The Penelopiad


January 8 to February 10, 2013

Nightwood Theatre presents the Toronto Premiere

by Margaret Atwood

Directed by Kelly Thornton

Starring Megan Follows

Check out the cast and creative teams bios and pictures by clicking the tab above

“Now that I’m dead, I know everything.” So begins The Penelopiad, Margaret Atwood’s daring response to Homer’s The Odyssey. Destined to spend eternity in Hades, Penelope recounts her life’s story and the murder of her twelve handmaidens by her vengeful husband Odysseus. Atwood’s acerbic wit brings one of history’s most powerful myths to the contemporary imagination. A provocative new look at a woman’s longing, lust and culpability.

4 N’s “If you didn’t see The Penelopiad last year, don’t miss it this time around. And even if you did, it’s worth a revisit…” - NOW
4 out of 4 stars  “The Penelopiad is stunning theatre”
- The Toronto Star
3 ½ out of 4 stars “…an absolute triumph”
- The Globe and Mail
4 out of 4 starsThe Penelopiad makes history”
- Toronto Sun
4 N’s “This is a superb show – smart, beautiful and superbly executed.”
- Now Magazine

“…vibrant, moving and darkly, explosively funny.”
- National Post
Written by Margaret Atwood

Starring Megan Follows

with Maev Beaty, Neema Bickersteth, Fiona Byrne, Sarah Dodd, Monica Dottor, Audrey Dwyer, Nicole Joy-Fraser, Kelli Fox, Cara Gee, Patricia Hamilton, Pamela Sinha and Sophia Walker


Megan Follows// Penelope Follows has guest starred on some of television’s most popular series. Most recently she was in the mini series World Without End, and guest stared in the A&E series Longmire. Her list of credits include such shows as House, CSI, Law and Order, CBC’s Heartland. She just finished filming the Canadian feature Hard Drive and the short film Bar None (Bravo) and can be heard as the narrator for the Imax film Flight of the Butterflies. Follows’ resume has a list of numerous big screen credits including Alan King’s powerful feature, Termini Station, which earned her a Genie nomination for Best Actress and Stephen King’s Silver Bullet, with Gary Busey. As Follows began to divide her time between L.A. and Toronto, she performed lead roles in the Oscar-winning short film Boys And Girls, and the mini-series Hockey Night, which earned her a 1985 ACTRA Award nomination. While filming Hockey Night, Follows landed the role of “Anne”, which earned her a 1987 Gemini for her performance in Anne Of Green Gables and a 1988 Gemini for Anne Of Avonlea. 
She also has a long history in theatre and has worked with prestigious companies such as the Stratford Festival (Romeo and Juliet, Amadeus) and The National Arts Centre in Ottawa. In 2008, Megan was nominated for two Dora Mavor Moore Best Actress Awards for her performances as Masha in Three Sisters and Marlene in Soulpepper’s award-winning presentation of Top Girls.


Maev Beaty// Laertes/Maid Maev’s coming out party was Canadian Stage’s ‘08 season where she played Helena in Midsummer Night’s Dream and premiered in Judith Thompson’s Palace of the End.  Shakespeare’s Titania and Kate followed and she has since performed in 10 Canadian Premieres, gathering 3 Dora nominations, for performance in Dance of the Red Skirts (Theatre Columbus), and for performance and writing of Montparnasse, which she co created with Erin Shields and Andrea Donaldson. She has been a proud ensemble member of huge theatre endeavours such at TheatreFront’s The Mill series and Volcano Theatre’s Another Africa (Luminato/Canadian Stage), and is Co-Artistic Director of Sheep No Wool Theatre Company and an Artistic Associate of Groundwater Productions. http://www.maevbeaty.com




Neema Bickersteth// Telemachus/Maid Neema began an opera degree at the University of British Columbia, where she received both a Bachelors and Masters of Music.  She has performed internationally in Asia, Africa, Europe, and North America.  Most recently, Neema was seen in The Story (Theatre Columbus), Harlem Duet (Black Theatre Workshop); Oil and Water (Artistic Fraud); Caroline, or Change (Acting Up Stage/Obsidian – Dora Nomination). More experimental/theatrical work includes Stitch and Voicebox (Urbanvessel); Giiwedin (Native Earth Performing Arts); Obeah Opera (b current) and Dark Star Requiem (Luminato/Tapestry New Opera).  Neema is developing a recital theatre piece called A Moveable Beast. It explores an alternative version of history combining classical singing, musical improvisation, modern dance, and historical photography.




Fiona Byrne// Naiad/Maid Most recently Fiona was seen in The Cosmonaut’s Last Message… (Canadian Stage) and Bethune Imagined (Factory Theatre), and has appeared on King, Rookie Blue, Flashpoint, Against the Wall, the award-winning Oliver Bump’s Birthday (CFC) and others.  She has played leading roles at the Stratford Festival, Soulpepper, and, for eleven seasons, the Shaw Festival.  Other credits include Belle Moral (NAC/Shaw Festival), The Country (Crow’s Theatre/Theatre Junction), Long Day’s Journey into Night , Vinci (MTC) and Doll House, for which she received a Dora Award for Best Actress.  Fiona is a graduate of the National Theatre School.





Sarah Dodd// Anticleia/Maid Most recently Sarah made her directorial debut with This Lime Tree Bower (Cart/Horse Theatre). Recent acting credits include The Small Room at the Top of the Stairs (Tarragon Theatre) and The Penelopiad (Nightwood Theatre, Dora Award for Best Ensemble). She performed for seven seasons at the Stratford Festival. She was seen in The New Electric Ballroom (MacKenzie Ro Theatre) and other theatre credits include The Age of Arousal (Nightwood Theatre), Communion, The Fall and Humble Boy (Tarragon Theatre); A Whistle In the Dark and Marion Bridge (Company Theatre, Dora Award for Marion Bridge); Them and Us (Theatre Passe Muraille); A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Canadian Stage); The Importance of Being Earnest (Stratford Festival). Sarah is a graduate of George Brown Theatre School.


Monica Dottor// Oracle/Maid (Choreographer) Monica is an actor & choreographer. She was nominated for a Dora Award for her choreography in The Penelopiad and received a Dora Award with the ensemble. Most recently, played the lead in the feature film The Shape of Rex (Factoria Films) and was featured in Picture Day (Snitch Pictures- TIFF selection) & choreographed and acted in PETRICHOR (Kitchenband/Summerworks), Recent Theatre (acting): The Trolley Car(Summerworks),The Middle Place (Canadian Stage/Belfry/GCTC) Featuring Loretta(Factory), The Red Queen Effect (NextStage), SCRATCH (Factory-Dora Nomination - Performance), A Midsummer Night’s Dream (CanadianStage), The Overcoat (CanadianStage/San Francisco Critics’ Circle Award, Dora Nomination Ensemble Performance), Chekhov’s Heartache & Chekhov’s Shorts (Smith-Gilmour), Recent Choreography:  MALARIA LULLABY (Company Blonde), CRASH (Theatre Passe Muraille), The Middle Place (CanadianStage/Passe Muraille/Belfry/GCTC), 2010 Dora Mavor Moore Awards,The Red Queen Effect (Next Stage),The Russian Play (Factory-Dora Nomination Choreography), The Elastocitizens, Suzie McNeil’s “Dear Love” tour.

Audrey Dwyer// Icarius/Maid Audrey was most recently seen in thirsty (National Arts Centre) and will be performing in a remount of Clybourne Park (Studio 180/Mirvish Productions). Other theatre credits include Breath in Between (Breath Collective with Crows Theatre), The Overwhelming (Studio 180), Black Medea (Obsidian Theatre), Medea (The Royal Manitoba Theatre Centre and Mirvish Productions); The Babysitter (Theatre Direct/Eldritch Theatre), Blue Planet (Young People’s Theatre); Danny, King of the Basement (Roseneath Theatre) and Patty’s Cake (Carousel Players – Dora Award, Best Outstanding Production for Young People). Film and TV credits include Da Kink in My Hair, The Ron James Show, The State Within, Man of the Year and Where the Truth Lies. She was Nightwood’s Associate Artistic Director from 2008 to 2009, is a Dora-Nominated director for The Apology, and was recently Assistant Director for Nightwood’s The Penelopiad. She is also writing, Calpurnia, her first full-length play with Obsidian Theatre’s Development series. She is a graduate of The National Theatre School of Canada.

Nicole Joy-Fraser// Antinous/Maid Nicole started her professional career singing top soprano in The Nathaniel Dett Chorale while finishing her final year of study at The Randolph Academy. Upon graduating she went directly into rehearsals for the North American premiere of Mamma Mia! at the Royal Alex and later toured with the same cast throughout the U.S.  She landed roles in Jerry Springer-The Opera (multi-award-winning West End cast) and eventually Disney’s Beauty and the Beast (UK Tour, Greece). Nicole returned to Toronto after six years of being a “Londoner” and was cast in Red Sky’s Raven Stole the Sun, which she performed for family audiences through out the US, Canada and the Vancouver 2010 Cultural Olympiad. Other theatre credits include; Job’s Wife (New Harlem, Summerworks), “Emily Dictionary” in The Rez Sisters, the Dora-nominated premiere of Giiwedin -a First Nations Opera, and the premiere of Marie Clement’s Tombs of the Vanishing Indian (Native Earth/Red Diva). She recently made her Young People’s Theatre debut in Red Sky’s The Great Mountain, touring it to B.C, Alberta and previously to New York City’s Smithsonian Institute.

Kelli Fox// Odysseus/Maid Kelli is thrilled to be back with Penny and the Maids. Since we were last in Hades she has been busy with TV (Nikita, Murdoch Mysteries, Cracked), made her directorial debut at the Bond Festival Wrecking Ball and has been developing, along with partners, a project for the stage inspired by American poet Edna St. Vincent Millay.  She’s spent 12 seasons with the Shaw Festival and 3 with Stratford, played the title role in Hamlet with the Geva Theatre Centre in Rochester, Princess of France in Love’s Labours Lost, Hermione in A Winter’s Tale, and Helena in All’s Well that Ends Well with the NAC, as well as Beatrice in Much Ado about Nothing with Chicago Shakespeare Theatre. In Toronto she has worked with Tarragon (Slavs!, Scorched, The Children’s Republic), Soulpepper (Top Girls), Factory (Oui, Restitution, Zadie’s Shoes), and elsewhere with The Citadel (Frozen, August: Osage County), MTC (The Blonde, The Brunette and the Vengeful Redhead) and the Segal Centre (Blithe Spirit). She has been nominated for a Dora and a Sterling, earned a Jessie and been recognized by the Critics Circles in both Toronto and Ottawa.

Cara Gee// Melantho/Maid Cara most recently performed in The Real World (Tarragon Theatre) and Ally & Kev (SummerWorks). Cara was seen in The Penelopiad (Nightwood Theatre, Dora Award for Best Ensemble), The Rez Sisters (Factory Theatre) and The Jones Boy (surface/underground).  Cara is an ensemble member of the independent company, Birdtown and Swanville.  Credits with Birdtown and Swanville include: The Physical Ramifications of Attempted Global Domination (Summerworks), 36 Little Plays About Hopeless Girls (Fringe), Dead Wrestlers (Rhubarb) and Family Story.  Other theatre credits include: Stitch (Dependent Theatre Projects, Summerworks—Spotlight Award), Spirit Horse (Roseneath Theatre), Flowers (Rose City Theatre Festival), Love’s Labour’s Lost (Resurgence), and Tout Comme Elle (Necessary Angel).  Upcoming, she will be in Arigato, Tokyo by Daniel MacIvor at Buddies in Bad Times. Cara has a BFA in Acting from the University of Windsor.




Patricia Hamilton// Eurycleia/Maid Patricia has been acting for more than 50 years. As well as 13 seasons at the Shaw Festival she has been seen across Canada from Vancouver to Stratford to Halifax. In Toronto she has appeared at Tarragon, Factory, Passe Muraille, Necessary Angel and Canadian Stage among others. She is also a director, teacher and producer (having been one of the founders of Masterclass theatre). To TV viewers she is known as Rachel Lynde in the Road to Avonlea series. She was most recently seen in Nurse Guinness in Heartbreak House (Shaw Festival).





Pamela Sinha// Helen/Maid Pamela was most recently seen in Crash (Theatre Passe Muraille – 2 Dora Awards: Actress, New Play), The Penelopiad (Nightwood Theatre – Dora Award – Acting Ensemble). She received a Dora Nomination for her work as Rekha in Brothel #9. She is part of Cahoots Theatre Playwrights Unit for 2011/12. She was seen in The Rez Sisters (Factory Theatre). Selected theatre credits include: Tout Comme Elle (Necessary Angel), Possible Worlds (Theatre Passe Muraille). Selected Film and Television: series leads on The Newsroom and Traders, ER (recurring), guest starring roles on Huff, Crossing Jordan, Rick Mercer Report; films include Breakaway, HBO’s Live from Baghdad, and Jinnah on Crime. Pamela’s short story Hiding was published in the best selling anthology Dropped Threads Vol.2 (Random House Canada), edited by Carol Shields and Marjorie Anderson. She is currently at work on her second play, Happy Place.


Sophia Walker// Menelaus/Maid Sophia is an award-winning Stratford Festival actor, bouffon and improviser performer. Recent theatre credits include: Ruined (Obsidian Theatre – Dora Award), The Penelopiad (Nightwood Theatre, Dora Award for Best Ensemble), Much Ado About Nothing (Canadian Stage Dream in High Park), BOBLO (Kitchenband Productions co-produced with The Theatre Centre). Sophia has spent the last 7 seasons performing at The Stratford Shakespeare Festival (selected credits): Julia in The Two Gentlemen of Verona, Hermia in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Lady Macduff in Macbeth, Lady Capulet in Romeo and Juliet, Luciana in The Comedy of Errors, Amah in Harlem Duet. Sophia is a graduate of The Birmingham Conservatory under David Latham. Film & TV credits Rookie Blue (Global/ABC), The Tempest (Melbar Entertainment) and Caesar and Cleopatra (BRAVO)




       






























Directed by Kelly Thornton
Designed by Denyse Karn
Lighting Designed by Kim Purtell
Original Music, Sound Design and Musical Direction by Suba Sankaran
Choreography by Monica Dottor
Stage Managed by Melissa Rood
Assistant Stage Managed by Ashley Westlake

 


Kelly Thornton// Director Kelly has been the Artistic Director of Nightwood Theatre since 2001. Directing Credits for Nightwood include Between the Sheets (The New Groundswell Festival), The List, That Face, Wild Dogs (all in association with Canadian Stage), The Danish Play (Toronto 2002 & 2007, Aveny-Teatret, Copenhagen, Magnetic North Theatre Festival & National Arts Centre), Bear With Me (Toronto, Grand Theatre & Magnetic North Theatre Festival), Mathilde, China Doll and Finding Regina (Globe Theatre/Theatre Passe Muraille). Other selected credits include The Comedy of Errors (Canadian Stage’s Dream in High Park); This Hotel (Theatre Passe Muraille/Planet 88 - Dora Nomination for Outstanding Direction); So Many Doors (Magnetic North Theatre Festival, Sour Brides/Yukon Arts Centre); Peep Show (Buddies in Bad Times); The Dumb Waiter (SummerWorks/Sometimes Y). Kelly has received the Pauline McGibbon Award for her outstanding work as a Director and was recognized for her commitment to training and mentorship of young women in the performing arts by being named a YWCA Woman of Distinction (Arts & Letters). In 2010 she was named the Associate Director of the National Theatre School of Canada’s Directing Program. Up next Kelly will be directing The Happy Woman at The Berkeley Street Theatre.


Denyse Karn// Designer Denyse is the Producer/General Manager of Nightwood Theatre. Her design credits for Nightwood include The List; The Lawyer Show 2011: As You Like It; The Lawyer Show 2010: A Midsummer Night’s Dream; Goodnight Desdemona, Goodmorning Juliet (Premier Production). Other recent credits include The Winter’s Tale (Canadian Stage 2011 Dream in High Park); The Oracle Of Gros Morne (Gros Morne Theatre Festival); Top Girls (Manitoba Theatre Centre). Denyse has also worked with Eastern Front Theatre, Neptune Theatre, Theatre New Brunswick, The Charlottetown Festival,  Atlantic Theatre Festival, Ship’s Company Theatre, Mulgrave Road Theatre, Festival Antigonish, Two Planks and A Passion Theatre, Tarragon Theatre, Theatre Passe Muraille, Canadian Stage Company and Cahoots Theatre Projects to name a few. Denyse Karn has been working in the Canadian theatre for over 25 years as a producer and designer. She is a graduate of the Ryerson Theatre School and has her BFA from NSCAD University. She is a recipient of a Dora Mavor Moore Award, five Theatre Nova Scotia Merritt Awards for various Outstanding Designs and was nominated for the Siminovitch Award in Theatre in 2006.  Up next Denyse will be Designer for The Happy Woman at The Berkeley Street Theatre.


Kim Purtell// Lighting Designer Previously for Nightwood Kimberly has designed lights for The Happy Woman, The Penelopiad (2012), The List, That Face, Wild Dogs, Age of Arousal and Crave. Most recently, her credits include The Little Years (Tarragon Theatre & Stratford Festival); Rigoletto (Opera Hamilton); This is What Happens Next (Necessary Angel); The Normal Heart (Studio 180); Proud (Proud Collective), HOMEbody (Shannon Litzenberger Dance); Speed The Plow (Soulpepper); Youʼre A Good Man Charlie Brown (Stratford Festival); and Crash (Theatre Passe Muraille). She has designed for theatres across the country including Mirvish Productions, Canadian Stage Company, Stratford Festival, World Stage, Luminato Festival, Manitoba Theatre Centre, Theatre Calgary, Vancouver Playhouse, Citadel Theatre, Young People’s Theatre, Studio 180, Soulpepper, Tarragon Theatre, Theatre Passe Muraille, Theatre Centre, Factory Theatre, Necessary Angel, Queen of Puddings, Tapestry New Opera, The Banff Centre, da da kamera, Dancemakers, Kaeja d’Dance and many others. Upcoming Kimberly will be designing Svadba (Edmonton Opera); Little One & Other Peopleʼs Children (Tarragon Theatre); The Power of Harriet T (YPT); Do You Want What I Have Got: A Craigslist Cantata (Factory Theatre); Clybourne Park (Studio 180 & Mirvish). Kimberly is a recipient of the Pauline McGibbon and has been nominated for 17 Dora Awards, winning three times.


Suba Sankaran// Composer of Original Music, Sound Design and Musical Director Dora award-winning, twice Juno nominated Suba Sankaran is a world/fusion vocalist who has effortlessly combined musical worlds, performing across North America, Europe, UK and Asia with Autorickshaw, Trichy Sankaran, FreePlay Duo (with Dylan Bell) and Retrocity (80s a cappella revue), to name a few. Performance highlights include performing for Peter Gabriel, Nelson Mandela and Bishop Tutu. Suba is in demand as a choral director, arranger, educator and composer/producer for theatre, film, radio and dance. Highlights include collaborations with Deepa Mehta and the CBC. Suba is currently artist-in-residence at the Young Centre for the Performing Arts and co-chair of the Juno world music committee.




Monica Dottor// Choreographer Monica is an actor & choreographer. She was nominated for a Dora Award for her choreography in The Penelopiad and received a Dora Award with the ensemble. Most recently, played the lead in the feature film The Shape of Rex (Factoria Films) and was featured in Picture Day (Snitch Pictures- TIFF selection) & choreographed and acted in PETRICHOR (Kitchenband/Summerworks), Recent Theatre (acting): The Trolley Car(Summerworks),The Middle Place (Canadian Stage/Belfry/GCTC) Featuring Loretta(Factory), The Red Queen Effect (NextStage), SCRATCH (Factory-Dora Nomination - Performance), A Midsummer Night’s Dream (CanadianStage), The Overcoat (CanadianStage/San Francisco Critics’ Circle Award, Dora Nomination Ensemble Performance), Chekhov’s Heartache & Chekhov’s Shorts (Smith-Gilmour), Recent Choreography:  MALARIA LULLABY (Company Blonde), CRASH (Theatre Passe Muraille), The Middle Place (CanadianStage/Passe Muraille/Belfry/GCTC), 2010 Dora Mavor Moore Awards,The Red Queen Effect (Next Stage),The Russian Play (Factory-Dora Nomination Choreography), The Elastocitizens, Suzie McNeil’s “Dear Love” tour.


Melissa Rood// Stage Manager From the Middle East to the Arctic and throughout North America with Stratford Shakespeare Festival (12 seasons), Canadian Opera Company (10 Winters), Nightwood Theatre, La Jolla Playhouse, Human Cargo Theatre, National Arts Centre, Pacific Opera Victoria, Belfry Theatre, Globe Theatre, Suddenly Dance, Canadian Stage, Mump & Smoot, Green Thumb Theatre for Young People, Haig-Brown Society, Princess Cruises, and David Atkins Enterprises for the Opening & Closing Ceremonies of the Asian Games (with a cast of just under ten thousand) in Doha, Qatar. A graduate of the technical production programme at Sheridan College, Melissa is also a social work student at the University of Waterloo and holds a degree in Social Development Studies, serves on the Board of Directors for PAL Stratford, plays Derby with the Festival City Rollergirls, and recently competed in the World Club Crew Dragon Boat Championships in Hong Kong.


