Alberto Guevara

BA (Concordia), MA (York), PhD (Concordia)

Alberto Guevara
Associate Professor

Performance studies

Originally from Nicaragua, Professor Guevara has harbored a lifelong interest in the intersections of theatre, performance and politics. During the Nicaraguan Sandinista government he participated in a cultural brigade, received training at the National Theatre School and was a member of Alan Bolt’s Nyxtayoleros Theatre. He has collaborated in a number of inter-cultural theatre organizations including Teatro Sin Fronteras (Toronto), Mise au Jeu (Montreal), Théâtre autochtone Ondinnok (Montreal), Dalit Theatre Group (Nepal), Act!vision (Lethbridge) and Chocolate Woman Collective (Toronto). He received an interdisciplinary PhD from Concordia University in Theatre, Social Anthropology and Communications.

Professor Guevara’s scholarly work focuses on a number of interconnected areas, including the theatricality of power, performance and nationalism – with a focus on the contestation of dominant narratives, art and revolution, theatre for social change, Indigenous art and performance, the aesthetics of violence and affliction, the body in performance, and ethnographic methods. A unique strength of his scholarship and teaching is his combination of contemporary performance theory and ethnographic methodologies. Thus, while field research forms the backbone of his performance studies scholarship in Nepal and Nicaragua, the measurable outcomes of this research are diverse and include: documentary films, exhibitions, performances, and an interdisciplinary open-access online journal InTensions http://www.yorku.ca/intent/index.html. He has published in Visual Anthropology Review, The Applied Theatre Researcher/IDEA, 452F: Journal of Literary Theory and Comparative Literature, and Intensions among others. His film work has been shown internationally at venues such as DOXA Documentary Film Festival, Planet in Focus Environmental, International Film and Video Festival, The RAI: Royal Anthropological Institute International Festival of Ethnographic Films, and ASPEKTY among others.

Michael Greyeyes

MFA (Kent State)

Michael Greyeyes
Associate Professor

Movement for Actors
Director, Graduate Program in Theatre (MFA)

Michael Greyeyes teaches physical performance and devised theatre. A graduate of Canada’s National Ballet School, he danced professionally with The National Ballet of Canada and as a soloist with the company of choreographer Eliot Feld in New York.

Professor Greyeyes is a choreographer, actor, director, and the founding artistic director of Toronto’s Signal Theatre, a company that engages in practiced-based research to create live performance, exploring dance, opera, music, design and the spoken word.

His productions for Signal include the full-length dance theatre works from thine eyes (Harbourfront Centre, Toronto, 2011; Prismatic Festival, Halifax, 2012) and A Soldier’s Tale, commissioned by the National Arts Centre (Canada Dance Festival, NAC, Ottawa, 2014; Fleck Dance Theatre, Harbourfront Centre, Toronto, 2014). Signal is currently developing two major new works: Bearing, a dance opera that delves into Canada’s Indian residential school legacy, and Gallábárnit, a Sami language opera that is a collaboration with Soundstreams Canada, Musik I Syd (Sweden) and Beaivváŝ, the National Sami Theatre.

Professor Greyeyes’ directorial credits include Pimooteewin, the first Cree language opera, with libretto by Tomson Highway (Soundstreams Canada); Almighty Voice and his Wife, which toured across Canada and to London/UK (Native Earth Performing Arts); The River (Nakai Theatre, Yukon); and the Super 16mm production Seven Seconds for Toronto’s imagineNATIVE film + media arts festival. In an acting career spanning more than two decade, he has worked with a number of notable directors including Terrence Malick, John Sayles, Bruce McDonald and Chris Eyre. His screen credits include Smoke Signals, The New World, Dance Me Outside, Skinwalkers and Passchendaele.

Ines Buchli

BFA (Simon Fraser) MFA (York University)

Ines Buchli
Associate Professor

Acting and Directing
Chair: Department of Theatre

Professor Buchli teaches acting and directing at both the graduate and undergraduate level.  She is a filmmaker, theatre director, dramaturg and writer.  Ines is the former associate artistic director of Necessary Angel Theatre and associate artist for Theatre Direct.  She has over 25 years of theatre experience in directing, dramaturgy and collective creations.  Her films Exposure, Ministry and Keeper aired nationally and screened in numerous international film festivals.  She is a graduate of the directing lab at the Canadian Film Centre.  Her award winning short, Foxy Lady, Wild Cherry, premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival and has screened around the world.  Film critic, Cameron Bailey, named Foxy Lady, Wild Cherry one of his top ten films and presented it in Sao Paulo as part of his favourite Canadian short films perspective.  Ines adapted and directed the Canadian premiere of Big Love and the North American premiere of Comedy of Vanity at York University. She is actively involved in using theatre as a tool for community outreach work, working in Kenya with young girls rescued from the sex trade.  Ines recently directed a sold out production of Macbeth for Shakespeare in Action.  She is a member of the 2012 Tarragon Playwright’s Unit.  Ines is directing the world premiere of the multi media production of The Secret Doctrine at the new Wong Theatre in Vancouver.

