Theatre Faculty Directory

Photo from Love's Labour's Lost

FACULTY 2015/2016

KATHRYN AKIN (DEVISING)

Kathryn Akin is a Canadian performer, teacher and director who has also trained and worked extensively in Britain. She qualified in England as a teacher of the Alexander Technique with Walter Carrington, one of FM Alexander’s first generation of teachers and his assistant for many years. She is a member of the British Society of Teachers of the Alexander Technique (MSTAT) and has been teaching Alexander Technique to actors and non- actors for over a decade. Kathryn also trained extensively in actor movement and devising with master teacher Monika Pagneux (LeCoq, Peter Brook, Complicite) and worked as Pagneux's assistant teacher in London. She received further training from members of the highly regarded UK theatre companies, Complicite, Shared Experience, Frantic Assembly and Told by an Idiot. Kathryn was then invited to work as a deviser with Complicite and as an assistant director with Shared Experience. Other professional coaching or directorial credits include Shakespeare and Company in the USA, Equity Showcase Theatre and Canadian Stage here in Toronto and in London with the Dende Collective.  In Britain Kathryn has taught or directed at RADA, LAMDA, The Central School of Speech and Drama and The Mountview Academy. In Canada she has taught at Humber College, Equity Showcase and is on the current faculty of George Brown Theatre School. As a performer herself, Kathryn has been seen on many Canadian main stages over the years such as the Shaw Festival, the NAC, the Grand Theatre, the Elgin Theatre, Young People’s Theatre and the Royal Alexandra. Recent Canadian stage credits include the MTC/ Mirvish co-production of Calendar Girls, Next To Normal at both the Tarragon Theatre and in the Theatre Calgary/Citadel co-production (Sterling, Calgary Critics and Betty Mitchell nominations), The Immigrant at the Toronto Centre for the Performing Arts for the Harold Green and as a guest deviser with the innovative Theatre Gargantua.  Kathryn's UK stage credits include plays, musicals and multi discipline/devised work at leading theatres such as the Bristol Old Vic, the Traverse Theatre, Dundee Rep, West Yorkshire Playhouse, Lyric Hammersmith, the New End and the King’s Head as well as many productions in London’s West End for international names such as Trevor Nunn, Lindsay Posner and Cameron Mackintosh. Other acting credits include television appearances and radio dramas for both the CBC and BBC, various characters in Ubisoft's Assassin's Creed series as well as voice work on many documentaries, cartoons and feature films. 

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MICHAEL ARMSTRONG (SPEECH)

Michael began his career over 20 years ago attending George Brown Theatre School.  Following that he spent 10 years working extensively in theatre, film and television between Toronto, Vancouver, and Los Angeles. Returning to Toronto over 10 years ago now, he completed his MFA in acting at York University; and subsequently, the Graduate Voice Teaching Diploma, also at York. Since Graduating, Michael has taught voice, speech, dialects, and acting at a number of Toronto schools including: York U, Humber College, The Randolph School, Toronto Film School, The Baumander School, and The Canadian National Voice Intensive. He has also coached shows at Soulpepper, Tarragon, Alumnae Theatre, and The Classical Theatre Project. The bulk of Michael's work in recent years has been coaching voice, dialogue, and dialects on film and television sets. His recent credits include: American Gothic, Recon, Incorporated, Killjoys, Assassin's Creed Syndicate, The Strain, The Listener, Lost Girl, Assassin's Creed Unity, Horizon, Bomb Girls, Warehouse 13, The Mortal Instruments, Silent Hill: Revelation, Covert Affairs, The Thing, and a full season as staff coach on BBC America's period drama Copper. During this time, he has been lucky enough to work with a host of well-known actors including: Julia Ormond, Sean Bean, Kit Harrington, Alfre Woodard, Donal Logue, Billy Baldwin, Joel Edgerton, Lee Tergesen, Robert Sheehan, and Piper Perabo. 

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STEWART ARNOTT (SCENE STUDY)

Stewart Arnott has been an actor and a director for over 35 years. As a director, his recent credits include Seminar (Royal MTC and Mirvish Peoductions; Title and Deed (Nightfall Theatrics); Tragedy: a tragedy (Summerworks 2014), Same Time, Next Year (Lighthouse Festival), The Importance of Being Earnest (U. Of Waterloo Drama), The Swearing Jar (Prairie Theatre Exchange), Tuesdays With Morrie (Campbell House Museum), Vincent River (Cart/Horse Theatre), the world premiere of Pobby and Dingan by Paula Wing at YPT, The Piper and Unity (1918) at Ryerson Theatre School, and Amadeus and The Mystery of Irma Vep for Theatre Aquarius.  Upcoming, Stewart will direct Seminar, starring Tom McCamus (Royal MTC and Mirvish Productions/Panasonic Theatre) and Title and Deed (Artscape Youngplace).  As an actor, Stewart has been a company member over several seasons with the Stratford Festival, the Atlantic Theatre festival and Autumn Angel/necessary Angel Theatre Co. Lead roles in Daniel Karasik's The Biographer (Videofag) and Our Town (Sudbury Theatre Centre) are recent stage appearances.  Other credits include Hallaj, Waiting for Godot and Stories from the Rains of Love and Death for Soheil Parsa and Modern Times Theatre, and lady in the red dress (fu-GEN).  Recent film and TV projects include 11/22/63, Disorderly Conduct, Schitt's Creek, and The Lizzie Borden Chronicles. Stewart is a respected teacher and coach.

