Prime Placements is our artists mentorship program. This program provides an opportunity for artists to add to their professional experience and make valuable connections. These positions are tailored to the goals and desires of each applicant.
Prime Placements can take on two primary forms.
First: We provide a much-needed bridge between training and professional status, with participants working alongside mentors to help them develop their skills and expand their profiles. Pi believes that it's incredibly important to teach and prepare those who have a strong interest in working in the arts.
Second: We support emerging, mid-career, and senior artists who are "young-in-craft". This means Prime Placements supports artists who are expanding their practice in ways that are still relatively new to them.
To apply for a position as a Prime Placements participant, please click here.
Past program participants include: Keltie Forsyth, Charissa Hurt, Maria Zarrillo, Mike St. Jean, Athena Wong, Linda Pitt, Chantele Fry, Alan Brodie, Sarah Afful, Carmen Alatorre, Spencer Atkinson, Jacqueline Breakwell, Niki Brown, Dani Bryant, Roxana Chapela, Lois Dawson, Ryan Egan, Matt Ellis, Simon Farrow, Alex Brendan Ferguson, Nick Fontaine, Tara Goertzen, Maura Halloran, Ian Harmon, Richard Heaven, Carmen Hung, Kelly Ingersoll, Annie Jang, Stephanie Jew, Sara Kerastas, Josue Laboucane, Adam Lolacher, Kathleen McFarlane, Cat Main, Billy Marchenski, Daniel Martin, Mathilde Le Nézet, Jamie Nesbitt, David Newham, Jane Noble, Ashley O’Connell, Shana Orlowsky, Jergus Oprsal, Mary Phan, Melissa Robertson, Izzy Rubin, Alyssa Satow, Liana Shannon, Chelsea Sherbut, Stacy Sherlock, Marisa Smith, Donna Soares, Brian Sutton, Andrew Tkach, Marie Weber-Seban, James Wilson, and Melanie Yeats.
Past supporters of this program include: Ian Forsyth, and Max Reimer; Casting Workbook, Theatre at UBC, VancouverPlays.com, Battery Opera, Biz Books, Carrier Talent, Creative Spirit Communications, Death by Chocolate, Dockside Restaurant, Douglas College, Fabrictime Solutions, Gateway Theatre, The Granville Island Hotel, Headlines Theatre, Calla Krause, Lord Byng Theatre Company, Alan Brodie, Teresa Lubkiewicz-Urbanowicz, Rebus Creative, the School for the Contemporary Arts at SFU, Studio 58, Theatre at UBC, UBC Costume Department, United Players, Vancouver East Cultural Centre, Vancouver Plays, William Davis Centre, and Yayah Studios.
Here's some feedback from the participants:
"I had the opportunity to undertake a mentorship with Pi Theatre’s General Manager, through the Early Career Development mentorship grant. The opportunity was essential to my development as an arts manager and producer and lead to my current path, undertaking a master’s in arts management. During my time at Pi I gained detailed knowledge of the administrative management and operational processes of a theatre company. The benefit of working with a company the size of Pi is that I acquired skills in many different areas of arts management: fundraising, producing, marketing and budgeting for example. Yet, even as a small organization, Pi Theatre is run extremely efficiently and smoothly and I was given a lot of autonomy to learn and develop as a manager. Shayna and Richard trusted in my abilities and I had opportunities to take the lead on certain projects, problem solving and improving my leadership skills while still feeling supported. Shayna, with her concrete expertise in business processes, was an attentive, encouraging and knowledgeable mentor. I learned a lot of strategies and systems that have been reinforced during my master’s program. I believe that Pi is a perfect organization for the ECD program due to its size, organizational structure, effective processes and the leadership of its two executives. They are committed to offering an holistic, educational and practical mentorship or internship that is catered to the mentees interests and goals." - Linda Pitt, Associate Producer, 2015-2016 season
"I could not have been happier to find myself in the Pi Theatre Office this year to work on their production of The Invisible Hand as the Apprentice Stage Manager. Pi Theatre is such an inclusive theatre company. My favourite part about working with them is that everyone that walks into the rehearsal space has a voice and an opinion. Their mission statement is to produce “thought-provoking theatre” and they definitely follow through. I truly believe that it’s impossible NOT to learn something new everyday when working with Pi Theatre.” - Maria Zarrillo, Apprentice Stage Manager, 2015-2016 season
"Being an administrative intern in Prime Placements at an outstanding independent theatre company like Pi was an experience that got me to know a whole lot more about the theatre industry, the structures, the forms and how a company functions. ... it was definitely a memorable experience!" - Athena Wong, Administrative Assistant, 2014-2015 season
"The mentorship that I gained from this production environment was essential for boosting my confidence and decreasing those butterflies about bridging the gap between emerging and professional...I felt honoured to work with some of the most accomplished and seasoned theatrical creators Vancouver has to showcase. I was allowed the freedom to apply my archive of experiences to the real world professional environment…and that felt good." - Stacy Sherlock, Assistant Stage Manager, 2009-2010 season
"AN AMAZING EXPERIENCE! I really enjoyed the creative process in which Richard Wolfe led us towards making this piece. We made it by exploring our own feelings about being at home and I can tell this play has a bit of everyone that was involved in it. I had a really good time during the whole process and in the end I'm pleased to say that I learned a lot from everyone in my team. When we got to the Centre for New Digital Media and started building and realizing all the drafts, colors, and started carving away at the general idea it was amazing and I felt like I was playing around in a big artistic camp sharing this wonderful space with a lot of talented people. What an experience! I can now say I have fallen in love with theatre in Vancouver and also I’m very grateful to be a part of the Prime Placements Program!" - Roxana Chapela, Set Designer, House/Home at HIVE, 2009-2010 season
