Members of the 2018 Academy: Fiona Dodsworth, Marina Gomes, Luke Kimball, Claire MacMaster, Brady Madsen, Kelli-Anne Maycock, Quinlan Shearer, Suzanne Wilkie, Isabella Wolder and Kevin Matthew Wong. Photo by Sarah Kirby at Imagine Photography

Festival Players Education Initiatives

Festival Players will continue to support and build bridges with the communities in Prince Edward County, the broader communities and its youth. PIC on the NET is a virtual way to bring the youth of the area into the creative spheres of the theatre community with rare and purposeful work that allows the voice of the young people in the region to be heard and celebrated.

PIContheNET is a play-creation theatre program for Prince Edward County (and surrounding areas) youth ages 13 to 17 to collaboratively design a new play. Through a series of engaging online group activities, the young artists will unearth inspiration from the County to address current local issues. The company of up to 20 participants will be guided by Cultivate with artist-educators Brendon Allen and Amanda Merpaw through a dynamic online process that channels the artists existing strengths while expanding their skills in new ways.

Presented by The Festival Players of Prince Edward County, in association with The Regent Theatre, this program allows young artists to craft an original play, expand their skills as actors, designers and playwrights while cultivating connections between their creative impulses and their sense of place in the County community.

PIContheNET has evolved from last year’s PICinPEC, which staged an original play at the Studio Theatre at the end of Wellington Water Week and took the themes of water conservation and community-centered environmental efforts. This year’s program has moved online as an opportunity to engage with the youth of the region while social distancing measures prevent us from gathering in person. The final play will be streamed live on August 21st.

Classes run from August 3rd to 21st, 2020 online. Hours spent online will fluctuate to accommodate the work. Online streaming event of final work held on August 21st, 2020.

Registration Fee
This program runs as donate-what-you-can, with all donations going to The ROC Youth Centre in Prince Edward County. You’ll receive a link to donate directly upon admission (by July 10).

Application Process
Applicants are required to register online at

All applicants need to be between the ages of 13 and 17 years of age. All participants must be able to work online with facilitators and participants.

Artist/Facilitator Biographies

Amanda Merpaw is a poet, playwright, and educator. Her poems have appeared in the Literary Review of Canada, Prairie Fire, and Room, and her essays have appeared in Pathways. She is a member of Toronto’s 2019 Emerging Writers Reading Series and an assistant editor at The Temz Review. Amanda holds an MA in English from Ryerson University and an MT from OISE/University of Toronto.

Brendon Allen is a playwright, theatre-practitioner and educator. His plays, devising projects and theatrical adaptations have been staged throughout North America, Europe, Oceania, and Africa. He has worked with companies like CanadianStage, Theatre Smash, Buddies in Bad Times and Why Not Theatre. He holds an MA from the Drama Centre at UofT, an MEd equivalent from HTH School of Graduate Studies (San Diego).