Ashley Westlake// Apprentice Stage Manager Ashley’s Nightwood credits include Stage Manager: Between The Sheets – Groundswell Festival (2011), The Lawyer Show – As You Like It (2011). Apprentice Stage Manager: The List (2010), That Face (2009, in association with Canadian Stage). Former Nightwood Producing Intern (2009). Other selected credits include Stage Manager: The Jones Boy (surface/underground); Stage Manager: The Little One (Company Theatre Crisis, SummerWorks 2011); Horse (Theatre Hetaerae, Toronto Fringe Festival 2011). Apprentice Stage Manager: The Middle Place (Project Humanity, Canadian Stage 2011). Up next for Ashley will be Apprentice Stage Manager: The Happy Woman (Nightwood). Stage Manager: The Lawyer Show 2012: Much Ado About Nothing (Nightwood). Production Manager: The Washing Machine (Red Betty Theatre, 2012 Next Stage Theatre Festival).

 

       



























INTERVIEWS AND REVIEWS FROM 2013 PRODUCTION
Review:” This is a fabulous production of a very beautiful play by one of our finest writers.”
- PostCity
The Big Interview  Megan Follows: Inspired casting as Penelope in Penelopiad
- The Toronto Star
Kate Taylor interviews Megan Follows on playing Atwood’s Penelope, being manipulative and motherhood
- The Globe and Mail
4 N’s “If you didn’t see The Penelopiad last year, don’t miss it this time around. And even if you did, it’s worth a revisit to catch the added nuances.”
- NOW
On the Town with The Penelopiad’s Megan Follows and Kelli Fox
- National Post
Interview with Megan Follows and Kelli Fox on the Global Morning Show
- Global Morning Show

INTERVIEWS AND REVIEWS FROM 2012 PRODUCTION
4 out of 4 stars  “The Penelopiad is stunning theatre”
- The Toronto Star
3 ½ out of 4 stars “…an absolute triumph”
- The Globe and Mail
4 out of 4 starsThe Penelopiad makes history”
- Toronto Sun
4 N’s “This is a superb show – smart, beautiful and superbly executed.”
- Now Magazine
“…vibrant, moving and darkly, explosively funny.”
- National Post
8 out of 10 roses “a moving cri de coeur…”
- The Grid
“Who needs men in a performance when the women play them so expertly?”
- The Scene in TO
“Director Kelly Thornton turns the serious material into delicious fare that stimulates everyone emotionally and intellectually.”
- fab magazine
“The aesthetics of The Penelopiad are stunning…”
- My Entertainment World
5 out of 5 stars “Don’t miss Nightwood Theatre’s inspiring production.”
- Theatromania
“Follows’ performs remarkably and is often times very witty.”
- zeeBigBang

 


January 8 to February 10, 2013

Nightwood Theatre presents the Toronto Premiere

by Margaret Atwood

Directed by Kelly Thornton

Starring Megan Follows

Check out the cast and creative teams bios and pictures by clicking the tab above

“Now that I’m dead, I know everything.” So begins The Penelopiad, Margaret Atwood’s daring response to Homer’s The Odyssey. Destined to spend eternity in Hades, Penelope recounts her life’s story and the murder of her twelve handmaidens by her vengeful husband Odysseus. Atwood’s acerbic wit brings one of history’s most powerful myths to the contemporary imagination. A provocative new look at a woman’s longing, lust and culpability.

4 N’s “If you didn’t see The Penelopiad last year, don’t miss it this time around. And even if you did, it’s worth a revisit…” - NOW
4 out of 4 stars  “The Penelopiad is stunning theatre”
- The Toronto Star
3 ½ out of 4 stars “…an absolute triumph”
- The Globe and Mail
4 out of 4 starsThe Penelopiad makes history”
- Toronto Sun
4 N’s “This is a superb show – smart, beautiful and superbly executed.”
- Now Magazine

“…vibrant, moving and darkly, explosively funny.”
- National Post

 

The Penelopiad


January 8 to February 10, 2013

Nightwood Theatre presents the Toronto Premiere

by Margaret Atwood

Directed by Kelly Thornton

Starring Megan Follows

Check out the cast and creative teams bios and pictures by clicking the tab above

“Now that I’m dead, I know everything.” So begins The Penelopiad, Margaret Atwood’s daring response to Homer’s The Odyssey. Destined to spend eternity in Hades, Penelope recounts her life’s story and the murder of her twelve handmaidens by her vengeful husband Odysseus. Atwood’s acerbic wit brings one of history’s most powerful myths to the contemporary imagination. A provocative new look at a woman’s longing, lust and culpability.

4 N’s “If you didn’t see The Penelopiad last year, don’t miss it this time around. And even if you did, it’s worth a revisit…” - NOW
4 out of 4 stars  “The Penelopiad is stunning theatre”
- The Toronto Star
3 ½ out of 4 stars “…an absolute triumph”
- The Globe and Mail
4 out of 4 starsThe Penelopiad makes history”
- Toronto Sun
4 N’s “This is a superb show – smart, beautiful and superbly executed.”
- Now Magazine

“…vibrant, moving and darkly, explosively funny.”
- National Post
Written by Margaret Atwood

Starring Megan Follows

with Maev Beaty, Neema Bickersteth, Fiona Byrne, Sarah Dodd, Monica Dottor, Audrey Dwyer, Nicole Joy-Fraser, Kelli Fox, Cara Gee, Patricia Hamilton, Pamela Sinha and Sophia Walker


Megan Follows// Penelope Follows has guest starred on some of television’s most popular series. Most recently she was in the mini series World Without End, and guest stared in the A&E series Longmire. Her list of credits include such shows as House, CSI, Law and Order, CBC’s Heartland. She just finished filming the Canadian feature Hard Drive and the short film Bar None (Bravo) and can be heard as the narrator for the Imax film Flight of the Butterflies. Follows’ resume has a list of numerous big screen credits including Alan King’s powerful feature, Termini Station, which earned her a Genie nomination for Best Actress and Stephen King’s Silver Bullet, with Gary Busey. As Follows began to divide her time between L.A. and Toronto, she performed lead roles in the Oscar-winning short film Boys And Girls, and the mini-series Hockey Night, which earned her a 1985 ACTRA Award nomination. While filming Hockey Night, Follows landed the role of “Anne”, which earned her a 1987 Gemini for her performance in Anne Of Green Gables and a 1988 Gemini for Anne Of Avonlea. 
She also has a long history in theatre and has worked with prestigious companies such as the Stratford Festival (Romeo and Juliet, Amadeus) and The National Arts Centre in Ottawa. In 2008, Megan was nominated for two Dora Mavor Moore Best Actress Awards for her performances as Masha in Three Sisters and Marlene in Soulpepper’s award-winning presentation of Top Girls.


Maev Beaty// Laertes/Maid Maev’s coming out party was Canadian Stage’s ‘08 season where she played Helena in Midsummer Night’s Dream and premiered in Judith Thompson’s Palace of the End.  Shakespeare’s Titania and Kate followed and she has since performed in 10 Canadian Premieres, gathering 3 Dora nominations, for performance in Dance of the Red Skirts (Theatre Columbus), and for performance and writing of Montparnasse, which she co created with Erin Shields and Andrea Donaldson. She has been a proud ensemble member of huge theatre endeavours such at TheatreFront’s The Mill series and Volcano Theatre’s Another Africa (Luminato/Canadian Stage), and is Co-Artistic Director of Sheep No Wool Theatre Company and an Artistic Associate of Groundwater Productions. http://www.maevbeaty.com




Neema Bickersteth// Telemachus/Maid Neema began an opera degree at the University of British Columbia, where she received both a Bachelors and Masters of Music.  She has performed internationally in Asia, Africa, Europe, and North America.  Most recently, Neema was seen in The Story (Theatre Columbus), Harlem Duet (Black Theatre Workshop); Oil and Water (Artistic Fraud); Caroline, or Change (Acting Up Stage/Obsidian – Dora Nomination). More experimental/theatrical work includes Stitch and Voicebox (Urbanvessel); Giiwedin (Native Earth Performing Arts); Obeah Opera (b current) and Dark Star Requiem (Luminato/Tapestry New Opera).  Neema is developing a recital theatre piece called A Moveable Beast. It explores an alternative version of history combining classical singing, musical improvisation, modern dance, and historical photography.




Fiona Byrne// Naiad/Maid Most recently Fiona was seen in The Cosmonaut’s Last Message… (Canadian Stage) and Bethune Imagined (Factory Theatre), and has appeared on King, Rookie Blue, Flashpoint, Against the Wall, the award-winning Oliver Bump’s Birthday (CFC) and others.  She has played leading roles at the Stratford Festival, Soulpepper, and, for eleven seasons, the Shaw Festival.  Other credits include Belle Moral (NAC/Shaw Festival), The Country (Crow’s Theatre/Theatre Junction), Long Day’s Journey into Night , Vinci (MTC) and Doll House, for which she received a Dora Award for Best Actress.  Fiona is a graduate of the National Theatre School.





Sarah Dodd// Anticleia/Maid Most recently Sarah made her directorial debut with This Lime Tree Bower (Cart/Horse Theatre). Recent acting credits include The Small Room at the Top of the Stairs (Tarragon Theatre) and The Penelopiad (Nightwood Theatre, Dora Award for Best Ensemble). She performed for seven seasons at the Stratford Festival. She was seen in The New Electric Ballroom (MacKenzie Ro Theatre) and other theatre credits include The Age of Arousal (Nightwood Theatre), Communion, The Fall and Humble Boy (Tarragon Theatre); A Whistle In the Dark and Marion Bridge (Company Theatre, Dora Award for Marion Bridge); Them and Us (Theatre Passe Muraille); A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Canadian Stage); The Importance of Being Earnest (Stratford Festival). Sarah is a graduate of George Brown Theatre School.


Monica Dottor// Oracle/Maid (Choreographer) Monica is an actor & choreographer. She was nominated for a Dora Award for her choreography in The Penelopiad and received a Dora Award with the ensemble. Most recently, played the lead in the feature film The Shape of Rex (Factoria Films) and was featured in Picture Day (Snitch Pictures- TIFF selection) & choreographed and acted in PETRICHOR (Kitchenband/Summerworks), Recent Theatre (acting): The Trolley Car(Summerworks),The Middle Place (Canadian Stage/Belfry/GCTC) Featuring Loretta(Factory), The Red Queen Effect (NextStage), SCRATCH (Factory-Dora Nomination - Performance), A Midsummer Night’s Dream (CanadianStage), The Overcoat (CanadianStage/San Francisco Critics’ Circle Award, Dora Nomination Ensemble Performance), Chekhov’s Heartache & Chekhov’s Shorts (Smith-Gilmour), Recent Choreography:  MALARIA LULLABY (Company Blonde), CRASH (Theatre Passe Muraille), The Middle Place (CanadianStage/Passe Muraille/Belfry/GCTC), 2010 Dora Mavor Moore Awards,The Red Queen Effect (Next Stage),The Russian Play (Factory-Dora Nomination Choreography), The Elastocitizens, Suzie McNeil’s “Dear Love” tour.

Audrey Dwyer// Icarius/Maid Audrey was most recently seen in thirsty (National Arts Centre) and will be performing in a remount of Clybourne Park (Studio 180/Mirvish Productions). Other theatre credits include Breath in Between (Breath Collective with Crows Theatre), The Overwhelming (Studio 180), Black Medea (Obsidian Theatre), Medea (The Royal Manitoba Theatre Centre and Mirvish Productions); The Babysitter (Theatre Direct/Eldritch Theatre), Blue Planet (Young People’s Theatre); Danny, King of the Basement (Roseneath Theatre) and Patty’s Cake (Carousel Players – Dora Award, Best Outstanding Production for Young People). Film and TV credits include Da Kink in My Hair, The Ron James Show, The State Within, Man of the Year and Where the Truth Lies. She was Nightwood’s Associate Artistic Director from 2008 to 2009, is a Dora-Nominated director for The Apology, and was recently Assistant Director for Nightwood’s The Penelopiad. She is also writing, Calpurnia, her first full-length play with Obsidian Theatre’s Development series. She is a graduate of The National Theatre School of Canada.

Nicole Joy-Fraser// Antinous/Maid Nicole started her professional career singing top soprano in The Nathaniel Dett Chorale while finishing her final year of study at The Randolph Academy. Upon graduating she went directly into rehearsals for the North American premiere of Mamma Mia! at the Royal Alex and later toured with the same cast throughout the U.S.  She landed roles in Jerry Springer-The Opera (multi-award-winning West End cast) and eventually Disney’s Beauty and the Beast (UK Tour, Greece). Nicole returned to Toronto after six years of being a “Londoner” and was cast in Red Sky’s Raven Stole the Sun, which she performed for family audiences through out the US, Canada and the Vancouver 2010 Cultural Olympiad. Other theatre credits include; Job’s Wife (New Harlem, Summerworks), “Emily Dictionary” in The Rez Sisters, the Dora-nominated premiere of Giiwedin -a First Nations Opera, and the premiere of Marie Clement’s Tombs of the Vanishing Indian (Native Earth/Red Diva). She recently made her Young People’s Theatre debut in Red Sky’s The Great Mountain, touring it to B.C, Alberta and previously to New York City’s Smithsonian Institute.

Kelli Fox// Odysseus/Maid Kelli is thrilled to be back with Penny and the Maids. Since we were last in Hades she has been busy with TV (Nikita, Murdoch Mysteries, Cracked), made her directorial debut at the Bond Festival Wrecking Ball and has been developing, along with partners, a project for the stage inspired by American poet Edna St. Vincent Millay.  She’s spent 12 seasons with the Shaw Festival and 3 with Stratford, played the title role in Hamlet with the Geva Theatre Centre in Rochester, Princess of France in Love’s Labours Lost, Hermione in A Winter’s Tale, and Helena in All’s Well that Ends Well with the NAC, as well as Beatrice in Much Ado about Nothing with Chicago Shakespeare Theatre. In Toronto she has worked with Tarragon (Slavs!, Scorched, The Children’s Republic), Soulpepper (Top Girls), Factory (Oui, Restitution, Zadie’s Shoes), and elsewhere with The Citadel (Frozen, August: Osage County), MTC (The Blonde, The Brunette and the Vengeful Redhead) and the Segal Centre (Blithe Spirit). She has been nominated for a Dora and a Sterling, earned a Jessie and been recognized by the Critics Circles in both Toronto and Ottawa.

Cara Gee// Melantho/Maid Cara most recently performed in The Real World (Tarragon Theatre) and Ally & Kev (SummerWorks). Cara was seen in The Penelopiad (Nightwood Theatre, Dora Award for Best Ensemble), The Rez Sisters (Factory Theatre) and The Jones Boy (surface/underground).  Cara is an ensemble member of the independent company, Birdtown and Swanville.  Credits with Birdtown and Swanville include: The Physical Ramifications of Attempted Global Domination (Summerworks), 36 Little Plays About Hopeless Girls (Fringe), Dead Wrestlers (Rhubarb) and Family Story.  Other theatre credits include: Stitch (Dependent Theatre Projects, Summerworks—Spotlight Award), Spirit Horse (Roseneath Theatre), Flowers (Rose City Theatre Festival), Love’s Labour’s Lost (Resurgence), and Tout Comme Elle (Necessary Angel).  Upcoming, she will be in Arigato, Tokyo by Daniel MacIvor at Buddies in Bad Times. Cara has a BFA in Acting from the University of Windsor.




Patricia Hamilton// Eurycleia/Maid Patricia has been acting for more than 50 years. As well as 13 seasons at the Shaw Festival she has been seen across Canada from Vancouver to Stratford to Halifax. In Toronto she has appeared at Tarragon, Factory, Passe Muraille, Necessary Angel and Canadian Stage among others. She is also a director, teacher and producer (having been one of the founders of Masterclass theatre). To TV viewers she is known as Rachel Lynde in the Road to Avonlea series. She was most recently seen in Nurse Guinness in Heartbreak House (Shaw Festival).





Pamela Sinha// Helen/Maid Pamela was most recently seen in Crash (Theatre Passe Muraille – 2 Dora Awards: Actress, New Play), The Penelopiad (Nightwood Theatre – Dora Award – Acting Ensemble). She received a Dora Nomination for her work as Rekha in Brothel #9. She is part of Cahoots Theatre Playwrights Unit for 2011/12. She was seen in The Rez Sisters (Factory Theatre). Selected theatre credits include: Tout Comme Elle (Necessary Angel), Possible Worlds (Theatre Passe Muraille). Selected Film and Television: series leads on The Newsroom and Traders, ER (recurring), guest starring roles on Huff, Crossing Jordan, Rick Mercer Report; films include Breakaway, HBO’s Live from Baghdad, and Jinnah on Crime. Pamela’s short story Hiding was published in the best selling anthology Dropped Threads Vol.2 (Random House Canada), edited by Carol Shields and Marjorie Anderson. She is currently at work on her second play, Happy Place.


Sophia Walker// Menelaus/Maid Sophia is an award-winning Stratford Festival actor, bouffon and improviser performer. Recent theatre credits include: Ruined (Obsidian Theatre – Dora Award), The Penelopiad (Nightwood Theatre, Dora Award for Best Ensemble), Much Ado About Nothing (Canadian Stage Dream in High Park), BOBLO (Kitchenband Productions co-produced with The Theatre Centre). Sophia has spent the last 7 seasons performing at The Stratford Shakespeare Festival (selected credits): Julia in The Two Gentlemen of Verona, Hermia in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Lady Macduff in Macbeth, Lady Capulet in Romeo and Juliet, Luciana in The Comedy of Errors, Amah in Harlem Duet. Sophia is a graduate of The Birmingham Conservatory under David Latham. Film & TV credits Rookie Blue (Global/ABC), The Tempest (Melbar Entertainment) and Caesar and Cleopatra (BRAVO)




       






























Directed by Kelly Thornton
Designed by Denyse Karn
Lighting Designed by Kim Purtell
Original Music, Sound Design and Musical Direction by Suba Sankaran
Choreography by Monica Dottor
Stage Managed by Melissa Rood
Assistant Stage Managed by Ashley Westlake

 


Kelly Thornton// Director Kelly has been the Artistic Director of Nightwood Theatre since 2001. Directing Credits for Nightwood include Between the Sheets (The New Groundswell Festival), The List, That Face, Wild Dogs (all in association with Canadian Stage), The Danish Play (Toronto 2002 & 2007, Aveny-Teatret, Copenhagen, Magnetic North Theatre Festival & National Arts Centre), Bear With Me (Toronto, Grand Theatre & Magnetic North Theatre Festival), Mathilde, China Doll and Finding Regina (Globe Theatre/Theatre Passe Muraille). Other selected credits include The Comedy of Errors (Canadian Stage’s Dream in High Park); This Hotel (Theatre Passe Muraille/Planet 88 - Dora Nomination for Outstanding Direction); So Many Doors (Magnetic North Theatre Festival, Sour Brides/Yukon Arts Centre); Peep Show (Buddies in Bad Times); The Dumb Waiter (SummerWorks/Sometimes Y). Kelly has received the Pauline McGibbon Award for her outstanding work as a Director and was recognized for her commitment to training and mentorship of young women in the performing arts by being named a YWCA Woman of Distinction (Arts & Letters). In 2010 she was named the Associate Director of the National Theatre School of Canada’s Directing Program. Up next Kelly will be directing The Happy Woman at The Berkeley Street Theatre.


Denyse Karn// Designer Denyse is the Producer/General Manager of Nightwood Theatre. Her design credits for Nightwood include The List; The Lawyer Show 2011: As You Like It; The Lawyer Show 2010: A Midsummer Night’s Dream; Goodnight Desdemona, Goodmorning Juliet (Premier Production). Other recent credits include The Winter’s Tale (Canadian Stage 2011 Dream in High Park); The Oracle Of Gros Morne (Gros Morne Theatre Festival); Top Girls (Manitoba Theatre Centre). Denyse has also worked with Eastern Front Theatre, Neptune Theatre, Theatre New Brunswick, The Charlottetown Festival,  Atlantic Theatre Festival, Ship’s Company Theatre, Mulgrave Road Theatre, Festival Antigonish, Two Planks and A Passion Theatre, Tarragon Theatre, Theatre Passe Muraille, Canadian Stage Company and Cahoots Theatre Projects to name a few. Denyse Karn has been working in the Canadian theatre for over 25 years as a producer and designer. She is a graduate of the Ryerson Theatre School and has her BFA from NSCAD University. She is a recipient of a Dora Mavor Moore Award, five Theatre Nova Scotia Merritt Awards for various Outstanding Designs and was nominated for the Siminovitch Award in Theatre in 2006.  Up next Denyse will be Designer for The Happy Woman at The Berkeley Street Theatre.