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CINDY BLOCK (STORYTELLING, VOICE, MOVEMENT)

Cindy Block holds an honorary BFA and an MFA in Acting, a Teaching Diploma from York University and a certificate to teach Embodied Practices®.  She studied Acting at the Herbert Berghof Studio in New York and is a veteran actor of the Canadian stage, having played over 30 professional roles. Throughout her performance career, she has participated in the artistic development of several new Canadian works and was co-founder of P.I.E. Theatre in Vancouver. She is currently a core performer with Toronto Playback Theatre: an improvisational form developed to generate dialogue in community and encourage the recognition of shared experience through story telling.   Her artistic research includes extensive study and application of the practice of Authentic Movement to writing, performance and collective creation for the stage, culminating in a Master’s Thesis.  She has been a co-presenter of this research at the International Festival of Making Theatre in Athens, Greece, The Myth and Theatre Festival’s Summer University at the Roy Hart Centre in France, and at the Canadian Association for Theatre Research Conference. Over the past 15 years she has taught voice, movement, collective creation and Embodied Practice® at York University’s Theatre Department, the Humber College Comedy School, The Centre for Indigenous Theatre as well as privately with industry professionals. She is currently on Faculty at Canada’s National Voice Intensive, George Brown Theatre School, The University of Toronto and The Professional Actor’s Lab.  Her Pedagogical interest is in the synthesis of voice and movement principles for performance and her recent work in the Butoh based production of Eunioa won two Dora Nominations. 

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MARK BROWNELL (THEATRE HISTORY, CANADIAN DRAMA, CREATIVE PROCESS)

Mark is an award winning Canadian playwright and co-artistic director of the Pea Green Theatre Group with his wife and partner Sue Miner. Awards: Nominated for a Governor General's Literary Award for his play Monsieur d'Eon. He received a Dora Mavor Moore Award for his libretto Iron Road and a Dora Mavor Moore Award Nomination for Medici Slot Machine. He is also the recent recipient of the Harold Indie Theatre Award. In 2011 Scirocco Drama published his "Break A Leg! An Actor's Guide to Theatrical Practices, Phrases and Superstitions". Other work includes The Gate of Harmonious Interest, The Schoolyard Carmen, The Barbecue King, The Martha Stewart Projects, Playballs, High Sticking - Three Period Plays, The Chevalier St. George, The Storyteller’s Bag and The Weaving Maiden.

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LEAH CHERNIAK (CLOWN)

Leah is a Resident Artist at Soulpepper and the Associate Director of The Soulpepper Academy. She is the Co-Founder with Martha Ross of Theatre Columbus in Toronto(now Common Boots Theatre)  where she created over 30 new plays and which has an excellent reputation for innovative productions of classics.  For Theatre Columbus she directed and co-created most of the company's repertoire, including: The Anger in Ernest and ErnestineGynty (an adaptation of Peer Gynt), Twelfth Night,  The BetrayalHotel LoopyDance of the Red SkirtsAnd Up They Flew (by Martha Ross) and many more.  She created and performed the role of Jelly in The Attic, the Pearls and 3 Fine Girls.  Other directing highlights include:  Nativity, by Peter Anderson, Happy Days by Samuel Beckett, The Little Years by John  Mighton at The National Arts Centre, Ottawa;  The Book of Esther and Schoolhouse, by Leanna Brodie and Having Hope at Home by David Craig at The Blyth Festival; Past  Perfect by Michel Tremblay, Rune Arlidge by Michael Healey and John and Beatrice by Carole Flechette at  Tarragon Theatre; Six Essential Questions by Priscila Uppal at Factory Theatre; The Miracle  Worker at The Lorraine Kimsa Theatre and I Claudia by Kristen Thompson at The Segal Centre in Montreal among others.   Most recently she directed The Anger in Ernest and Ernestine  at Soulpepper,  and performed in The Dybbuk, adapted by Anton Piatagorsky at Soulpepper.    Leah teaches an intensive clown course for the Ryerson Theatre Program.  She also teaches Directing at University of Toronto.

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MAURIZIO DODARO (DRAMATIC LITERATURE)

Maurizio holds a BA Honours in Italian Studies and History from York University, a MA in Italian Studies from the University of Toronto, a MA in Drama from the University of Toronto and is currently completing his PhD in Drama at U of T. His theatre work has included: dramaturge for Verdi's Don Carlos for the Chicago Opera House, Julius Caesar for the Stratford Festival, The Dark Lady of the Sonnets and The Clairvoyant for the Drama Centre at the U of T.; producer for San Pascal Baylon and Qui Fra Noi Facendoci Compagnia at the Alumni Theatre, U of T and Mozart and Salieri: An Operatic Paraphrase After Rimsky – Korsakov and Mozart at the Robert Gill Theatre; costume designer for Il Re Cervo (Robert Gill Theatre); The Transfiguration, The Annunciation and The Last Judgment (the York Cycle Plays); The Cabot Voyages (Campiello Players). In addition to George Brown College, Maurizio has taught at the Columbus Centre, Ryerson University and the York Catholic District School Board.

