Marie has ignited her brand of artistry within a variety of mediums including film, TV, radio, and live performance. In live performance, her play Iron Peggy, directed by Sherry Yoon, premiered at the Vancouver International’s Children Festival last Spring; her libretto Missing, composed by Brian Current and directed by Peter Hinton, premiered at City Opera Vancouver and Pacific Opera Victoria in 2018 and will go on to tour nationally this fall, and a production of her script Burning Vision, directed by Mike Payette will open at the National Theatre School in Montreal this winter.
As a writer and director in film, her feature drama Red Snow has recently been nominated for 10 Leo Awards and will have its world premiere at the Vancouver International Film Festival this September. Her feature music documentrary The Road Forward, produced by the National Film Board, screened at over 300 venues in North America receiving five Leo Awards including Best Production, Best Director, and Best Screenwriter and a Best Director Award at the North American Indian Festival in San Francisco, as well as the WFF Women on Top Award and a DGC‑BC Spotlight Impact Award 2018. Her multi-award-winning films have screened at Cannes, TIFF, MOMA, VIFF, Whistler Film Festival, American Indian Film Festival and ImagineNATIVE Film Festival.
Her 15 plays have been presented on some of the most prestigious stages for Canadian and international work garnering numerous awards and publications including the 2004 Canada- Japan Literary Award, and two prestigious Governor General’s Literary Award nominations. Marie’s previous work with the National Arts Centre include Copper Thunderbird (2007) directed by Peter Hinton, and The Edward Curtis Project (2013, co-produced with Great Canadian Theatre Company in association with red diva projects) in which she directed.
She is grateful to witness The Unnatural and Accidental Women again, and the opening
of the first NAC Indigenous theatre season.
Muriel, from the Kuna and Rappahannock Nations, is a director, choreographer and actor. She is the founder and Artistic Director of Spiderwoman Theater, the longest running Native feminist theater in North America. Muriel is a 2018 Doris Duke Artist and a 2016 John S. Guggenheim Fellow. She received an Honorary DFA from Miami University in Oxford, OH; is a member of the National Theatre Conference and attended the Rauschenberg Residency in 2015. She has pioneered Spiderwoman Theater’s storyweaving process and the development of a culturally-based Indigenous performance methodology.Read full NAC bio ›
Columpa has been a theatre maker for over 30 years now. She has multiple national and international award nominations. In recent years, she has been a four-time Winnipeg‘s Mayor’s Arts Awards nominee. In the last several years, she has been touring her Indigenous storytelling works across Canada, throughout India and Australia, to São Paulo, Brazil, and most recently to Hamilton, New Zealand. Columpa is also a newly-published poet, having written Hope Matters with her mother, Lee Maracle, and sister, Tania Carter. Enjoy the show.
Now based in Tkarón:to, Yolanda Bonnell is a Queer 2S Ojibwe/South Asian performer and playwright from Fort William First Nation in Thunder Bay, ON. Her Dora Mavor Moore Award-nominated solo show, bug, had its world premiere at the Luminato Festival in 2018, and will appear at Theatre Passe Muraille in 2020. Select theatre performance credits include: Edith in Kamloopa (Western Canada Theatre/Persephone Theatre); Femi in Cake (Theatre Passe Muraille/New Harlem Productions); Ipruq/Atugauq in The Breathing Hole, Fanny/Robert in Treasure Island (Stratford Festival); and Theresa in The Crackwalker (Factory Theatre).
A multi award-winning actor, playwright and comedian, Pierre is perhaps best known locally for his many solo plays, Blood on the Moon, The Last Spartan, Will Somers: Keeping Your Head!, Portrait of an Unidentified Man, 5 O’Clock Bells, performed variously at the NAC, Great Canadian Theatre Company and Gladstone Theatre, as well on stages across Canada, New Zealand and Ireland. Other selected NAC credits include Up To Low, The Sound of Music, Pride and Prejudice, The Ecstasy of Rita Joe and Macbeth. Pierre is deeply honoured to be part of this important, inaugural production.
Jenifer Brousseau is an Anishnabe and French interdisciplinary artist from Serpent River First Nation, Ontario, currently residing in West Vancouver, BC. She is writer and director of the renowned suicide prevention play Beneath the Surface (now transforming into a national youth outreach program) and co-host of APTN’s Wild Archaeology. Jenifer is active both in the Vancouver theatre and film communities (Women in Film and Television), and is a long-time vocalist with M’girl Music. As an artist she fuses passion and creativity to educate and heal and to create her own formula for powerful change.