Kim Purtell// Lighting Designer Previously for Nightwood Kimberly has designed lights for The Happy Woman, The Penelopiad (2012), The List, That Face, Wild Dogs, Age of Arousal and Crave. Most recently, her credits include The Little Years (Tarragon Theatre & Stratford Festival); Rigoletto (Opera Hamilton); This is What Happens Next (Necessary Angel); The Normal Heart (Studio 180); Proud (Proud Collective), HOMEbody (Shannon Litzenberger Dance); Speed The Plow (Soulpepper); Youʼre A Good Man Charlie Brown (Stratford Festival); and Crash (Theatre Passe Muraille). She has designed for theatres across the country including Mirvish Productions, Canadian Stage Company, Stratford Festival, World Stage, Luminato Festival, Manitoba Theatre Centre, Theatre Calgary, Vancouver Playhouse, Citadel Theatre, Young People’s Theatre, Studio 180, Soulpepper, Tarragon Theatre, Theatre Passe Muraille, Theatre Centre, Factory Theatre, Necessary Angel, Queen of Puddings, Tapestry New Opera, The Banff Centre, da da kamera, Dancemakers, Kaeja d’Dance and many others. Upcoming Kimberly will be designing Svadba (Edmonton Opera); Little One & Other Peopleʼs Children (Tarragon Theatre); The Power of Harriet T (YPT); Do You Want What I Have Got: A Craigslist Cantata (Factory Theatre); Clybourne Park (Studio 180 & Mirvish). Kimberly is a recipient of the Pauline McGibbon and has been nominated for 17 Dora Awards, winning three times.


Suba Sankaran// Composer of Original Music, Sound Design and Musical Director Dora award-winning, twice Juno nominated Suba Sankaran is a world/fusion vocalist who has effortlessly combined musical worlds, performing across North America, Europe, UK and Asia with Autorickshaw, Trichy Sankaran, FreePlay Duo (with Dylan Bell) and Retrocity (80s a cappella revue), to name a few. Performance highlights include performing for Peter Gabriel, Nelson Mandela and Bishop Tutu. Suba is in demand as a choral director, arranger, educator and composer/producer for theatre, film, radio and dance. Highlights include collaborations with Deepa Mehta and the CBC. Suba is currently artist-in-residence at the Young Centre for the Performing Arts and co-chair of the Juno world music committee.




Monica Dottor// Choreographer Monica is an actor & choreographer. She was nominated for a Dora Award for her choreography in The Penelopiad and received a Dora Award with the ensemble. Most recently, played the lead in the feature film The Shape of Rex (Factoria Films) and was featured in Picture Day (Snitch Pictures- TIFF selection) & choreographed and acted in PETRICHOR (Kitchenband/Summerworks), Recent Theatre (acting): The Trolley Car(Summerworks),The Middle Place (Canadian Stage/Belfry/GCTC) Featuring Loretta(Factory), The Red Queen Effect (NextStage), SCRATCH (Factory-Dora Nomination - Performance), A Midsummer Night’s Dream (CanadianStage), The Overcoat (CanadianStage/San Francisco Critics’ Circle Award, Dora Nomination Ensemble Performance), Chekhov’s Heartache & Chekhov’s Shorts (Smith-Gilmour), Recent Choreography:  MALARIA LULLABY (Company Blonde), CRASH (Theatre Passe Muraille), The Middle Place (CanadianStage/Passe Muraille/Belfry/GCTC), 2010 Dora Mavor Moore Awards,The Red Queen Effect (Next Stage),The Russian Play (Factory-Dora Nomination Choreography), The Elastocitizens, Suzie McNeil’s “Dear Love” tour.


Melissa Rood// Stage Manager From the Middle East to the Arctic and throughout North America with Stratford Shakespeare Festival (12 seasons), Canadian Opera Company (10 Winters), Nightwood Theatre, La Jolla Playhouse, Human Cargo Theatre, National Arts Centre, Pacific Opera Victoria, Belfry Theatre, Globe Theatre, Suddenly Dance, Canadian Stage, Mump & Smoot, Green Thumb Theatre for Young People, Haig-Brown Society, Princess Cruises, and David Atkins Enterprises for the Opening & Closing Ceremonies of the Asian Games (with a cast of just under ten thousand) in Doha, Qatar. A graduate of the technical production programme at Sheridan College, Melissa is also a social work student at the University of Waterloo and holds a degree in Social Development Studies, serves on the Board of Directors for PAL Stratford, plays Derby with the Festival City Rollergirls, and recently competed in the World Club Crew Dragon Boat Championships in Hong Kong.


Ashley Westlake// Apprentice Stage Manager Ashley’s Nightwood credits include Stage Manager: Between The Sheets – Groundswell Festival (2011), The Lawyer Show – As You Like It (2011). Apprentice Stage Manager: The List (2010), That Face (2009, in association with Canadian Stage). Former Nightwood Producing Intern (2009). Other selected credits include Stage Manager: The Jones Boy (surface/underground); Stage Manager: The Little One (Company Theatre Crisis, SummerWorks 2011); Horse (Theatre Hetaerae, Toronto Fringe Festival 2011). Apprentice Stage Manager: The Middle Place (Project Humanity, Canadian Stage 2011). Up next for Ashley will be Apprentice Stage Manager: The Happy Woman (Nightwood). Stage Manager: The Lawyer Show 2012: Much Ado About Nothing (Nightwood). Production Manager: The Washing Machine (Red Betty Theatre, 2012 Next Stage Theatre Festival).

 

       



























INTERVIEWS AND REVIEWS FROM 2013 PRODUCTION
Review:” This is a fabulous production of a very beautiful play by one of our finest writers.”
- PostCity
The Big Interview  Megan Follows: Inspired casting as Penelope in Penelopiad
- The Toronto Star
Kate Taylor interviews Megan Follows on playing Atwood’s Penelope, being manipulative and motherhood
- The Globe and Mail
4 N’s “If you didn’t see The Penelopiad last year, don’t miss it this time around. And even if you did, it’s worth a revisit to catch the added nuances.”
- NOW
On the Town with The Penelopiad’s Megan Follows and Kelli Fox
- National Post
Interview with Megan Follows and Kelli Fox on the Global Morning Show
- Global Morning Show

INTERVIEWS AND REVIEWS FROM 2012 PRODUCTION
4 out of 4 stars  “The Penelopiad is stunning theatre”
- The Toronto Star
3 ½ out of 4 stars “…an absolute triumph”
- The Globe and Mail
4 out of 4 starsThe Penelopiad makes history”
- Toronto Sun
4 N’s “This is a superb show – smart, beautiful and superbly executed.”
- Now Magazine
“…vibrant, moving and darkly, explosively funny.”
- National Post
8 out of 10 roses “a moving cri de coeur…”
- The Grid
“Who needs men in a performance when the women play them so expertly?”
- The Scene in TO
“Director Kelly Thornton turns the serious material into delicious fare that stimulates everyone emotionally and intellectually.”
- fab magazine
“The aesthetics of The Penelopiad are stunning…”
- My Entertainment World
5 out of 5 stars “Don’t miss Nightwood Theatre’s inspiring production.”
- Theatromania
“Follows’ performs remarkably and is often times very witty.”
- zeeBigBang

 

Written by Margaret Atwood

Starring Megan Follows

with Maev Beaty, Neema Bickersteth, Fiona Byrne, Sarah Dodd, Monica Dottor, Audrey Dwyer, Nicole Joy-Fraser, Kelli Fox, Cara Gee, Patricia Hamilton, Pamela Sinha and Sophia Walker


Megan Follows// Penelope Follows has guest starred on some of television’s most popular series. Most recently she was in the mini series World Without End, and guest stared in the A&E series Longmire. Her list of credits include such shows as House, CSI, Law and Order, CBC’s Heartland. She just finished filming the Canadian feature Hard Drive and the short film Bar None (Bravo) and can be heard as the narrator for the Imax film Flight of the Butterflies. Follows’ resume has a list of numerous big screen credits including Alan King’s powerful feature, Termini Station, which earned her a Genie nomination for Best Actress and Stephen King’s Silver Bullet, with Gary Busey. As Follows began to divide her time between L.A. and Toronto, she performed lead roles in the Oscar-winning short film Boys And Girls, and the mini-series Hockey Night, which earned her a 1985 ACTRA Award nomination. While filming Hockey Night, Follows landed the role of “Anne”, which earned her a 1987 Gemini for her performance in Anne Of Green Gables and a 1988 Gemini for Anne Of Avonlea. 
She also has a long history in theatre and has worked with prestigious companies such as the Stratford Festival (Romeo and Juliet, Amadeus) and The National Arts Centre in Ottawa. In 2008, Megan was nominated for two Dora Mavor Moore Best Actress Awards for her performances as Masha in Three Sisters and Marlene in Soulpepper’s award-winning presentation of Top Girls.


Maev Beaty// Laertes/Maid Maev’s coming out party was Canadian Stage’s ‘08 season where she played Helena in Midsummer Night’s Dream and premiered in Judith Thompson’s Palace of the End.  Shakespeare’s Titania and Kate followed and she has since performed in 10 Canadian Premieres, gathering 3 Dora nominations, for performance in Dance of the Red Skirts (Theatre Columbus), and for performance and writing of Montparnasse, which she co created with Erin Shields and Andrea Donaldson. She has been a proud ensemble member of huge theatre endeavours such at TheatreFront’s The Mill series and Volcano Theatre’s Another Africa (Luminato/Canadian Stage), and is Co-Artistic Director of Sheep No Wool Theatre Company and an Artistic Associate of Groundwater Productions. www.maevbeaty.com




Neema Bickersteth// Telemachus/Maid Neema began an opera degree at the University of British Columbia, where she received both a Bachelors and Masters of Music.  She has performed internationally in Asia, Africa, Europe, and North America.  Most recently, Neema was seen in The Story (Theatre Columbus), Harlem Duet (Black Theatre Workshop); Oil and Water (Artistic Fraud); Caroline, or Change (Acting Up Stage/Obsidian – Dora Nomination). More experimental/theatrical work includes Stitch and Voicebox (Urbanvessel); Giiwedin (Native Earth Performing Arts); Obeah Opera (b current) and Dark Star Requiem (Luminato/Tapestry New Opera).  Neema is developing a recital theatre piece called A Moveable Beast. It explores an alternative version of history combining classical singing, musical improvisation, modern dance, and historical photography.




Fiona Byrne// Naiad/Maid Most recently Fiona was seen in The Cosmonaut’s Last Message… (Canadian Stage) and Bethune Imagined (Factory Theatre), and has appeared on King, Rookie Blue, Flashpoint, Against the Wall, the award-winning Oliver Bump’s Birthday (CFC) and others.  She has played leading roles at the Stratford Festival, Soulpepper, and, for eleven seasons, the Shaw Festival.  Other credits include Belle Moral (NAC/Shaw Festival), The Country (Crow’s Theatre/Theatre Junction), Long Day’s Journey into Night , Vinci (MTC) and Doll House, for which she received a Dora Award for Best Actress.  Fiona is a graduate of the National Theatre School.





Sarah Dodd// Anticleia/Maid Most recently Sarah made her directorial debut with This Lime Tree Bower (Cart/Horse Theatre). Recent acting credits include The Small Room at the Top of the Stairs (Tarragon Theatre) and The Penelopiad (Nightwood Theatre, Dora Award for Best Ensemble). She performed for seven seasons at the Stratford Festival. She was seen in The New Electric Ballroom (MacKenzie Ro Theatre) and other theatre credits include The Age of Arousal (Nightwood Theatre), Communion, The Fall and Humble Boy (Tarragon Theatre); A Whistle In the Dark and Marion Bridge (Company Theatre, Dora Award for Marion Bridge); Them and Us (Theatre Passe Muraille); A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Canadian Stage); The Importance of Being Earnest (Stratford Festival). Sarah is a graduate of George Brown Theatre School.


Monica Dottor// Oracle/Maid (Choreographer) Monica is an actor & choreographer. She was nominated for a Dora Award for her choreography in The Penelopiad and received a Dora Award with the ensemble. Most recently, played the lead in the feature film The Shape of Rex (Factoria Films) and was featured in Picture Day (Snitch Pictures- TIFF selection) & choreographed and acted in PETRICHOR (Kitchenband/Summerworks), Recent Theatre (acting): The Trolley Car(Summerworks),The Middle Place (Canadian Stage/Belfry/GCTC) Featuring Loretta(Factory), The Red Queen Effect (NextStage), SCRATCH (Factory-Dora Nomination - Performance), A Midsummer Night’s Dream (CanadianStage), The Overcoat (CanadianStage/San Francisco Critics’ Circle Award, Dora Nomination Ensemble Performance), Chekhov’s Heartache & Chekhov’s Shorts (Smith-Gilmour), Recent Choreography:  MALARIA LULLABY (Company Blonde), CRASH (Theatre Passe Muraille), The Middle Place (CanadianStage/Passe Muraille/Belfry/GCTC), 2010 Dora Mavor Moore Awards,The Red Queen Effect (Next Stage),The Russian Play (Factory-Dora Nomination Choreography), The Elastocitizens, Suzie McNeil’s “Dear Love” tour.

Audrey Dwyer// Icarius/Maid Audrey was most recently seen in thirsty (National Arts Centre) and will be performing in a remount of Clybourne Park (Studio 180/Mirvish Productions). Other theatre credits include Breath in Between (Breath Collective with Crows Theatre), The Overwhelming (Studio 180), Black Medea (Obsidian Theatre), Medea (The Royal Manitoba Theatre Centre and Mirvish Productions); The Babysitter (Theatre Direct/Eldritch Theatre), Blue Planet (Young People’s Theatre); Danny, King of the Basement (Roseneath Theatre) and Patty’s Cake (Carousel Players – Dora Award, Best Outstanding Production for Young People). Film and TV credits include Da Kink in My Hair, The Ron James Show, The State Within, Man of the Year and Where the Truth Lies. She was Nightwood’s Associate Artistic Director from 2008 to 2009, is a Dora-Nominated director for The Apology, and was recently Assistant Director for Nightwood’s The Penelopiad. She is also writing, Calpurnia, her first full-length play with Obsidian Theatre’s Development series. She is a graduate of The National Theatre School of Canada.

Nicole Joy-Fraser// Antinous/Maid Nicole started her professional career singing top soprano in The Nathaniel Dett Chorale while finishing her final year of study at The Randolph Academy. Upon graduating she went directly into rehearsals for the North American premiere of Mamma Mia! at the Royal Alex and later toured with the same cast throughout the U.S.  She landed roles in Jerry Springer-The Opera (multi-award-winning West End cast) and eventually Disney’s Beauty and the Beast (UK Tour, Greece). Nicole returned to Toronto after six years of being a “Londoner” and was cast in Red Sky’s Raven Stole the Sun, which she performed for family audiences through out the US, Canada and the Vancouver 2010 Cultural Olympiad. Other theatre credits include; Job’s Wife (New Harlem, Summerworks), “Emily Dictionary” in The Rez Sisters, the Dora-nominated premiere of Giiwedin -a First Nations Opera, and the premiere of Marie Clement’s Tombs of the Vanishing Indian (Native Earth/Red Diva). She recently made her Young People’s Theatre debut in Red Sky’s The Great Mountain, touring it to B.C, Alberta and previously to New York City’s Smithsonian Institute.

Kelli Fox// Odysseus/Maid Kelli is thrilled to be back with Penny and the Maids. Since we were last in Hades she has been busy with TV (Nikita, Murdoch Mysteries, Cracked), made her directorial debut at the Bond Festival Wrecking Ball and has been developing, along with partners, a project for the stage inspired by American poet Edna St. Vincent Millay.  She’s spent 12 seasons with the Shaw Festival and 3 with Stratford, played the title role in Hamlet with the Geva Theatre Centre in Rochester, Princess of France in Love’s Labours Lost, Hermione in A Winter’s Tale, and Helena in All’s Well that Ends Well with the NAC, as well as Beatrice in Much Ado about Nothing with Chicago Shakespeare Theatre. In Toronto she has worked with Tarragon (Slavs!, Scorched, The Children’s Republic), Soulpepper (Top Girls), Factory (Oui, Restitution, Zadie’s Shoes), and elsewhere with The Citadel (Frozen, August: Osage County), MTC (The Blonde, The Brunette and the Vengeful Redhead) and the Segal Centre (Blithe Spirit). She has been nominated for a Dora and a Sterling, earned a Jessie and been recognized by the Critics Circles in both Toronto and Ottawa.

Cara Gee// Melantho/Maid Cara most recently performed in The Real World (Tarragon Theatre) and Ally & Kev (SummerWorks). Cara was seen in The Penelopiad (Nightwood Theatre, Dora Award for Best Ensemble), The Rez Sisters (Factory Theatre) and The Jones Boy (surface/underground).  Cara is an ensemble member of the independent company, Birdtown and Swanville.  Credits with Birdtown and Swanville include: The Physical Ramifications of Attempted Global Domination (Summerworks), 36 Little Plays About Hopeless Girls (Fringe), Dead Wrestlers (Rhubarb) and Family Story.  Other theatre credits include: Stitch (Dependent Theatre Projects, Summerworks—Spotlight Award), Spirit Horse (Roseneath Theatre), Flowers (Rose City Theatre Festival), Love’s Labour’s Lost (Resurgence), and Tout Comme Elle (Necessary Angel).  Upcoming, she will be in Arigato, Tokyo by Daniel MacIvor at Buddies in Bad Times. Cara has a BFA in Acting from the University of Windsor.




Patricia Hamilton// Eurycleia/Maid Patricia has been acting for more than 50 years. As well as 13 seasons at the Shaw Festival she has been seen across Canada from Vancouver to Stratford to Halifax. In Toronto she has appeared at Tarragon, Factory, Passe Muraille, Necessary Angel and Canadian Stage among others. She is also a director, teacher and producer (having been one of the founders of Masterclass theatre). To TV viewers she is known as Rachel Lynde in the Road to Avonlea series. She was most recently seen in Nurse Guinness in Heartbreak House (Shaw Festival).





Pamela Sinha// Helen/Maid Pamela was most recently seen in Crash (Theatre Passe Muraille – 2 Dora Awards: Actress, New Play), The Penelopiad (Nightwood Theatre – Dora Award – Acting Ensemble). She received a Dora Nomination for her work as Rekha in Brothel #9. She is part of Cahoots Theatre Playwrights Unit for 2011/12. She was seen in The Rez Sisters (Factory Theatre). Selected theatre credits include: Tout Comme Elle (Necessary Angel), Possible Worlds (Theatre Passe Muraille). Selected Film and Television: series leads on The Newsroom and Traders, ER (recurring), guest starring roles on Huff, Crossing Jordan, Rick Mercer Report; films include Breakaway, HBO’s Live from Baghdad, and Jinnah on Crime. Pamela’s short story Hiding was published in the best selling anthology Dropped Threads Vol.2 (Random House Canada), edited by Carol Shields and Marjorie Anderson. She is currently at work on her second play, Happy Place.


Sophia Walker// Menelaus/Maid Sophia is an award-winning Stratford Festival actor, bouffon and improviser performer. Recent theatre credits include: Ruined (Obsidian Theatre – Dora Award), The Penelopiad (Nightwood Theatre, Dora Award for Best Ensemble), Much Ado About Nothing (Canadian Stage Dream in High Park), BOBLO (Kitchenband Productions co-produced with The Theatre Centre). Sophia has spent the last 7 seasons performing at The Stratford Shakespeare Festival (selected credits): Julia in The Two Gentlemen of Verona, Hermia in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Lady Macduff in Macbeth, Lady Capulet in Romeo and Juliet, Luciana in The Comedy of Errors, Amah in Harlem Duet. Sophia is a graduate of The Birmingham Conservatory under David Latham. Film & TV credits Rookie Blue (Global/ABC), The Tempest (Melbar Entertainment) and Caesar and Cleopatra (BRAVO)




       






























 

The Penelopiad


January 8 to February 10, 2013

Nightwood Theatre presents the Toronto Premiere

by Margaret Atwood

Directed by Kelly Thornton

Starring Megan Follows

Check out the cast and creative teams bios and pictures by clicking the tab above

“Now that I’m dead, I know everything.” So begins The Penelopiad, Margaret Atwood’s daring response to Homer’s The Odyssey. Destined to spend eternity in Hades, Penelope recounts her life’s story and the murder of her twelve handmaidens by her vengeful husband Odysseus. Atwood’s acerbic wit brings one of history’s most powerful myths to the contemporary imagination. A provocative new look at a woman’s longing, lust and culpability.

