Summer Apprenticeship: Bread and Puppet Theater
This program provides students with the opportunity to earn 3 Concordia credits while working at the Bread and Puppet Theater, culminating in a new performance under the direction of the Theater’s founder, Peter Schumann.
About the program
The Faculty of Fine Arts, Department of Theatre, and Concordia International are pleased to offer students a short-term summer program providing students with the opportunity to earn 3 Concordia credits while spending 2 weeks working at the Bread and Puppet Theater, culminating in a new performance under the direction of Peter Schumann, along with members of the company. Founder and director of Bread and Puppet in the Lower East Side of New York City in 1963 and based since 1974 in the town of Glover, Vermont (USA), Schumann is the creator of hundreds of theatrical productions, expansive community parades and pageants, and other multi-scale spectacles in both urban and rural settings – often on themes relating to the pressing issues of the day, and always in collaboration with the rural ecology of the company’s home.
Concordia students will work on a performance creation project in an intensive Field School, assisted by Bread and Puppet company members, over the course of a 2-week residency (including two travel days and one day off) and culminating in a final public performance at the annual Museum Opening day on Sunday, June 4th, launching the Theater’s summer season. The final performance will also be done on the day that we return to Montreal, Monday, June 5th, as part of the Suoni per il Popolo Festival outdoors at Entrepôt 77 in Mile End.
Dates & courses
Dates: May 23 - June 5, 2023
Undergraduate Course: PERC 496: Performance Creation Field School
Graduate Course: FAFS 660 (MA/MFA) or FAFS 860 (PhD): Faculty of Fine Arts Field School
In addition to working with the company’s signature puppets, masks, costumes, music, and movement style, the Field School will comprise of preparatory meetings and historical/contextual presentations on the history and philosophy of Bread and Puppet Theater. Students will participate in simple choral singing and music-making, papier-mâché puppet construction, printing and painting of posters and broadsides in the print shop, and the everyday chores of a working farm. A number of additional smaller performances in local towns and communities will likely be scheduled during the residency. Living conditions at the Theater are rustic, and the field school will take place in a phone and screen-free environment. (Internet access is available at the local library, but it’s best to plan to have most of your online business taken care of before departure.)
No prior performance experience is required, but an openness to trying things is helpful.
Estimated cost & bursary
Program fee: Concordia will charge program participants for 3 credits of undergraduate tuition and a program fee $1080 CDN to cover
- Bus transportation to and from Glover, Vermont
- Workshops, Materials, and Transportation within Vermont
Additional costs: Students are financially responsible for the payment of their accommodations, mandatory health and travel insurance, any travel documents you may need, the cost of a PCR test prior to departure and spending money.
Travel Documents: Students are responsible for ensuring that they have the necessary documentation to enter the US. If you are not traveling on a Canadian or US passport, please make confirm soon whether a travel visa will be required. For further information on entry requirements to the United States, please visit the U.S. Embassy & Consulates in Canada website.
Peter N. Thomson Family Field School Award: The Faculty of Fine Arts invites applications for the Peter N. Thomson Family Field School Awards. The Award offers an amount of $1,300 for thirty (30) eligible Fine Arts undergraduate or graduate students accepted to a Field School hosted by the Faculty of Fine Arts. Please consult the Peter N. Thomson Field School Award webpage for application instructions.
Quebec Mobility Bursary: To offset costs, Concordia offers a bursary of $1050 CDN to students who qualify. To partially offset costs, Concordia offers a Quebec Mobility Bursary of $1,050 to students who qualify. To qualify, you must meet the following requirements:
- Be a Concordia student enrolled in a Concordia Bachelor’s, Master’s or Doctoral degree program while participating in the program.
- Undergraduate students must have completed a minimum of 24 credits toward their degree. Graduate students must have completed at least 9 credits towards their degree; these must be credits earned from the current program. Transfer credits, whether internal or external, do not count.
- Students in Faculty of Fine Arts programs may also apply for the Thomson Award, which can be combined with the Quebec Mobility Bursary to offset the full cost of the course.
Bread and Puppet Theater is one of the oldest, non-profit, political theatre companies in the United States, founded in 1963 in New York City. In 1974, they moved to a farm in Glover in the Northeast Kingdom of Vermont. The 150-year-old hay barn was transformed into a museum for veteran puppets. Our Domestic Resurrection Circus, a two-day outdoor festival of puppet shows, was presented annually through 1998.
The company makes its income from touring new and old productions both on the American continent and abroad, and from sales of Bread and Puppet Press posters and publications. The traveling puppet shows range from tightly composed theater pieces presented by members of the company to extensive outdoor pageants which require the participation of many volunteers.
Today, Bread and Puppet continues to be one of the oldest, non-profit, political theatre companies in the country.
Accommodations are rustic. Students will be camping and should plan to provide their own camping gear. In case of cold of wet weather, indoor accommodations can be provided as a backup. If you don’t have camping equipment, we will work to see about lending or sharing equipment within the group.
In general, the Bread & puppet Theater field school is aimed at Theater or other performing arts students, but this is not a hard limitation.
- All students are eligible.
- No minimum GPA requirements.
All students interested in applying to this program must attend an information session given by Concordia International prior to submitting an application.
Date: February 17, 2023
Time: 12:00 p.m. - 1:00 p.m.
Submit the Concordia Field School Abroad Application by the application deadline of February 28, 2023. The application can be accessed through the Concordia International CSEP Mobility Portal.
Your application must also include:
- A copy of your most recent unofficial Concordia transcript.
Submit a short letter of intent to Prof. Mark Sussman by Friday, Feb. 17, 2023, at email@example.com, discussing why the Field School interests you.
- Concordia admissions decisions will be communicated by email after the application deadline.
- Final admissions decisions will be made by the program director.
- Students admitted to the program will have to make a non-refundable $500 deposit to Student Accounts. Please be aware, however, that any deposit you make will first be applied to any outstanding balances you owe to Concordia.
- Students admitted to the program will have to attend a mandatory pre-departure meeting on April 24th , 2023 at 12 on the following link: https://concordia-ca.zoom.us/j/5275981388
COVID Program Requirements
All student participating in this field school must meet the measures required by the Bread and Puppet Theater to ensure safety of all. Since the Covid situation is still changing, the precise requirements will be circulated closer to departure. However, it is expected that all students participating will be vaccinated and boosted. We may ask people to take a test and provide proof of negative status before departure, and there may be additional rapid testing after arrival in Glover.
For current information on entry requirements to the United States, please visit the U.S. Embassy & Consulates in Canada website.
All information on this website is subject to change without notice; the program is subject to a minimum enrollment of 12 students to take place; and it may be cancelled at any time and for any reason.
Have a question?
Associate Professor, Department of Theatre