Performing Turtle Island: Indigenous Theatre on the World Stage is edited by Jesse Rae Archibald-Barber (Metis/Cree), Kathleen Irwin, and Moira J. Day. Performing Turtle Island cites the TRC Call to Action 83 for Indigenous and non-Indigenous artists to undertake collaborative projects and produce works that contribute to the reconciliation process. Acting on this call the two main parts of this work refer to Critical Self-Representation in Production and Training in part I: and, part II Performance in Dialogue with the Text.
Elapultiek / We Are Looking Towards by Shalan Joudry, from the traditional district of Kespukwitk and of both Mi’kmaw and European ancestry, is a play first produced by Two Planks and a Passion Theatre and opened at the Ross Creek Centre for the Arts in Canning, Nova Scotia, Mi’kma’ki. The two main characters are Natawintoq (Nat) an early twenties Mi’kmaw drum singer and Bill, a mid fifties, Euro-Nova Scotian biologist.
Redpatch is the story of the fictional character Jonathon Woodrow/Half-Blood and his best friend who served in World War I with the Canadian 1st division on the Western Front of Europe including Vimy. His experiences as a warrior and his hunting and surviving skills are put to the challenge when the war continues without any end in sight and he wonders if he will ever get home again. This play focuses on Indigenous soldiers and communities' contribution to Canada in the First World War. A graphic novel is included.
‘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.