4 N’s “If you didn’t see The Penelopiad last year, don’t miss it this time around. And even if you did, it’s worth a revisit…” - NOW
4 out of 4 stars  “The Penelopiad is stunning theatre”
- The Toronto Star
3 ½ out of 4 stars “…an absolute triumph”
- The Globe and Mail
4 out of 4 starsThe Penelopiad makes history”
- Toronto Sun
4 N’s “This is a superb show – smart, beautiful and superbly executed.”
- Now Magazine

“…vibrant, moving and darkly, explosively funny.”
- National Post
Written by Margaret Atwood

Starring Megan Follows

with Maev Beaty, Neema Bickersteth, Fiona Byrne, Sarah Dodd, Monica Dottor, Audrey Dwyer, Nicole Joy-Fraser, Kelli Fox, Cara Gee, Patricia Hamilton, Pamela Sinha and Sophia Walker


Megan Follows// Penelope Follows has guest starred on some of television’s most popular series. Most recently she was in the mini series World Without End, and guest stared in the A&E series Longmire. Her list of credits include such shows as House, CSI, Law and Order, CBC’s Heartland. She just finished filming the Canadian feature Hard Drive and the short film Bar None (Bravo) and can be heard as the narrator for the Imax film Flight of the Butterflies. Follows’ resume has a list of numerous big screen credits including Alan King’s powerful feature, Termini Station, which earned her a Genie nomination for Best Actress and Stephen King’s Silver Bullet, with Gary Busey. As Follows began to divide her time between L.A. and Toronto, she performed lead roles in the Oscar-winning short film Boys And Girls, and the mini-series Hockey Night, which earned her a 1985 ACTRA Award nomination. While filming Hockey Night, Follows landed the role of “Anne”, which earned her a 1987 Gemini for her performance in Anne Of Green Gables and a 1988 Gemini for Anne Of Avonlea. 
She also has a long history in theatre and has worked with prestigious companies such as the Stratford Festival (Romeo and Juliet, Amadeus) and The National Arts Centre in Ottawa. In 2008, Megan was nominated for two Dora Mavor Moore Best Actress Awards for her performances as Masha in Three Sisters and Marlene in Soulpepper’s award-winning presentation of Top Girls.


Maev Beaty// Laertes/Maid Maev’s coming out party was Canadian Stage’s ‘08 season where she played Helena in Midsummer Night’s Dream and premiered in Judith Thompson’s Palace of the End.  Shakespeare’s Titania and Kate followed and she has since performed in 10 Canadian Premieres, gathering 3 Dora nominations, for performance in Dance of the Red Skirts (Theatre Columbus), and for performance and writing of Montparnasse, which she co created with Erin Shields and Andrea Donaldson. She has been a proud ensemble member of huge theatre endeavours such at TheatreFront’s The Mill series and Volcano Theatre’s Another Africa (Luminato/Canadian Stage), and is Co-Artistic Director of Sheep No Wool Theatre Company and an Artistic Associate of Groundwater Productions. http://www.maevbeaty.com




Neema Bickersteth// Telemachus/Maid Neema began an opera degree at the University of British Columbia, where she received both a Bachelors and Masters of Music.  She has performed internationally in Asia, Africa, Europe, and North America.  Most recently, Neema was seen in The Story (Theatre Columbus), Harlem Duet (Black Theatre Workshop); Oil and Water (Artistic Fraud); Caroline, or Change (Acting Up Stage/Obsidian – Dora Nomination). More experimental/theatrical work includes Stitch and Voicebox (Urbanvessel); Giiwedin (Native Earth Performing Arts); Obeah Opera (b current) and Dark Star Requiem (Luminato/Tapestry New Opera).  Neema is developing a recital theatre piece called A Moveable Beast. It explores an alternative version of history combining classical singing, musical improvisation, modern dance, and historical photography.




Fiona Byrne// Naiad/Maid Most recently Fiona was seen in The Cosmonaut’s Last Message… (Canadian Stage) and Bethune Imagined (Factory Theatre), and has appeared on King, Rookie Blue, Flashpoint, Against the Wall, the award-winning Oliver Bump’s Birthday (CFC) and others.  She has played leading roles at the Stratford Festival, Soulpepper, and, for eleven seasons, the Shaw Festival.  Other credits include Belle Moral (NAC/Shaw Festival), The Country (Crow’s Theatre/Theatre Junction), Long Day’s Journey into Night , Vinci (MTC) and Doll House, for which she received a Dora Award for Best Actress.  Fiona is a graduate of the National Theatre School.





Sarah Dodd// Anticleia/Maid Most recently Sarah made her directorial debut with This Lime Tree Bower (Cart/Horse Theatre). Recent acting credits include The Small Room at the Top of the Stairs (Tarragon Theatre) and The Penelopiad (Nightwood Theatre, Dora Award for Best Ensemble). She performed for seven seasons at the Stratford Festival. She was seen in The New Electric Ballroom (MacKenzie Ro Theatre) and other theatre credits include The Age of Arousal (Nightwood Theatre), Communion, The Fall and Humble Boy (Tarragon Theatre); A Whistle In the Dark and Marion Bridge (Company Theatre, Dora Award for Marion Bridge); Them and Us (Theatre Passe Muraille); A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Canadian Stage); The Importance of Being Earnest (Stratford Festival). Sarah is a graduate of George Brown Theatre School.


Monica Dottor// Oracle/Maid (Choreographer) Monica is an actor & choreographer. She was nominated for a Dora Award for her choreography in The Penelopiad and received a Dora Award with the ensemble. Most recently, played the lead in the feature film The Shape of Rex (Factoria Films) and was featured in Picture Day (Snitch Pictures- TIFF selection) & choreographed and acted in PETRICHOR (Kitchenband/Summerworks), Recent Theatre (acting): The Trolley Car(Summerworks),The Middle Place (Canadian Stage/Belfry/GCTC) Featuring Loretta(Factory), The Red Queen Effect (NextStage), SCRATCH (Factory-Dora Nomination - Performance), A Midsummer Night’s Dream (CanadianStage), The Overcoat (CanadianStage/San Francisco Critics’ Circle Award, Dora Nomination Ensemble Performance), Chekhov’s Heartache & Chekhov’s Shorts (Smith-Gilmour), Recent Choreography:  MALARIA LULLABY (Company Blonde), CRASH (Theatre Passe Muraille), The Middle Place (CanadianStage/Passe Muraille/Belfry/GCTC), 2010 Dora Mavor Moore Awards,The Red Queen Effect (Next Stage),The Russian Play (Factory-Dora Nomination Choreography), The Elastocitizens, Suzie McNeil’s “Dear Love” tour.

Audrey Dwyer// Icarius/Maid Audrey was most recently seen in thirsty (National Arts Centre) and will be performing in a remount of Clybourne Park (Studio 180/Mirvish Productions). Other theatre credits include Breath in Between (Breath Collective with Crows Theatre), The Overwhelming (Studio 180), Black Medea (Obsidian Theatre), Medea (The Royal Manitoba Theatre Centre and Mirvish Productions); The Babysitter (Theatre Direct/Eldritch Theatre), Blue Planet (Young People’s Theatre); Danny, King of the Basement (Roseneath Theatre) and Patty’s Cake (Carousel Players – Dora Award, Best Outstanding Production for Young People). Film and TV credits include Da Kink in My Hair, The Ron James Show, The State Within, Man of the Year and Where the Truth Lies. She was Nightwood’s Associate Artistic Director from 2008 to 2009, is a Dora-Nominated director for The Apology, and was recently Assistant Director for Nightwood’s The Penelopiad. She is also writing, Calpurnia, her first full-length play with Obsidian Theatre’s Development series. She is a graduate of The National Theatre School of Canada.

Nicole Joy-Fraser// Antinous/Maid Nicole started her professional career singing top soprano in The Nathaniel Dett Chorale while finishing her final year of study at The Randolph Academy. Upon graduating she went directly into rehearsals for the North American premiere of Mamma Mia! at the Royal Alex and later toured with the same cast throughout the U.S.  She landed roles in Jerry Springer-The Opera (multi-award-winning West End cast) and eventually Disney’s Beauty and the Beast (UK Tour, Greece). Nicole returned to Toronto after six years of being a “Londoner” and was cast in Red Sky’s Raven Stole the Sun, which she performed for family audiences through out the US, Canada and the Vancouver 2010 Cultural Olympiad. Other theatre credits include; Job’s Wife (New Harlem, Summerworks), “Emily Dictionary” in The Rez Sisters, the Dora-nominated premiere of Giiwedin -a First Nations Opera, and the premiere of Marie Clement’s Tombs of the Vanishing Indian (Native Earth/Red Diva). She recently made her Young People’s Theatre debut in Red Sky’s The Great Mountain, touring it to B.C, Alberta and previously to New York City’s Smithsonian Institute.

Kelli Fox// Odysseus/Maid Kelli is thrilled to be back with Penny and the Maids. Since we were last in Hades she has been busy with TV (Nikita, Murdoch Mysteries, Cracked), made her directorial debut at the Bond Festival Wrecking Ball and has been developing, along with partners, a project for the stage inspired by American poet Edna St. Vincent Millay.  She’s spent 12 seasons with the Shaw Festival and 3 with Stratford, played the title role in Hamlet with the Geva Theatre Centre in Rochester, Princess of France in Love’s Labours Lost, Hermione in A Winter’s Tale, and Helena in All’s Well that Ends Well with the NAC, as well as Beatrice in Much Ado about Nothing with Chicago Shakespeare Theatre. In Toronto she has worked with Tarragon (Slavs!, Scorched, The Children’s Republic), Soulpepper (Top Girls), Factory (Oui, Restitution, Zadie’s Shoes), and elsewhere with The Citadel (Frozen, August: Osage County), MTC (The Blonde, The Brunette and the Vengeful Redhead) and the Segal Centre (Blithe Spirit). She has been nominated for a Dora and a Sterling, earned a Jessie and been recognized by the Critics Circles in both Toronto and Ottawa.

Cara Gee// Melantho/Maid Cara most recently performed in The Real World (Tarragon Theatre) and Ally & Kev (SummerWorks). Cara was seen in The Penelopiad (Nightwood Theatre, Dora Award for Best Ensemble), The Rez Sisters (Factory Theatre) and The Jones Boy (surface/underground).  Cara is an ensemble member of the independent company, Birdtown and Swanville.  Credits with Birdtown and Swanville include: The Physical Ramifications of Attempted Global Domination (Summerworks), 36 Little Plays About Hopeless Girls (Fringe), Dead Wrestlers (Rhubarb) and Family Story.  Other theatre credits include: Stitch (Dependent Theatre Projects, Summerworks—Spotlight Award), Spirit Horse (Roseneath Theatre), Flowers (Rose City Theatre Festival), Love’s Labour’s Lost (Resurgence), and Tout Comme Elle (Necessary Angel).  Upcoming, she will be in Arigato, Tokyo by Daniel MacIvor at Buddies in Bad Times. Cara has a BFA in Acting from the University of Windsor.




Patricia Hamilton// Eurycleia/Maid Patricia has been acting for more than 50 years. As well as 13 seasons at the Shaw Festival she has been seen across Canada from Vancouver to Stratford to Halifax. In Toronto she has appeared at Tarragon, Factory, Passe Muraille, Necessary Angel and Canadian Stage among others. She is also a director, teacher and producer (having been one of the founders of Masterclass theatre). To TV viewers she is known as Rachel Lynde in the Road to Avonlea series. She was most recently seen in Nurse Guinness in Heartbreak House (Shaw Festival).





Pamela Sinha// Helen/Maid Pamela was most recently seen in Crash (Theatre Passe Muraille – 2 Dora Awards: Actress, New Play), The Penelopiad (Nightwood Theatre – Dora Award – Acting Ensemble). She received a Dora Nomination for her work as Rekha in Brothel #9. She is part of Cahoots Theatre Playwrights Unit for 2011/12. She was seen in The Rez Sisters (Factory Theatre). Selected theatre credits include: Tout Comme Elle (Necessary Angel), Possible Worlds (Theatre Passe Muraille). Selected Film and Television: series leads on The Newsroom and Traders, ER (recurring), guest starring roles on Huff, Crossing Jordan, Rick Mercer Report; films include Breakaway, HBO’s Live from Baghdad, and Jinnah on Crime. Pamela’s short story Hiding was published in the best selling anthology Dropped Threads Vol.2 (Random House Canada), edited by Carol Shields and Marjorie Anderson. She is currently at work on her second play, Happy Place.


Sophia Walker// Menelaus/Maid Sophia is an award-winning Stratford Festival actor, bouffon and improviser performer. Recent theatre credits include: Ruined (Obsidian Theatre – Dora Award), The Penelopiad (Nightwood Theatre, Dora Award for Best Ensemble), Much Ado About Nothing (Canadian Stage Dream in High Park), BOBLO (Kitchenband Productions co-produced with The Theatre Centre). Sophia has spent the last 7 seasons performing at The Stratford Shakespeare Festival (selected credits): Julia in The Two Gentlemen of Verona, Hermia in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Lady Macduff in Macbeth, Lady Capulet in Romeo and Juliet, Luciana in The Comedy of Errors, Amah in Harlem Duet. Sophia is a graduate of The Birmingham Conservatory under David Latham. Film & TV credits Rookie Blue (Global/ABC), The Tempest (Melbar Entertainment) and Caesar and Cleopatra (BRAVO)




       






























Directed by Kelly Thornton
Designed by Denyse Karn
Lighting Designed by Kim Purtell
Original Music, Sound Design and Musical Direction by Suba Sankaran
Choreography by Monica Dottor
Stage Managed by Melissa Rood
Assistant Stage Managed by Ashley Westlake

 


Kelly Thornton// Director Kelly has been the Artistic Director of Nightwood Theatre since 2001. Directing Credits for Nightwood include Between the Sheets (The New Groundswell Festival), The List, That Face, Wild Dogs (all in association with Canadian Stage), The Danish Play (Toronto 2002 & 2007, Aveny-Teatret, Copenhagen, Magnetic North Theatre Festival & National Arts Centre), Bear With Me (Toronto, Grand Theatre & Magnetic North Theatre Festival), Mathilde, China Doll and Finding Regina (Globe Theatre/Theatre Passe Muraille). Other selected credits include The Comedy of Errors (Canadian Stage’s Dream in High Park); This Hotel (Theatre Passe Muraille/Planet 88 - Dora Nomination for Outstanding Direction); So Many Doors (Magnetic North Theatre Festival, Sour Brides/Yukon Arts Centre); Peep Show (Buddies in Bad Times); The Dumb Waiter (SummerWorks/Sometimes Y). Kelly has received the Pauline McGibbon Award for her outstanding work as a Director and was recognized for her commitment to training and mentorship of young women in the performing arts by being named a YWCA Woman of Distinction (Arts & Letters). In 2010 she was named the Associate Director of the National Theatre School of Canada’s Directing Program. Up next Kelly will be directing The Happy Woman at The Berkeley Street Theatre.


Denyse Karn// Designer Denyse is the Producer/General Manager of Nightwood Theatre. Her design credits for Nightwood include The List; The Lawyer Show 2011: As You Like It; The Lawyer Show 2010: A Midsummer Night’s Dream; Goodnight Desdemona, Goodmorning Juliet (Premier Production). Other recent credits include The Winter’s Tale (Canadian Stage 2011 Dream in High Park); The Oracle Of Gros Morne (Gros Morne Theatre Festival); Top Girls (Manitoba Theatre Centre). Denyse has also worked with Eastern Front Theatre, Neptune Theatre, Theatre New Brunswick, The Charlottetown Festival,  Atlantic Theatre Festival, Ship’s Company Theatre, Mulgrave Road Theatre, Festival Antigonish, Two Planks and A Passion Theatre, Tarragon Theatre, Theatre Passe Muraille, Canadian Stage Company and Cahoots Theatre Projects to name a few. Denyse Karn has been working in the Canadian theatre for over 25 years as a producer and designer. She is a graduate of the Ryerson Theatre School and has her BFA from NSCAD University. She is a recipient of a Dora Mavor Moore Award, five Theatre Nova Scotia Merritt Awards for various Outstanding Designs and was nominated for the Siminovitch Award in Theatre in 2006.  Up next Denyse will be Designer for The Happy Woman at The Berkeley Street Theatre.


Kim Purtell// Lighting Designer Previously for Nightwood Kimberly has designed lights for The Happy Woman, The Penelopiad (2012), The List, That Face, Wild Dogs, Age of Arousal and Crave. Most recently, her credits include The Little Years (Tarragon Theatre & Stratford Festival); Rigoletto (Opera Hamilton); This is What Happens Next (Necessary Angel); The Normal Heart (Studio 180); Proud (Proud Collective), HOMEbody (Shannon Litzenberger Dance); Speed The Plow (Soulpepper); Youʼre A Good Man Charlie Brown (Stratford Festival); and Crash (Theatre Passe Muraille). She has designed for theatres across the country including Mirvish Productions, Canadian Stage Company, Stratford Festival, World Stage, Luminato Festival, Manitoba Theatre Centre, Theatre Calgary, Vancouver Playhouse, Citadel Theatre, Young People’s Theatre, Studio 180, Soulpepper, Tarragon Theatre, Theatre Passe Muraille, Theatre Centre, Factory Theatre, Necessary Angel, Queen of Puddings, Tapestry New Opera, The Banff Centre, da da kamera, Dancemakers, Kaeja d’Dance and many others. Upcoming Kimberly will be designing Svadba (Edmonton Opera); Little One & Other Peopleʼs Children (Tarragon Theatre); The Power of Harriet T (YPT); Do You Want What I Have Got: A Craigslist Cantata (Factory Theatre); Clybourne Park (Studio 180 & Mirvish). Kimberly is a recipient of the Pauline McGibbon and has been nominated for 17 Dora Awards, winning three times.


Suba Sankaran// Composer of Original Music, Sound Design and Musical Director Dora award-winning, twice Juno nominated Suba Sankaran is a world/fusion vocalist who has effortlessly combined musical worlds, performing across North America, Europe, UK and Asia with Autorickshaw, Trichy Sankaran, FreePlay Duo (with Dylan Bell) and Retrocity (80s a cappella revue), to name a few. Performance highlights include performing for Peter Gabriel, Nelson Mandela and Bishop Tutu. Suba is in demand as a choral director, arranger, educator and composer/producer for theatre, film, radio and dance. Highlights include collaborations with Deepa Mehta and the CBC. Suba is currently artist-in-residence at the Young Centre for the Performing Arts and co-chair of the Juno world music committee.




Monica Dottor// Choreographer Monica is an actor & choreographer. She was nominated for a Dora Award for her choreography in The Penelopiad and received a Dora Award with the ensemble. Most recently, played the lead in the feature film The Shape of Rex (Factoria Films) and was featured in Picture Day (Snitch Pictures- TIFF selection) & choreographed and acted in PETRICHOR (Kitchenband/Summerworks), Recent Theatre (acting): The Trolley Car(Summerworks),The Middle Place (Canadian Stage/Belfry/GCTC) Featuring Loretta(Factory), The Red Queen Effect (NextStage), SCRATCH (Factory-Dora Nomination - Performance), A Midsummer Night’s Dream (CanadianStage), The Overcoat (CanadianStage/San Francisco Critics’ Circle Award, Dora Nomination Ensemble Performance), Chekhov’s Heartache & Chekhov’s Shorts (Smith-Gilmour), Recent Choreography:  MALARIA LULLABY (Company Blonde), CRASH (Theatre Passe Muraille), The Middle Place (CanadianStage/Passe Muraille/Belfry/GCTC), 2010 Dora Mavor Moore Awards,The Red Queen Effect (Next Stage),The Russian Play (Factory-Dora Nomination Choreography), The Elastocitizens, Suzie McNeil’s “Dear Love” tour.


Melissa Rood// Stage Manager From the Middle East to the Arctic and throughout North America with Stratford Shakespeare Festival (12 seasons), Canadian Opera Company (10 Winters), Nightwood Theatre, La Jolla Playhouse, Human Cargo Theatre, National Arts Centre, Pacific Opera Victoria, Belfry Theatre, Globe Theatre, Suddenly Dance, Canadian Stage, Mump & Smoot, Green Thumb Theatre for Young People, Haig-Brown Society, Princess Cruises, and David Atkins Enterprises for the Opening & Closing Ceremonies of the Asian Games (with a cast of just under ten thousand) in Doha, Qatar. A graduate of the technical production programme at Sheridan College, Melissa is also a social work student at the University of Waterloo and holds a degree in Social Development Studies, serves on the Board of Directors for PAL Stratford, plays Derby with the Festival City Rollergirls, and recently competed in the World Club Crew Dragon Boat Championships in Hong Kong.


Ashley Westlake// Apprentice Stage Manager Ashley’s Nightwood credits include Stage Manager: Between The Sheets – Groundswell Festival (2011), The Lawyer Show – As You Like It (2011). Apprentice Stage Manager: The List (2010), That Face (2009, in association with Canadian Stage). Former Nightwood Producing Intern (2009). Other selected credits include Stage Manager: The Jones Boy (surface/underground); Stage Manager: The Little One (Company Theatre Crisis, SummerWorks 2011); Horse (Theatre Hetaerae, Toronto Fringe Festival 2011). Apprentice Stage Manager: The Middle Place (Project Humanity, Canadian Stage 2011). Up next for Ashley will be Apprentice Stage Manager: The Happy Woman (Nightwood). Stage Manager: The Lawyer Show 2012: Much Ado About Nothing (Nightwood). Production Manager: The Washing Machine (Red Betty Theatre, 2012 Next Stage Theatre Festival).

