In 1979 four women got together because they wanted to make theatre. It seems simple but in reality the very act in itself was political. Our stages were not only dominated by male playwrights but the new Canadian play itself was an anomaly. Now, forty years later our voices are heard across the country and around the world. It is with immense pride that we celebrate Nightwood’s legacy of propelling the voice of women on our stages and for making such a significant contribution to the canon.
In considering Nightwood’s place on the Canadian theatre landscape we must remember the shoulders we stand on and the path that has been carved by so many that have come before. From our founders Cynthia Grant, Kim Renders, Mary Vingoe and Maureen White who launched the dream, to Kate Lushington who succeeded as the Artistic Director in the late eighties and made it her mission to create more inclusion on our stages with the likes of Djanet Sears and Monique Mojica seeing some of their earliest work at Nightwood. We salute Artistic Directors Diane Roberts and Alisa Palmer who continued to push that conversation forward. And now, as we pen this message a new chapter unfolds again for Nightwood as the torch is passed from Kelly to Andrea, and the stage is set to build on our current success and push further the boundaries of what our theatre can mean for the next generation.
Nightwood has achieved an immense amount of growth since we were a fledgling company in the late 70s, and this resilience is a testament to all of the Administrators who steered the dream while balancing the budget. Let’s not forget their magnificent contribution. The rock on which Beth now stands has been built by all who came before her, as they tirelessly searched for money to make manifest the dream. And lest we forget the myriad of staff, volunteers and interns who have also contributed selflessly to our mission, alongside our board members, donors and funders who have invested in the company and the voices it has raised – this success is yours as well!
Finally, at its very essence, theatre is the artist and their audience. This beautiful act of storytelling, as we sit in communion with one another, is the most vital relationship we can uphold and we must protect it, for it represents our most basic human need. Connection. The artists within our 40th season are a collection of brilliant voices that have a deep-seated desire to share their work and worldview with you, in the dark, together.
Thank you for being here. For those who have been on the journey all along and those who are brand new to us, we are blessed to share our story together.
Kelly Thornton – Artistic Director Emeritus
Andrea Donaldson – Artistic Director
Beth Brown – Managing Director
3-Show Pass Sold Out!
Includes one ticket to each of the following productions:
Every Day She Rose, The Solitudes and All the Little Animals I Have Eaten
$75 ($60 for Under 30 / Senior / Arts Worker)
Please email Amanda firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions regarding our season pass subscription.
Written by Natasha Greenblatt & Yolanda Bonnell with the Company
Directed by Jennifer Brewin
Theatre Passe Muraille presents a Common Boots Theatre Production in association with Nightwood Theatre and Theatre Direct
October 9 – 27, 2019 at Theatre Passe Muraille (16 Ryerson Avenue)
Following the wildly successful run of The Public Servant, Common Boots Theatre delivers a provocative and hilarious investigation of how Canadians engage in democracy.
In 2015, a group of theatre makers infiltrated the Canadian Federal Election as volunteers for three major political parties and documented their interactions. Exploring the intersection of Indigenous, Settler and Newcomer experiences with the political process, The Election sparks urgent dialogue just as Canadians are about to take another swing at the ballot box. With a live vocal score, this play asks: Do we have a voice and does that voice count?
The Election was developed with the support of Studio 180 Theatre and the Banff Playwrights Lab
Written by Andrea Scott and Nick Green
Directed by Andrea Donaldson and Sedina Fiati
A Nightwood Theatre Production
November 23 – December 8, 2019 at Buddies in Bad Times Theatre (12 Alexander Street)
The personal becomes political in this collaboratively created new work from playwrights Andrea Scott and Nick Green. When racial and queer politics collide with the Black Lives Matter protest at the 2016 Toronto Pride Parade, two best friends discover that the things that brought them together may now drive them apart. A hilarious and heartbreaking stare-down of privilege and oppression.
Created and directed by Beatriz Pizano with Lara Arabian, Brefny Caribou, Liliana Suarez Henao, Janis Mayers, Rosalba Martinni, Michelle Polak, Sofia Rodriguez, and Rhoma Spencer
An Aluna Theatre production in association with Nightwood Theatre
January 7 – 18, 2020 at Harbourfront Centre Theatre (231 Queens Quay West)
Eight women on the borderline between the real and the imagined refuse to be condemned to another hundred years of solitude. Through orchestral storytelling and movement, each proposes her own distinct mythologies and life experiences toward alternative narratives of the female: to a new, larger Story.
What if this is how it begins?
Inspired by the women of Gabriel García Márquez’s One Hundred Years of Solitude, this piece unearths and reclaims space for the keeping of memory.
Written and Directed by Karen Hines
A Nightwood Theatre production in association with Crow’s Theatre
March 24 – April 12, 2020 at Crow’s Theatre (345 Carlaw Avenue)
Governor General Award-nominated, powerhouse playwright Karen Hines (The Pochsy Plays; Crawlspace) serves up a biting meditation on capitalism, consumption, precarity and hope in her latest dark comedy. Set in the extraordinarily modern bistro of an all-women’s condominium, All The Little Animals I Have Eaten follows a tender-hearted young server on the most harrowing shift of her life. With a stellar cast of comedic performers, this timely play examines the commodification of feminism, neo-liberalism, and the increasingly unattainable dream of snatching a piece of the real estate pie.
Clockwise from top left:
Katherine Gauthier, Anyika Mark, Tabia Lau, Catt Filippov, Lara Arabian and Andrea Donaldson
Readings from our 2018/19 Emerging Playwrights program
Program Director: Andrea Donaldson
September 23 – 28, 2019
Ernest Balmer Studio, The Distillery District
Don’t miss this week of new Canadian plays from some of the most exciting emerging female-identifying playwrights in the city. The 2018/19 Write from the Hip playwrights are Katherine Gauthier, Anyika Mark, Tabia Lau, Catt Filippov, and Lara Arabian. Visit nightwoodtheatre.net for the full Groundswell Festival schedule in September 2019.
Nightwood Staff Photo: Lauren Vandervroot, Teiya Kasahara, Naz Afsahi, Kelly Thornton, Andrea Donaldson, Beth Brown, Victoria Laberge, Angie Ho and Sadie Epstein-Fine. Photography by John Lauener.