Conversations on Performance

The FTA’s newest project, Conversations on Performance is a 7-day seminar from May 28 to June 3, 2020 as part of the 14th edition of the Festival TransAmériques. The FTA will take place in Montreal from May 20 to June 3, 2020.

Open to a maximum of fifteen young Canadian professional artists aged 25 to 35, this project takes the form of a seminar held in English and based on six shows presented during the FTA. Participants are encouraged to expand their ideas about contemporary theatre and dance, confront their artistic realities and critical thinking, and to share their expertise with their peers. A cultural project coordinator will serve as a consultant during the project.

For its second edition, Conversations on Performance will include English-language artists from Montreal, across Quebec and from other provinces in Canada. We hope to eventually open it up to participants from other countries in the years to come.

We no longer accept candidates for the 2020 edition. The call for applications for the 2021 edition will open in November 2020.


Encourage the development of emerging artistic practices by circulating ideas and intermingling disciplines and diverse creative contexts;

Enrich the professional and artistic approach of participants by discovering the work of other artists, as well as contemporary dance and theatre performances from Canada and elsewhere;

Stimulate contact with other artists and critics, and the sharing of ideas.

Festival TransAmériques

The biggest performing arts festival in North America, the Festival TransAmériques is a driving force for the promotion of contemporary theatre and dance. The FTA delves deep into artistic disciplines, probing their limits in its quest for bold, outstanding artistic voices. Its policy is a pact with the present, i.e. to support creative artists by presenting and co-producing contemporary theatre and dance pieces, works that reinterpret the world we live in, that shed light on our times. Featuring shows from all over the world, the FTA mirrors political and social movements of our era, as echoed in striking and essential works of art.

Eligibility Criteria

At least two years’ experience as a young dance, performance art or theatre professional*.

Have good spoken english

Be between 25 and 35

 Special attention will be given to candidates who have demonstrated over the course of their short careers a desire to reflect in depth about their chosen art form and to further advance that particular discipline.

* Directors, playwrights, choreographers, actors, performers, critics or any other candidate with a performing arts practice

Program activities

+ 6 FTA shows

Discuss FTA shows and related topics with an emphasis on critical analysis

In-depth discussions with FTA artists

Visits of cultural venues and artistic centres

Conversations on Performance is a demanding seminar that consists of an intense daily schedule. Successful candidates must demonstrate engagement and commitment.

Program 2019 Schedule 2019

Registration Fees: $195 / participant

Including 6 FTA shows and 7 days of activities, with a professional mediator

Not covered by the Festival


Transportation to and in Montreal

Personal expenses

Lodging (A special rate is available at universitary residences)

Tickets for shows not included in the Festival’s programme

Every submission requires

1 page cover letter


Photocopy of your identity card (at the photo page)

Please submit your files at the latest on December 1 to and indicate Conversations on Performance Application in your email title.

If selected, it is each candidate’s responsibility to find the funding necessary for taking part in the project. The FTA will provide an official letter of acceptance, to help participants in their search for funding.

We highly recommend that you start by communicating with your municipal and provincial funding agencies. The Canada Arts Council also offers travel grants for artists taking part in professional development activities.

Informations or questions

Jeanne-Renée D. Lorrain | Project Manager
514 842 0704 + 26 /
Festival TransAmériques

Testimonials from participants

‘‘Attending Conversations on Performance was transformative for my artistic practice. I was challenged, motivated, and inspired by my time at FTA. The exceptional shows, informative meetings with artists and producers, and fantastic conversations with the seminar group have all had an exciting effect on the work I’m making now. I made new friends and future collaborators from across the country, and I can’t wait to see when and how I cross paths with my fellow participants in the future.’’ – David Gagnon Walker, Halifax

‘‘One of very few opportunities for young Canadian live-art artists across the country to come together and share best practices. I left feeling connected to emerging artists from coast to coast, and overall more implicated in the landscape of Canadian performing arts.’’ – Burcu Emeç, Montreal

‘‘The Conversations on Performance seminar was a truly enriching week. It’s a rare and special opportunity to discover other artists’ point of views because we get to reflect from a shared experience. The discussions allowed me to expand my critical thinking and also consider how my own voice can be an active part of the Canadian artistic landscape. ’’ – Bruno-Pierre Houle, Montreal

‘‘The Conversations on Performance program was such a rich experience. FTA’s national and international curation is unparalleled and offered not just networking opportunities but a pressing chance for real exchange with my peers about the state of our art. I’m still in contact with my cohort and I have no doubt I will be for years to come. The program fills an urgent void in our country. I’m at a pivotal time in my career when I’m trying to build national relationships, but there simply aren’t other exchange opportunities like this for artists at our career stage—that is, for professionals several years into their practice who are creating work and driving artistic innovation, but still developing their aesthetic and grappling with their place within the industry—who are “established” and no longer “emerging”, but for whom “mid-career” sounds positively ancient. And with many of the country’s other young professionals programs having recently shuttered Conversations on Performance is unique and all-too necessary. ’’ – Griffin McInnes, Toronto