Danielle Doiron’s adult acting class gets underway at CSAC this month

Category: arts 371

Danielle Doiron spent years pursuing a career in acting. This month, the Fredericton-based actor and musician will begin sharing her knowledge and experience by leading a new six week acting program at the Charlotte Street Arts Centre designed specifically with adult learners in mind.

Matt Carter  

These days, Fredericton-based artist Danielle Doiron is known primarily as a singer songwriter. A frequent performer on stages and festivals throughout the city, her soft jazzy vocals and vulnerable lyrics have helped establish her unique place within the city’s broad range of musical performers. But music wasn’t always at the forefront of her creative to-do list. In fact, prior to settling in Fredericton and devoting much of her time to writing and performing, Danielle spent years pursuing a career in acting, a pursuit that took her from one end of the country to the other. 

“When I was 13 I joined an acting class at a local community theatre,” said Doiron. “I was a really shy kid and suddenly I had this outlet to express myself. I just fell in love and from there on out I wanted to be an actor.” 

Following her introduction to acting as a young teenager, Doiron took advantage of every possible avenue she could find to further develop her skills by taking theatre and improv classes through high school and university. Her interest in acting led her to study and perform in Vancouver, Montreal, Halifax and Toronto. 

“I’ve really done a bit of everything over the years. Musicals, theatre, improv, independent films, and crew work for film and theatre,” she said. 

Doiron credits her time at Montreal’s Theatre Ste. Catherine for being the most impactful on her career as an artist. Founded in 2009, Theatre Ste. Catherine is an important home for improv and sketch comedy in Canada’s second largest city.

“My time living in Montreal really had a profound effect on me as a performer,” said Doiron. “My coach from my weekly scene study class approached acting and story with such compassion. I got to observe the people in that class doing amazing work and being courageous and vulnerable. I got asked to do a show that was produced by some of my classmates and from there got involved in some other shows and helped out with several independent films. I also performed weekly improv shows at Theatre Ste. Catherine. I owe a lot to that place. Just being around so many artists who wanted to create was a wonderful thing.”

After moving back to Nova Scotia, Doiron was accepted into a nine month conservatory acting program at Neptune Theatre in Halifax. From there she spent time living in Toronto before the pandemic, and a chance to work remotely, eventually brought her to New Brunswick.  

“What I love about theatre and acting is telling stories and connecting with people,” said Doiron. “I love finding humanity in every role, finding the reasons why someone does what they do. Why today?  Why at this moment?  Sometimes it’s easier to say things in a play or with music. People are more willing to let their guard down and listen. They consider things they haven’t considered before, or with a different perspective and I think that’s really valuable.”

While she may sing more than she acts these days, Doiron is continuously reminded of all the different ways her acting experience informs her music, and vice versa. 

“My improv and acting skills help me so much while performing live music. The experience of just letting myself be, feeling the energy of the room and the crowd and not worrying about what I’m going to say. I lean on it a lot,” she said.

“On the other hand, music has helped with acting because when I started writing songs and playing live I kind of just went with the attitude of, alright, I’m new at this, I’ll just try.  When it came to acting there were times that I put a lot of pressure on myself.  So I’ve learned to approach acting with more of that relaxed energy and to not take myself so seriously.”

Doiron will be sharing her acting experience with others in an upcoming class at the Charlotte Street Arts Centre. Adult Acting with Danielle Doiron begins later this month. Over the six week program, participants will learn the fundamentals of acting, engage in scene studies, and character development. 

But this class isn’t just for would-be actors. Doiron says it’s also a great fit for anyone looking to build their confidence, whether that may involve speaking in public or other aspects of live performance. 

“Acting can help with public speaking, people skills, trusting your instincts, working as a team, being more connected to your body and movement,” she said. “Oh yeah, and it’s fun too!”  

Adult Acting with Danielle Doiron | March 13 to April 24 (no class April 10). Space is limited. Register today

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