 

       



























INTERVIEWS AND REVIEWS FROM 2013 PRODUCTION
Review:” This is a fabulous production of a very beautiful play by one of our finest writers.”
- PostCity
The Big Interview  Megan Follows: Inspired casting as Penelope in Penelopiad
- The Toronto Star
Kate Taylor interviews Megan Follows on playing Atwood’s Penelope, being manipulative and motherhood
- The Globe and Mail
4 N’s “If you didn’t see The Penelopiad last year, don’t miss it this time around. And even if you did, it’s worth a revisit to catch the added nuances.”
- NOW
On the Town with The Penelopiad’s Megan Follows and Kelli Fox
- National Post
Interview with Megan Follows and Kelli Fox on the Global Morning Show
- Global Morning Show

INTERVIEWS AND REVIEWS FROM 2012 PRODUCTION
4 out of 4 stars  “The Penelopiad is stunning theatre”
- The Toronto Star
3 ½ out of 4 stars “…an absolute triumph”
- The Globe and Mail
4 out of 4 starsThe Penelopiad makes history”
- Toronto Sun
4 N’s “This is a superb show – smart, beautiful and superbly executed.”
- Now Magazine
“…vibrant, moving and darkly, explosively funny.”
- National Post
8 out of 10 roses “a moving cri de coeur…”
- The Grid
“Who needs men in a performance when the women play them so expertly?”
- The Scene in TO
“Director Kelly Thornton turns the serious material into delicious fare that stimulates everyone emotionally and intellectually.”
- fab magazine
“The aesthetics of The Penelopiad are stunning…”
- My Entertainment World
5 out of 5 stars “Don’t miss Nightwood Theatre’s inspiring production.”
- Theatromania
“Follows’ performs remarkably and is often times very witty.”
- zeeBigBang

 

Directed by Kelly Thornton
Designed by Denyse Karn
Lighting Designed by Kim Purtell
Original Music, Sound Design and Musical Direction by Suba Sankaran
Choreography by Monica Dottor
Stage Managed by Melissa Rood
Assistant Stage Managed by Ashley Westlake


Kelly Thornton// Director Kelly has been the Artistic Director of Nightwood Theatre since 2001. Directing Credits for Nightwood include Between the Sheets (The New Groundswell Festival), The List, That Face, Wild Dogs (all in association with Canadian Stage), The Danish Play (Toronto 2002 & 2007, Aveny-Teatret, Copenhagen, Magnetic North Theatre Festival & National Arts Centre), Bear With Me (Toronto, Grand Theatre & Magnetic North Theatre Festival), Mathilde, China Doll and Finding Regina (Globe Theatre/Theatre Passe Muraille). Other selected credits include The Comedy of Errors (Canadian Stage’s Dream in High Park); This Hotel (Theatre Passe Muraille/Planet 88 - Dora Nomination for Outstanding Direction); So Many Doors (Magnetic North Theatre Festival, Sour Brides/Yukon Arts Centre); Peep Show (Buddies in Bad Times); The Dumb Waiter (SummerWorks/Sometimes Y). Kelly has received the Pauline McGibbon Award for her outstanding work as a Director and was recognized for her commitment to training and mentorship of young women in the performing arts by being named a YWCA Woman of Distinction (Arts & Letters). In 2010 she was named the Associate Director of the National Theatre School of Canada’s Directing Program. Up next Kelly will be directing The Happy Woman at The Berkeley Street Theatre.


Denyse Karn// Designer Denyse is the Producer/General Manager of Nightwood Theatre. Her design credits for Nightwood include The List; The Lawyer Show 2011: As You Like It; The Lawyer Show 2010: A Midsummer Night’s Dream; Goodnight Desdemona, Goodmorning Juliet (Premier Production). Other recent credits include The Winter’s Tale (Canadian Stage 2011 Dream in High Park); The Oracle Of Gros Morne (Gros Morne Theatre Festival); Top Girls (Manitoba Theatre Centre). Denyse has also worked with Eastern Front Theatre, Neptune Theatre, Theatre New Brunswick, The Charlottetown Festival,  Atlantic Theatre Festival, Ship’s Company Theatre, Mulgrave Road Theatre, Festival Antigonish, Two Planks and A Passion Theatre, Tarragon Theatre, Theatre Passe Muraille, Canadian Stage Company and Cahoots Theatre Projects to name a few. Denyse Karn has been working in the Canadian theatre for over 25 years as a producer and designer. She is a graduate of the Ryerson Theatre School and has her BFA from NSCAD University. She is a recipient of a Dora Mavor Moore Award, five Theatre Nova Scotia Merritt Awards for various Outstanding Designs and was nominated for the Siminovitch Award in Theatre in 2006.  Up next Denyse will be Designer for The Happy Woman at The Berkeley Street Theatre.


Kim Purtell// Lighting Designer Previously for Nightwood Kimberly has designed lights for The Happy Woman, The Penelopiad (2012), The List, That Face, Wild Dogs, Age of Arousal and Crave. Most recently, her credits include The Little Years (Tarragon Theatre & Stratford Festival); Rigoletto (Opera Hamilton); This is What Happens Next (Necessary Angel); The Normal Heart (Studio 180); Proud (Proud Collective), HOMEbody (Shannon Litzenberger Dance); Speed The Plow (Soulpepper); Youʼre A Good Man Charlie Brown (Stratford Festival); and Crash (Theatre Passe Muraille). She has designed for theatres across the country including Mirvish Productions, Canadian Stage Company, Stratford Festival, World Stage, Luminato Festival, Manitoba Theatre Centre, Theatre Calgary, Vancouver Playhouse, Citadel Theatre, Young People’s Theatre, Studio 180, Soulpepper, Tarragon Theatre, Theatre Passe Muraille, Theatre Centre, Factory Theatre, Necessary Angel, Queen of Puddings, Tapestry New Opera, The Banff Centre, da da kamera, Dancemakers, Kaeja d’Dance and many others. Upcoming Kimberly will be designing Svadba (Edmonton Opera); Little One & Other Peopleʼs Children (Tarragon Theatre); The Power of Harriet T (YPT); Do You Want What I Have Got: A Craigslist Cantata (Factory Theatre); Clybourne Park (Studio 180 & Mirvish). Kimberly is a recipient of the Pauline McGibbon and has been nominated for 17 Dora Awards, winning three times.


Suba Sankaran// Composer of Original Music, Sound Design and Musical Director Dora award-winning, twice Juno nominated Suba Sankaran is a world/fusion vocalist who has effortlessly combined musical worlds, performing across North America, Europe, UK and Asia with Autorickshaw, Trichy Sankaran, FreePlay Duo (with Dylan Bell) and Retrocity (80s a cappella revue), to name a few. Performance highlights include performing for Peter Gabriel, Nelson Mandela and Bishop Tutu. Suba is in demand as a choral director, arranger, educator and composer/producer for theatre, film, radio and dance. Highlights include collaborations with Deepa Mehta and the CBC. Suba is currently artist-in-residence at the Young Centre for the Performing Arts and co-chair of the Juno world music committee.




Monica Dottor// Choreographer Monica is an actor & choreographer. She was nominated for a Dora Award for her choreography in The Penelopiad and received a Dora Award with the ensemble. Most recently, played the lead in the feature film The Shape of Rex (Factoria Films) and was featured in Picture Day (Snitch Pictures- TIFF selection) & choreographed and acted in PETRICHOR (Kitchenband/Summerworks), Recent Theatre (acting): The Trolley Car(Summerworks),The Middle Place (Canadian Stage/Belfry/GCTC) Featuring Loretta(Factory), The Red Queen Effect (NextStage), SCRATCH (Factory-Dora Nomination - Performance), A Midsummer Night’s Dream (CanadianStage), The Overcoat (CanadianStage/San Francisco Critics’ Circle Award, Dora Nomination Ensemble Performance), Chekhov’s Heartache & Chekhov’s Shorts (Smith-Gilmour), Recent Choreography:  MALARIA LULLABY (Company Blonde), CRASH (Theatre Passe Muraille), The Middle Place (CanadianStage/Passe Muraille/Belfry/GCTC), 2010 Dora Mavor Moore Awards,The Red Queen Effect (Next Stage),The Russian Play (Factory-Dora Nomination Choreography), The Elastocitizens, Suzie McNeil’s “Dear Love” tour.


Melissa Rood// Stage Manager From the Middle East to the Arctic and throughout North America with Stratford Shakespeare Festival (12 seasons), Canadian Opera Company (10 Winters), Nightwood Theatre, La Jolla Playhouse, Human Cargo Theatre, National Arts Centre, Pacific Opera Victoria, Belfry Theatre, Globe Theatre, Suddenly Dance, Canadian Stage, Mump & Smoot, Green Thumb Theatre for Young People, Haig-Brown Society, Princess Cruises, and David Atkins Enterprises for the Opening & Closing Ceremonies of the Asian Games (with a cast of just under ten thousand) in Doha, Qatar. A graduate of the technical production programme at Sheridan College, Melissa is also a social work student at the University of Waterloo and holds a degree in Social Development Studies, serves on the Board of Directors for PAL Stratford, plays Derby with the Festival City Rollergirls, and recently competed in the World Club Crew Dragon Boat Championships in Hong Kong.


Ashley Westlake// Apprentice Stage Manager Ashley’s Nightwood credits include Stage Manager: Between The Sheets – Groundswell Festival (2011), The Lawyer Show – As You Like It (2011). Apprentice Stage Manager: The List (2010), That Face (2009, in association with Canadian Stage). Former Nightwood Producing Intern (2009). Other selected credits include Stage Manager: The Jones Boy (surface/underground); Stage Manager: The Little One (Company Theatre Crisis, SummerWorks 2011); Horse (Theatre Hetaerae, Toronto Fringe Festival 2011). Apprentice Stage Manager: The Middle Place (Project Humanity, Canadian Stage 2011). Up next for Ashley will be Apprentice Stage Manager: The Happy Woman (Nightwood). Stage Manager: The Lawyer Show 2012: Much Ado About Nothing (Nightwood). Production Manager: The Washing Machine (Red Betty Theatre, 2012 Next Stage Theatre Festival).

 

       



























 

The Penelopiad


January 8 to February 10, 2013

Nightwood Theatre presents the Toronto Premiere

by Margaret Atwood

Directed by Kelly Thornton

Starring Megan Follows

Check out the cast and creative teams bios and pictures by clicking the tab above

“Now that I’m dead, I know everything.” So begins The Penelopiad, Margaret Atwood’s daring response to Homer’s The Odyssey. Destined to spend eternity in Hades, Penelope recounts her life’s story and the murder of her twelve handmaidens by her vengeful husband Odysseus. Atwood’s acerbic wit brings one of history’s most powerful myths to the contemporary imagination. A provocative new look at a woman’s longing, lust and culpability.

4 N’s “If you didn’t see The Penelopiad last year, don’t miss it this time around. And even if you did, it’s worth a revisit…” - NOW
4 out of 4 stars  “The Penelopiad is stunning theatre”
- The Toronto Star
3 ½ out of 4 stars “…an absolute triumph”
- The Globe and Mail
4 out of 4 starsThe Penelopiad makes history”
- Toronto Sun
4 N’s “This is a superb show – smart, beautiful and superbly executed.”
- Now Magazine

“…vibrant, moving and darkly, explosively funny.”
- National Post
Written by Margaret Atwood

Starring Megan Follows

with Maev Beaty, Neema Bickersteth, Fiona Byrne, Sarah Dodd, Monica Dottor, Audrey Dwyer, Nicole Joy-Fraser, Kelli Fox, Cara Gee, Patricia Hamilton, Pamela Sinha and Sophia Walker


Megan Follows// Penelope Follows has guest starred on some of television’s most popular series. Most recently she was in the mini series World Without End, and guest stared in the A&E series Longmire. Her list of credits include such shows as House, CSI, Law and Order, CBC’s Heartland. She just finished filming the Canadian feature Hard Drive and the short film Bar None (Bravo) and can be heard as the narrator for the Imax film Flight of the Butterflies. Follows’ resume has a list of numerous big screen credits including Alan King’s powerful feature, Termini Station, which earned her a Genie nomination for Best Actress and Stephen King’s Silver Bullet, with Gary Busey. As Follows began to divide her time between L.A. and Toronto, she performed lead roles in the Oscar-winning short film Boys And Girls, and the mini-series Hockey Night, which earned her a 1985 ACTRA Award nomination. While filming Hockey Night, Follows landed the role of “Anne”, which earned her a 1987 Gemini for her performance in Anne Of Green Gables and a 1988 Gemini for Anne Of Avonlea. 
She also has a long history in theatre and has worked with prestigious companies such as the Stratford Festival (Romeo and Juliet, Amadeus) and The National Arts Centre in Ottawa. In 2008, Megan was nominated for two Dora Mavor Moore Best Actress Awards for her performances as Masha in Three Sisters and Marlene in Soulpepper’s award-winning presentation of Top Girls.


Maev Beaty// Laertes/Maid Maev’s coming out party was Canadian Stage’s ‘08 season where she played Helena in Midsummer Night’s Dream and premiered in Judith Thompson’s Palace of the End.  Shakespeare’s Titania and Kate followed and she has since performed in 10 Canadian Premieres, gathering 3 Dora nominations, for performance in Dance of the Red Skirts (Theatre Columbus), and for performance and writing of Montparnasse, which she co created with Erin Shields and Andrea Donaldson. She has been a proud ensemble member of huge theatre endeavours such at TheatreFront’s The Mill series and Volcano Theatre’s Another Africa (Luminato/Canadian Stage), and is Co-Artistic Director of Sheep No Wool Theatre Company and an Artistic Associate of Groundwater Productions. http://www.maevbeaty.com




Neema Bickersteth// Telemachus/Maid Neema began an opera degree at the University of British Columbia, where she received both a Bachelors and Masters of Music.  She has performed internationally in Asia, Africa, Europe, and North America.  Most recently, Neema was seen in The Story (Theatre Columbus), Harlem Duet (Black Theatre Workshop); Oil and Water (Artistic Fraud); Caroline, or Change (Acting Up Stage/Obsidian – Dora Nomination). More experimental/theatrical work includes Stitch and Voicebox (Urbanvessel); Giiwedin (Native Earth Performing Arts); Obeah Opera (b current) and Dark Star Requiem (Luminato/Tapestry New Opera).  Neema is developing a recital theatre piece called A Moveable Beast. It explores an alternative version of history combining classical singing, musical improvisation, modern dance, and historical photography.




Fiona Byrne// Naiad/Maid Most recently Fiona was seen in The Cosmonaut’s Last Message… (Canadian Stage) and Bethune Imagined (Factory Theatre), and has appeared on King, Rookie Blue, Flashpoint, Against the Wall, the award-winning Oliver Bump’s Birthday (CFC) and others.  She has played leading roles at the Stratford Festival, Soulpepper, and, for eleven seasons, the Shaw Festival.  Other credits include Belle Moral (NAC/Shaw Festival), The Country (Crow’s Theatre/Theatre Junction), Long Day’s Journey into Night , Vinci (MTC) and Doll House, for which she received a Dora Award for Best Actress.  Fiona is a graduate of the National Theatre School.





Sarah Dodd// Anticleia/Maid Most recently Sarah made her directorial debut with This Lime Tree Bower (Cart/Horse Theatre). Recent acting credits include The Small Room at the Top of the Stairs (Tarragon Theatre) and The Penelopiad (Nightwood Theatre, Dora Award for Best Ensemble). She performed for seven seasons at the Stratford Festival. She was seen in The New Electric Ballroom (MacKenzie Ro Theatre) and other theatre credits include The Age of Arousal (Nightwood Theatre), Communion, The Fall and Humble Boy (Tarragon Theatre); A Whistle In the Dark and Marion Bridge (Company Theatre, Dora Award for Marion Bridge); Them and Us (Theatre Passe Muraille); A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Canadian Stage); The Importance of Being Earnest (Stratford Festival). Sarah is a graduate of George Brown Theatre School.


Monica Dottor// Oracle/Maid (Choreographer) Monica is an actor & choreographer. She was nominated for a Dora Award for her choreography in The Penelopiad and received a Dora Award with the ensemble. Most recently, played the lead in the feature film The Shape of Rex (Factoria Films) and was featured in Picture Day (Snitch Pictures- TIFF selection) & choreographed and acted in PETRICHOR (Kitchenband/Summerworks), Recent Theatre (acting): The Trolley Car(Summerworks),The Middle Place (Canadian Stage/Belfry/GCTC) Featuring Loretta(Factory), The Red Queen Effect (NextStage), SCRATCH (Factory-Dora Nomination - Performance), A Midsummer Night’s Dream (CanadianStage), The Overcoat (CanadianStage/San Francisco Critics’ Circle Award, Dora Nomination Ensemble Performance), Chekhov’s Heartache & Chekhov’s Shorts (Smith-Gilmour), Recent Choreography:  MALARIA LULLABY (Company Blonde), CRASH (Theatre Passe Muraille), The Middle Place (CanadianStage/Passe Muraille/Belfry/GCTC), 2010 Dora Mavor Moore Awards,The Red Queen Effect (Next Stage),The Russian Play (Factory-Dora Nomination Choreography), The Elastocitizens, Suzie McNeil’s “Dear Love” tour.

Audrey Dwyer// Icarius/Maid Audrey was most recently seen in thirsty (National Arts Centre) and will be performing in a remount of Clybourne Park (Studio 180/Mirvish Productions). Other theatre credits include Breath in Between (Breath Collective with Crows Theatre), The Overwhelming (Studio 180), Black Medea (Obsidian Theatre), Medea (The Royal Manitoba Theatre Centre and Mirvish Productions); The Babysitter (Theatre Direct/Eldritch Theatre), Blue Planet (Young People’s Theatre); Danny, King of the Basement (Roseneath Theatre) and Patty’s Cake (Carousel Players – Dora Award, Best Outstanding Production for Young People). Film and TV credits include Da Kink in My Hair, The Ron James Show, The State Within, Man of the Year and Where the Truth Lies. She was Nightwood’s Associate Artistic Director from 2008 to 2009, is a Dora-Nominated director for The Apology, and was recently Assistant Director for Nightwood’s The Penelopiad. She is also writing, Calpurnia, her first full-length play with Obsidian Theatre’s Development series. She is a graduate of The National Theatre School of Canada.

Nicole Joy-Fraser// Antinous/Maid Nicole started her professional career singing top soprano in The Nathaniel Dett Chorale while finishing her final year of study at The Randolph Academy. Upon graduating she went directly into rehearsals for the North American premiere of Mamma Mia! at the Royal Alex and later toured with the same cast throughout the U.S.  She landed roles in Jerry Springer-The Opera (multi-award-winning West End cast) and eventually Disney’s Beauty and the Beast (UK Tour, Greece). Nicole returned to Toronto after six years of being a “Londoner” and was cast in Red Sky’s Raven Stole the Sun, which she performed for family audiences through out the US, Canada and the Vancouver 2010 Cultural Olympiad. Other theatre credits include; Job’s Wife (New Harlem, Summerworks), “Emily Dictionary” in The Rez Sisters, the Dora-nominated premiere of Giiwedin -a First Nations Opera, and the premiere of Marie Clement’s Tombs of the Vanishing Indian (Native Earth/Red Diva). She recently made her Young People’s Theatre debut in Red Sky’s The Great Mountain, touring it to B.C, Alberta and previously to New York City’s Smithsonian Institute.

Kelli Fox// Odysseus/Maid Kelli is thrilled to be back with Penny and the Maids. Since we were last in Hades she has been busy with TV (Nikita, Murdoch Mysteries, Cracked), made her directorial debut at the Bond Festival Wrecking Ball and has been developing, along with partners, a project for the stage inspired by American poet Edna St. Vincent Millay.  She’s spent 12 seasons with the Shaw Festival and 3 with Stratford, played the title role in Hamlet with the Geva Theatre Centre in Rochester, Princess of France in Love’s Labours Lost, Hermione in A Winter’s Tale, and Helena in All’s Well that Ends Well with the NAC, as well as Beatrice in Much Ado about Nothing with Chicago Shakespeare Theatre. In Toronto she has worked with Tarragon (Slavs!, Scorched, The Children’s Republic), Soulpepper (Top Girls), Factory (Oui, Restitution, Zadie’s Shoes), and elsewhere with The Citadel (Frozen, August: Osage County), MTC (The Blonde, The Brunette and the Vengeful Redhead) and the Segal Centre (Blithe Spirit). She has been nominated for a Dora and a Sterling, earned a Jessie and been recognized by the Critics Circles in both Toronto and Ottawa.

