Tara is a theatre artist and international workshop leader. An experienced director and actor, she specializes in improvisation, physical comedy and modern clown, with an interest in playwrighting and singing. Her areas of expertise as a workshop leader are in devising original works and in unleashing an actor's sense of honest and spontaneous play.
Tara received her theatre training from the University of Alberta (B.Ed. Drama) and Grant MacEwan College (Theatre Arts). Furthermore, she has enriched her knowledge of world theatre traditions by travelling to study with renowned theatre practitioners. She loves comedy and has studied the art of improvisation extensively with the internationally acclaimed Rapid Fire Theatre Company in Edmonton, AB and The Upright Citizens Brigade in New York City. Tara is very passionate about the art of clowning and has studied with The New York Downtown Clowns, Eric Davis, Christopher Bayes (Yale School of Drama), Mick Barnfather (Theatre de Complicite) and some of Canada's celebrated clowns: Jan Henderson, Shannan Calcutt and Sue Morrison.
Tara began receiving critical acclaim over a decade ago with her performance in The Woolgatherer that garnered the title: "Pick of the Fringe" at the theatre festival in Edmonton. She has written and performed her one-woman piece entitled Neurotica and is the co-author of a film noir/black comedy entitled, Urge to Kill. In the 2006 season of the Edmonton Fringe Festival, Tara directed MacIvor's See Bob Run to rave reviews. She also directed and produced Sherri D. Sutton's one-woman show Don't Make Fun of Jesus to sold out houses and standing ovations at the 2008 Edmonton Fringe. In 2009, Don't Make Fun of Jesus was chosen BEST OF FEST at the Winnipeg Fringe Festival. Tara also produced, directed, and co-wrote Excuse Me... This is the Truth! for the Edmonton Fringe Festival, as well as produced NYC's hit Off-Broadway show, Viva La Diva. Most recently, Tara appeared in Assassins at Studio Theatre and in her solo-show I'll Show Ya Crazy! at the Catalyst Theatre. This past summer, Tara toured the Fringe circuit with Taking out the White Trash that was chosen as BEST OF FEST at the Winnipeg Fringe Festival. Currently, Tara is directing and writing several new works for performance next year.
Tara has taught various styles of theatre and numerous forms of dance. She has led workshops and extended intensives with all levels of participants, from elementary to university, as well as educators and theatre professionals. A former IB theatre instructor and staff development leader, Tara implemented and trained staff in cross-curricular practice, thinking maps/learning strategies and best practices. Currently, she travels the world freelancing as a workshop leader, artistic director, and representative with ISTA (International Schools Theatre Association) and is a senior examiner for the International Baccalaureate theatre curriculum. In addition, Tara also teaches acting and improvisation for the Citadel's Foote Theatre School. An award winning educator, Tara's students have received numerous provincial awards and have participated in national competitions. Recently she worked with Encore Ensemble Theatre in France and devised an original musical, Boat Boy that toured to the Avignon Theatre Festival. In addition, Tara's article on clowning has been published in Scene Magazine and she is writing a resource guide for educators entitled Permission to Play!
Currently, she is most excited about her role as the Artistic Director of Break the Wall Productions, a devising company that specializes in creating works that explode the conventional audience-actor barrier, and Break The Wall between us.
"Tara has a powerful and lovely clown... fierce and naughty and full of regret. Beautiful."
~Christopher Bayes, Yale School of Drama