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SARAH DODD (SCENE STUDY)

Sarah has been a professional actor for over 20 years. Recently, she was seen in Kat Sandler’s play Mustard at the Tarragon Theatre, for which she was nominated for a Dora Award.  After graduating from George Brown in 1995, Sarah was accepted in into the Stratford Festival Apprenticeship program, where she studied for a year and then became a company member until 2003. She returned in 2009 for Brian Bedford’s acclaimed production of The Importance of Being Earnest. Selected credits at Stratford include: The Cherry Orchard, Macbeth, Private Lives, The Merchant of Venice, Electra and Richard III. In Toronto, selected credits include: Humble Boy, Communion, The Fall, The Small Room at the Top of the Stairs(Tarragon); Age of Arousal, The Penelopiad(Nightwood ); Bingo(Factory Theatre); A Whistle in the Dark, Marion Bridge, Domesticated(Company Theatre). Across Canada, Sarah has been seen at The Citadel Theatre, The Belfry, Centaur Theatre, The Globe, Sudbury Theatre Centre, The Grand and Yukon Arts Centre. Sarah has two Dora Awards for acting and received the Mary Savage Award from the Stratford Festival. She has been an acting coach/instructor for the past 10 years and is a volunteer drama teacher at her son’s elementary school.

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SHARRY FLETT (MONOLOGUE)

Sharry ) recently appeared at the Shaw Festival in Uncle Vanya, Our Town, and Driving Miss Daisy for the Harold Green Jewish Theatre.  As a member of the Shaw Festivalfor  twenty- seven seasons, she has appeared in over 54 productions including ,The Philadelphia Story, The Charity That Began At Home, Lady Windermere’s Fan, Enchanted April, A Man and Some Women, Come Back Little Sheba,  My Fair Lady, Maria Severa, Age of Arousal, The Women, Sunday in the Park with George, A Month in the Country, Summer and Smoke, High Society, The Magic Fire, The Autumn Garden, Major Barbara, Man and Superman, Floyd Collins, Blood Relations, His Majesty, The Return of the Prodigal, Six Characters in Search of an Author, A Woman of No Importance, Getting Married, Rebecca, Joy, Hobson's Choice, The Seagull, The Secret LifeThe HollowCavalcade, Busman's Honeymoon, Eden End, The Silver King, Lulu, Hedda Gabler, Misalliance, Night Must Fall, Berkeley Square, Dangerous Corner, Once in a Lifetime, and War and Peace. Ms. Flett earned two music degrees from McGill University before studying theatre at the Webber-Douglas Academy in London, England. She began her career in musical theatre at Charlottetown. In 1981 she played Kate to Len Cariou`s Petruchio in The Taming of the Shrew at the Stratford Festival. She appeared at Stratford for three seasons in She Stoops to Conquer, The Misanthrope, The Tempest, and Translations. She also appeared in Company at Canadian Stage; as Nora in A Doll’s House at Theatre London, Blanche Dubois in A Streetcar Named Desire, and The Pitman Painters for Theatre Aquarius.  She served as Assistant Director on the Canadian Stage production of Passion. Ms. Flett`s television work has been recognized with Best Actress Gemini nomination for War Brides and a Best Supporting Actress Gemini nomination for The Suicide Murders. Her television and film credits include the starring role in 35 episodes of Full House with Sharry Flett for TVO, as well as appearances on CBC Sunday Arts, Eleventh Hour, Forever Knight, Street Legal, Secret Service, Top Cops, Jane of Lantern Hill, and Shades of Black.  She has taught at the National Theatre School, and various universities, including Toronto, Queen’s, Dalhousie, and Brock. 

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SIMON FON (STAGE COMBAT)

With over 600 professional credits stretching from Broadway to Stratford to Yellowknife, Simon specializes in all areas: Weaponry, Aerial Flying, Unarmed Combat (Eastern and Western).   Fight Master with FDC.  Executive Director and Founder of RIOT A.C.T. earning 17 nominations and 8 awards, including Simon for Male Action Performer of the Year 2009 AOF Festival – California. www.simonfon.com  and www.riotact.ca

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LESLIE FRENCH (MOVEMENT, VOCAL MASQUE)