Animikiikwe Couchie is an emerging multidisciplinary dance artist from Nipissing First Nation. She has engaged and worked with a number of large-scale community arts projects, including Like an Old Tale (Jumblies Theatre) and Dances of Resistance (Aanmitaagzi). In 2013, Animikiikwe worked with acclaimed choreographer Penny Couchie’s dance theatre piece entitled When Will You Rage?. She narrated and danced within her mother’s piece. In 2015, she completed her studies at the Canadore College Theatre Arts Program. In May 2018, she completed her training at École de Danse Contemporaine de Montréal.
Lisa Cromarty is an Anishnaabe/Oji-Cree actor from Wikwemikong Unceded Territory located on Manitoulin Island. She has trained at the Centre for Indigenous Theatre, Canada's National Voice Intensive and also served as a voice trainee at the Stratford Theatre Festival for two seasons. Theatre credits include: Moose on the Loose (Sudbury Theatre Centre); Honour Story (Debajehmujig Theatre Company). TV/film: Burden of Truth (CBC); The Silencing (Anova Pictures); Indian Horse (Screen Sirens Films). Chi-miigwetch to my mother Vivian and dear friend Sabrina for watching my children during this production. Without you I wouldn't be on stage helping to tell this story.
Olivier is a bilingual actor and creator from Montreal. This is his second appearance on the NAC stage having played in last season’s English Theatre presentation of Angélique by Lorena Gale. He has recently finished work on The Flying Dutchman, a co-production between New York Metropolitan Opera, Opera de Quebec, and The Dutch National Opera and Ballet. Based in Toronto, he is currently developing two stage productions, while regularly working in television, film, voice and video games. It is an honor to be part of this landmark event.
Cheri Maracle is an actor/singer of Mohawk and Irish descent. She is from the Six Nations of the Grand River Territory. Cheri’s most recent theatre credits include: Too Good To Be True (Video Cabaret); The Road to Paradise (Buddies in Bad Times Theatre); The Rez Sisters (Belfry Theatre). Film and TV credits: Tribal (APTN); Blackstone (APTN/CBC); Sleigh Bell Sweethearts (Hallmark); Degrassi (Netflix); Epitome and Murdoch Mysteries (CBC), to name a few. I’m thrilled to be in this production! Check out my music on iTunes… Nia:Wen.
Actor and playwright, Monique (Guna and Rappahannock nations) is passionately dedicated to a theatrical practice as an act of healing, of reclaiming historical/cultural memory and of resistance. Spun directly from the family-web of New York’s Spiderwoman Theater, her theatrical practice embraces her artistic lineage through mining stories embedded in the body in connection to land-based embodied research. Monique has taught Indigenous Theatre in theory, process and practice at Brown University, the University of Illinois, the Institute of American Indian Arts, McMaster University, and is a former co-director of the Centre for Indigenous Theatre. She was most recently seen onstage with the NAC Orchestra in the European tour of I Lost My Talk, Izzie M.: The Alchemy of Enfreakment written by Monique for Chocolate Woman Collective and in Tara Beagan’s Honour Beat for Theatre Calgary. Upcoming: the role of dramaturg for Kaha:wi Dance Theatre’s Sken:en created by Santee Smith.Read full NAC bio ›
Soni Moreno (Maya/Apache/Yaqui vocalist/actress/composer/artist/poet). Originally from Northern California, studied at the American Conservatory Theatre in San Francisco, CA. Theatre credits include: original San Francisco company of Hair; Broadway: Hair, The Leaf People; Off Broadway: Aladdin, America Smith (La MaMa Experimental Theatre Club); Blood Speaks (Coatlicue Theatre Company); Bones Aboriginal Opera (Banff, Alberta); Smoke (Signature Theatre, NYC); Bones Hill (Public Theater). Music credits: Co-founder of First Nations a cappella women’s trio Ulali which has toured and recorded with Buffy Sainte-Marie, the Indigo Girls and Robbie Robertson & the Red Road Ensemble. Artist/Design credits: Collaborative Art Installation of This Path We Travel at the Museum of the American Indian (NYC). Currently: Recording a record with Charley Buckland titled Frequencies.