Cara Gee// Melantho/Maid Cara most recently performed in The Real World (Tarragon Theatre) and Ally & Kev (SummerWorks). Cara was seen in The Penelopiad (Nightwood Theatre, Dora Award for Best Ensemble), The Rez Sisters (Factory Theatre) and The Jones Boy (surface/underground).  Cara is an ensemble member of the independent company, Birdtown and Swanville.  Credits with Birdtown and Swanville include: The Physical Ramifications of Attempted Global Domination (Summerworks), 36 Little Plays About Hopeless Girls (Fringe), Dead Wrestlers (Rhubarb) and Family Story.  Other theatre credits include: Stitch (Dependent Theatre Projects, Summerworks—Spotlight Award), Spirit Horse (Roseneath Theatre), Flowers (Rose City Theatre Festival), Love’s Labour’s Lost (Resurgence), and Tout Comme Elle (Necessary Angel).  Upcoming, she will be in Arigato, Tokyo by Daniel MacIvor at Buddies in Bad Times. Cara has a BFA in Acting from the University of Windsor.




Patricia Hamilton// Eurycleia/Maid Patricia has been acting for more than 50 years. As well as 13 seasons at the Shaw Festival she has been seen across Canada from Vancouver to Stratford to Halifax. In Toronto she has appeared at Tarragon, Factory, Passe Muraille, Necessary Angel and Canadian Stage among others. She is also a director, teacher and producer (having been one of the founders of Masterclass theatre). To TV viewers she is known as Rachel Lynde in the Road to Avonlea series. She was most recently seen in Nurse Guinness in Heartbreak House (Shaw Festival).





Pamela Sinha// Helen/Maid Pamela was most recently seen in Crash (Theatre Passe Muraille – 2 Dora Awards: Actress, New Play), The Penelopiad (Nightwood Theatre – Dora Award – Acting Ensemble). She received a Dora Nomination for her work as Rekha in Brothel #9. She is part of Cahoots Theatre Playwrights Unit for 2011/12. She was seen in The Rez Sisters (Factory Theatre). Selected theatre credits include: Tout Comme Elle (Necessary Angel), Possible Worlds (Theatre Passe Muraille). Selected Film and Television: series leads on The Newsroom and Traders, ER (recurring), guest starring roles on Huff, Crossing Jordan, Rick Mercer Report; films include Breakaway, HBO’s Live from Baghdad, and Jinnah on Crime. Pamela’s short story Hiding was published in the best selling anthology Dropped Threads Vol.2 (Random House Canada), edited by Carol Shields and Marjorie Anderson. She is currently at work on her second play, Happy Place.


Sophia Walker// Menelaus/Maid Sophia is an award-winning Stratford Festival actor, bouffon and improviser performer. Recent theatre credits include: Ruined (Obsidian Theatre – Dora Award), The Penelopiad (Nightwood Theatre, Dora Award for Best Ensemble), Much Ado About Nothing (Canadian Stage Dream in High Park), BOBLO (Kitchenband Productions co-produced with The Theatre Centre). Sophia has spent the last 7 seasons performing at The Stratford Shakespeare Festival (selected credits): Julia in The Two Gentlemen of Verona, Hermia in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Lady Macduff in Macbeth, Lady Capulet in Romeo and Juliet, Luciana in The Comedy of Errors, Amah in Harlem Duet. Sophia is a graduate of The Birmingham Conservatory under David Latham. Film & TV credits Rookie Blue (Global/ABC), The Tempest (Melbar Entertainment) and Caesar and Cleopatra (BRAVO)




       






























Directed by Kelly Thornton
Designed by Denyse Karn
Lighting Designed by Kim Purtell
Original Music, Sound Design and Musical Direction by Suba Sankaran
Choreography by Monica Dottor
Stage Managed by Melissa Rood
Assistant Stage Managed by Ashley Westlake

 


Kelly Thornton// Director Kelly has been the Artistic Director of Nightwood Theatre since 2001. Directing Credits for Nightwood include Between the Sheets (The New Groundswell Festival), The List, That Face, Wild Dogs (all in association with Canadian Stage), The Danish Play (Toronto 2002 & 2007, Aveny-Teatret, Copenhagen, Magnetic North Theatre Festival & National Arts Centre), Bear With Me (Toronto, Grand Theatre & Magnetic North Theatre Festival), Mathilde, China Doll and Finding Regina (Globe Theatre/Theatre Passe Muraille). Other selected credits include The Comedy of Errors (Canadian Stage’s Dream in High Park); This Hotel (Theatre Passe Muraille/Planet 88 - Dora Nomination for Outstanding Direction); So Many Doors (Magnetic North Theatre Festival, Sour Brides/Yukon Arts Centre); Peep Show (Buddies in Bad Times); The Dumb Waiter (SummerWorks/Sometimes Y). Kelly has received the Pauline McGibbon Award for her outstanding work as a Director and was recognized for her commitment to training and mentorship of young women in the performing arts by being named a YWCA Woman of Distinction (Arts & Letters). In 2010 she was named the Associate Director of the National Theatre School of Canada’s Directing Program. Up next Kelly will be directing The Happy Woman at The Berkeley Street Theatre.


Denyse Karn// Designer Denyse is the Producer/General Manager of Nightwood Theatre. Her design credits for Nightwood include The List; The Lawyer Show 2011: As You Like It; The Lawyer Show 2010: A Midsummer Night’s Dream; Goodnight Desdemona, Goodmorning Juliet (Premier Production). Other recent credits include The Winter’s Tale (Canadian Stage 2011 Dream in High Park); The Oracle Of Gros Morne (Gros Morne Theatre Festival); Top Girls (Manitoba Theatre Centre). Denyse has also worked with Eastern Front Theatre, Neptune Theatre, Theatre New Brunswick, The Charlottetown Festival,  Atlantic Theatre Festival, Ship’s Company Theatre, Mulgrave Road Theatre, Festival Antigonish, Two Planks and A Passion Theatre, Tarragon Theatre, Theatre Passe Muraille, Canadian Stage Company and Cahoots Theatre Projects to name a few. Denyse Karn has been working in the Canadian theatre for over 25 years as a producer and designer. She is a graduate of the Ryerson Theatre School and has her BFA from NSCAD University. She is a recipient of a Dora Mavor Moore Award, five Theatre Nova Scotia Merritt Awards for various Outstanding Designs and was nominated for the Siminovitch Award in Theatre in 2006.  Up next Denyse will be Designer for The Happy Woman at The Berkeley Street Theatre.


Kim Purtell// Lighting Designer Previously for Nightwood Kimberly has designed lights for The Happy Woman, The Penelopiad (2012), The List, That Face, Wild Dogs, Age of Arousal and Crave. Most recently, her credits include The Little Years (Tarragon Theatre & Stratford Festival); Rigoletto (Opera Hamilton); This is What Happens Next (Necessary Angel); The Normal Heart (Studio 180); Proud (Proud Collective), HOMEbody (Shannon Litzenberger Dance); Speed The Plow (Soulpepper); Youʼre A Good Man Charlie Brown (Stratford Festival); and Crash (Theatre Passe Muraille). She has designed for theatres across the country including Mirvish Productions, Canadian Stage Company, Stratford Festival, World Stage, Luminato Festival, Manitoba Theatre Centre, Theatre Calgary, Vancouver Playhouse, Citadel Theatre, Young People’s Theatre, Studio 180, Soulpepper, Tarragon Theatre, Theatre Passe Muraille, Theatre Centre, Factory Theatre, Necessary Angel, Queen of Puddings, Tapestry New Opera, The Banff Centre, da da kamera, Dancemakers, Kaeja d’Dance and many others. Upcoming Kimberly will be designing Svadba (Edmonton Opera); Little One & Other Peopleʼs Children (Tarragon Theatre); The Power of Harriet T (YPT); Do You Want What I Have Got: A Craigslist Cantata (Factory Theatre); Clybourne Park (Studio 180 & Mirvish). Kimberly is a recipient of the Pauline McGibbon and has been nominated for 17 Dora Awards, winning three times.


Suba Sankaran// Composer of Original Music, Sound Design and Musical Director Dora award-winning, twice Juno nominated Suba Sankaran is a world/fusion vocalist who has effortlessly combined musical worlds, performing across North America, Europe, UK and Asia with Autorickshaw, Trichy Sankaran, FreePlay Duo (with Dylan Bell) and Retrocity (80s a cappella revue), to name a few. Performance highlights include performing for Peter Gabriel, Nelson Mandela and Bishop Tutu. Suba is in demand as a choral director, arranger, educator and composer/producer for theatre, film, radio and dance. Highlights include collaborations with Deepa Mehta and the CBC. Suba is currently artist-in-residence at the Young Centre for the Performing Arts and co-chair of the Juno world music committee.




Monica Dottor// Choreographer Monica is an actor & choreographer. She was nominated for a Dora Award for her choreography in The Penelopiad and received a Dora Award with the ensemble. Most recently, played the lead in the feature film The Shape of Rex (Factoria Films) and was featured in Picture Day (Snitch Pictures- TIFF selection) & choreographed and acted in PETRICHOR (Kitchenband/Summerworks), Recent Theatre (acting): The Trolley Car(Summerworks),The Middle Place (Canadian Stage/Belfry/GCTC) Featuring Loretta(Factory), The Red Queen Effect (NextStage), SCRATCH (Factory-Dora Nomination - Performance), A Midsummer Night’s Dream (CanadianStage), The Overcoat (CanadianStage/San Francisco Critics’ Circle Award, Dora Nomination Ensemble Performance), Chekhov’s Heartache & Chekhov’s Shorts (Smith-Gilmour), Recent Choreography:  MALARIA LULLABY (Company Blonde), CRASH (Theatre Passe Muraille), The Middle Place (CanadianStage/Passe Muraille/Belfry/GCTC), 2010 Dora Mavor Moore Awards,The Red Queen Effect (Next Stage),The Russian Play (Factory-Dora Nomination Choreography), The Elastocitizens, Suzie McNeil’s “Dear Love” tour.


Melissa Rood// Stage Manager From the Middle East to the Arctic and throughout North America with Stratford Shakespeare Festival (12 seasons), Canadian Opera Company (10 Winters), Nightwood Theatre, La Jolla Playhouse, Human Cargo Theatre, National Arts Centre, Pacific Opera Victoria, Belfry Theatre, Globe Theatre, Suddenly Dance, Canadian Stage, Mump & Smoot, Green Thumb Theatre for Young People, Haig-Brown Society, Princess Cruises, and David Atkins Enterprises for the Opening & Closing Ceremonies of the Asian Games (with a cast of just under ten thousand) in Doha, Qatar. A graduate of the technical production programme at Sheridan College, Melissa is also a social work student at the University of Waterloo and holds a degree in Social Development Studies, serves on the Board of Directors for PAL Stratford, plays Derby with the Festival City Rollergirls, and recently competed in the World Club Crew Dragon Boat Championships in Hong Kong.


Ashley Westlake// Apprentice Stage Manager Ashley’s Nightwood credits include Stage Manager: Between The Sheets – Groundswell Festival (2011), The Lawyer Show – As You Like It (2011). Apprentice Stage Manager: The List (2010), That Face (2009, in association with Canadian Stage). Former Nightwood Producing Intern (2009). Other selected credits include Stage Manager: The Jones Boy (surface/underground); Stage Manager: The Little One (Company Theatre Crisis, SummerWorks 2011); Horse (Theatre Hetaerae, Toronto Fringe Festival 2011). Apprentice Stage Manager: The Middle Place (Project Humanity, Canadian Stage 2011). Up next for Ashley will be Apprentice Stage Manager: The Happy Woman (Nightwood). Stage Manager: The Lawyer Show 2012: Much Ado About Nothing (Nightwood). Production Manager: The Washing Machine (Red Betty Theatre, 2012 Next Stage Theatre Festival).

 

       



























INTERVIEWS AND REVIEWS FROM 2013 PRODUCTION
Review:” This is a fabulous production of a very beautiful play by one of our finest writers.”
- PostCity
The Big Interview  Megan Follows: Inspired casting as Penelope in Penelopiad
- The Toronto Star
Kate Taylor interviews Megan Follows on playing Atwood’s Penelope, being manipulative and motherhood
- The Globe and Mail
4 N’s “If you didn’t see The Penelopiad last year, don’t miss it this time around. And even if you did, it’s worth a revisit to catch the added nuances.”
- NOW
On the Town with The Penelopiad’s Megan Follows and Kelli Fox
- National Post
Interview with Megan Follows and Kelli Fox on the Global Morning Show
- Global Morning Show

INTERVIEWS AND REVIEWS FROM 2012 PRODUCTION
4 out of 4 stars  “The Penelopiad is stunning theatre”
- The Toronto Star
3 ½ out of 4 stars “…an absolute triumph”
- The Globe and Mail
4 out of 4 starsThe Penelopiad makes history”
- Toronto Sun
4 N’s “This is a superb show – smart, beautiful and superbly executed.”
- Now Magazine
“…vibrant, moving and darkly, explosively funny.”
- National Post
8 out of 10 roses “a moving cri de coeur…”
- The Grid
“Who needs men in a performance when the women play them so expertly?”
- The Scene in TO
“Director Kelly Thornton turns the serious material into delicious fare that stimulates everyone emotionally and intellectually.”
- fab magazine
“The aesthetics of The Penelopiad are stunning…”
- My Entertainment World
5 out of 5 stars “Don’t miss Nightwood Theatre’s inspiring production.”
- Theatromania
“Follows’ performs remarkably and is often times very witty.”
- zeeBigBang

 

INTERVIEWS AND REVIEWS FROM 2013 PRODUCTION
Review:” This is a fabulous production of a very beautiful play by one of our finest writers.”
- PostCity
The Big Interview  Megan Follows: Inspired casting as Penelope in Penelopiad
- The Toronto Star
Kate Taylor interviews Megan Follows on playing Atwood’s Penelope, being manipulative and motherhood
- The Globe and Mail
4 N’s “If you didn’t see The Penelopiad last year, don’t miss it this time around. And even if you did, it’s worth a revisit to catch the added nuances.”
- NOW
On the Town with The Penelopiad’s Megan Follows and Kelli Fox
- National Post
Interview with Megan Follows and Kelli Fox on the Global Morning Show
- Global Morning Show

INTERVIEWS AND REVIEWS FROM 2012 PRODUCTION
4 out of 4 stars  “The Penelopiad is stunning theatre”
- The Toronto Star
3 ½ out of 4 stars “…an absolute triumph”
- The Globe and Mail
4 out of 4 starsThe Penelopiad makes history”
- Toronto Sun
4 N’s “This is a superb show – smart, beautiful and superbly executed.”
- Now Magazine
“…vibrant, moving and darkly, explosively funny.”
- National Post
8 out of 10 roses “a moving cri de coeur…”
- The Grid
“Who needs men in a performance when the women play them so expertly?”
- The Scene in TO
“Director Kelly Thornton turns the serious material into delicious fare that stimulates everyone emotionally and intellectually.”
- fab magazine
“The aesthetics of The Penelopiad are stunning…”
- My Entertainment World
5 out of 5 stars “Don’t miss Nightwood Theatre’s inspiring production.”
- Theatromania
“Follows’ performs remarkably and is often times very witty.”
- zeeBigBang

The Penelopiad


January 8 to February 10, 2013

Nightwood Theatre presents the Toronto Premiere

by Margaret Atwood

Directed by Kelly Thornton

Starring Megan Follows

Check out the cast and creative teams bios and pictures by clicking the tab above

“Now that I’m dead, I know everything.” So begins The Penelopiad, Margaret Atwood’s daring response to Homer’s The Odyssey. Destined to spend eternity in Hades, Penelope recounts her life’s story and the murder of her twelve handmaidens by her vengeful husband Odysseus. Atwood’s acerbic wit brings one of history’s most powerful myths to the contemporary imagination. A provocative new look at a woman’s longing, lust and culpability.

4 N’s “If you didn’t see The Penelopiad last year, don’t miss it this time around. And even if you did, it’s worth a revisit…” - NOW
4 out of 4 stars  “The Penelopiad is stunning theatre”
- The Toronto Star
3 ½ out of 4 stars “…an absolute triumph”
- The Globe and Mail
4 out of 4 starsThe Penelopiad makes history”
- Toronto Sun
4 N’s “This is a superb show – smart, beautiful and superbly executed.”
- Now Magazine

“…vibrant, moving and darkly, explosively funny.”
- National Post
Written by Margaret Atwood

Starring Megan Follows

with Maev Beaty, Neema Bickersteth, Fiona Byrne, Sarah Dodd, Monica Dottor, Audrey Dwyer, Nicole Joy-Fraser, Kelli Fox, Cara Gee, Patricia Hamilton, Pamela Sinha and Sophia Walker


Megan Follows// Penelope Follows has guest starred on some of television’s most popular series. Most recently she was in the mini series World Without End, and guest stared in the A&E series Longmire. Her list of credits include such shows as House, CSI, Law and Order, CBC’s Heartland. She just finished filming the Canadian feature Hard Drive and the short film Bar None (Bravo) and can be heard as the narrator for the Imax film Flight of the Butterflies. Follows’ resume has a list of numerous big screen credits including Alan King’s powerful feature, Termini Station, which earned her a Genie nomination for Best Actress and Stephen King’s Silver Bullet, with Gary Busey. As Follows began to divide her time between L.A. and Toronto, she performed lead roles in the Oscar-winning short film Boys And Girls, and the mini-series Hockey Night, which earned her a 1985 ACTRA Award nomination. While filming Hockey Night, Follows landed the role of “Anne”, which earned her a 1987 Gemini for her performance in Anne Of Green Gables and a 1988 Gemini for Anne Of Avonlea. 
She also has a long history in theatre and has worked with prestigious companies such as the Stratford Festival (Romeo and Juliet, Amadeus) and The National Arts Centre in Ottawa. In 2008, Megan was nominated for two Dora Mavor Moore Best Actress Awards for her performances as Masha in Three Sisters and Marlene in Soulpepper’s award-winning presentation of Top Girls.


Maev Beaty// Laertes/Maid Maev’s coming out party was Canadian Stage’s ‘08 season where she played Helena in Midsummer Night’s Dream and premiered in Judith Thompson’s Palace of the End.  Shakespeare’s Titania and Kate followed and she has since performed in 10 Canadian Premieres, gathering 3 Dora nominations, for performance in Dance of the Red Skirts (Theatre Columbus), and for performance and writing of Montparnasse, which she co created with Erin Shields and Andrea Donaldson. She has been a proud ensemble member of huge theatre endeavours such at TheatreFront’s The Mill series and Volcano Theatre’s Another Africa (Luminato/Canadian Stage), and is Co-Artistic Director of Sheep No Wool Theatre Company and an Artistic Associate of Groundwater Productions. http://www.maevbeaty.com




Neema Bickersteth// Telemachus/Maid Neema began an opera degree at the University of British Columbia, where she received both a Bachelors and Masters of Music.  She has performed internationally in Asia, Africa, Europe, and North America.  Most recently, Neema was seen in The Story (Theatre Columbus), Harlem Duet (Black Theatre Workshop); Oil and Water (Artistic Fraud); Caroline, or Change (Acting Up Stage/Obsidian – Dora Nomination). More experimental/theatrical work includes Stitch and Voicebox (Urbanvessel); Giiwedin (Native Earth Performing Arts); Obeah Opera (b current) and Dark Star Requiem (Luminato/Tapestry New Opera).  Neema is developing a recital theatre piece called A Moveable Beast. It explores an alternative version of history combining classical singing, musical improvisation, modern dance, and historical photography.




Fiona Byrne// Naiad/Maid Most recently Fiona was seen in The Cosmonaut’s Last Message… (Canadian Stage) and Bethune Imagined (Factory Theatre), and has appeared on King, Rookie Blue, Flashpoint, Against the Wall, the award-winning Oliver Bump’s Birthday (CFC) and others.  She has played leading roles at the Stratford Festival, Soulpepper, and, for eleven seasons, the Shaw Festival.  Other credits include Belle Moral (NAC/Shaw Festival), The Country (Crow’s Theatre/Theatre Junction), Long Day’s Journey into Night , Vinci (MTC) and Doll House, for which she received a Dora Award for Best Actress.  Fiona is a graduate of the National Theatre School.





Sarah Dodd// Anticleia/Maid Most recently Sarah made her directorial debut with This Lime Tree Bower (Cart/Horse Theatre). Recent acting credits include The Small Room at the Top of the Stairs (Tarragon Theatre) and The Penelopiad (Nightwood Theatre, Dora Award for Best Ensemble). She performed for seven seasons at the Stratford Festival. She was seen in The New Electric Ballroom (MacKenzie Ro Theatre) and other theatre credits include The Age of Arousal (Nightwood Theatre), Communion, The Fall and Humble Boy (Tarragon Theatre); A Whistle In the Dark and Marion Bridge (Company Theatre, Dora Award for Marion Bridge); Them and Us (Theatre Passe Muraille); A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Canadian Stage); The Importance of Being Earnest (Stratford Festival). Sarah is a graduate of George Brown Theatre School.