Erika Batdorf

BSc (Lesley College, Cambridge)

Erika Batdorf
Associate Professor

Movement, Creation, Directing

Professor Batdorf is listed in the Who’s Who of American Teachers, received the York Faculty of Fine Arts Dean’s Senior Teaching Award for 2009/10 and in 1996 was voted Most Outstanding Faculty at The Boston Conservatory where she taught for 12 years. Batdorf has also taught at Brandeis University, Emerson College and the University of Alaska Anchorage. She founded the Batdorf School for Movement Theatre in 1998 and has been a guest artist in universities and theatres internationally. Her solo works have appeared in such places as the Smithsonian Institute, The Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, Landegg Academy for International Development in Switzerland, Nine Dragon Heads International Arts Symposium in Korea, Harvard University, Movement Theatre Festivals in New York, Philadelphia and New Hampshire, the Women’s Theater Festival in Philadelphia, the Boston Center for the Arts and in NYC for PS122, Dixon Place, Moonworks and the NY International Fringe Festival. Erika Batdorf has also performed for United Nations conferences in Switzerland and Denmark and the 7th International Women’s Playwrights Conference in Indonesia. Her works have appeared in Toronto at Theatre Passé Muraille, The Theatre Centre, Factory and Buddies in Bad Times Theatre many times in the Hysteria and Rhubarb! festivals. She has had four Dora nominations, one for performance, two for playwriting and one for directing. In 2010 she created/directed an original production for the Luminato Festival for Arts and Creativity, adapted and directed Peer Gynt as a two hander listed in NOW in the top ten theatre of 2010 and performed her solo Poetic License in Massachusetts at the KO Festival. Most recently she performed in Brooklyn, NY and in Toronto for the Festival of Fools and is working on a new solo. She will be in Bali, Indonesia and Australia for her 2011- 12 sabbatical.

Personal Website

Elizabeth Asselstine

BA (Guelph), MA (University of California)

Elizabeth Asselstine
Professor Emerita

Lighting Design

Elizabeth Asselstine has been working as a lighting designer across Canada for almost three decades in both opera and theatre. Opera credits include the production of Der Fliegende Holländer at Edmonton Opera and Opera to Go for Tapestry New Opera Works, Toronto.  She has also worked for Baltimore Opera, Pacific Opera in Victoria, Vancouver Opera and Opera Lyra in Ottawa, as well as 12 with the Canadian Opera Company.  With the COC she toured to the Edinburgh Festival, New York City, Hong Kong Music Festival and Melbourne Music Festival, Australia.

Professor Asselstine’s theatre credits include Elizabeth Rex and Coronation Voyage for the Globe Theatre, Regina; Rice Boy for Toronto’s CanStage; and various productions at the National Arts Centre in Ottawa, Edmonton’s Citadel Theatre and the Charlottetown Festival. She has designed frequently for the Shaw Festival, including their productions of Playboy of the Western World, The Children’s Hour, and An Ideal Husband. Other credits include the original designs for Canadian musicals Anne and Gilbert and Stan Rogers: A Matter of Heart.

A Dora nominee, Elizabeth Asselstine is a member of Associated Designers of Canada and OISTAT (International Organization of Scenographers, Theatre Architects and Technicians), and serves on the committee of Theatre Ontario’s Professional Training Program.

Eric Armstrong

BFA (Concordia), MFA (York)

Eric Armstrong
Associate Professor

Voice

Eric Armstrong teaches voice, speech, dialects and Shakespearen text to students in the BFA and MFA acting programs at York University. He has also taught at Roosevelt University in Chicago, Brandeis University in Boston, Canada’s National Voice Intensive and the University of Windsor.

Professor Armstrong trained with David Smukler in York’s Voice Teacher training program. He also studied at The Drama Studio (London/UK) and apprenticed with Andrew Wade, Head of Voice at the Royal Shakespeare Company.

