frog in Hand's professional performers. From 2018-2021, Summer Company members received classes in Flying Low/floor work, Gaga Technique, stage combat, acting, jazz dance, fusion dance, improvisation, movement and scores, grant writing, choreography, physical theatre, music, clown/commedia del'arte, voice training, script and research development, site-specific performance, martial arts, and long-term strength/stamina/flexibility coaching with a certified personal trainer. Past guest artists and collaborators include Noelle Hamlyn, Callahan Connor, Sadie Epstein Fine, Clay & Paper Theatre, Alvin Collantes, Andrew Gaboury, JT Papandreos, Daniel Levinson, Andy Ingram, Alice Cavanagh & more.
Summer Company 2020 and guest artists, Image by Kendra Epik
2021 Summer Company dance auditions and submissions are now closed!
Thank you for your interest in the 2021 Summer Company. The number of submissions we received was our highest number to date and we appreciate the growing support and enthusiasm! If you missed this round of opportunities, sign up for our mailing list and follow us on our social media to be in the know of future opportunities.
Summer Company Information Session
Want to learn about the Summer Company? Watch the 2021 information session, recorded on Zoom on Monday, April 30th, led by Rehearsal Director Alice Cavanagh, Artistic Director Colleen Snell, and past Summer Company participant / Frog in Hand Business Manager Jessica Cen.
The Summer Company: A History
2020 Summer Company members.
Left image: Rohan Dhupar, Erin Eldershaw, Drew Berry, Maks Martinez, Lizzie Moffat. Image by MonstrARTity.
Summer Company dancers 2019, Image by Tavia Christina Summer Company dancers 2018, Image by Rosemary Snell
Rehearsal Director: Rohan Dhupar
Communications Intern & Performer: Clarke Blair
Company: Hannah Shikatani, Claire Whitaker, Morgyn Aronyk-Schell, Sarah Flack, Gwendolyn Mitchell, Justin Fraser.
In this first year of the company, we began by performing a new work collaboratively created at the Mississauga Waterfront Festival ("Colours"). Company dancers joined a terrific team of established professional dancers in "The Fall" at the Toronto Fringe. The 2018 Summer Company led a full day of workshops for students at Riverside School in Port Credit, and performed "Checkmate" at Mississauga's Living Arts Centre for Canada Day. Our special projects involved dancing outdoors (site-specific work) by the lake (where the company was invited to dance on a boat!), creating a dance film in the historic Small Arms Inspection Building, and performing original choreography by Rohan Dhupar (Speakeasy Suite).
Rehearsal Director: Micha Baltman
Production Assistant & Stage Manager: Jessica Cen
Company: Krista Newey, Cody Berry, Kirsten Sullivan, Tavia Christina, Anastasia Botos, Dana MacDonald.
In this second year of the company, we hit the ground running - company members began by performing a highly theatrical work they devised in collaboration with Andrew Gaboury and Colleen Snell at the Mississauga Waterfront Festival ("Boomba!"). Then they joined spoken word poet Callahan Connor in re-creating "Heart of Matter" at the Toronto Fringe Festival, performing 8 times in Trinity Saint Pauls' United Church. They led "Dragon"workshops for QE Public School and Port Credit S.S., and performed at Mississauga's Living Arts Centre for Canada Day. Special projects involved research and development for Stories in the Woods, Sugar Plum (led by Sadie Epstein Fine), company workshops/classes led by company members, and a master class led by Matti Tauru, a dancer at Tanzmainz at Staatstheater Mainz in Germany. The company trained for seven weeks with personal trainer, actor/physical theatre artist Alice Cavanagh.
Co-Artistic Director: Alice Cavanagh
Production Assistant & Business Manager: Jessica Cen
Company: Zachary Bastille, Drew Berry, Clarke Blair, Michael Derworiz, Rohan Dhupar, Erin Eldershaw, Makenna (Maks) Martinez, Lizzie Moffatt, Jeremy Pearson, Kaitlyn Seibold.
