Banff Playwrights Lab

The Banff Playwrights Lab was created by playwrights Tom Hendry and George Ryga in the early 1970s. Celebrating its 49th season in 2022, the Lab has sustained its founding principles of focusing on playwrights and developing new works away from the pressures of a producing theatre.

Each year the Lab welcomes Canadian playwrights and their collaborators, providing each writer with a residency tailored to their specific needs with the goal of nurturing, challenging, and inspiring the next phase of their work. Each Lab features international writer/dramaturg teams, an acting company, and partnerships with organizations from across Canada and beyond.

Welcome text in a variety of languages.

Playwrights Programs

Playwrights Related

Directors Letter

The Banff Playwrights Lab offers Canadian playwrights an inspiring, interdisciplinary, and inclusive environment to work on their plays while surrounded by performing artists from across the country and around the world. The Lab supports challenging, multi-disciplinary, and provocative approaches to telling stories. We are proud to gather on Treaty 7 territory to create, share and explore theatrical storytelling.

Each year the Lab welcomes 8 Canadian playwrights and their collaborators, providing each writer with a residency tailored to their specific needs with the goal of nurturing, challenging, and inspiring the next phase of their work. The Lab also includes international writers and guest artists through partnerships with organizations from across Canada and beyond.

We want to support writers and plays telling stories not commonly told on Canadian stages; stories that embrace outrage and wrestle with wild ideas, images, and individuals.

The Lab accepts applications in English and French only, though we are open to receiving projects that reference or incorporate any and all languages. We encourage artists working with Indigenous languages and those working on projects with little or no language to apply.

The Lab seeks artists who are exploring theatrical form, taking risks, and asking questions about our society. We value strong storytelling, diversity (in form, discipline, culture, and community), beautiful language, bold experimentation, and collaboration. We seek artists who demand that theatre have social and political impact, and who are writing plays that seek to challenge and change our world.

 

Brian Quirt

Director, Banff Playwrights Lab

Playwrights Stories

The great gift of the Playwrights Lab is that it is whatever you need it to be whenever you need it. It is uninterrupted time and solitude; it is also an endlessly inspiring community. It is a retreat into yourself and your work, it is also a communion with other artists who quickly become your family, your fellow travelers.

Hiro Kanagawa

Contact Us

For questions about the department and what we offer, please contact:

Email: arts_info@banffcentre.ca
Phone: 403.762.610