Monica Dottor// Oracle/Maid (Choreographer) Monica is an actor & choreographer. She was nominated for a Dora Award for her choreography in The Penelopiad and received a Dora Award with the ensemble. Most recently, played the lead in the feature film The Shape of Rex (Factoria Films) and was featured in Picture Day (Snitch Pictures- TIFF selection) & choreographed and acted in PETRICHOR (Kitchenband/Summerworks), Recent Theatre (acting): The Trolley Car(Summerworks),The Middle Place (Canadian Stage/Belfry/GCTC) Featuring Loretta(Factory), The Red Queen Effect (NextStage), SCRATCH (Factory-Dora Nomination - Performance), A Midsummer Night’s Dream (CanadianStage), The Overcoat (CanadianStage/San Francisco Critics’ Circle Award, Dora Nomination Ensemble Performance), Chekhov’s Heartache & Chekhov’s Shorts (Smith-Gilmour), Recent Choreography:  MALARIA LULLABY (Company Blonde), CRASH (Theatre Passe Muraille), The Middle Place (CanadianStage/Passe Muraille/Belfry/GCTC), 2010 Dora Mavor Moore Awards,The Red Queen Effect (Next Stage),The Russian Play (Factory-Dora Nomination Choreography), The Elastocitizens, Suzie McNeil’s “Dear Love” tour.

Audrey Dwyer// Icarius/Maid Audrey was most recently seen in thirsty (National Arts Centre) and will be performing in a remount of Clybourne Park (Studio 180/Mirvish Productions). Other theatre credits include Breath in Between (Breath Collective with Crows Theatre), The Overwhelming (Studio 180), Black Medea (Obsidian Theatre), Medea (The Royal Manitoba Theatre Centre and Mirvish Productions); The Babysitter (Theatre Direct/Eldritch Theatre), Blue Planet (Young People’s Theatre); Danny, King of the Basement (Roseneath Theatre) and Patty’s Cake (Carousel Players – Dora Award, Best Outstanding Production for Young People). Film and TV credits include Da Kink in My Hair, The Ron James Show, The State Within, Man of the Year and Where the Truth Lies. She was Nightwood’s Associate Artistic Director from 2008 to 2009, is a Dora-Nominated director for The Apology, and was recently Assistant Director for Nightwood’s The Penelopiad. She is also writing, Calpurnia, her first full-length play with Obsidian Theatre’s Development series. She is a graduate of The National Theatre School of Canada.

Nicole Joy-Fraser// Antinous/Maid Nicole started her professional career singing top soprano in The Nathaniel Dett Chorale while finishing her final year of study at The Randolph Academy. Upon graduating she went directly into rehearsals for the North American premiere of Mamma Mia! at the Royal Alex and later toured with the same cast throughout the U.S.  She landed roles in Jerry Springer-The Opera (multi-award-winning West End cast) and eventually Disney’s Beauty and the Beast (UK Tour, Greece). Nicole returned to Toronto after six years of being a “Londoner” and was cast in Red Sky’s Raven Stole the Sun, which she performed for family audiences through out the US, Canada and the Vancouver 2010 Cultural Olympiad. Other theatre credits include; Job’s Wife (New Harlem, Summerworks), “Emily Dictionary” in The Rez Sisters, the Dora-nominated premiere of Giiwedin -a First Nations Opera, and the premiere of Marie Clement’s Tombs of the Vanishing Indian (Native Earth/Red Diva). She recently made her Young People’s Theatre debut in Red Sky’s The Great Mountain, touring it to B.C, Alberta and previously to New York City’s Smithsonian Institute.

Kelli Fox// Odysseus/Maid Kelli is thrilled to be back with Penny and the Maids. Since we were last in Hades she has been busy with TV (Nikita, Murdoch Mysteries, Cracked), made her directorial debut at the Bond Festival Wrecking Ball and has been developing, along with partners, a project for the stage inspired by American poet Edna St. Vincent Millay.  She’s spent 12 seasons with the Shaw Festival and 3 with Stratford, played the title role in Hamlet with the Geva Theatre Centre in Rochester, Princess of France in Love’s Labours Lost, Hermione in A Winter’s Tale, and Helena in All’s Well that Ends Well with the NAC, as well as Beatrice in Much Ado about Nothing with Chicago Shakespeare Theatre. In Toronto she has worked with Tarragon (Slavs!, Scorched, The Children’s Republic), Soulpepper (Top Girls), Factory (Oui, Restitution, Zadie’s Shoes), and elsewhere with The Citadel (Frozen, August: Osage County), MTC (The Blonde, The Brunette and the Vengeful Redhead) and the Segal Centre (Blithe Spirit). She has been nominated for a Dora and a Sterling, earned a Jessie and been recognized by the Critics Circles in both Toronto and Ottawa.

Cara Gee// Melantho/Maid Cara most recently performed in The Real World (Tarragon Theatre) and Ally & Kev (SummerWorks). Cara was seen in The Penelopiad (Nightwood Theatre, Dora Award for Best Ensemble), The Rez Sisters (Factory Theatre) and The Jones Boy (surface/underground).  Cara is an ensemble member of the independent company, Birdtown and Swanville.  Credits with Birdtown and Swanville include: The Physical Ramifications of Attempted Global Domination (Summerworks), 36 Little Plays About Hopeless Girls (Fringe), Dead Wrestlers (Rhubarb) and Family Story.  Other theatre credits include: Stitch (Dependent Theatre Projects, Summerworks—Spotlight Award), Spirit Horse (Roseneath Theatre), Flowers (Rose City Theatre Festival), Love’s Labour’s Lost (Resurgence), and Tout Comme Elle (Necessary Angel).  Upcoming, she will be in Arigato, Tokyo by Daniel MacIvor at Buddies in Bad Times. Cara has a BFA in Acting from the University of Windsor.




Patricia Hamilton// Eurycleia/Maid Patricia has been acting for more than 50 years. As well as 13 seasons at the Shaw Festival she has been seen across Canada from Vancouver to Stratford to Halifax. In Toronto she has appeared at Tarragon, Factory, Passe Muraille, Necessary Angel and Canadian Stage among others. She is also a director, teacher and producer (having been one of the founders of Masterclass theatre). To TV viewers she is known as Rachel Lynde in the Road to Avonlea series. She was most recently seen in Nurse Guinness in Heartbreak House (Shaw Festival).





Pamela Sinha// Helen/Maid Pamela was most recently seen in Crash (Theatre Passe Muraille – 2 Dora Awards: Actress, New Play), The Penelopiad (Nightwood Theatre – Dora Award – Acting Ensemble). She received a Dora Nomination for her work as Rekha in Brothel #9. She is part of Cahoots Theatre Playwrights Unit for 2011/12. She was seen in The Rez Sisters (Factory Theatre). Selected theatre credits include: Tout Comme Elle (Necessary Angel), Possible Worlds (Theatre Passe Muraille). Selected Film and Television: series leads on The Newsroom and Traders, ER (recurring), guest starring roles on Huff, Crossing Jordan, Rick Mercer Report; films include Breakaway, HBO’s Live from Baghdad, and Jinnah on Crime. Pamela’s short story Hiding was published in the best selling anthology Dropped Threads Vol.2 (Random House Canada), edited by Carol Shields and Marjorie Anderson. She is currently at work on her second play, Happy Place.


Sophia Walker// Menelaus/Maid Sophia is an award-winning Stratford Festival actor, bouffon and improviser performer. Recent theatre credits include: Ruined (Obsidian Theatre – Dora Award), The Penelopiad (Nightwood Theatre, Dora Award for Best Ensemble), Much Ado About Nothing (Canadian Stage Dream in High Park), BOBLO (Kitchenband Productions co-produced with The Theatre Centre). Sophia has spent the last 7 seasons performing at The Stratford Shakespeare Festival (selected credits): Julia in The Two Gentlemen of Verona, Hermia in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Lady Macduff in Macbeth, Lady Capulet in Romeo and Juliet, Luciana in The Comedy of Errors, Amah in Harlem Duet. Sophia is a graduate of The Birmingham Conservatory under David Latham. Film & TV credits Rookie Blue (Global/ABC), The Tempest (Melbar Entertainment) and Caesar and Cleopatra (BRAVO)




       






























Directed by Kelly Thornton
Designed by Denyse Karn
Lighting Designed by Kim Purtell
Original Music, Sound Design and Musical Direction by Suba Sankaran
Choreography by Monica Dottor
Stage Managed by Melissa Rood
Assistant Stage Managed by Ashley Westlake

 


Kelly Thornton// Director Kelly has been the Artistic Director of Nightwood Theatre since 2001. Directing Credits for Nightwood include Between the Sheets (The New Groundswell Festival), The List, That Face, Wild Dogs (all in association with Canadian Stage), The Danish Play (Toronto 2002 & 2007, Aveny-Teatret, Copenhagen, Magnetic North Theatre Festival & National Arts Centre), Bear With Me (Toronto, Grand Theatre & Magnetic North Theatre Festival), Mathilde, China Doll and Finding Regina (Globe Theatre/Theatre Passe Muraille). Other selected credits include The Comedy of Errors (Canadian Stage’s Dream in High Park); This Hotel (Theatre Passe Muraille/Planet 88 - Dora Nomination for Outstanding Direction); So Many Doors (Magnetic North Theatre Festival, Sour Brides/Yukon Arts Centre); Peep Show (Buddies in Bad Times); The Dumb Waiter (SummerWorks/Sometimes Y). Kelly has received the Pauline McGibbon Award for her outstanding work as a Director and was recognized for her commitment to training and mentorship of young women in the performing arts by being named a YWCA Woman of Distinction (Arts & Letters). In 2010 she was named the Associate Director of the National Theatre School of Canada’s Directing Program. Up next Kelly will be directing The Happy Woman at The Berkeley Street Theatre.


Denyse Karn// Designer Denyse is the Producer/General Manager of Nightwood Theatre. Her design credits for Nightwood include The List; The Lawyer Show 2011: As You Like It; The Lawyer Show 2010: A Midsummer Night’s Dream; Goodnight Desdemona, Goodmorning Juliet (Premier Production). Other recent credits include The Winter’s Tale (Canadian Stage 2011 Dream in High Park); The Oracle Of Gros Morne (Gros Morne Theatre Festival); Top Girls (Manitoba Theatre Centre). Denyse has also worked with Eastern Front Theatre, Neptune Theatre, Theatre New Brunswick, The Charlottetown Festival,  Atlantic Theatre Festival, Ship’s Company Theatre, Mulgrave Road Theatre, Festival Antigonish, Two Planks and A Passion Theatre, Tarragon Theatre, Theatre Passe Muraille, Canadian Stage Company and Cahoots Theatre Projects to name a few. Denyse Karn has been working in the Canadian theatre for over 25 years as a producer and designer. She is a graduate of the Ryerson Theatre School and has her BFA from NSCAD University. She is a recipient of a Dora Mavor Moore Award, five Theatre Nova Scotia Merritt Awards for various Outstanding Designs and was nominated for the Siminovitch Award in Theatre in 2006.  Up next Denyse will be Designer for The Happy Woman at The Berkeley Street Theatre.


Kim Purtell// Lighting Designer Previously for Nightwood Kimberly has designed lights for The Happy Woman, The Penelopiad (2012), The List, That Face, Wild Dogs, Age of Arousal and Crave. Most recently, her credits include The Little Years (Tarragon Theatre & Stratford Festival); Rigoletto (Opera Hamilton); This is What Happens Next (Necessary Angel); The Normal Heart (Studio 180); Proud (Proud Collective), HOMEbody (Shannon Litzenberger Dance); Speed The Plow (Soulpepper); Youʼre A Good Man Charlie Brown (Stratford Festival); and Crash (Theatre Passe Muraille). She has designed for theatres across the country including Mirvish Productions, Canadian Stage Company, Stratford Festival, World Stage, Luminato Festival, Manitoba Theatre Centre, Theatre Calgary, Vancouver Playhouse, Citadel Theatre, Young People’s Theatre, Studio 180, Soulpepper, Tarragon Theatre, Theatre Passe Muraille, Theatre Centre, Factory Theatre, Necessary Angel, Queen of Puddings, Tapestry New Opera, The Banff Centre, da da kamera, Dancemakers, Kaeja d’Dance and many others. Upcoming Kimberly will be designing Svadba (Edmonton Opera); Little One & Other Peopleʼs Children (Tarragon Theatre); The Power of Harriet T (YPT); Do You Want What I Have Got: A Craigslist Cantata (Factory Theatre); Clybourne Park (Studio 180 & Mirvish). Kimberly is a recipient of the Pauline McGibbon and has been nominated for 17 Dora Awards, winning three times.


Suba Sankaran// Composer of Original Music, Sound Design and Musical Director Dora award-winning, twice Juno nominated Suba Sankaran is a world/fusion vocalist who has effortlessly combined musical worlds, performing across North America, Europe, UK and Asia with Autorickshaw, Trichy Sankaran, FreePlay Duo (with Dylan Bell) and Retrocity (80s a cappella revue), to name a few. Performance highlights include performing for Peter Gabriel, Nelson Mandela and Bishop Tutu. Suba is in demand as a choral director, arranger, educator and composer/producer for theatre, film, radio and dance. Highlights include collaborations with Deepa Mehta and the CBC. Suba is currently artist-in-residence at the Young Centre for the Performing Arts and co-chair of the Juno world music committee.




Monica Dottor// Choreographer Monica is an actor & choreographer. She was nominated for a Dora Award for her choreography in The Penelopiad and received a Dora Award with the ensemble. Most recently, played the lead in the feature film The Shape of Rex (Factoria Films) and was featured in Picture Day (Snitch Pictures- TIFF selection) & choreographed and acted in PETRICHOR (Kitchenband/Summerworks), Recent Theatre (acting): The Trolley Car(Summerworks),The Middle Place (Canadian Stage/Belfry/GCTC) Featuring Loretta(Factory), The Red Queen Effect (NextStage), SCRATCH (Factory-Dora Nomination - Performance), A Midsummer Night’s Dream (CanadianStage), The Overcoat (CanadianStage/San Francisco Critics’ Circle Award, Dora Nomination Ensemble Performance), Chekhov’s Heartache & Chekhov’s Shorts (Smith-Gilmour), Recent Choreography:  MALARIA LULLABY (Company Blonde), CRASH (Theatre Passe Muraille), The Middle Place (CanadianStage/Passe Muraille/Belfry/GCTC), 2010 Dora Mavor Moore Awards,The Red Queen Effect (Next Stage),The Russian Play (Factory-Dora Nomination Choreography), The Elastocitizens, Suzie McNeil’s “Dear Love” tour.


Melissa Rood// Stage Manager From the Middle East to the Arctic and throughout North America with Stratford Shakespeare Festival (12 seasons), Canadian Opera Company (10 Winters), Nightwood Theatre, La Jolla Playhouse, Human Cargo Theatre, National Arts Centre, Pacific Opera Victoria, Belfry Theatre, Globe Theatre, Suddenly Dance, Canadian Stage, Mump & Smoot, Green Thumb Theatre for Young People, Haig-Brown Society, Princess Cruises, and David Atkins Enterprises for the Opening & Closing Ceremonies of the Asian Games (with a cast of just under ten thousand) in Doha, Qatar. A graduate of the technical production programme at Sheridan College, Melissa is also a social work student at the University of Waterloo and holds a degree in Social Development Studies, serves on the Board of Directors for PAL Stratford, plays Derby with the Festival City Rollergirls, and recently competed in the World Club Crew Dragon Boat Championships in Hong Kong.


Ashley Westlake// Apprentice Stage Manager Ashley’s Nightwood credits include Stage Manager: Between The Sheets – Groundswell Festival (2011), The Lawyer Show – As You Like It (2011). Apprentice Stage Manager: The List (2010), That Face (2009, in association with Canadian Stage). Former Nightwood Producing Intern (2009). Other selected credits include Stage Manager: The Jones Boy (surface/underground); Stage Manager: The Little One (Company Theatre Crisis, SummerWorks 2011); Horse (Theatre Hetaerae, Toronto Fringe Festival 2011). Apprentice Stage Manager: The Middle Place (Project Humanity, Canadian Stage 2011). Up next for Ashley will be Apprentice Stage Manager: The Happy Woman (Nightwood). Stage Manager: The Lawyer Show 2012: Much Ado About Nothing (Nightwood). Production Manager: The Washing Machine (Red Betty Theatre, 2012 Next Stage Theatre Festival).

 

       



























INTERVIEWS AND REVIEWS FROM 2013 PRODUCTION
Review:” This is a fabulous production of a very beautiful play by one of our finest writers.”
- PostCity
The Big Interview  Megan Follows: Inspired casting as Penelope in Penelopiad
- The Toronto Star
Kate Taylor interviews Megan Follows on playing Atwood’s Penelope, being manipulative and motherhood
- The Globe and Mail
4 N’s “If you didn’t see The Penelopiad last year, don’t miss it this time around. And even if you did, it’s worth a revisit to catch the added nuances.”
- NOW
On the Town with The Penelopiad’s Megan Follows and Kelli Fox
- National Post
Interview with Megan Follows and Kelli Fox on the Global Morning Show
- Global Morning Show

INTERVIEWS AND REVIEWS FROM 2012 PRODUCTION
4 out of 4 stars  “The Penelopiad is stunning theatre”
- The Toronto Star
3 ½ out of 4 stars “…an absolute triumph”
- The Globe and Mail
4 out of 4 starsThe Penelopiad makes history”
- Toronto Sun
4 N’s “This is a superb show – smart, beautiful and superbly executed.”
- Now Magazine
“…vibrant, moving and darkly, explosively funny.”
- National Post
8 out of 10 roses “a moving cri de coeur…”
- The Grid
“Who needs men in a performance when the women play them so expertly?”
- The Scene in TO
“Director Kelly Thornton turns the serious material into delicious fare that stimulates everyone emotionally and intellectually.”
- fab magazine
“The aesthetics of The Penelopiad are stunning…”
- My Entertainment World
5 out of 5 stars “Don’t miss Nightwood Theatre’s inspiring production.”
- Theatromania
“Follows’ performs remarkably and is often times very witty.”
- zeeBigBang

 

The Penelopiad


January 8 to February 10, 2013

Nightwood Theatre presents the Toronto Premiere

by Margaret Atwood

Directed by Kelly Thornton

Starring Megan Follows

Check out the cast and creative teams bios and pictures by clicking the tab above

“Now that I’m dead, I know everything.” So begins The Penelopiad, Margaret Atwood’s daring response to Homer’s The Odyssey. Destined to spend eternity in Hades, Penelope recounts her life’s story and the murder of her twelve handmaidens by her vengeful husband Odysseus. Atwood’s acerbic wit brings one of history’s most powerful myths to the contemporary imagination. A provocative new look at a woman’s longing, lust and culpability.

4 N’s “If you didn’t see The Penelopiad last year, don’t miss it this time around. And even if you did, it’s worth a revisit…” - NOW
4 out of 4 stars  “The Penelopiad is stunning theatre”
- The Toronto Star
3 ½ out of 4 stars “…an absolute triumph”
- The Globe and Mail
4 out of 4 starsThe Penelopiad makes history”
- Toronto Sun
4 N’s “This is a superb show – smart, beautiful and superbly executed.”
- Now Magazine

“…vibrant, moving and darkly, explosively funny.”
- National Post
Written by Margaret Atwood

Starring Megan Follows

with Maev Beaty, Neema Bickersteth, Fiona Byrne, Sarah Dodd, Monica Dottor, Audrey Dwyer, Nicole Joy-Fraser, Kelli Fox, Cara Gee, Patricia Hamilton, Pamela Sinha and Sophia Walker


Megan Follows// Penelope Follows has guest starred on some of television’s most popular series. Most recently she was in the mini series World Without End, and guest stared in the A&E series Longmire. Her list of credits include such shows as House, CSI, Law and Order, CBC’s Heartland. She just finished filming the Canadian feature Hard Drive and the short film Bar None (Bravo) and can be heard as the narrator for the Imax film Flight of the Butterflies. Follows’ resume has a list of numerous big screen credits including Alan King’s powerful feature, Termini Station, which earned her a Genie nomination for Best Actress and Stephen King’s Silver Bullet, with Gary Busey. As Follows began to divide her time between L.A. and Toronto, she performed lead roles in the Oscar-winning short film Boys And Girls, and the mini-series Hockey Night, which earned her a 1985 ACTRA Award nomination. While filming Hockey Night, Follows landed the role of “Anne”, which earned her a 1987 Gemini for her performance in Anne Of Green Gables and a 1988 Gemini for Anne Of Avonlea. 
She also has a long history in theatre and has worked with prestigious companies such as the Stratford Festival (Romeo and Juliet, Amadeus) and The National Arts Centre in Ottawa. In 2008, Megan was nominated for two Dora Mavor Moore Best Actress Awards for her performances as Masha in Three Sisters and Marlene in Soulpepper’s award-winning presentation of Top Girls.


