Friday November 15

Breathing Space
by Yvette Nolan

 “I swear, the sky was almost blue.
I swear, Mod. And the air – well,
I actually can’t recall what the air was like.

That’s a good thing, right?

Yvette Nolan (Algonquin) is a playwright, director, and dramaturg. She has written dozens of plays, long and short, some of which are Annie Mae’s Movement, Alaska, The Unplugging, Prophecy, and the libretto Shanawdithit. She loves the short form play.

Kohkum & me
by Zach Running Coyote

A Greyhound Vision Quest through the spirit world, where Jesus is a Native Grandma, David Bowie is an ice covered monster, and the ancestors speak through payphones. Kohkum & me is a virtuosic folk musical performance examining the intersection of faith, identity and culture.

The humour ranges from playful to biting, but this is also a play that tugs at the heartstrings as much as it tickles the ribs.” – Calgary Herald

Zach Running Coyote is a Nehiyaw actor, playwright and musician based in Calgary, Alberta. He is a graduate of the four year acting program at Rosebud School of the Arts. He is artist-in-residence at Making Treaty 7, currently developing The Napi Project for production in 2020. He is thrilled to visit Tkaronto to work on his debut work as a writer, Kohkum & me.

by Out of Sync Collective
Theresa Cutknife & Jesse Wabegijig

What is Indigenous love? What does it mean? What does Indigneous Love look like in our world today? To answer this, we must first know who we are.

Presented by Out of Sync Collective, Kisâkihitin/Gizaagin is a collection of stories moving through non-linear narrative reimagining love within colonial spaces. This project aims to shine a light on the best parts of being Indigenous. With the world focusing so much on trauma, hate, and the darkness of the world, now is the time for us to be the light.

Developed at the 2019 Paprika Festival’s Indigenous Arts Program.

Theresa Cutknife is a mixed Nehiyaw (Plains Cree) and Puerto Rican Iskwew from Maskwacîs, Alberta and is a member of the Samson Cree Nation. She is an emerging actor, playwright, director, and a recent third year graduate of the CIT.  Theresa was the Assistant Director for After the Fire (2019) by award-winning playwright Matthew MacKenzie.

Jesse Wabegijig is an Ojibway from Wiikwemkoong Anishinabek Territory on Manitoulin Island. They are currently in CIT’s post-grad program and interested in the preservation of native cultural heritage. Jesse has experience in various art forms, including writing, improvisation, acting, mask, and movement, influencing his interest in intersectionality and deeper commitment to community work.

Theresa and Jesse are two of the co-founders of Out of Sync Collective, a collective of fellow students from CIT that have come together to create art for social and informative justice. Their first project S.O.S. Saving Our Sovereignty was developed at the 2018 Paprika Festival and the 31st annual Weesageechak festival. 

A Path of Ghosts and Warriors
by Mark Dieter

On the eve of a historical Land Claim decision, members of a divided community wrestle with the notion of change. The prospect of a huge government payout comes with excitement and talk of its potential impacts. However, this is soon shadowed by a long history of social poverty, band office politics, cronyism, and the complexity of human relationships.

As the events of the past collide with the present, old bones emerge, causing the people of Thunder Hawk First Nation to question the motives of their leadership and their own personal lives. Is money really the solution?

Mark Dieter is a Canadian First Nations playwright, actor, and director with 19 written stage plays to date, 11 of which have been produced. A Path of Ghosts and Warriors takes place in the same community as the previous Equity-produced play RRAP (2005), a story about a native housing crisis on a First Nations reserve. Mark has also written for radio, studied film and screen-writing, and has a screenplay in pre-production development titled Loaded. Currently, Mark is working on thirteen-part 2D motion comic web-series called “Kevin Stone”.

BUNK #7 
by Larry Guno
presented by The Raven Collective

The true story of a riot at Edmonton Residential School in 1959. The students rioted when they learned of the dismissal of their beloved English supervisor, after a boy died running away from the school. The students revolted, and put the building and staff on lock-down until the RCMP intervened.

After four years of development with expected debut as part of Native Earth’s 2005/06 season, The Raven Collective brings back the late and great Larry Guno’s play BUNK #7 to Weesageechak. 

The boys at Edmontion Residential School who are represented in Bunk#7, known as CLUB 13

Playwright: Larry Guno
Living Writer: Yvette Nolan (Algonquin)
Director: Marianne Brorup Weston
Dramaturg: Donna-Michelle St. Bernard
Performers: Nick Dangeli

Lighting Designer: Eryn Griffith
Sound Designer: Troy Slocum
Acting Coach: Kat MacLean (Métis)
Choreographers & Git Hayetsk Dancers: Mike Dangeli (Nisga’a), Dr. Miqu’el Dangeli (Tsimshian)
Marketing (Northern Native Broadcasting): Mary Bartlett Denton (Tsimishian)
IRSSS Advisor: Dean Wilson (Heiltsuk)
Guno Family Historical Advisors: (Nisga’a) Sadie Parnell O’Doneghey, Laurie Gosnell Mercer, Kym Guno-Good, David Parnell