Friday November 22


Nibi (Water) Protectors
by Corey Payette

 “A hero would stand with us. Would stand for what’s right…Is your pay cheque worth more than our clean drinking water?

Corey Payette is proud of his Oji-Cree heritage from Northern Ontario and has worked as a playwright, actor, composer, and director across Canada. He is the Artistic Director of Urban Ink (Vancouver), past Artist-in-Residence with NAC English Theatre, and founder of Raven Theatre.

by James Dallas Smith

Two Indigenous brothers who haven’t spoken in fifteen years are thrust into a magical place that shouldn’t exist. They are forced to confront deities and mythical beings, their personal failings and their own complicated history in order to save the world. This comedic, fantastical, and historical theatre-musical is a story of reconciliation. 

James Dallas Smith is a multi-disciplinary artist with Anishinaabe (Turtle Clan of the Six Nations Mohawk) and Scottish heritage who has performed professionally nation-wide as an actor, musician, and writer in theatre, music, television, and film for the last twenty years. Although he has participated in several collective/collaborative projects, including performing four times at Weesageechak festival and in Blyth and Native Earth’s productions of Ipperwash, Crossroads will be his first full script. He is ecstatic to be appearing at Weesageechak as a writer for the first time.

The Complications of Lyrebirds
by Jasmin Sheppard

The lyrebird adopts the calls of other birds in order to appear most attractive and find a mate. But there is the authentic identity of the bird underneath that is no mimic. In the same way, there are external pressures thrust upon Indigenous people to prove their ‘blackness’ and to adopt certain ways of talking and appearing. But if your family was denied their culture by the impact of colonisation, then what really makes you Aboriginal?

Jasmin Sheppard is a contemporary dancer and choreographer, a Tagalak and Kurtjar Aboriginal woman with Irish, Chinese and Hungarian ancestry. She spent 12 years with Bangarra Dance Theatre, performing numerous lead roles such as Patyegarang, and choreographing MACQ, based on the 1816 Appin Massacres under Governor Macquarie. Other works include: No Remittance for Legs on the Wall, and WWS  with Sydney Symphony artists. Her work is political and have been described as evocative and provoking.

MALI’E | Tåno’ Uchan
by Dakota Alcantara-Camacho

MALI’E | Tåno’ Uchan is a multi-disciplinary embodied meditation on ancestral lineage, belonging, responsibility, and relationship to home/birthland.

MALI’E imagines the traditional Matao practice of embodied, improvisatory collective singing where oral history and prophecy converge. Tåno’ Uchan tells the stories of Chamoru migration to Coast Salish Territory and how Coast Salish life ways, Danza Mexica, hip hop and capoeira inform Camacho’s indigenizing journey.

Dakota Camacho (Matao/CHamoru, Ilokano, European) is a multi-disciplinary artist and researcher working in spaces of Indigenous lifeways, performance, musical composition, community engagement and education. Dakota holds a Masters of Arts in Performance Studies from Tisch School of the Arts at NYU, and graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison with a Bachelor of Arts in Gender & Women’s Studies as a First Wave Urban Arts and Hip Hop Scholar.