Young Playwrights Unit
Young Playwrights Unit 2021
The Young Playwrights Unit (YPU) is a FREE training experience for young people who are curious and passionate about play-making. We take a page from our professional play development programs to offer a group of dedicated young creators a rigorous context in which to develop some of their first works.
If you have any questions about the Young Playwrights Unit, please don’t hesitate to contact Danielle Bourgon (Education and Community Engagement Manager) at [email protected].
Introducing Our 2021 YPU Program Lead
Makram Ayache is a Lebanese-Canadian community-engaged playwright, director, actor, producer and educator who splits his time between Edmonton and Toronto. His playwriting explores meaningful representations of queer Arab voices. He endeavors to bridge complex and interlocking political struggles to the very intimate and real experiences of the people impacted by them.
Ayache has been nominated for four Elizabeth Sterling Haynes Awards for his plays “Harun” (2018) and “The Green Line” (2019). Most recently, “Harun” won the Playwrights’ Guild of Canada’s annual Tom Hendry Award in the RBC Emerging Playwright Category. In 2020, Ayache completed Factory Theatre’s Mechanicals Actors’ Enhancement Training in Toronto and co-created and performed in Azimuth Theatre’s “All That Binds Us” in Edmonton.
Currently, his play “The Hooves Belonged to the Deer,” is commissioned by the Alberta Queer Calendar Project which has been recorded for online public viewing, directed by Peter Hinton, to be released in early 2021. Also 2021, he will spend his time at the Citadel Theatre developing his skills as a director and he is a participant of Generator’s Artist Producer Training program. He is also thrilled to be a part of Musical Stage Co. and Prime Mover’s NoteWorthy program where he will explore musical theatre creation.
Ayache is trained as an educator from the University of Alberta and has extensive education experience working with children, youth, and adult learners in a variety of settings. Currently, he facilitates 2SLGBTQIA+ (2-Spirit, Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans, Queer, Intersex, and Asexual/Agender) inclusion training through the 519 Church Street Community Centre in Toronto, Ontario. He also runs his own consultation and training organization, Shajara, which works with organizations and individuals to make meaningful change towards equity and anti-oppression. He has synthesized anti-oppression education with theatre education through the Queer and Trans Youth Theatre Project hosted by Soulpepper Theatre and the 519. He is also the Education Coordinator for Shakespeare in the Ruff. He has extensive experience in curricular design and development at the secondary, post-secondary, and community level of education. Much of his teaching philosophy is centered around an anti-oppressive and socially conscious pedagogy.