Leslie is an internationally recognized movement teacher and coach.  She has taught at the College for over 30 years.  As well as teaching at George Brown, Leslie has worked at the Stratford Festival as a movement coach for 5 seasons with the Company and previously taught for 8 years in the Birmingham Conservatory for Classical Theatre Training. Until recently Leslie taught in the evenings at her own school The Centre of Movement where she originally studied. After five years of intensive study in body wisdom, modern dance, mime, improvisation and composition with Til Thiele, former master teacher and principal of the Mary Wigman School in Berlin, Til passed on The Centre of Movement to Leslie. Working with the question 'what is important for an actor' she began to develop her own innovative and personal approach to teaching the actor process in movement terms. She is one of the first people in Canada to teach movement specifically for the actor. As well as George Brown, Leslie has taught at the Maggie Basset Studio, Ryerson's Act Two Studio, Theatre Ontario's Summer Intensive, Harbourfront, OISE, Charlottetown Festival Young People's Company and many other places. Since studying with Til Thiele, she has developed her work further through her studies in Sensory Awareness with Charlotte Selver, Authentic Movement with Judith Koltai and Janet Adler, Syntonics with Judith Koltai, and Craniosacral Therapy with the Upledger Foundation. Presently Leslie is participating as a supporting member in a Masterclass of Embodied Practice TM with Judith Koltai. As well, she is a founding member of a recent movement research project called The Cassandra Project. Leslie is the only person in Canada certified by Charlotte Selver to teach the practice of Sensory Awareness. As well as teaching classes and workshops, Leslie gives private movement sessions in Toronto.

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KAREN GLAVE (TV ACTING)

Karen Glave is a graduate of George Brown School, where she was taught by many wonderful instructors such as Peter Wylde, David Ferry, Paul Lampert, Sherry Flett and Diana Reis. She was also part of The President's Class at The British American Drama Academy (BADA) in 2001, working with Fiona Shaw, David Leveaux, and John Barton. Karen has been working regularly on stage and in Film and TV for over 20 years, since graduating from George Brown Theatre School. She has been seen on stage in a variety of productions including: Macbeth and Cyrano de Bergerac (Stratford Festival), Paulo and Daphne (Theatreworks), The Lady Smith (Theatre Passe Muraille), New World (Tarragon Theatre), Little Tongues (Toronto Fringe) and The Postman directed by David Ferry as part of the Panamania presentations during the 2015 Pan Am Games. Film and TV include: The Strain, Saving Hope, Suits, Remedy, Sensitive Skin, Lost Girl, The Day After Tomorrow, Shooting Oliver, and Last Night.

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TODD HAMMOND (ACTING, VOCAL MASQUE, DIRECTOR)

Todd Hammond is a director, playwright, acting instructor, and is currently on staff at the George Brown Theatre Department. His writing credits include Fish and Starker which he directed for his own company Alchemy Theatre Projects, White/Noise/Jump (director/co-author, Parallel Exit, Best Production Award, New York International Fringe Theatre Festival). Recent directing credits include Fanny's First Play and J. M. Barrie's The Old Lady Shows Her Medals for the Shaw Festival, the Harry Somers opera A Midwinter's Dream for Soundstreams Canada and the Canadian Children's Opera Chorus. Other credits include Short Sharp Mamet (David Mamet/Accessible Theatre), Alias Barcode (Young People's Theatre), Philip-Dimitri Galas' Performance Hell - Avante Vaudeville (BabyJump Project - Toronto and New York), Suddenly Shakespeare and The Lost Land (Shakespeare In Action), Peter Barnes' The Bewitched (Equity Showcase/George Brown), The Crucible (George Brown), King Lear, and Peter Barnes' Red Noses for the York University Theatre Dept. Todd has also taught acting at the National Theatre School and York University.

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VICTORIA HEART (THE ALEXANDER TECHNIQUE)

Victoria Heart is a graduate of the Toronto School of the Alexander Technique and has been teaching since 1995.  Having just finished her fourteenth season with the Shaw Festival, Ms. Heart finds supporting the creative process particularly rewarding.  She has taught master classes with Music Niagara's Youth Camp, did Alexander coaching for the Toronto production of The Lion King, as well as working individually with some members of the Toronto Symphony and the Canadian Opera Company Orchestra.  Ms. Heart makes her home in Toronto, where she also maintains a private practice. Selected Credits for the Shaw Festival:  2016/  Alice, Our Town, Sweeney Todd;  2015/  Sweet Charity, You Never Can Tell;  2014/  Cabaret, The Sea;  2013/  Major Barbara, Faith Healer;  2012/  Ragtime, Helen's Necklace; 2011/  The Admirable Crichton, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof;  2009/  Sunday in the Park with George;  2008/  A Little Night Music;  2007/  Hotel Peccadillo;   2006/  Magic Fire, The Crucible; 2004/  Floyd Collins

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VRENIA IVONOFFSKI (MASK, COMMEDIA DELL' ARTE)