PJ is a proud Métis actor and writer. Indigenous stories of this land incite her as an artist. She is the current Creator-In-Residence at Nightswimming Theatre, has been a company actor at both the NAC English Theatre and the Shaw Festival, and is a former Playwright in Rez for Native Earth Performing Arts. PJ is honoured to be here, now. Kitatamihinâwâw. For the NAC: Angélique, Moonlodge, Twelfth Night, The Adventures of a Black Girl in Search of God, Anne and Gilbert, Copper Thunderbird. Other recent credits: Iphigenia and the Furies (SAGA Collectif); Honour Beat (Theatre Calgary); Everything I Couldn’t Tell You (Spiderbones); Ipperwash (Native Earth Performing Arts); A Christmas Carol, Saint Joan and Wilde Tales (Shaw Festival); Moonlodge (Urban Ink Productions).
Kelsey is a mixed-race Cree theatre artist from Tataskweyak Cree Nation, Split Lake, and was raised on Treaty 1 territory, Winnipeg, Manitoba. Her recent acting work includes ōpimātis written and performed by Kelsey (Shift Festival); Mortified, Incognito Mode, Cabaret and Hot House (Studio 58); Battle of the Birds and Council of Spider, Ant and Fly (Savage Society); The P*rn Project (Studio 58/Neworld Theatre) and Institutionalized, written by Kelsey as part of Studio 58’s Fourplay: New Work by Excited Writers. She is a graduate of Studio 58 and, during her time there, was the recipient the Manitoba Arts Council Scholarship, Studio 58 Writing Award, as well as two-time recipient of the Royal Manitoba Theatre Centre Scholarship. Kelsey’s favorite theatre work has included engaging community youth and she hopes to do more of that in the future. Most importantly, Kelsey hopes that by starting with decolonizing her own artistic practice she can help dismantle larger colonial structures within the world.
Colleen is honoured to have journeyed from Vancouver to join this amazing company of storytellers. Her career includes the Stratford, Shaw and Charlottetown Festivals, including a national tour of Anne of Green Gables that played the NAC nearly 40 years ago. On stage, she has recently played everything from Daisy in Driving Miss Daisy and Dolly Levy in Hello, Dolly!, to Shelly Levene in Glengarry Glen Ross. She received Vancouver’s Ovation and Jessie Richardson Awards for her performance as Mrs. Lovett in the acclaimed site-specific Sweeney Todd. On the small screen, she lately appeared in Man in the High Castle, Reign, iZombie, Van Helsing, and a collection of Hallmark movies.
Penny Couchie (Anishinaabe) is an award-winning arts leader, dancer, actor, choreographer and community engaged artist of Anishinaabe ancestry from Nipissing First Nation, Ontario. Penny is co-founder and co-artistic director of Aanmitaagzi, an Indigenous multi-arts company based in her home community. In 2016, Penny received the KM Hunter Award in Dance from the Ontario Arts Council. Over the past 20 years, Penny has been guest instructor at schools throughout Canada and the U.S., including Toronto’s Centre for Indigenous Theatre, where she has been a faculty member and choreographer since 1998.
Andy Moro is a mixed Euro/Cree multi-disciplinary artist. He collaborates extensively with companies from coast to coast to coast. He is Co-founder/ Artistic Director of ARTICLE 11 with partner Tara Beagan, named for the UNDRIP article protecting the right to practice, revitalize, protect and develop all manifestations of culture, such as historical sites, artefacts, designs, ceremonies, technologies and visual and performing arts and literature.
This summer, ARTICLE 11’s newest work Deer Woman met critical acclaim in Edinburgh, Kia Mau, Aotearoa the Sydney Festival, and Arts Centre Melbourne, Australia. Deer Woman makes its Turtle Island premiere in Calgary November 2019.
Sage Paul (Urban Denesuline, member of English River First Nation) is an artist in fashion and costume. Some of her costume credits include: Too Good to Be True by Cliff Cardinal (VideoCabaret); Omaagaaman by Waawaate Fobister (Independent); Falls Around Her by Darlene Naponse (feature film); Cottagers and Indians by Drew Hayden Taylor (Tarragon Theatre); Utopia Falls (TV series), and most recently The Trickster (TV series). Sage is also the Artistic Director at Indigenous Fashion Week Toronto and creates fashion and material arts for both runway and exhibition. Sage received the Design Exchange Emerging Designer Award (2017) and was nominated in 2019 for the Virginia and Myrtle Cooper Award in Costume Design (Ontario Arts Foundation) and the Indigenous Arts Award (Ontario Arts Council).
