Dream Another Day

September 14, 2017 // by admin

Female James Bond, Meagan O'Shea in Dream Another Day

re-imagining James Bond as a girl without a gun; saving the world, through dance.



Stand Up Dance is thrilled to announce that

Meagan O’Shea’s Dream Another Day 

gets 2 workshop productions this fall.

Trajectory  October 12 – 14, 2017, in Barrie, Ontario with Simcoe Contemporary Dancers



SpringWorks Festival at Factory163, in Stratford, Ontario

October 17, 9:30 pm

October 20, 7:30 pm

October 21, 12 noon

10% off tickets bought before September 15




dance like no one is watching 10 year anniversary edition Grassroots : Remix in Newfoundland

May 31, 2017 // by admin


photo above from a B>Lab in Barcelona, making dance to a poem in a language we don’t understand


dance like no one is watching ~ Grassroots : Remix brings together experiences, materials, and scores through translocal and international collaboration spanning a decade of improv practice.  In 2007 Meagan O’Shea conceived of “dance like no one is watching” – dancers performing spontaneous choreography in unexpected locations through shared improv practice. O’Shea spent 5 years working with 200 dancers to create this ever-evolving work, which reached 30,000 incidental audience members in parks, on streets, in parking spots, public transit, shop windows, and at farmers markets. For the last 5 years O’Shea has been developing that source material through her work in international contexts. For the World Dance Alliance Global Summit, O’Shea brings together dancers from myriad countries and contexts to connect practices, experiments, dance scores in Grassroots : Remix .

Over the course of a week, dancers gathered from Vancouver, Toronto, St. John’s and New York, Scandinavia and Spain will work together to develop shared vocabulary and try out different scores. At the end of the week we’ll pick the things we like the most and remix them to make pop up dances through out the next week.

We’ll insert secret scores within each dance that create their own narrative, and we’ll extract parts of each of the dances to make a dance film in the magnificent coastal Newfoundland landscape.

We’ve got a grassroots fundraising campaign going on. Please help us get to Newfoundland. Go www.standupdance.com and click on the PayPal button in the top right corner. Contribute as little or as much as you’d like. Every $2 or $5 gets us closer. Tell your friends. It’s that simple. Then, later, you’ll get to see the results of this in videos, photos and mini-docs. I’ts going to be amazing. Thank you for helping us get there!



photo below from original dance like no one is watching on Church St in Toronto, 2007; Meagan O’Shea, Penny Chivas, Julia Male
The Trio 07 Church

The Love Project

November 23, 2016 // by admin

Today we were so thrilled to perform The Love Project for the dance students at Rosedale Heights School of the Arts.

Choreographed by Meagan O’Shea

with performers (Nov.23.2016):

Patricia Allison

Miyeko Ferguson

Alya Graham

Maxime Nadeau

Shakeil Rollock


The Love Project playlist:  Patrick Watson, Bon Iver, The Barr Brothers, Andrew Bird, Lori Clarke, Schubert, Couperin, TV On The Radio, St. Dirt Elementary School, Sigur Rós

Summer Solo Making

April 10, 2016 // by admin

Stand Up Dance presents

Summer Solo Making with Meagan O’Shea

July 30 – August 6

Golden Lake, Ontario, Canada

Join Meagan O’Shea this summer on the shores of beautiful Golden Lake for a week of living and playing together to build skills, practice making and to create interdisciplinary solo performance.

Open to physical performers and performance creators of all disciplines, from students entering their final year of professional training, new graduates, and emerging and professional artists.

The week will include daily workshops to develop skills for generating and crafting material, practice time, studio space, one on one coaching, showings, and time to enjoy water and land activities that the location offers.

Using mind-maps and bodystorming participants will be led through practical exercises and a creative process map for making their own interdisciplinary performance. Drawing on dance and theatre improvisation strategies, participants will be introduced to and explore choreographic, clown, storytelling, character, DIY spectacle, and task-based activity to generate material. Borrowing structures from different traditions and genres participants will develop their material and begin to craft a new solo.

Meagan’s two main practices revolve around solo making and collaborative activity. Within the week Meagan will lead group practice that will inform solo making.

We will work outdoors around the property and at a dance studio in nearbny town of Killaloe.