Vrenia Ivonoffski studied acting at the Ecole Jacques Lecoq in Paris, mask with Phillip Gaulier, and directing at Ryerson Theatre School. She has taught at George Brown Theatre School since 1987, Mime and Mask at Ryerson Theatre School and physical theatre workshops at the Centre of Movement, C.O.D.E. conferences and University of Guelph. She has been Artistic Director of the Yellow Bench Theatre Company, Assistant Director at Gryphon Theatre and YPT, Associate Director of the Young Company at the Blyth Festival, and has directed for the Huron Country Playhouse, Hole-in-the-Wall Theatre, Cabbagetown Theatre, Black-White-and-Yiddish Project at the Ford Centre and Act II Studio, of which she has been Artistic Director since 1990. Her play, Leacock Live!, an adaptation of Stephen Leacock’s work, was awarded Patrons’ Pick at the 2010 Toronto Fringe Festival. She was dramaturge and director of Beyond the Pail, a mask show at the 2011 Calgary Fringe.  Ivonoffski is also Artistic Director of Research Based Theatre, a company which translates psychosocial research into theatrical form. Among her research-based plays are three Canada-U.S. touring shows with the Toronto-Sunnybrook Regional Cancer Centre, a show on aging with the Ontario Coalition of Senior Citizens Organizations, and a play for the Aboriginal Health Centre in Hamilton.  Her latest research-based play, Shame!, on ageism and elder abuse, is currently being performed throughout Canada and the US.  Ms. Ivonoffski was president of the Toronto Association of Acting Studios from 2006-09 and has been distinguished as an honorary member of the Arts and Letters Club.  She was awarded the 2014 Maggie Bassett Prize by Theatre Ontario.

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DAVID JANSEN (PERIOD STUDY)

David is an actor, director, dramaturg, and teacher.
As an actor he has performed leading and supporting roles in theatres throughout Canada and the U.K., including Tarragon, Canadian Stage, Mirvish Productions, Soulpepper, Theatre Passe Muraille, Necessary Angel, VideoCabaret, Factory, The Theatre Centre, five years at the Stratford Festival, four years at the Shaw Festival, and a season with The Peter Hall Company in the UK, among others. This past year he was a member of the Dora Award-winning ensemble of The Great War (VideoCabaret). David is also proud of his work with The Wrecking Ball and with Wild Pig Theatre, notably in The Conquest of the South Pole (Dora Award, Best Actor) and Greek.  As a director he recently staged Tuesdays with Morrie at Thousand Islands Playhouse, The Plough and the Stars at Ryerson Theatre School, and assisted Richard Rose on An Enemy of the People at Tarragon. Other directing credits include Age of Arousal (with Kate Lynch) at the University of Toronto; Have I None for the Edward Bond Festival; Kaspar and the Sea of Houses (with Birgit Schreyer-Duarte) for Summerworks, which won that Festival’s award for Outstanding Production in 2011, and Martin Crimp’s Attempts on her Life co-directed with Jennifer Tarver for Ryerson Theatre School. In 2010, he directed both Harold Pinter’s Betrayal for BeMe Theatre in Munich and The Return of Corporal Mazenet at Summerworks. David has also taught at George Brown Theatre School, Ryerson, and mostly recently at the University of Toronto where he is working on a PhD. His dissertation looks at directorial adaptation, comparing how Canadian and German directors and their creative teams remodel classical texts.
In addition, he was Tarragon’s Interim Literary Coordinator for its 2015-2016 season.

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PAM JOHNSON (CONTACT IMPROVISATION)

has been dancing, choreographing, teaching and directing in Toronto for over 30 years. She has danced for many choreographers including: Dave Wilson, Susan McKenzie, Darcey Callison, Viv Moore, Kaeja D'Dance and Kathleen Rea.  In 2009 she choreographed and produced Brother, Can You Spare a Dime? at Winchester Street Theatre. Her choreography has appeared in fFida, Dances for a Small Stage, Square Zero, Dance Matters series, on bicycles, trapezes and in anti-war events. She has been commissioned to create work for the MacMaster Dancers, IN pulse Dance Co., composer John Oswald, Kid in the Hall Bruce McCullough, actor/playwright Diane Flacks and performance artist Phillip Barker and taiko drummers, Raging Asian Women. She is a founding member of High Xposure: Rock Climbing Dance Theatre, dance buskers, Bo Mon 7 Pagolac and Red Alert Rouge Ensemble (RARE).  Pam's theatre credits include: Motherhouse (Centaur Theatre, Montreal),By a Thread (Mythproductions), Gravity Calling (Tarragon), The Stranger (Praxis Theatre). Her film credits include features Zero Patience and Million Dollar Babies and many independent films. She has toured the world as an actor/dancer with the acclaimed Canadian Opera Co. production, Bluebeard’s Castle/Erwartung directed by Robert LePage. As a director/producer, Pam’s credits include the Canadian premier of Marx in Soho, A Tribute to Howard Zinn, video Toronto’s Price Tag and Motherhouse by David Fennario: Ground Zero for a Political Theatre.  Pam’s dance specialty is Contact Improvisation. She is co-coordinator of the Toronto Contact Jam, now in its 37th year. She holds an MA from York University. Her work has been supported by the Toronto and Ontario Arts Councils and the Canada Council for the Arts. She is a member of the Canadian Alliance of Dance Artists (CADA), the Association of Theatre Movement Educators (ATME) and the Canadian Association for Theatre Research (CATR). She is a faculty member in theatre at Humber College, George Brown College and the School of Toronto Dance Theatre. 