Professional dialect coaching for theatre highlights include “Another Africa” for Volcano Theatre, “The Cosmonaut’s Last Message…” and “Habeas Corpus” at Canadian Stage, “Eternal Hydra” at Crow’s Theatre, “Arigato Tokyo” and “Blasted” at Buddies in Bad Times Theatre, “Translations” at Soulpepper, and “Just Stopped by to See the Man” at Steppenwolf. Film and television credits include coaching Michelle Williams and Sarah Silverman for Sarah Polley’s film “Take This Waltz” and Tom Wilkinson for his Emmy and Golden Globe-nominated performance in “Normal“.

Armstrong is a former director and board member of the Voice And Speech Trainers Association (VASTA). He has published articles in the Voice and Speech Review and has worked as an actor in theatre and film across Canada. His research/teaching/creative interests lie in the intersection of teaching and technology, and he has used web-based technologies extensively to support his teaching and research. He wrote a blog on voice training at voiceguy.ca and was cohost of the podcast “Glossonomia, conversations on the sounds of speech”

Personal website

Publications

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Coaching for Professional Theatre and Film (Highlights)

2012

Dialect Coach: Arigato Tokyo (Workshop), Daniel MacIvor (Regional Theatre)
Buddies in Bad Times Theatre, Director: Brendan Healy

2011

Dialect Coach: Another Africa: Shine Your Eye, Binyavanga Wainaina (Regional Theatre)
Volcano Theatre and Canadian Stage, Director: Ross Manson

Dialect Coach: The Cosmonaut’s Last Message to the Woman he once Loved in the Former Soviet Union, David Greig (Regional Theatre)
Canadian Stage, Director: Jennifer Tarver

Dialect Coach: Eternal Hydra, Anton Piatigorski (Regional Theatre)
Crows Theatre, Director: Chris Abraham

2010

Dialect Coach: Blasted, Sarah Kane (Regional Theatre)
Buddies in Bad Times Theatre, Director: Brendan Healey

Dialect Coach: Master Harold and the Boys, Athol Fugard (Regional Theatre)
Thousand Island Playhouse, Director: Nigel Shawn Williams

Dialect Coach: Take This Waltz (Feature Film)
Actors: Michelle Williams, Sarah Silverman, Luke Kirby; Director: Sarah Polley

2009

Dialect Coach: Resident Evil: Afterlife (Feature Film)
Actor: Sergio Peris-Mencheta, Constantin Film Produktions , Director: Paul W.S. Anderson

Dialect Coach: Eternal Hydra, Anton Piatigorski
Crow’s Theatre, Buddies in Bad Times Theatre (Independent Theatre)
Director: Chris Abraham

2008

Dialect Coach: Someone Who’ll Watch Over Me, Frank McGuinness
Adeona Productions, Berkeley St. Theatre (Regional Theatre)
Director: Tegan Shohet

Dialect Coach: Pride and Prejudice, Jane Austen, adapted by Mark Cuddy & Marg Betley
Geva Theatre (Regional Theatre)
Director: Mark Cuddy

Dialect Coach: Eternal Hydra, Anton Piatigorski (WORKSHOP)
Crow’s Theatre, Buddies in Bad Times Theatre (Independent Theatre)
Director: Chris Abraham

Dialect Coach: Alias Godot, Brendan Gall
Tarragon Theatre (Regional Theatre)
Director: Richard Rose

Dialect Coach: Orphan, David Leslie Johnson (Hollywood Film)
DCP Orphan Productions, Warner Bros.
Director: Jaume Collet-Serra

2007

Dialect Coach: Eternal Hydra, Anton Piatigorsky
Crow’s Theatre (Regional Theatre)
Director: Chris Abraham

Dialect Coach: Sherlock Holmes: The Final Adventure, Steven Dietz
Geva Theatre and the Cleveland Playhouse (Regional Theatres)
Director: Tim Ocel

2005

Dialect Coach: Habeas Corpus, Alan Bennett
CanStage, Canadian Premiere (National Theatre)
Director: Morris Panych

Dialect Coach: That Was Then, Gerard Stembridge
Geva Theatre (Regional Theatre)
Director: Mark Cuddy

2004

Dialect Coach: John Bull’s Other Island, G. B. Shaw
Geva Theatre (Regional Theatre)
Director: Edward Call

Dialect Coach: Translations, Brian Friel
SoulPepper Theatre (National Theatre)
Director: Ben Barnes

2002

Dialect Coach: Just Stopped By to See the Man, Stephen Jeffreys
Steppenwolf Theatre (National Theatre)
Director: Randall Arney

Dialect Coach: Mad Forest, Caryl Churchill
Piven Theatre (Regional Theatre)
Director: Jennifer Green

Dialect Coach: Phedre, Racine
Court Theatre (Regional Theatre)
Director: Joanne Akalaitis