Jeff is the Technical Director of Kidd Pivot. He is a four-time Jessie Richardson Award-winning lighting designer for his work on Pharaoh Serket & the Lost Stone of Fire (Carousel Theatre); Floyd Collins (Patrick Street Theatre); Blasted (Pi Theatre) and Hand to God (Arts Club Theatre Company). Jeff is a graduate of Simon Fraser University’s School for the Contemporary Arts, attended the Banff Centre for the Performing Arts, and is a member of the Associated Designers of Canada. Other lighting credits for the NAC: Children of God.
Troy is an experienced and acclaimed sound designer for film, television and live performance. His sound design and original music could be heard in The Lamentable Tragedy of Sal Capone at the NAC in 2018, as well as the National Film Board documentary The Road Forward and the documentary series Looking at Edward Curtis for The Knowledge Network, both directed by Marie Clements. More recent work for the NFB includes the feature documentaries That Higher Level directed by John Bolton, and True North – The Rise of Toronto Basketball directed by Ryan Sidhoo. He has been nominated for a Soirée des Masques Award for Best Sound Design, several Montreal English Critics Circle Awards, Montreal English Theatre Awards, and won the Jessie Richardson Theatre Award for Outstanding Sound Design for The Pipeline Project (ITSAZOO Productions/Savage Society).
Siobhan Richardson is a certified Fight Director (Fight Directors Canada), Intimacy Director (Intimacy Directors International, which she co-founded), and an award-winning performer. Also an internationally-respected instructor, she has taught stage combat and intimacy across Canada, USA and Europe. In all her work, Siobhan is dedicated to the growth and development of the art form, the artists and our workplaces in order to support a vibrant and healthy artistic community. Recent Fight/Intimacy Director credits: Sex and The Russian Play (Shaw Festival), Guarded Girls (Tarragon Theatre). Recent Fight Director credits: Getting Married (Shaw). Recent Intimacy Coach credits: Othello (Stratford Festival), Betrayal (Soulpepper).
Lisa is honoured to be a part of NAC Indigenous Theatre’s inaugural season and delighted to be making her National Arts Centre debut. Selected credits include Glory (Alberta Theatre Projects); Fidelio (Pacific Opera); Hadestown (Citadel Theatre); The Cure for Death by Lightning, Liberation Days, Les Misérables (Western Canada Theatre); Romeo and Juliet, The Drowning Girls, Pride and Prejudice (Globe Theatre); Madame Butterfly (Calgary Opera); Shirley Valentine (The Grand Theatre). Lisa was the production stage manager for the Summer Arts Festival at Banff Centre for four summers and worked for seven seasons at the Stratford Festival.
Since apprenticing on the West Coast-inspired The Tempest with Skylight Theatre (Toronto, ON), Jane has worked across Canada, including five seasons with the Shaw Festival, puppets, opera, and 10 tours of Nova Scotia. Selected NAC credits: Assistant Stage Management for Up to Low, Hamlet, Mother Courage; Stage Management for A Christmas Carol, And Slowly Beauty, Angel Square. Elsewhere: Behaviour, You Are Happy, Rock & Roll (Great Canadian Theatre Company); Entangled (Ottawa Fringe Festival); Armstrong’s War (Theatre Kingston). Jane is excited and honoured to be part of the NAC Indigenous Theatre inaugural season. Thank you to all the strong women in whose steps she follows.
Brody Halfe worked with the City of Vancouver’s Aboriginal Production Assistant Program on the Canada 150+ events. He has worked with the Vancouver International Children’s Festival, Jazz Festival, Folk Festival, Talking Stick Festival, Skookum Festival, and Bard On The Beach. In 2018, he was the Assistant Stage Manager for the Savage Society/ITSAZOO Productions three-city tour of The Pipeline Project, and is currently working with the Savage Society team. Brody Halfe is a member of the Qayqayt Nation and Saddle Lake Cree Nation.