Before they arrived at the NAC for rehearsals, we asked a few questions to the members of the 2014-15 Ensemble about themselves.
1) What are you working on over the summer?
This summer I am under contract with Roughhouse Theatre as a writer on a new piece centered around discussions of disorientation and cartography. I am also contracted to adapt a site-specific farm piece for Mortal Coil that I co-wrote in 2000 called The Faerie Play.
2) What are you looking most forward to when you arrive at the NAC?
Looking forward to working with theatre artists from across Canada – actors, designers, directors – and the cross-pollination, dialogue and play that will come out of that. Looking forward to working with the very innovative and forward-thinking Jillian Keiley and seeing how theatre is percolating at the national level. Looking forward to bringing a bit of the West Coast out East.
3) How did you get involved in acting?
I began as a literature student. I've always loved story and how it reflects culture. I shifted from English studies into Theatre and began as an artist at the Caravan Farm, fascinated by the relationship between story, landscape, and community. Questions of form, story, spatial relationships and the position of the audience continue to interest me in my work.
4) What’s the most interesting thing that has happened to you on stage?
When I was performing Shirley Valentine to a matinee of older audience members, my character, Shirley, asks herself how she looks. Shirley is feeling insecure about herself and her ability to travel off to Greece in middle age. An elderly lady in the front row spoke out to me in a little voice "you look lovely dear - it's going to be alright". I'm the only one who heard her – she made me cry. I love older audience members – they have lived it all ahead of us.
Raised in: Vancouver, BC | Based in: Vancouver, BC
Lois Anderson has been working as an actor, deviser, director for over 20 years. A graduate of UBC with a BA (English Lit), BFA (Acting), and MFA (Directing), Lois has worked with regional and independent theatre companies. She was a co-founder of Cirque Poule, an original member of Leaky Heaven Circus, a co-creator on Neworld Theatre’s first production Devil Box Cabaret, an original creator of The Flying Blind Collective, an Artistic Associate with Runaway Moon and Leaky Heaven, as well as a leading player at Bard on The Beach for six seasons.
Acting credits include Twelfth Night, The Taming of the Shrew, All’s Well That Ends Well, As You Like It, Measure for Measure, King Lear (Bard on the Beach Shakespeare Festival); A Streetcar Named Desire, Bonobo, Birthday Boy (Leaky Heaven Circus); Griffin and Sabine, Poster Boys, The Penelopiad (Arts Club Theatre); Trout Stanley (Ruby Slippers); The Score (Electric Company); The Shoes That Were Danced to Pieces (Boca Del Lupo); Killjoy (Solo Collective); Bloody Cleanup, Queen of Hearts (LesSaintes); Soulless (Rumble); Crime and Punishment (Neworld Theatre); and Caucasian Chalk Circle, The Passion, The Winter’s Tale (The Caravan Farm Theatre with Nick Hutchinson).
She has played the title role in: Wit, Shirley Valentine, Mother Courage, Salome. Directing Credits include A Last Resort (Roughhouse Theatre) My Granny The Goldfish, The Unplugging (The Arts Club); and Peter Panties with Stephen Hill (Leaky Heaven Circus). For Runaway Moon she has devised, acted in and/or directed The Winter’s Tale, Sparrows, Faerie Play, A Small Miracle.
Lois is Mom to Anouska and Elena. As an actress Lois has earned seven Jessie Richardson Awards and is the recipient of the Sydney Risk Emerging Director award as well as Two Critic’s Choice Awards.