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DEBORA JOY (VOICE)

A professional actor, singer and director, Debora has taught voice for actors at the George Brown Theatre School since 1998. She has also been the voice coach for over 60 student productions and 18 period studies there. She holds a Voice Performance degree (BMus) from the University of Toronto and a Masters of Fine Arts degree in Directing (MFA) from York University, and she is a member of the Canadian Actors Equity Association, and Actra. She studied extensively with master voice teacher, David Smukler, and master singing teachers, Richard Armstrong, Patricia Kern and Mary Morrison, and attended both the National Voice Intensive in Vancouver as well as Shakespeare and Company in Lennox, Massachusetts, where she studied with Kristin Linklater, the ground-breaking voice teacher and author of Freeing the Natural Voice. Recently, she was invited to attend Voice Teachers’ Conferences at the Stratford Festival with master teachers, Patsy Rodenburg, and Christina Shewell. Debora has taught voice for actors at York University, the University of Windsor, and Erindale College (U of T). She taught singing in the MFA Theatre program at York University and in the Musical Theatre Department at Sheridan College. Outside of academia, Debora has worked with the Soulpepper Company and Theatre By The Bay, and she has also taught voice workshops with Elevated Grounds, coaching at-risk youth, and with Workman Arts, a not-for-profit arts company working in partnership with the Centre of Addiction and Mental Health. She also coached Pamela Sinha in her award–winning solo show, Crash, at Theatre Passe Muraille.  A Tyrone Guthrie award winner, Debora spent five seasons performing at the Stratford Festival and toured with the company to Broadway and the Old Vic in London, England. She has directed and acted in many professional productions across Canada over the years. Recently, Debora played Mme. De Rosemonde in Les Liaisons Dangereuses at the Storefront Theatre, which was directed by Jakob Ehman, a graduate of GBC. Debora applauds and continues to be inspired by the past, present and future graduates of George Brown Theatre School.

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JEANNETTE LAMBERMONT-MOREY (MONOLOGUE, PERIOD STUDY)

Jeannette Lambermont-Morey has directed major productions in major theatres across Canada and the United States, from the Stratford Festival, to the Virginia Stage Company; including such theatres as The Citadel (Edmonton), The Great Canadian Theatre Company (Ottawa), Atlantic Theatre Festival (Nova Scotia), Manitoba Theatre Centre (Winnipeg), Theatre Aquarius (Hamilton) the Thousand Islands Playhouse (Gananoque), Talk is Free Theatre (Barrie), the New World Theatre Project (St. John’s, NFLD) and Huron Country Playhouse (Grand Bend); and Toronto theatres, Factory Theatre, Canadian Stage, Harbourfront Centre, and The Toronto International Fringe Festival, etc. Jeannette directed the World Leaders Tributes to Harold Pinter and Robert Rauschenberg as part of the internationally acclaimed Series produced by Harbourfront at the Liberty Grand in the fall of 2001.  That year also marked her 8th season with the Stratford Festival in Ontario, where she directed Henry V. Other significant Stratford Festival productions include As You Like It (2000), Pride and Prejudice (1999) and The Miracle Worker (1998). In earlier years at the Festival she directed Titus AndronicusThe Grand Inquisitor and Swan Song (1989 and 1990), as well as serving as collaborating director on The Comedy of Errors and The Relapse (1989) and assisting Richard Monette on The Taming of the Shrew (1988) and John Neville on Othello (1987).  Her hit production of The Syringa Tree (The Citadel) won a Sterling Award for Liisa Repo-Martell; and her productions of Twelfth Night in High Park (Canadian Stage) and Digging For Fire (Paramour Productions) were both nominated for a Dora Mavor Moore awards for Outstanding Production.  Favourite projects have included The Tempest and The Merchant of Venice for the New World Theatre Project in St. John’s, Newfoundland, As You Like It for BlueBridge Rep Theatre in Victoria, Private Lives at the Atlantic Theatre Festival, The Beauty Queen of Leenane at the Virginia Stage Company with Eileen Brennan, and also at the Manitoba Theatre Centre with Rosemary Dunsmore, Doc (Great Canadian Theatre Co., Ottawa), Moving Day by Cathy Elliott (TIFT), and A Midsummer Night's Dream (Juilliard School , N.Y.), to name only a few. She also produced and directed the CBC's live show Get Set for Life for a cross-Canada tour and the Milk International Children's Festival of the Arts at Harbourfront. Jeannette works extensively in college and university theatre programs as a director and instructor. Among them are George Brown College, Grenfell College, York University, the Juilliard School (NY), the University of Alberta, Ryerson University, Dartmouth College (NH), and the University of Victoria. At George Brown College Jeannette has directed Mary Stuart, War and PeaceThe Beau StratagemLion in the StreetsRitesWild Honey and Bon Ton & The Lying Valet. In addition Jeannette has helmed the Annual Period Study exercise for over ten years.  Jeannette is passionately devoted to the development and dramaturgy of new work, and is currently working with several George Brown graduates on various projects.  In the summer of 2016 she directed her musical version of Faust (music by Leslie Arden) for Theatre By the Bay in Barrie, produced by GB grad, Alex Dault. Jeannette was Artistic Director of the New World Theatre Project in Newfoundland in 2012/13 and 2015 directed Much Ado About Nothing for them under their new name, Perchance Theatre. She was also Executive Director of the Shakespeare Globe Centre of Canada from 2000 to 2015. Jeannette lives in Toronto with her husband, fiction writer and computer special effects compositor Mike Morey, and their daughter, musician, Micaela.

