Rahul Varma is a playwright, artistic director of Teesri Duniya Theatre, and co-founder of alt.theatre: cultural diversity and the stage. He writes both in Hindi and English, a language he acquired as an adult. Some of his other plays include Land Where the Trees Talk, No Man’s Land, Trading Injuries (a radio drama), and Truth and Treason. His plays have been translated into French, Italian, Hindi, and Punjabi. Rahul is the recipient of a special Juror’s Award from the Quebec Drama Federation, a Montreal English Critic’s Circle Award for promoting Interculturalism, and the South Asian Theatre Festival Award.Learn More
- Mary Vingoe grew up in Dartmouth, Nova Scotia, and received an honours degree in theatre from Dalhousie University. She has written, acted in, and directed numerous plays, including Holy Ghosters and Herring Gull’s Egg. Throughout her career, Vingoe has also been the co-founder of three theatre companies, the most recent being the Eastern Front Theatre with Wendy Lill and Gay Hauser. She is the former artistic director of the Magnetic North Theatre Festival. Learn More
Montreal-based playwright, director, and actor Julie Vincent received the Golden Plaque Award for Best Actress at the International Film Festival in Chicago for her role in Mourir à tue-tête (A Scream from Silence). She also won the Special Jury Award at Évry, France, for her one-woman show Noir de monde. She teaches at the National Theatre School of Canada and the École nationale de cirque and is director of the theatre company Singulier Pluriel.Learn More
Johnnie Walker is a playwright, performer, and director. He was the recipient of the 2010 SummerWorks Emerging Artist Award for his work on Redheaded Stepchild, which he has performed in Toronto, Victoria, Winnipeg, Calgary, Edmonton, Halifax, and New York City. Johnnie is the founder and co-artistic producer of Nobody’s Business Theatre with Morgan Norwich, and they have been creating new work in Toronto since 2005. Johnnie’s plays include Scheherazade, The Other Three Sisters, and Muhammad of Yorkville. He wrote 8 Girls Without Boyfriends with Courtney J. Walker and both A Maude-Lynne Evening and An Especially Maude-Lynne Xmas with Morgan Norwich.
Johnnie is also a producer, journalist, and nightclub DJ and has hosted dozens of burlesque shows. He is currently in post-production for his first short film, Saturn Devours, and is developing a new play with Buddies in Bad Times Theatre.Learn More
- David Young has written extensively for film and television, beginning with Jim Henson’s Fraggle Rock. Most recently he wrote and co-produced a one-hour dramatic comedy pilot for CTV about residential real estate agents. Theatrical works include Love is Strange (with Paul Ledoux); Glenn, a theatrical portrait of Glenn Gould, which had numerous productions in Canada (including at the Stratford Festival) and overseas; and Inexpressible Island, which was produced in Canada, the United States, Germany, and London’s West End. Both Glenn and Inexpressible Island were nominated for the Governor General’s Literary Award. Clout, a portrait of a neoconservative press baron, was co-produced by the National Arts Centre and Tarragon Theatre. David also wrote an adaptation of Ibsen’s An Enemy of the People for the NAC. David adapted Alistair MacLeod’s award-winning novel No Great Mischief for Tarragon Theatre. Current theatrical projects include Without Hope, Without Fear, a theatrical portrait of Caravaggio for the NAC. David was a founding director of the Writers’ Trust of Canada and is a trustee of the Griffin Poetry Prize. Learn More
David Yee is a half-Chinese, half-Scottish playwright born and raised in Toronto. He is a co-founder and the artistic director of fu-GEN Asian Canadian Theatre Company. His play lady in the red dress was nominated for the 2010 Governor General’s Literary Award for Drama. carried away on the crest of a wave, which premiered at the Tarragon Theatre, won the Carol Bolt Award in 2013 and the Governor General’s Literary Award for Drama in 2015. He is currently working on projects as playwright-in-residence for both Factory Theatre and Tarragon Theatre.Learn More
- Daniela Vlaskalic is an actor and playwright who lives and works in Canada. Since graduating from the University of Alberta with a Bachelor of Fine Arts in acting, she has worked in numerous theatres across the country. Daniela began collaborating with Beth Graham and Charlie Tomlinson in 1999 with The Drowning Girls and continued collaborating with Beth on several plays, including Comrades, The Last Train (winner of the 2003 Alberta Playwrights Network Playwriting Competition), and Mules. They also shared the role of artist-in-residence at Catalyst Theatre in 2006. Daniela currently lives in Toronto. Learn More
d’bi.young.anitafrika is an award-winning African-Jamaican dub poet, monodramatist, educator, and one of North America’s most celebrated storytellers. She has toured and lectured nationally and internationally, founded the pan afrikan performing arts institute (papai), participated in seven residencies, and garnered numerous awards, all while raising her two young sons, moon and phoenix. In 2015 d’bi was named one of the seven YWCA Toronto Women of Distinction.
- Cynthia Zimmerman has been a highly regarded commentator on Canadian playwriting and on the voice of women on the Canadian stage for her whole career at Glendon College, York University, where she is a professor in the English department. Previously book review editor of the international journal Modern Drama and a member of its advisory board, Zimmerman has authored or co-authored a number of books, including Playwriting Women: Female Voices in English Canada. She has produced many articles, chapters, and public papers. She also edited the successful anthology, Taking the Stage, for Playwrights Canada Press. Learn More