"Meeting and working with the cast and crew as a unit towards making this piece has taken me to many different places. In exploring our possibilities we have gone from one side of the spectrum to the other, to somewhere where we didn’t think we would or could go and then back to something more concrete. I shouldn’t really say concrete as what we are creating morphs and changes and grows everyday we visit it. But it seems now that we have quite a solid grasp on what it is we want to send out into the universe. This is just everybody working on a different level and getting the opportunity to explore and create. Speaking of opportunity, it has been a fantastic opportunity to come onto this project. Especially as a Prime Placement! I said before this is different then anything I have done, and it is nice to get a break from the usual Musical Theatre that I do. I also have the opportunity to work with some fantastic individuals. Everyone involved is so special and unique. I know that sounds sappy and cliché but it’s true! Everyone brings something different to the table (literally sometimes when we work at the table up in the kitchen) and we are able to use one person’s idea and flow with it into another as the piece expands and grows. I am very lucky and happy to be a part of this adventure!" - Jacqueline Breakwell, Dancer, House/Home at HIVE, 2009-2010 season
"This internship enlightened me about aspects of theatre production that I didn’t know as much about, and definitely made me even more interested in producing. Thank you Pi Theatre!" - Kathleen McFarlane, Administrative Assistant, 2008-2009 season
"This experience totally transformed me and now I am the richest person in the world!" - Mathilde le Nezét, Administrative Assistant, 2008-2009 season
“It was an excellent segué into the professional field for a beginner such as myself…I was very fortunate to have had the chance to work with some of the best and most experienced people in the field.” - Annie Jang, Apprentice Stage Manager, Bashir Lazhar, 2008-2009 season
“During my first month at Pi, I have already learned more than in 2 years of studies. I always knew that that I loved theatre, but now thanks to this enriching placement at Pi Theatre, I know that I want to make it my work environment. Working at Pi gives me hope in my future, it gives me hope in work because it is possible to enjoy going to work! Thanks to this internship, I won't see theatre in the same way." - Mathilde le Nezét, Administrative Intern, 2008-2009 season
“The program gave me the opportunity to meet many of the leading professionals in the business as well as educating me in the systems used in the theatres over here. The contacts that I made will and already have created employment opportunities elsewhere in Vancouver. As a way of helping emerging artists and designers I would thoroughly recommend Pi Theatre’s Prime Placements program to anyone that wishes to make connections in Vancouver.” - Simon Farrow, Technical Assistant, Bashir Lazhar, 2008-2009 season
"Prime at Pi galvanized my learning experience as a freshly graduated theatre student. For the first time, I had an environment in which to cut my teeth on a professional level, and apply what my teachers had taught me to the real world, with the kid gloves off. There simply isn't a substitute for this kind of job training. It was the perfect finish to my acting training, and an even better start to my new career as a full-fledged professional actor." - Sarah Afful, Actor, The 8th Land, 2007-2008 season
"With my inclusion in two Pi shows as a stage manager, and assistant stage manager, the experiences I've had have added to my skills and knowledge. It was such an appreciated challenge and pleasure to work on interesting and creative works." - Jethelo E. Cabilete, Apprentice Stage Manager, John & Beatrice; Assistant Stage Manager, The 8th Land, 2007-2008 season
"I came to understand the inner workings of what it takes to stage a theatre production in Vancouver: the inter-company negotiations, the pre-planning and foresight, the gathering of and access to resources, and the necessary pre-production work grant applications, budgeting, etc. As an emerging director who seeks to start her own company someday, this kind of exposure and first-hand learning was invaluable to me." - Sara Kerastas, Assistant Director, Werewolves, 2006-2007 season
"It was incredible. I got a real sense of what it's really like to work for a professional company. There was no aspect of an administrator's job that I didn't get a chance to tackle, and now I am fully confident that I can handle anything that comes my way." - Heather Cant, Administrative Assistant, 2005-2006 season
"Technically, as a video designer, I have grown in leaps and bounds. I now have a leading edge in video design because we made a huge video concept into reality. I had my first design meeting for my latest job and I came loaded with knowledge that will no doubt enhance the project." - Jamie Nesbitt, Video Designer, Carnage, 2005-2006 season
"I feel as though I am seeing my work for the first time. I didn't know that this is what it could be." - Stéphane Hogue, Playwright, Carnage
"It brings artists from different programs and walks of life together who would otherwise not have had such an opportunity. This fostering of cooperation serves both them and our community. For those of us who have been in the business rather longer it is always refreshing to remember where your roots are and to be able to help establish roots for up and coming artists." - David Kerr, Mentor, Production Manager, Vancouver International Children's Festival
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