In the third year of the company, we went digital under the artistic direction of Frog in Hand co-founder and director Colleen Snell and actor Alice Cavanagh, working with guest artists Noelle Hamlyn, Sadie Epstein-Fine, Teiya Kasahara, Cole Vincent, Andrew Gaboury, and Callahan Connor. The Summer Company was mentored in voice work and fitness training with Alice Cavanagh, sound and audio exploration, movement sessions with the artistic directors, and research and developing "Sugar Plum" script by Sadie Epstein-Fine. Under social distancing measures, the performers rehearsed three pieces filmed for the Bollywood Monster Mashup that was live on the Bollywood Monster Mashup Facebook. They filmed a short dance film in collaboration with artist Noelle Hamlyn based on her award-winning art work "Lifers", submitted to the digital Toronto Fringe Collective and premiered from July 4 - 6. We developed Clay and Paper Theatre's mobile performance tour "Cyclops" with lead artists Andrew Gaboury and Alice Cavanagh and performed around neighbourhoods in Toronto and Mississauga. The Summer Company sought out experts in pedagogy, dance-theatre, improvisation, and site-specific performance to develop, write, and film videos for an online masterclass on YouTube as an educational resource. We performed a score-based improvisational piece called "Distance Dances" with spoken word poet Callahan Connor on the grounds near the Small Arms Inspection Building. We developed an audio / radio play based on War of the Worlds with the Frog in Hand artistic team that is slated to premiere at the 2021 Toronto Fringe Festival.
Artistic Director: Colleen Snell
Rehearsal Director: Alice Cavanagh
Business Manager: Jessica Cen
Production Assistant: Angela Xu
Assistant Costume Designer: Mariana Sandoval-Angel
Company: Stephanie Harkness, Ankita Alemona, Eilish Shin-Culhane, Zoe Kwan, Maria Riano, Sierra Goldak, Annalise Grammacione, Kaitlyn Seibold, Erin Eldershaw, and Daniela Jezerinac
From June to August 2021 for 9 weeks, we rehearsed in-person under safe and dilligent social-distancing measures and resorted to digital platforms to collaborate, devise, and create new and existing Frog in Hand repertoire. We had the privilege to work with fellow guest artists: Noelle Hamlyn, Andrew Gaboury, Clay and Paper Theatre, Bridges Festival, and Stories in the Woodsinternational guest artists. The Summer Company was mentored in site-specific performance, voice work and fitness training, character building, clowning, fusion dance, martial arts, score and movement exploration, research and development, and more. The Summer Company members collaborated and advised on creating Caretakers, a mobile puppet squad show inspired by Clay and Paper, and performed in Stories in the Woods, the remount of the acclaimed 2019 premiere of Frog in Hand's largest site-specific production to date.
Thank you to Summer Company community partners the Port Credit Community Foundation, the City of Mississauga, the Hazel McCallion Foundation, and to Canada Summer Jobs. Thanks also to the professional artist mentors who supported Summer Company 2018-2021. Special thanks to Andrew Gaboury, Daniel Levinson and Rapier Wit, Caroline Augustin and Blueheel Dance Studio, Kelly Shaw, Micha Baltman, Alvin Collantes, Philippe Poirier, JT Papandreos, Andy Ingram, Alice Cavanagh, Callahan Connor, Sadie Epstein-Fine, Teiya Kasahara, Cole Vincent, New Blue Dance, Clay and Paper Theatre, Julie Tepperman, Kev McCurdy, Affair of Honor, Kim Fischer, Kristen Carcone, Samuel Davilmar, Casey Hudecki, Jill Hollingsworth, Crane Creations.
Summer Company 2021 members Eilish Shin-Culhane and Stephanie Harkness in Caretakers. Image by Alice Cavanagh.
Summer Company 2020 member Kaitlyn Seibold in Lifers. Image by Noelle Hamlyn.
Left to right Summer Company 2019 dancers Dana MacDonald, Kirsten Sullivan. Image by Tavia Christina.
Left to right: Summer Company 2018 members Morgyn Aronyk-Schell and Justin Fraser in The Fall. Image: Francesca Chudnoff