2017-18 Season Info

Staff Shot

L to R: Naz Afsahi, Andrea Donaldson, Patricia Meally, Kelly Thornton, Beth Brown, Taylor Trowbridge, Victoria Laberge. Photo by Dahlia Katz.

Welcome to Nightwood Theatre’s 38th season of provocative theatre by women. In a world that seems more and more polarized on the political stage, today’s artists are inciting a powerful conversation in response.

Each play in our 17/18 season ignites a dialogue around the most electric issues of today. To borrow from one play in particular, 7th Cousins, we face the profound question “How can we be together?” This simple question runs like a current through each of our offerings. Unpacking the massive issues around sexuality, race, class, religion, politics and gender, our playwrights grapple with what fundamentally unites us - even in the face of what divides or oppresses us. In the play Calpurnia, one issue being explored is that of allyship: the process of building relationships based on trust, consistency, and accountability with marginalized individuals. Nothing is simple as we struggle to understand our collective histories and possible futures, but the notion of art as a resilient material with which to build bridges is a sound one.

This season we proudly unveil four World Premieres productions from an exciting array of female playwrights and revive two wildly successful box office hits. We take theatre outside the box with our pop-up series and engage our audiences in a vital symposium on sexuality and consent.

This is theatre for everyone made by women.

Join us this season and let’s get the conversation started.

Kelly Thornton, Artistic Director       Beth Brown, Managing Director

2017-18 Season Passes are now on sale. Click here to purchase your pass. Or call 416-944-1740 x4 to book over the phone.

World Premiere Pass:
Lo (or Dear Mr. Wells), Asking for It & Calpurnia $75 ($60 for Under 30)*

Full Season Pass:

Lo (or Dear Mr. Wells), Asking for It,Calpurnia, Unholy and Mouthpiece $125 ($100 for Under 30)*

*Prices do not include HST
*7th Cousins is not included in the Season Pass, but pass holders will receive a discount on tickets for that production.



A play series and symposium navigating the minefield of modern sexuality.

By Ellie Moon
Directed by Brendan Healy
an In Association production
in association with Crow’s Theatre,
Nightwood Theatre and Necessary Angel Theatre Company
Onstage at Crow’s Theatre
October 6 – 21, 2017

“A bracing pleasure… A sly, intelligent piece of documentary theatre.” Simon Houpt, Globe and Mail

A daring documentary play that explores gender roles and sexual consent in the wake of the Ghomeshi scandal.  Asking for It offers a candid, often funny, and sometimes uncomfortable look at shame, power, ambiguity, and misunderstanding in communication about sex.

LO (or Dear Mr. Wells)
By Rose Napoli
A Nightwood Theatre production
in association with Crow’s Theatre
Onstage at Crow’s Theatre
October 25 – November 11, 2017

“Napoli already has the gifts of sharp, believable dialogue, captivating imagery and deeper thematic resonances that many writers far more experienced lack.” –Toronto Star

A feminist retake on a student / teacher relationship, wrestling with burgeoning sexuality and consent, literature and passion, right and wrong. Developed through Nightwood Theatre’s Write from the Hip playwright’s unit.

Written by Diane Flacks
Directed by Kelly Thornton
Produced by Nightwood Theatre
Onstage at Buddies in Bad Times Theatre
November 23 – December 10, 2017

“Diane Flacks has written exactly the right play to see right now.” - Stage-Door.com

NNNN - NOW Magazine

“Should women abandon religion?” Four female panelists face-off in a wild, whip-smart public debate about religion and misogyny. With opinions flying from a progressive Muslim lawyer, an Orthodox Jewish spiritual leader, an excommunicated nun and a lesbian atheist pundit, Unholy delivers a hilarious, no-holds-barred look at contemporary women in organized religion.

Written and Directed by Audrey Dwyer
A Nightwood Theatre and Sulong Theatre Co-Production
Onstage at Buddies in Bad Times Theatre
January 14 – February 4, 2018

“Audrey Dwyer’s direction pulls no punches.”  - Torontoist

A hilarious and provocative look at class, race and family dynamics under the roof of a wealthy Jamaican-Canadian home. As Julie, a screenwriter, seeks to redress To Kill a Mockingbird through the perspective of Calpurnia - the Finch family maid - her tactics meet with explosive results at an important family dinner party. A brave, insightful, and outrageous new play.

Written by Norah Sadava & Amy Nostbakken
Directed and Composed by Amy Nostbakken
A Nightwood Theatre presentation of a Quote Unquote Collective production
At Buddies in Bad Times Theatre
April 11 – 22, 2018

“Productions as good as this are why we go to the theatre.” – The Slotkin Letter

“Mouthpiece is a gift to lovers of boundary-breaking theatre.” Five Stars – Stage Door

Mouthpiece follows one woman, for one day, as she tries to find her voice. Interweaving a cappella harmony, dissonance, text and physicality, two performers express the inner conflict that exists within a modern woman’s head: the push and the pull, the past and the present, the progress and the regression.

By Christine Brubaker and Erin Brubacher
Collaborators: Christopher Stanton, Kaitlin Hickey and Andrea Nann

Nightwood Theatre presents 7th Cousins
at various locations throughout the 2017-18 Season
Special one-time, inaugural performance July 31, 2017
The Royal Canadian Legion Branch 344
September location to be revealed…

Nightwood is thrilled to present a series of pop-up performances by 7th Cousins throughout Toronto. This vital project asks, “How can we be together?” through both the personal and political perspective of two Canadian women who walked a 700 km journey through the Bible Belt of Middle America, tracing the migration of their Mennonite ancestors. Described as an automythography, 7th Cousins explores truth, tales, and the space in between a shared and imagined past, present and future.

GROUNDSWELL UNPLUGGED: Write from the Hip Reading Series

Readings from our 2016/17 Emerging Playwrights program
Facilitated by Andrea Donaldson
September 25 – 30, 2017
Ernest Balmer Studio, The Distillery District

Be the first to hear new work from some of the most exciting emerging female playwrights in the city. The 2016-17 Write from the Hip writers are Elena Belyea, Deanna Kruger, Michelle Langille, Gitanjali Lena, Hannah Rittner and Lisa Ryder. Write from the Hip is a year-long script development program designed to support new writers toward the completion of a full-length play. Come hear what these talented women have created.

See full schedule of Groundswell Unplugged in September, 2017.

2017-18 Season Passes are now on sale. Click here to purchase your pass. Or call 416-944-1740 x4 to book over the phone.

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