‘Cottagers and Indians’ is about manoomin, an Anishnawbe ‘good seed’ planted around a lake and which stands above the waterline, but it is also about Gertie, Justin and Marie. The seed causes consternation with cottagers who argue that it is hampering swimming, fishing, boating and property values.
‘Honouring the Strength of Indian Women’ is a combination of many efforts inspired by Vera Manuel. Manuel’s dramatherapy groups generated several scripts and selected poems, plays, photos, short stories were collated by University of Manitoba Press First Voices, First Texts and The People and the Text project, from protected and archived works by Emalene Manuel, Vera’s sister.
Two Plays About Residential School (Indigenous Education Press) honours the fearless voices of residential school survivor Larry Loyie (Cree, 1933-2016) and intergenerational survivor Vera Manuel (Secwepemc / Ktunaxa, 1949-2010). In the early 1990s, these award-winning authors wrote about their individual experiences of residential schools.
Someday is the second edition of Drew Hayden Taylor's outstanding play about a fictional Ojibway First Nation somewhere in Ontario. It could be set in any First Nation community in Canada because it deals with a painful time when thousands of Indigenous children were removed from their families during the notorious "scoop-up" of the 1950s and 1960s. Anne Wabung's daughter was taken from her by children's aid workers when the girl was a toddler. Now, 35 years later at Christmastime, Anne's hope to be reunited with her daughter is realized.
Cerulean Blue is a comedic play about a struggling blues band invited to participate in a benefit concert for a First Nation community in conflict with governmental authorities. Upon arriving, the band discovers the entire lineup of musical acts has cancelled and they’re left trapped behind barricades. Complicating the matter, there is conflict within the band and the sudden appearance of an old girlfriend makes the event even more perilous. This play by Ojibwe playwright and author Drew Hayden Taylor is an homage to fast-moving farces while also addressing Aboriginal issues.
Nicimos: The Last Rez Christmas Story This Christmas season, things have gone awry for the kohkoms of Kiwetinohk. Clare Bear is engaged to be married, Zula Merasty is moving off-reserve and Sihkos Sinclare is in jail. It all comes to fruition at Clare's stagette. Playwright Curtis Peeteetuce is Cree from the Beardy's & Okemasis First Nation. Since 2001, he has had the honour of working with many talented artists in theatre, radio drama, music and film. Curtis is the playwright of the popular Rez Christmas story series, which has been presented since 2001.
Medicine Shows: Indigenous Performance Culture examines how theatre has been used to make medicine, reconnecting individuals and communities, giving voice to the silenced and disappeared, staging ceremony, and honouring the ancestors. Contemporary Indigenous theatre in Canada is just over thirty years old, if one begins counting from the premiere of Linda Griffiths and Maria Campbell’s Jessica in Saskatoon and the establishment of Native Earth Performing Arts in Toronto.
3 Plays by Alanis King is the long-awaited first collection by playwright and director Alanis King who presents three exciting plays interconnected by themes of hope: spiritual (If Jesus Met Nanabush); personal (The Tommy Prince Story) and cultural (Born Buffalo). When Jesus turns up at the Champion of Champions Pow-Wow, the first person he meets is Nanabush. Together they form an odd pair. Nanabush is earthy, irascible, fun-loving. Jesus is formal, introverted, a fish out of water.
At its core, God and the Indian, by celebrated Ojibwe playwright Drew Hayden Taylor, explores the complex process of healing through dialogue. Loosely based on Death and the Maiden by Chilean playwright Ariel Dorfman, the play identifies the ambiguities that frame past traumatic events. Against the backdrop of Canada’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission, which has facilitated the recent outpouring of stories from residential school survivors across the country, the play explores what is possible when the abused meets the abuser and is given a free forum for expression.
The (Post) Mistress is a new one-woman musical theatre work written and composed by Cree playwright, composer and classical pianist, Tomson Highway. The (Post) Mistress recounts the adventures of a small-town postmistress, Marie-Louise Faucon, who divines the contents of sealed letters that pass through her hands. Having worked at the same rural post office for many years (in the fictional northern Ontario town of Lovely, just west of copper mining town Complexity), the postmistress becomes deeply involved in the emotional lives of her clients.