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KENNEDY C. MacKINNON (SHAKESPEARE)

Kennedy MacKinnon holds a MFA in Acting, a Diploma in Voice Teacher Training (York University) and a BFA in Acting (University of Windsor). Also known as Cathy, she is the founder and Artistic Director of Shakespeare Link Canada. With SLC Kennedy has spent the last ten years working in Mozambique where she co-created/co-directed A Winter's TaleRomeo and JulietMedida Por MedidaA Tempestade, and Sonho Noctourno. She is working toward the creation of  an Arts Centre in Quelimane, Mozambique. She co-adapted/co-directed Death of a Chief for Native Earth Performing Arts at the NAC/Buddies in Bad Times and directed Saltwater Moon for GB alum Nathan Carroll. She coached on the innovative, inaugural Groundling Theatre production of A Winter's Tale. She spent ten years as Head of Voice at Humber College. She is currently in her eleventh season as a Voice and Text Coach at the Stratford Festival of Canada where she also spends time working with the Birmingham Conservatory for Classical Theatre Training and the Education department. In Denver, Colorado, Kennedy interned as assistant to Gary Logan (Head of Voice and Speech) at the Denver Center for the Performing Arts/National Theater Conservatory. She has coached, taught and given workshops in a variety of places including Wales, Broadway, Shakespeare Chicago Theater, Saskatoon, Theatre New Brunswick, Native Earth Performing Arts, Ryerson (Act II), Equity Showcase Theatre, University of Windsor, York University, Indigenous Theatre School, Randolph School for the Performing Arts, Young People's Theatre and the National Voice Intensive. By either name, she is, as always, privileged to be here.

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ROBERT McCOLLUM (DANCE)

Robert started his career in New York City as a scholarship student at the Joffrey Ballet and as an artist-in-residence at St. John Divine Cathedral with the Omega Dance Company.  In 1978 Robert came to Toronto to dance with Ballet Ys and toured Canada, which he loved, and has been based here ever since.  As a choreographer, his work has been seen across Canada with Ballet Ys, Danseast, Sharon, Lois and Bram, and Dance Nova Scotia.  As well, he has choreographed for the theatre including the productions Monsieur D’eon is a Woman (Pea Green Productions), Maestro Orpheus (Centre in the Square in Kitchener),  Love’s  Labour’s Lost (Resurgence Theatre), and five shows for Soulpepper Theatre – Ring Round the Moon, Travesties, Waiting for the Parade, White Biting Dog, and You Can’t Take It With You.   As the Dance Teacher and Resident Choreographer for George Brown Theatre for 25 years, he has created dances for many productions including some memorable shows such as Sunday in the Park With George, The Threepenny Opera, Pride and Prejudice, War and Peace, and The Baker’s Wife.  In addition to teaching at George Brown Theatre School, Robert is the Adult Ballet Program Director at Canada’s National Ballet School.  A special thanks to Jimmy Simon for keeping the program vibrant and exciting with genuine human touch.

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SUE MINER (CAREER STUDIES, GUEST DIRECTOR)

A graduate of the National Theatre School’s Acting section Sue has been directing for 24 years and is versed in classical text, music theatre, puppetry and opera. Recent directing credits include 3 Men in a Boat (Pea Green Theatre) James and the Giant Peach (Young People's Theatre) Ring Round the Moon (George Brown Theatre School) Prairie Nurse (Blyth Festival) A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Theatre Erindale) Fly Fisher’s Companion (Lighthouse Festival Theatre) The Pub Operas (Tapestry New Opera) The Good Doctor and The Crucible (Toronto Film School) The Love List (Sudbury Theatre Centre) The Tempest (Canadian Stage Dream in High Park) The Fantasticks (Red Barn) and Sexy Laundry (Theatre Aquarius) Sue is co-artistic director of Pea Green Theatre Group with her husband Mark Brownell where she directed War of the Clowns, Medici Slot Machine and Monsieur D’Eon is a Woman, among others. In 2010 both Sue and Mark received a Harold Award for “Outstanding Contribution to the Toronto Performing Arts Scene.” Along with many Dora nominations, Sue made the long list for the Siminovitch Prize in 2007, been thrice nominated for the Pauline McGibbon Award and has been twice touted as one of Toronto’s Top-10 theatre artists by NOW Magazine. Love You Forever and More Munsch, which she co-adapted and directed for Young People’s Theatre, won a Dora Mavor Moore Award for Outstanding TYA Show. Sue first directed at George Brown in 1995 and has directed three of the second year theatre-for-young-audience shows as well as Stephen Sondheim’s Sunday in the Park with George with the graduating class of 2000. She has also long been an instructor in George Brown’s IPAC program as well as several scene studies and monologue classes. Sue also teaches with The Toronto Film School and has taught at Sheridan’s Music Theatre Dept, the TDSB and Theatre Ontario.  

