In Fall of 2016, a sold out run of brave, bold, and curious audience members joined us for the premiere run of our latest sensory adventure!

Swept up by the tactile experience of the surface of the skin, we endeavored to blend storytelling with a one of a kind guided storytelling experience unlike any other. Often in theatre we rely on the benefit of sight to inform our experience: use of a set to indicate where things take place, tricks of the light to dazzle us, the faces of actors to provoke ouremotions –TOUCH removes all of those elements to stimulate your imagination and zero in on what you can actually FEEL.

In partnering with the incredible team at the Aveda Institute, we gained access to an array of esthetics services, products, and techniques that assisted in widening our physical vocabulary. The science of touch is remarkably complex, reaching well beyond the physical framework of neurological signals and chemical reactions. The “who”, the “where”, and the “how” can be just as important as the “what” in terms of the body’s response to sensation - indicated for example by the way we imagine a hug from either a loved one or a stranger.

With TOUCH we bridge the gaps between what the body physically recognizes and what that can conjure or create in terms of a personal connection –all of this to create awareness. Consciousness of these connections is part of how we locate ourselves in the world, and manifests part of what it is to be alive.

Performance Dates

September 2016: Presented in Calgary, Alberta as part of the 2016 Beakerhead Festival



Concept/Co-Creator/Director: Eric Rose

Playwright/Co-Creator: Louise Casemore

Audience Experience Director/Dramaturg: Laurel Green

Design/Collaborator: Braden Griffiths

Technical Direction/Sound Design: Thomas Geddes

Performers: Emily Promise Allison, Louise Casemore, and the Senior Students of the Aveda Institute Calgary


Assistant Creative Director, Aveda Institute/Collaborator: Katelyn Ladanchuk

Director, Aveda Institute Calgary: Sara Holt-Moseson

Front Line Manager, Aveda Institute Calgary: Kat Parkin

TOUCH Guides:

Carley Saab, Lindsey Balogh, Drake Vincent, Joanna Chu, Caylin Zynger, Isaac Lozoya, Jules Hynes, Kelauren Kurtz, Samantha Pruski, Meghan Clark


Beakerhead is a Calgary based art and science festival, taking place for one week every September. Beakerhead is a time and place where engineers show their creative sides, and artists get technical, where science hits the street, and everyone gets ingenious. Leading with hands-on entertainment, Beakerhead advances the understanding of science and engineering as part of everyday life – through art and culture. It creates a world of collision and collaboration. Yes, indeed, sparks do fly when “things technical” meet “things creative”. For more information: http://beakerhead.com


TOUCH is the third instalment of GRT’s Six Senses Performance Series.  The Series is a rigorous exploration of what happens to the boundaries of narrative when you focus on stimulating the audience’s senses.  When you take away sight—our primary gateway in the world— how do our imaginations open up to narrative? How can being deprived of sight prime us for a unique performance experience? How does the audience imagination/engagement factor into the overall narrative experience of performance?

At the forefront of our work is the question of liveness:  how we unearth and reveal the world differently for audiences based on the immediacy and interactivity of the performance experience.  The Six Senses Series challenges us in our devised practice to break down our ‘total artwork’ approach to creation into its component parts, in order to better understand and trust the imaginary space our audience needs to fully engage in the live performance experience.