Maev Beaty// Laertes/Maid Maev’s coming out party was Canadian Stage’s ‘08 season where she played Helena in Midsummer Night’s Dream and premiered in Judith Thompson’s Palace of the End.  Shakespeare’s Titania and Kate followed and she has since performed in 10 Canadian Premieres, gathering 3 Dora nominations, for performance in Dance of the Red Skirts (Theatre Columbus), and for performance and writing of Montparnasse, which she co created with Erin Shields and Andrea Donaldson. She has been a proud ensemble member of huge theatre endeavours such at TheatreFront’s The Mill series and Volcano Theatre’s Another Africa (Luminato/Canadian Stage), and is Co-Artistic Director of Sheep No Wool Theatre Company and an Artistic Associate of Groundwater Productions. http://www.maevbeaty.com




Neema Bickersteth// Telemachus/Maid Neema began an opera degree at the University of British Columbia, where she received both a Bachelors and Masters of Music.  She has performed internationally in Asia, Africa, Europe, and North America.  Most recently, Neema was seen in The Story (Theatre Columbus), Harlem Duet (Black Theatre Workshop); Oil and Water (Artistic Fraud); Caroline, or Change (Acting Up Stage/Obsidian – Dora Nomination). More experimental/theatrical work includes Stitch and Voicebox (Urbanvessel); Giiwedin (Native Earth Performing Arts); Obeah Opera (b current) and Dark Star Requiem (Luminato/Tapestry New Opera).  Neema is developing a recital theatre piece called A Moveable Beast. It explores an alternative version of history combining classical singing, musical improvisation, modern dance, and historical photography.




Fiona Byrne// Naiad/Maid Most recently Fiona was seen in The Cosmonaut’s Last Message… (Canadian Stage) and Bethune Imagined (Factory Theatre), and has appeared on King, Rookie Blue, Flashpoint, Against the Wall, the award-winning Oliver Bump’s Birthday (CFC) and others.  She has played leading roles at the Stratford Festival, Soulpepper, and, for eleven seasons, the Shaw Festival.  Other credits include Belle Moral (NAC/Shaw Festival), The Country (Crow’s Theatre/Theatre Junction), Long Day’s Journey into Night , Vinci (MTC) and Doll House, for which she received a Dora Award for Best Actress.  Fiona is a graduate of the National Theatre School.





Sarah Dodd// Anticleia/Maid Most recently Sarah made her directorial debut with This Lime Tree Bower (Cart/Horse Theatre). Recent acting credits include The Small Room at the Top of the Stairs (Tarragon Theatre) and The Penelopiad (Nightwood Theatre, Dora Award for Best Ensemble). She performed for seven seasons at the Stratford Festival. She was seen in The New Electric Ballroom (MacKenzie Ro Theatre) and other theatre credits include The Age of Arousal (Nightwood Theatre), Communion, The Fall and Humble Boy (Tarragon Theatre); A Whistle In the Dark and Marion Bridge (Company Theatre, Dora Award for Marion Bridge); Them and Us (Theatre Passe Muraille); A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Canadian Stage); The Importance of Being Earnest (Stratford Festival). Sarah is a graduate of George Brown Theatre School.


Monica Dottor// Oracle/Maid (Choreographer) Monica is an actor & choreographer. She was nominated for a Dora Award for her choreography in The Penelopiad and received a Dora Award with the ensemble. Most recently, played the lead in the feature film The Shape of Rex (Factoria Films) and was featured in Picture Day (Snitch Pictures- TIFF selection) & choreographed and acted in PETRICHOR (Kitchenband/Summerworks), Recent Theatre (acting): The Trolley Car(Summerworks),The Middle Place (Canadian Stage/Belfry/GCTC) Featuring Loretta(Factory), The Red Queen Effect (NextStage), SCRATCH (Factory-Dora Nomination - Performance), A Midsummer Night’s Dream (CanadianStage), The Overcoat (CanadianStage/San Francisco Critics’ Circle Award, Dora Nomination Ensemble Performance), Chekhov’s Heartache & Chekhov’s Shorts (Smith-Gilmour), Recent Choreography:  MALARIA LULLABY (Company Blonde), CRASH (Theatre Passe Muraille), The Middle Place (CanadianStage/Passe Muraille/Belfry/GCTC), 2010 Dora Mavor Moore Awards,The Red Queen Effect (Next Stage),The Russian Play (Factory-Dora Nomination Choreography), The Elastocitizens, Suzie McNeil’s “Dear Love” tour.

Audrey Dwyer// Icarius/Maid Audrey was most recently seen in thirsty (National Arts Centre) and will be performing in a remount of Clybourne Park (Studio 180/Mirvish Productions). Other theatre credits include Breath in Between (Breath Collective with Crows Theatre), The Overwhelming (Studio 180), Black Medea (Obsidian Theatre), Medea (The Royal Manitoba Theatre Centre and Mirvish Productions); The Babysitter (Theatre Direct/Eldritch Theatre), Blue Planet (Young People’s Theatre); Danny, King of the Basement (Roseneath Theatre) and Patty’s Cake (Carousel Players – Dora Award, Best Outstanding Production for Young People). Film and TV credits include Da Kink in My Hair, The Ron James Show, The State Within, Man of the Year and Where the Truth Lies. She was Nightwood’s Associate Artistic Director from 2008 to 2009, is a Dora-Nominated director for The Apology, and was recently Assistant Director for Nightwood’s The Penelopiad. She is also writing, Calpurnia, her first full-length play with Obsidian Theatre’s Development series. She is a graduate of The National Theatre School of Canada.

Nicole Joy-Fraser// Antinous/Maid Nicole started her professional career singing top soprano in The Nathaniel Dett Chorale while finishing her final year of study at The Randolph Academy. Upon graduating she went directly into rehearsals for the North American premiere of Mamma Mia! at the Royal Alex and later toured with the same cast throughout the U.S.  She landed roles in Jerry Springer-The Opera (multi-award-winning West End cast) and eventually Disney’s Beauty and the Beast (UK Tour, Greece). Nicole returned to Toronto after six years of being a “Londoner” and was cast in Red Sky’s Raven Stole the Sun, which she performed for family audiences through out the US, Canada and the Vancouver 2010 Cultural Olympiad. Other theatre credits include; Job’s Wife (New Harlem, Summerworks), “Emily Dictionary” in The Rez Sisters, the Dora-nominated premiere of Giiwedin -a First Nations Opera, and the premiere of Marie Clement’s Tombs of the Vanishing Indian (Native Earth/Red Diva). She recently made her Young People’s Theatre debut in Red Sky’s The Great Mountain, touring it to B.C, Alberta and previously to New York City’s Smithsonian Institute.

Kelli Fox// Odysseus/Maid Kelli is thrilled to be back with Penny and the Maids. Since we were last in Hades she has been busy with TV (Nikita, Murdoch Mysteries, Cracked), made her directorial debut at the Bond Festival Wrecking Ball and has been developing, along with partners, a project for the stage inspired by American poet Edna St. Vincent Millay.  She’s spent 12 seasons with the Shaw Festival and 3 with Stratford, played the title role in Hamlet with the Geva Theatre Centre in Rochester, Princess of France in Love’s Labours Lost, Hermione in A Winter’s Tale, and Helena in All’s Well that Ends Well with the NAC, as well as Beatrice in Much Ado about Nothing with Chicago Shakespeare Theatre. In Toronto she has worked with Tarragon (Slavs!, Scorched, The Children’s Republic), Soulpepper (Top Girls), Factory (Oui, Restitution, Zadie’s Shoes), and elsewhere with The Citadel (Frozen, August: Osage County), MTC (The Blonde, The Brunette and the Vengeful Redhead) and the Segal Centre (Blithe Spirit). She has been nominated for a Dora and a Sterling, earned a Jessie and been recognized by the Critics Circles in both Toronto and Ottawa.

Cara Gee// Melantho/Maid Cara most recently performed in The Real World (Tarragon Theatre) and Ally & Kev (SummerWorks). Cara was seen in The Penelopiad (Nightwood Theatre, Dora Award for Best Ensemble), The Rez Sisters (Factory Theatre) and The Jones Boy (surface/underground).  Cara is an ensemble member of the independent company, Birdtown and Swanville.  Credits with Birdtown and Swanville include: The Physical Ramifications of Attempted Global Domination (Summerworks), 36 Little Plays About Hopeless Girls (Fringe), Dead Wrestlers (Rhubarb) and Family Story.  Other theatre credits include: Stitch (Dependent Theatre Projects, Summerworks—Spotlight Award), Spirit Horse (Roseneath Theatre), Flowers (Rose City Theatre Festival), Love’s Labour’s Lost (Resurgence), and Tout Comme Elle (Necessary Angel).  Upcoming, she will be in Arigato, Tokyo by Daniel MacIvor at Buddies in Bad Times. Cara has a BFA in Acting from the University of Windsor.




Patricia Hamilton// Eurycleia/Maid Patricia has been acting for more than 50 years. As well as 13 seasons at the Shaw Festival she has been seen across Canada from Vancouver to Stratford to Halifax. In Toronto she has appeared at Tarragon, Factory, Passe Muraille, Necessary Angel and Canadian Stage among others. She is also a director, teacher and producer (having been one of the founders of Masterclass theatre). To TV viewers she is known as Rachel Lynde in the Road to Avonlea series. She was most recently seen in Nurse Guinness in Heartbreak House (Shaw Festival).





Pamela Sinha// Helen/Maid Pamela was most recently seen in Crash (Theatre Passe Muraille – 2 Dora Awards: Actress, New Play), The Penelopiad (Nightwood Theatre – Dora Award – Acting Ensemble). She received a Dora Nomination for her work as Rekha in Brothel #9. She is part of Cahoots Theatre Playwrights Unit for 2011/12. She was seen in The Rez Sisters (Factory Theatre). Selected theatre credits include: Tout Comme Elle (Necessary Angel), Possible Worlds (Theatre Passe Muraille). Selected Film and Television: series leads on The Newsroom and Traders, ER (recurring), guest starring roles on Huff, Crossing Jordan, Rick Mercer Report; films include Breakaway, HBO’s Live from Baghdad, and Jinnah on Crime. Pamela’s short story Hiding was published in the best selling anthology Dropped Threads Vol.2 (Random House Canada), edited by Carol Shields and Marjorie Anderson. She is currently at work on her second play, Happy Place.


Sophia Walker// Menelaus/Maid Sophia is an award-winning Stratford Festival actor, bouffon and improviser performer. Recent theatre credits include: Ruined (Obsidian Theatre – Dora Award), The Penelopiad (Nightwood Theatre, Dora Award for Best Ensemble), Much Ado About Nothing (Canadian Stage Dream in High Park), BOBLO (Kitchenband Productions co-produced with The Theatre Centre). Sophia has spent the last 7 seasons performing at The Stratford Shakespeare Festival (selected credits): Julia in The Two Gentlemen of Verona, Hermia in A Midsummer Night’s Dream, Lady Macduff in Macbeth, Lady Capulet in Romeo and Juliet, Luciana in The Comedy of Errors, Amah in Harlem Duet. Sophia is a graduate of The Birmingham Conservatory under David Latham. Film & TV credits Rookie Blue (Global/ABC), The Tempest (Melbar Entertainment) and Caesar and Cleopatra (BRAVO)




       






























Directed by Kelly Thornton
Designed by Denyse Karn
Lighting Designed by Kim Purtell
Original Music, Sound Design and Musical Direction by Suba Sankaran
Choreography by Monica Dottor
Stage Managed by Melissa Rood
Assistant Stage Managed by Ashley Westlake

 


Kelly Thornton// Director Kelly has been the Artistic Director of Nightwood Theatre since 2001. Directing Credits for Nightwood include Between the Sheets (The New Groundswell Festival), The List, That Face, Wild Dogs (all in association with Canadian Stage), The Danish Play (Toronto 2002 & 2007, Aveny-Teatret, Copenhagen, Magnetic North Theatre Festival & National Arts Centre), Bear With Me (Toronto, Grand Theatre & Magnetic North Theatre Festival), Mathilde, China Doll and Finding Regina (Globe Theatre/Theatre Passe Muraille). Other selected credits include The Comedy of Errors (Canadian Stage’s Dream in High Park); This Hotel (Theatre Passe Muraille/Planet 88 - Dora Nomination for Outstanding Direction); So Many Doors (Magnetic North Theatre Festival, Sour Brides/Yukon Arts Centre); Peep Show (Buddies in Bad Times); The Dumb Waiter (SummerWorks/Sometimes Y). Kelly has received the Pauline McGibbon Award for her outstanding work as a Director and was recognized for her commitment to training and mentorship of young women in the performing arts by being named a YWCA Woman of Distinction (Arts & Letters). In 2010 she was named the Associate Director of the National Theatre School of Canada’s Directing Program. Up next Kelly will be directing The Happy Woman at The Berkeley Street Theatre.


Denyse Karn// Designer Denyse is the Producer/General Manager of Nightwood Theatre. Her design credits for Nightwood include The List; The Lawyer Show 2011: As You Like It; The Lawyer Show 2010: A Midsummer Night’s Dream; Goodnight Desdemona, Goodmorning Juliet (Premier Production). Other recent credits include The Winter’s Tale (Canadian Stage 2011 Dream in High Park); The Oracle Of Gros Morne (Gros Morne Theatre Festival); Top Girls (Manitoba Theatre Centre). Denyse has also worked with Eastern Front Theatre, Neptune Theatre, Theatre New Brunswick, The Charlottetown Festival,  Atlantic Theatre Festival, Ship’s Company Theatre, Mulgrave Road Theatre, Festival Antigonish, Two Planks and A Passion Theatre, Tarragon Theatre, Theatre Passe Muraille, Canadian Stage Company and Cahoots Theatre Projects to name a few. Denyse Karn has been working in the Canadian theatre for over 25 years as a producer and designer. She is a graduate of the Ryerson Theatre School and has her BFA from NSCAD University. She is a recipient of a Dora Mavor Moore Award, five Theatre Nova Scotia Merritt Awards for various Outstanding Designs and was nominated for the Siminovitch Award in Theatre in 2006.  Up next Denyse will be Designer for The Happy Woman at The Berkeley Street Theatre.


Kim Purtell// Lighting Designer Previously for Nightwood Kimberly has designed lights for The Happy Woman, The Penelopiad (2012), The List, That Face, Wild Dogs, Age of Arousal and Crave. Most recently, her credits include The Little Years (Tarragon Theatre & Stratford Festival); Rigoletto (Opera Hamilton); This is What Happens Next (Necessary Angel); The Normal Heart (Studio 180); Proud (Proud Collective), HOMEbody (Shannon Litzenberger Dance); Speed The Plow (Soulpepper); Youʼre A Good Man Charlie Brown (Stratford Festival); and Crash (Theatre Passe Muraille). She has designed for theatres across the country including Mirvish Productions, Canadian Stage Company, Stratford Festival, World Stage, Luminato Festival, Manitoba Theatre Centre, Theatre Calgary, Vancouver Playhouse, Citadel Theatre, Young People’s Theatre, Studio 180, Soulpepper, Tarragon Theatre, Theatre Passe Muraille, Theatre Centre, Factory Theatre, Necessary Angel, Queen of Puddings, Tapestry New Opera, The Banff Centre, da da kamera, Dancemakers, Kaeja d’Dance and many others. Upcoming Kimberly will be designing Svadba (Edmonton Opera); Little One & Other Peopleʼs Children (Tarragon Theatre); The Power of Harriet T (YPT); Do You Want What I Have Got: A Craigslist Cantata (Factory Theatre); Clybourne Park (Studio 180 & Mirvish). Kimberly is a recipient of the Pauline McGibbon and has been nominated for 17 Dora Awards, winning three times.


Suba Sankaran// Composer of Original Music, Sound Design and Musical Director Dora award-winning, twice Juno nominated Suba Sankaran is a world/fusion vocalist who has effortlessly combined musical worlds, performing across North America, Europe, UK and Asia with Autorickshaw, Trichy Sankaran, FreePlay Duo (with Dylan Bell) and Retrocity (80s a cappella revue), to name a few. Performance highlights include performing for Peter Gabriel, Nelson Mandela and Bishop Tutu. Suba is in demand as a choral director, arranger, educator and composer/producer for theatre, film, radio and dance. Highlights include collaborations with Deepa Mehta and the CBC. Suba is currently artist-in-residence at the Young Centre for the Performing Arts and co-chair of the Juno world music committee.




Monica Dottor// Choreographer Monica is an actor & choreographer. She was nominated for a Dora Award for her choreography in The Penelopiad and received a Dora Award with the ensemble. Most recently, played the lead in the feature film The Shape of Rex (Factoria Films) and was featured in Picture Day (Snitch Pictures- TIFF selection) & choreographed and acted in PETRICHOR (Kitchenband/Summerworks), Recent Theatre (acting): The Trolley Car(Summerworks),The Middle Place (Canadian Stage/Belfry/GCTC) Featuring Loretta(Factory), The Red Queen Effect (NextStage), SCRATCH (Factory-Dora Nomination - Performance), A Midsummer Night’s Dream (CanadianStage), The Overcoat (CanadianStage/San Francisco Critics’ Circle Award, Dora Nomination Ensemble Performance), Chekhov’s Heartache & Chekhov’s Shorts (Smith-Gilmour), Recent Choreography:  MALARIA LULLABY (Company Blonde), CRASH (Theatre Passe Muraille), The Middle Place (CanadianStage/Passe Muraille/Belfry/GCTC), 2010 Dora Mavor Moore Awards,The Red Queen Effect (Next Stage),The Russian Play (Factory-Dora Nomination Choreography), The Elastocitizens, Suzie McNeil’s “Dear Love” tour.


Melissa Rood// Stage Manager From the Middle East to the Arctic and throughout North America with Stratford Shakespeare Festival (12 seasons), Canadian Opera Company (10 Winters), Nightwood Theatre, La Jolla Playhouse, Human Cargo Theatre, National Arts Centre, Pacific Opera Victoria, Belfry Theatre, Globe Theatre, Suddenly Dance, Canadian Stage, Mump & Smoot, Green Thumb Theatre for Young People, Haig-Brown Society, Princess Cruises, and David Atkins Enterprises for the Opening & Closing Ceremonies of the Asian Games (with a cast of just under ten thousand) in Doha, Qatar. A graduate of the technical production programme at Sheridan College, Melissa is also a social work student at the University of Waterloo and holds a degree in Social Development Studies, serves on the Board of Directors for PAL Stratford, plays Derby with the Festival City Rollergirls, and recently competed in the World Club Crew Dragon Boat Championships in Hong Kong.


Ashley Westlake// Apprentice Stage Manager Ashley’s Nightwood credits include Stage Manager: Between The Sheets – Groundswell Festival (2011), The Lawyer Show – As You Like It (2011). Apprentice Stage Manager: The List (2010), That Face (2009, in association with Canadian Stage). Former Nightwood Producing Intern (2009). Other selected credits include Stage Manager: The Jones Boy (surface/underground); Stage Manager: The Little One (Company Theatre Crisis, SummerWorks 2011); Horse (Theatre Hetaerae, Toronto Fringe Festival 2011). Apprentice Stage Manager: The Middle Place (Project Humanity, Canadian Stage 2011). Up next for Ashley will be Apprentice Stage Manager: The Happy Woman (Nightwood). Stage Manager: The Lawyer Show 2012: Much Ado About Nothing (Nightwood). Production Manager: The Washing Machine (Red Betty Theatre, 2012 Next Stage Theatre Festival).

 

       



























INTERVIEWS AND REVIEWS FROM 2013 PRODUCTION
Review:” This is a fabulous production of a very beautiful play by one of our finest writers.”
- PostCity
The Big Interview  Megan Follows: Inspired casting as Penelope in Penelopiad
- The Toronto Star
Kate Taylor interviews Megan Follows on playing Atwood’s Penelope, being manipulative and motherhood
- The Globe and Mail
4 N’s “If you didn’t see The Penelopiad last year, don’t miss it this time around. And even if you did, it’s worth a revisit to catch the added nuances.”
- NOW
On the Town with The Penelopiad’s Megan Follows and Kelli Fox
- National Post
Interview with Megan Follows and Kelli Fox on the Global Morning Show
- Global Morning Show

INTERVIEWS AND REVIEWS FROM 2012 PRODUCTION
4 out of 4 stars  “The Penelopiad is stunning theatre”
- The Toronto Star
3 ½ out of 4 stars “…an absolute triumph”
- The Globe and Mail
4 out of 4 starsThe Penelopiad makes history”
- Toronto Sun
4 N’s “This is a superb show – smart, beautiful and superbly executed.”
- Now Magazine
“…vibrant, moving and darkly, explosively funny.”
- National Post
8 out of 10 roses “a moving cri de coeur…”
- The Grid
“Who needs men in a performance when the women play them so expertly?”
- The Scene in TO
“Director Kelly Thornton turns the serious material into delicious fare that stimulates everyone emotionally and intellectually.”
- fab magazine
“The aesthetics of The Penelopiad are stunning…”
- My Entertainment World
5 out of 5 stars “Don’t miss Nightwood Theatre’s inspiring production.”
- Theatromania
“Follows’ performs remarkably and is often times very witty.”
- zeeBigBang

 

Designed by Hambly & Woolley Inc. and developed by The Wire