“We are all about inclusivity, kindness and compassion,” says Louise Robinson, creative director of Squamish’s Step Out! “I accept absolutely everybody.”
Australian expat Robinson started her new business in March 2022 and provides education and events focused on social and communication development, with programs geared to kids, teens and adults.
With her goal to strengthen the local community, Robinson, a trained drama and arts teacher certified in B.C., uses improvisational theatre, acting and creative writing programs to support and encourage people to ramp up their interpersonal relationships, deal with social anxiety and develop public speaking skills.
“My main thing is helping people,” says Robinson. “Over the last couple years particularly, I have friends who never had social anxiety before the pandemic but do now. For two years, we were told not to socialize, essentially. I have people in my classes who are just now stepping back out into communities and making new friends.”
To ‘step out’ of one’s comfort zone is a challenge at the best of times and Step Out! has a range of school and business programs plus drop-in classes to choose from, all geared to break free from fear and encourage personal growth.
Corporate team building is top of many businesses list now that office employees are gathering in person. Robinson goes to “workplaces to help strengthen their team with communication by kindness and honesty, teaching them about conflict resolution, even how to make eye contact,” she says. “People see the value in what I am doing.” Improv classes have appeal with many businesses, and Robinson loves the mobility she and her business offer, saying “you can do improv anywhere, outside, you don’t even need chairs. You just need people.”
For kids and teens, Step Out! offers home-school arts programs at Aikidaily and improv classes at 38014 Fourth Ave. For those interested in creative writing and acting, contractor Brandon Barrett heads up that program at the Squamish Waldorf School.
A champion of local talent, Robinson is also putting on the Squamish Has Talent show annually, providing cash prizes in both kids and adult categories.
She puts it rather simply, saying “I just want to build community and want people laughing. To step away from all this seriousness, play some improv and acting games and interact with each other on a real human level. That’s what life is about really.”
For more information and to contact Louise Robinson, visit www.stepoutbc.com.