“The National Arts Centre was a place for me to aspire to–but it always seemed quite in the great beyond.”
Jillian Keiley’s National Moment came in 2003 when a production she had directed, Tempting Providence, was selected for the NAC’s Atlantic Scène Festival.
While the show was a hit in Newfoundland two years earlier, it was virtually unknown outside the province. However, following its mainland debut at the NAC, Tempting Providence went on tour for almost eleven years! “That gave us the credibility we needed; it was a massive shot in the arm.”
Keiley has since gone from success to success at the NAC, which has become a gateway to Canada and beyond for her uniquely Canadian productions. Awarded the Siminovitch Prize for Direction in 2004, Jillian was recently appointed Artistic Director of English Theatre at Canada’s National Arts Centre.
Jillian Keiley is an award-winning director from St. John’s, Newfoundland and founder of Artistic Fraud of Newfoundland. Ms. Keiley has directed and taught across Canada and has worked internationally. She received her BFA in Theatre from York University and was awarded an Honorary Doctorates of Letters from both Memorial University and York University. She was the winner of the prestigious Siminovitch Prize for Directing in 2004 and is also the recipient of the Canada Council’s John Hirsch Prize. Ms Keiley assumed her role as NAC English Theatre Artistic Director in August 2012. Her productions at the NAC have included Metamorphoses: Based on the Myths of Ovid, a re-working of Tartuffe set in Newfoundland (a collaboration with Andy Jones), Artistic Fraud’s Oil and Water and Alice Through the Looking-Glass, which she first directed for the Stratford Festival. More recently, she directed the premiere of The Colony of Unrequited Dreams for Artistic Fraud in St. John’s, and The Diary of Anne Frank for the Stratford Festival, while her production of Alice Through the Looking-Glass toured to the Confederation Centre of the Arts in Charlottetown, the Royal Manitoba Theatre Centre in Winnipeg and Edmonton’s Citadel Theatre, featuring local casts in each city. In 2016, she directed Twelfth Night as imagined by the Old Trout Puppet Workshop for the NAC, and As You Like It for the Stratford Festival. Upcoming: A Christmas Carol for the NAC; The Colony of Unrequited Dreams on tour with Artistic Fraud (Halifax’s Neptune Theatre, London’s Grand Theatre and the NAC), Between Breaths for Artistic Fraud, and Bakkhai for the Stratford Festival’s 2017 season.