SATURDAY MAY 7
SPECIAL PRESENTATION (matinee)
Africville in Black and White by Cyrus Sundar Singh
Cyrus Sundar Singh Creator, Writer, Performer, Composer, Musician
Shelley Hamilton Actor, Singer, Performer
2:00PM, doors 1:30PM
Site-specific venue: St Matthew’s United Church, 729 St Clair Ave West
PWYC – $10 Suggested
Africville in Black and White is a site-specific verbatim documentary performance. Symbolically situated inside the demolished, Seaview United Church in Halifax, Nova Scotia, the documentary tells the story of the community of Africville. The church becomes a “container”, (a physical, metaphorical and philosophical space), in which the various parts of the Africville story in conjunction with the audience unfolds. The energy of the performance is shared between all three “players”: the narrator (the outsider), the singer (the insider), and the audience (the Africville diaspora). As with Verbatim-theatre, all lines are pulled from transcriptions and the full ‘script’ is printed in a program that doubles as a liturgy to be followed and recited where required. The triumvirate of story, performance, and audience is used to create an interactive and immersive documentary experience incorporating oral storytelling, poetry, musical score, archival materials and television—all performed live.
A brown-man with a yellow-guitar and a black-camera, Cyrus is a Gemini Award-winning filmmaker, songwriter, composer, and poet. Born and raised in India and living in Canada, he continues to bridge his different worlds effortlessly while maintaining an original unique style. Cyrusʼ directorial debut Film Club is the winner of both a Gemini Award and the NFBʼs Reel Diversity Award and since then he has written, produced and directed in a range of genres including documentary, reality, lifestyle, and installations. His film productions have earned numerous awards and taken him around the world including to Israel, India, Haiti, and Spain. Cyrus’ recent academic pursuits in documentary media have allowed him to push the boundaries of the form towards a hybrid he calls “performing the documentary.” His most recent documentary-hybrid Brothers In The Kitchen has its world premiere at Hot Docs 2016 Festival in Toronto.
FESTIVAL NIGHT 5
The Last Bike Ride by Grace Lynn Kung
A mile wide asteroid has struck the southeast coast of China. The world is in a state of emergency. Solar flares have created geomagnetic storms across the globe, disabling all electronic infrastructure. Ecosystems have collapsed and ash and debris from the impact will wipe out all life within eight days. We meet Louise and Thelma on Day 7.
What would you do if you had one day left to live and all threads of society had been cut loose? What if you were separated from your family and loved ones by a continent – could the realities that govern our world convince you a reunion was futile? What would happen to your ethics with no time and no cost of consequence? What if you threw in a lukewarm friend from your past? How would you chase the most important thing to you?
Grace Lynn Kung is a Canadian Screen Award nominee for Best Lead Actress in a Comedy, Grace Lynn Kung is a graduate of the Ottawa School of Speech and Drama (Chancellor’s Trophy recipient), York University (Dean’s Honour Roll, two time awardee – Jean Gascon Award for Acting) and holds two Certificates of Distinction for Speech and Drama from Trinity College London in the United Kingdom.Ms Kung recently wrapped John Madden’s gun lobby drama Miss Sloane with Jessica Chastain and played opposite Corey Stoll in Guillermo del Toro’s The Strain. Select credits include Slings and Arrows, Being Erica, Sarah Polley’s Away From Her, Cube 2: Hypercube, InSecurity and Lost and Delirious. For stage, The Vagina Monologues in Oranjestad, Aruba, Seminar (Mirvish), Kim’s Convenience, La Ronde (Soulpepper), Yukonstyle (CanStage) and a nanking winter (Nightwood).Grace studied naturopathic medicine in the UK, voiced Ubisoft’s Far Cry 4 and directed her first film this April.
Collaboration: the Human and the Divine by Nasra Adem
“Collaboration: the Human and the Divine” is a series of poetic movements mapping the trajectory and searchings for spiritual truth and creative excellence; tightly bound in black skin and womanhood. It follows the spiritual and artistic struggles of Nasra Adem, a young Ethiopian-Canadian Muslim artist. The audience will be taken on a journey spanning 15 years of this young woman’s life; through laughter, tears and history we will experience life as a black, female artist through the Islamic gaze. An experience specific to Nasra but not solely her own.
The Midnight Birth by All-Ever and Kim Henry
The Midnight Birth, a unique fusion of rap, contemporary dance and projections, toured Montreal, Magog, Toronto and Wakefield, reaching over 1,100 audience members live and 270,000 more through TV, radio and newspaper interviews. The show breaks the respective cultural and aesthetic boundaries of urban and contemporary art. The songs’ music, poetry and messages resonate in a powerful and evocative way through the dancer’s body and projections, bringing a striking visual dimension. Humorous at times, tragic at others, the piece stimulates and entertains while making its audience reflect. Comprised of original songs from The Midnight Birth album, the show seeks to break some of its genre’s stereotypes, which generally come from the commercial rap industry. It deals with sexism, gangsterism, bullying, suicide, socio-political apathy, dysfunctional relationships between men and women as well as women’s hyper-sexualization, among other themes. The show is thus targeted to a wide audience, more particularly adults and teenagers.
All-Ever, born Oliver Koomsatira, has performed over 1000 times in 180 film, theatre, TV, dance productions and TV commercials reaching 450,000 audience members across Canada and the US. He’s the recipient of the Elsa Bolam Award (2008) in Recognition of Outstanding Achievement by an Emerging Theatre Artist as well as the Outstanding Ensemble Award (My Entertainment World – 2015) for Factory Theatre’s Banana Boys. He’s been writing and performing rap since 2000. TV credits include playing a 6er gang member in 19-2 (Bravo/CTV) as well as TV commercials for Videotron (TVA) and La Régie des rentes du Québec. During her training at l’École de danse contemporaine de Montréal, Kim Henry received 2 Excellence grants as well as the Hnatyshyn Foundation grant. She danced in pieces created by Sylvain Émard, Jacques Poulin-Denis, Fred Gravel, Dana Gingras and Serge Bennathan. Since her graduation, she danced in more than 25 productions for Montréal Danse, Mélanie Demers (Fly), Lucie Grégoire, Audrey Bergeron, Fleuve-Espace Danse, Isabelle Boulanger, Willy Dorner (FTA), Festival Complètement Cirque, Dynamo Theatre, Théâtre de la Dame de Coeur, Cirque du Soleil’s Red Carpet.
8:00-10:00PM, doors 7:30PM
Location: Wychwood Theatre