The group will live and work together, practicing collaborative skills. All food is provided and participants sign up to prepare meals for everyone.

Golden Lake is 150 km west of Ottawa, 340 km west of Montreal, and 360 km north east of Toronto.

MeaganO'Shea_AWOH_chart_Photo by LindsayAnneBlackphoto by Lindsay Anne Black

Stand Up Dance: moving. social. imagination.

Working across forms and borders, Stand Up Dance activates people individually and collectively. Founder and Artistic Director, Meagan O’Shea, creates, performs, teaches and facilitates creative work across Canada and internationally. Devising intimate and grand experiences for living rooms, theatres and public spaces, Meagan explores timely and universal themes through innovative solos, collaborative group work and site-specific immersive experiences.

O’Shea’s solo works have been performed and toured across Canada, in the USA and Europe.

  • We Don’t Need Another Hero (2015), Toronto, Victoria, Gabriola Island, Saint John, Athens, Vienna, and will be touring BC this summer.
  • The Atomic Weight of Happiness (2011) co-created with director Andrea Donaldson, nominated for 2 Dora Awards, Theatre Direct, Intrepid Theatre, Ottawa Dance Directive and is slated for remount next season.
  • based on actual unrelated events (2009), named Best Dance Piece of 2010 – Ottawa XPress, DanceWorks CoWorks, Crow Theatre’s East End Performance Crawl, LabCab Festival, Performance Mix at Joyce SoHo, Earthdance, Crimson Coast Dance, Toronto Festival of Clowns, Series Dance 10.
  • Coffee for One (2007), developed in residency at Earthdance, presented in Edmonton, Winnipeg, Toronto, Ottawa and Montreal.
  • something blue (2006), DanceWorks, Toronto and Public Energy, Peterborough.
  • Night Stills (2003) toured to 15 different venues between 2003-2005.

“Uplifting, energetic and totally out of the ordinary” Mooney on Theatre

“Like Laurie Anderson, only entertaining” AndrewAndrew.com

“Off the wall, impossible to categorize, fun” Montreal Gazette

“whacky, whimscial and wonderful” Toronto Star

An accomplished teacher, O’Shea leads creative workshops for post-secondary dance and theatre students and professional artists, and coaches emerging artists in creative process and performance, and collaborates with colleagues as outside eye.

Meagan infuses her teaching with experience from her own practice, which is influenced by her work with Keith Hennessy, Nina Martin and The Lower Left, Ruth Zaporah and Action Theater, Clown with John Turner, Bouffon with Adam Lazarus, ensemble creation with One Yellow Rabbit. O’Shea is the first graduate of The School of Dance’s professional contemporary dance program in Ottawa.

She has been Associate Artist at Theatre Direct in Toronto, International Associate Artist at Dance Ireland, Artist in Residence at Living Arts Centre, guest artist in residence at The Banff Centre, Dance Victoria, Ottawa Dance Directive, Le Groupe Dance Lab, The Theatre Centre in Canada and Dance Base, New Dance Alliance, fabrik Potsdam, Earthdance, Firkin Crane, internationally. She was Artistic Collaborator with Barcelona International Dance Exchange and is founder of hub14 in Toronto and is a recipient of the KM Hunter Award in Dance.


Space is limited, APPLY NOW

Please send a letter of interest and your bio and cv with video links to your work (or script sample) to meagan@standupdance.com



$650 Early bird; register with $300 deposit by May 1

$700 Middle bird; register with $350 deposit by May 31

  • some subsidized and work exchange spots are available.


Saturday July 30, arrive after 3 pm

Friday August 5, showings

Saturday August 6, depart after breakfast

The Love Project

October 12, 2015 // by admin

History of The Love Project

What seems like a long time ago, and just a few months ago all at once, I began the process of making what is now The Love Project. In 2007 or 2008, I began as a short piece for four teenagers in YMI Dancing at Pia Bouman School called How to fall in love in 9 easy steps, featuring vignettes of 9 ideas that the dancers identified as important in relationships. The idea was hot. Parents said “This needs to be seen. Its hard to talk about all of this, but this is an easy way in.”

I started writing grants and pitching. I created the next iteration for students in the professional training program at The School of Dance, The Love Project, Volume 1, in 2010.