Dialect Coach (FILM): Normal, Jane Anderson
HBO films (International Film)
Director: Jane Anderson

2001

Dialect Coach: Book of Days, Lanford Wilson
Piven Theatre (Regional Theatre)
Director: Jennifer Green

Dialect & Voice Coach: Mary Stuart, Friedrich Schiller, translated by Robert David MacDonald
Court Theatre (Regional Theatre)
Director: Joanne Akalaitis

Books:

Rootberg, Ruth, ed.  TEACHING BREATHING: Results of a Survey Monograph, Marth Munro (assistant editor); co-author with 9 other voice trainers: Christine Adaire, Barbara Adrian, Eric Armstrong, Michael Barnes, Marina Gilman, Jane Heirich, Mary Howland, Ellen Margolis, Marth Munro, Lise Olson, published by the editor, 2002, 181 pp.

Chapters:

Armstrong, Eric, “Compelling Honesty: Searching for Authenticity in the Voice of Nina Arsenault” in TRANS(per)FORMING Nina Arsenault, Judith Rudakoff, editor, Intellect Press, Bristol UK, 2012. In Press.

Armstrong, Eric “Embodying Meter,” Voice and Movement, and other contemporary issues in professional voice and speech training presented by the Voice and Speech Review, Rena Cook, editor, University Readers, July 2009, pending.

Armstrong, Eric, & Meier, Paul,  “R and Its Articulation,” Shakespeare Around the Globe and other contemporary issues in professional voice and speech training presented by the Voice and Speech Review, Mandy Rees, editor, Applause Books, August 2005, p. 237-250.

Armstrong, Eric,  “Hybrid Dialects,” Shakespeare Around the Globe and other contemporary issues in professional voice and speech training presented by the Voice and Speech Review, Mandy Rees, editor, Applause Books, August 2005, p. 251-260.

–––, “IS THIS NORMAL?: A Theatre Coach Works in Film,” Film, Broadcast and E-Media Coaching and other contemporary issues in professional voice and speech training presented by the Voice and Speech Review, Rocco Dal Vera, editor, Applause Books, August 2003, p. 33-43.

Rootberg, Ruth (moderator), Adaire, C., Adrian, B., Armstrong, E., Barnes, M., Gilman, M. Heirich, J., Howland, M., Margolis, E., Munro, M., Olson, L., Timberlake, P., Watson, L.,  “Clavicular Breathing, Held Shoulders and Related Issues: Round Table Discussion,” Film, Broadcast and E-Media Coaching and other contemporary issues in professional voice and speech training presented by the Voice and Speech Review, Rocco Dal Vera, editor, Applause Books, August 2003, p. 278-295.

Armstrong, Eric, “EARNING THE ROLE: The Company Voice Coach, An Interview with the Royal Shakespeare Company’s Andrew Wade,” The Voice in Violence and other contemporary issues in professional voice and speech training presented by the Voice and Speech Review, Rocco Dal Vera, editor, Applause Books, August 2001, p. 148-154.

–––, “Vowel Slide/Glide,” The Complete Voice and Speech Workout Book (and CD), Janet Rodgers, editor, Applause Books, 2001, p. 43-48.

Magazine Articles:

Armstrong, Eric, “Taking Care of Your Voice” in Dramatics Magazine, a publication of the Educational Theatre Association, March 2009.

Reviews:

Armstrong, Eric, “Access Accents: RP, Cockney, Geordie,” by Gwyneth Strong and Penny Dyer in The Moving Voice, and other contemporary issues in professional voice and speech training presented by the Voice and Speech Review, Rena Cook, editor, University Readers, July 2009, p. 449.

–––, “The Atlas of North American English,” by William Labov, Sharon Ash and Charles Boberg, in Voice and Gender, and other contemporary issues in professional voice and speech training presented by the Voice and Speech Review, Mandy Rees, editor, University Readers, July 2007, p. 394-395.

CD-ROM/Book Publications:

Fairfield Language Technology,  Rosetta Stone: US English Level One, Pronunciation Reviewer (editor). 2007.

Awards

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2010

Council for Exceptional Children, Yes I Can Parent Award (Ontario wide, with my spouse, Amy Armstrong) For advocating for our two sons, who are both on the Autism Spectrum.

Council for Exceptional Children, Yes I Can Parent Award (Chapter 56, Toronto)

2008

Community Partners Teaching Award: Outstanding Lecture/Seminar/DCM teaching. Dept. of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy, University of Toronto. With Dawn Lunan, Alison Bowen, and Beth Kingston

2006

VASTA Leadership & Service Award: One of only 7 such awards given out in the 25 year history of VASTA.