Like to laugh? Act? Ninjas? Meet Instructor Renee St. Cyr (week one)


I am Renée! I’ll be at WordsWorth for the first week teaching screenwriting. This class is great because – not only do we write – we ACT! Everything I write falls into the category of comedy with dramatic elements. The key to comedy is timing, which means I have become really good at listening to the voices in my head. The comedy director, James Burrows, doesn’t watch the monitors during the take. He doesn’t even watch the actors; he puts his head between his legs and listens to them through his earphones. He’s listening for the pace (ahem timing) and energy of the delivery. We won’t have earphones, but we will have a series of acting exercises, where we will explore pace and the structure of comedy. Basically… we will make each other laugh, and then we will discuss why we made each other laugh.

Also! Because timing is essential to comedy, it is one of the most highly structured narratives; thus! I’ve become really good at understanding story structure. During this week, we will all write scenes, and we will use exercises and our knowledge of structure to develop the characters and storylines. Then we will act them to listen to the pace and feel the tension. Now, if you hate comedy and laughing, don’t choose this class. But! If you love horror or sci-fi or suspense thrillers, that’s awesome, and everything we do will totally apply to your genre.

As for the stuff I do… I have seven TV show concepts that are currently being pitched to networks. I have filmed two demo pilots, and I have acted in both of them. I plan to shoot my first film this fall, whereupon I will…again…act in it. I am workshopping my first novel at the Banff Arts Centre this spring. I have lots of projects on the go, and I like to collaborate with others. I studied acting, and have acted in independent features, shorts, and web-series. Acting has helped my writing and writing has helped my acting. It’s like learning the ABC’s backwards. We become alphabetical ninjas. So…I can’t wait for camp! Writing! Acting! Yay!

(To be clear – in case out of everything I said, all you heard was ninja – this class is totally un-ninja-related; because although I can be deft with words, I’m a major uncoordinated klutz in the physical realm. So, to reiterate: no ninja, just WRITING! ACTING! YAY!!!)

Meet Instructor Renee St. Cyr (week one). Cyr (week one)
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