The Love Project received creation funding through Ontario Arts Council’s Arts Education Projects (on my third application) and Creator’s Reserve through Theatre Direct.

With four dancers and a musical consultant we began the creation process in a residency at Theatre Direct in Artscape Wychwood Barns in Toronto in 2011. I created a draft of the piece, showed it as a work in progress at the end of the residency and realized I didn’t like the tone I’d struck. So over the next two years I continued the creative process in windows of time around the holidays with free space from Theatre Direct and bartered time with dancers.

There are now many dancers who have contributed to the development and performed in The Love Project: Darcy Gerhart, Shannon Hirsch, Lara Roberts, Mieke Leewis (YMI Dancing), Andrea Spaziani, Alicia Grant, Andrew Taylor, Andrew Hartley, Luke Garwood, Krista Posyniak, Christy Stoeten, Irvin Chow, Austin Fagan, Robyn Breen, Jane Alison McKinney, Christine Birch, Corrado Cerruto, Patricia Allison, Brodie Stevenson and Shakeil Rollock. Also a huge acknowledgement to Larissa Taurins-Crawford without whose dedication this wouldn’t have moved forward in several key moments.

Finally, in May 2014, we were invited into Oakwood Collegiate Institute to workshop the show with Heather Saum’s Grade 11 dance class. The following season, in January 2014, we performed The Love Project, with a sound design by Alex Williams and some of Andrew Penner’s original music, for an audience of local grade 8’s and Oakwood’s grade 10’s and 12’s, as well as Prologue for the Performing Arts’ selection committee.

Shy gasps from junior high students, knowing giggles from the more knowing teens, “That was real art!” from the selection committee – success! Now all we had to do was create a study guide and perform a showcase for teachers and parent committee members who book shows in schools.

Last February, we performed and taught two workshops at Ruth Thompson Middle School. They loved it. They laughed and gasped and hooted and clapped. They asked great questions. They loved dancing. They tweeted and IG’d us. They asked for the soundtrack.

The Love Project enjoyed a great first season with Prologue, performing for an estimated 3,000 students and 100 teachers.

We are ready to go again. Please join us.

Book your tickets NOW https://www.picatic.com/event14440078434875654#/edit

The Love Project at Oakwood CI

The Love Project at Oakwood CI; dancers: Christine Birch, Andrew Hartley, Irvin Chow, Jane Alison McKinney, Andrea Spaziani

The Love Project, our innovative ensemble dance piece performed by emerging dance professionals for ‘tween and teen audiences, is once again touring Toronto and area schools. We’re also remounting it for a showcase in Vancouver so that it can tour to schools throughout BC.

We are thrilled to present a one night only performance of The Love Project at Wychwood Direct at the Artscape Wychwood Barns – home of Theatre Direct.

The Love Project is a timely, physically daring, funny and poignant dance performance that explores elements of healthy relationships. Structured like a recipe for good love, respect, communication and empowered choice-making are represented through sections like Chemistry, Taking Risks and Building Trust, Compassion and Forgiveness.

Please join us for an evening of dance and discussion. Enjoy some nibbles and craft brew on tap, as well as some fun and games – and prizes!

Friday October 23rd, 7 pm, Wychwood Theatre at Artscape Wychwood Barns

Book your tickets NOW https://www.picatic.com/event14440078434875654#/edit

The Love Project

September 29, 2015 // by admin

We have some big news!

THE LOVE PROJECT, which has been seen by more than 3,000 students and 100 teachers is leaving school and going public for ONE NIGHT ONLY.

Friday October 23rd at 7 pm, at Theatre Direct in Wychwood Art Barns.

Photo: Alex Williams; Dancers: Irvin Chow, Andrea Spaziani

Photo: Alex Williams; Dancers: Irvin Chow, Andrea Spaziani


The Love Project, our innovative ensemble dance piece performed by emerging dance professionals for ‘tween and teen audiences, is once again touring Toronto and area schools this school year. We’re also remounting it with a western cast for a showcase in Vancouver to tour schools throughout BC.

Please contact us for more information. See you there.


Stand Up Dance . moving . . social . . imagination . . .

August Intensive: Interdisciplinary Solo Making

July 6, 2015 // by admin

A workshop for the creators and performers who are exploring their craft as their body as source; for playwrights wanting to explore on their feet; for directors and choreographers wanting to take ideas back to a group. In this facilitated process participants will explore different strategies for creating work, develop material, build sections using different forms, and play with structure. Participants will show their work at the end of week 1 and week 2. A video will be made available to the participants of their performances.


Drawing on choreographic concepts, movement improvisation, theatre games, Action Theater, Illuminating the Solo Body, Authentic Movement, jeux, clown, comedy, poetry, task-based activity, low-fi special effects and DIY spectacle, participants will be led through a cuing system using mind-maps to generate material and spontaneously create and connect ideas.


In the first week of the workshop, participants will be introduced to strategies and play with them, generating material over the week. In the second week, we’ll develop the material further, get to the seed of the ideas and push for expansion in a narrower field.


Award winning dance-theatre artist Meagan O’Shea shares the strategies she uses in creating her “whacky, wonderful, whimsical”* and “off the wall, impossible to categorize, fun”** solo work. (* Toronto Star & ** Montreal Gazette) Meagan’s Solos include: Where Truth Lies (2013), The Atomic Weight of Happiness (2011) co-created with director Andrea Donaldon, based on actual unrelated events (2009), Coffee for One (2007), something blue (2006), Night Stills (2003), Mully Afternoon (2002), this is the way (1999).  O’Shea creates, performs, teaches and facilitates creative work across Canada and internationally. Devising intimate and grand experiences for living rooms, theatres and public spaces, Meagan explores current social issues and universal themes through innovative solos, collaborative group work and site-specific immersive experiences. Meagan has performed her work in Ireland, Finland, Austria, Hungary, Greece and Spain, as well as in New York City, Massachusetts, and in every province and one territory in Canada.



Monday August 17 – Friday August 21, 10 – 5 pm

Showing on Friday August 21 at 7 pm


Monday August 24 – Thursday August 27, 10 – 5 pm

Showing on Thursday August 27 at 7 pm


Week 1: skill building and facilitated creation

Week 2: warm ups and coaching



Includes performance video.

$ 500 with deposit of $250 due July 19th.

$ 450 for Equity, CADA, students, with a deposit of $250 due July 19th.

$ 400 if paid in full by July 19th.

Plus hst

May be eligible for CADA training subsidy.

* limited financial assistance may be available.


Please submit letter of interest and links to work online (or script sample) by July 16th. Confirmation of acceptance, July 17th. Deposit due July 19th.




We Don’t Need Another Hero opens next week

April 2, 2015 // by admin

We weathered the KickStarter campaign and while it was really stressful, it was also quite amazing. We raised $12,000. This is fantastic. I am relieved and elated. Thank you everyone who donated, passed it on, spread the word, encouraged. It was a tremendous effort.

On Tuesday night, we were hosted by The Drake Hotel for A Conversation on the Chaordic Space for Discovery, Innovation and Emergent Ideas in Art and Social Transformation. Vanessa Reid who works internationally in Social Transformation led the conversation with Christine Duncan relating the theme through her development of The Element Choir – an improvising choir she leads and that is a part of the show – and I with my dance-based socially expanded practice in relation to the show specifically and my outlook generally. So many great revelations and experiences within those two hours. We are going to share the event through vimeo – look for a  link here soon.

Linnea Swan and Brendan Wyatt by Jeremy Mimnagh

Linnea Swan and Brendan Wyatt by Jeremy Mimnagh

And now, on with the show.

We open on Wednesday April 8th at 8 pm at The Theatre Centre.


Book your tickets now and see you there!



We Don’t Need Another Hero

March 11, 2015 // by admin

We have launched a KickStarter Campaign. There are just under 2 weeks to contribute.


I love this idea:

If everyone I know chips in $6 and shares the campaign and spreads the word then not only do we raise the money to have the best show possible but we also build audience and create community around the project so it can tour!

Please consider contributing $6 (or more) if we all do then we make it together; if we don’t reach the goal then none of your credit cards get charged.

It’s like the collaborative choreography I do with audience at house concerts, where the audience calls out the cues and I dance what they say. It means they need to work together, communicating only in the public arena to create something together.

Practice collaborating, contribute to the campaign!

We’ve already received $1,000 in pledges, it feels so great to get that infusion of support. Thank you.