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GEOFF POUNSETT (SPEECH, GUEST DIRECTOR)

A twenty-year veteran of the Canadian theatre, Geoffrey is a Toronto-based actor, director and educator, and a graduate of George Brown. He has performed in theatres across the country, been a company member with the Stratford, Charlottetown and PlayRites Festivals, and been in several productions for Canadian Stage, Factory and Tarragon Theatres in Toronto. In 2017, he returns to Scotland to continue his work with local company Poorboy Theatre. As an actor, he has been a part of developing new work with playwrights such as Hannah Moscovitch, Erin Shields, Linda Griffiths, Wendy Lill, Florence Gibson, Jason Sherman, Paula Wing, Joseph Jomo Pierre and David Young. As a director, his work includes the original production of two Governor-General’s Award nominees, Kate Hewlett’s The Swearing Jar and Brendan Gall’s A Quiet Place, which also garnered Geoffrey a Dora Award nomination – one of five received by that production. He has also directed new work by Jenny Young, Rick Roberts, Matt Gorman and Michael Rubenfeld, among others, and has twice been cited by NOW Magazine for Outstanding Direction at the Toronto Fringe Festival. Along with Brendan Gall and Christopher Stanton, Geoffrey is the co-founder of the Toronto performance company The Room, for whom he directed three parts of the epic seven-stage cycle Red Machine as well as the world premiere of Neil Wechsler’s award-winning The Brown Bull of Cuilange.

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DIANA REIS (ACTING)

Ms. Reis trained at the National Theatre School, HB Studio in New York and The Centre for Actors' Study in Toronto (CAST). Ms. Reis is best known to television audiences as the notorious Stephanie Long on CBC's Riverdale and saintly Lucy Ramone (Busy's mom) on Ready or Not for Global/Disney. She has appeared in over forty TV series, movies of the week and feature films and worked with such esteemed directors as John Huston, Robert Altman, Allan King, Lee Grant and Kinji Fukusaku. Most recently, she played principal roles in the LIFETIME film Taken in Broad Daylight and on the CTV series Nikita and The LA Complex.  Theatre highlights include: The Diary of Anne Frank (Manitoba Theatre Centre); Amadeus, The Little Foxes (Asolo State Theatre); Top Girls (Arbour Theatre); Salt-Water Moon, A Streetcar Named Desire (Theatre Aquarius); A Doll’s House (Banff Centre); Hedda Gabler, Waiting for the Parade (Magnus Theatre) and Charlie's Aunt (Capitol Theatre). Ms Reis' directing credits include: Loose Ends (National Theatre School); Under the Skin, If Betty Should Rise (Grand Theatre, London), Amadeus (Theatre Sheridan) and over 30 concert play readings for The First Stages Theatre Company of which she is the former and founding Artistic Director. She has been an acting coach on over 25 films and TV movies. In addition to her long time association with George Brown Theatre School, Ms Reis has taught and directed at Florida State University, Equity Showcase, Sheridan College, Ryerson University, Humber College, The National Theatre School of Canada and the National Ballet of Canada.  As well, she teaches acting in the MFA program at York University and at her own professional theatre-training workshop. She has helped to create and is a senior faculty member of the new George Brown Acting for Media Program that will commence in the fall of 2016. She holds a Masters degree in Theatre and Performance Studies from York University.

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ED SAHELY (GROUP IMPROVISATION)

Ed Sahely has been a working actor for over thirty years now. Ed worked with the renowned Second City Company as an improviser/writer for seven years. His cast received a Dora Mavor Moore Award for their work on the Toronto Main-stage. He co-created the troupe Not To Be Repeated which improvised a new Canadian play every night and first ran at the Tarragon Theatre then was picked up by CTV and The Comedy Channel and called This Sitcom Is Not To Be Repeated. Along with performing Ed has been teaching Improv to the first year George Brown theatre students for the last sixteen years. Ed teaches Improv at the Second City Training Centre, the Sheraton/UTM first year students and was guest artist for the George Brown Gaming Design students/2011. Other teaching credits include the Charlottetown Festival's Young Company/2010, frequent guest artist acting coach/director for Cawthra Park High School for the Arts in Mississauga, improv and monologue coach, and director for the Theatre Aquarius Summer Theatre Camp 2011-2013. Taught an Improv Intensive for the St. Lawrence College musical theatre students, 2014. As an actor Ed has many credits for television, film theatre and voice work and continues to work as an actor, a writer, a director of theatre and dramaturge for new works. Theatre credits include: Outrageous, Dishwashers, Last Resort, Funny Thing Happened On The Way To The Forum, Sexy Laundry, Henry and Alice, Weekend Comedy, Annie, Lend Me A Tenor, Chicago (nominated for a Calgary Critics Choice award Amos Hart),  Fiddler On The Roof and Lend Me A Tenor. Film/television credits include: Canadian Bacon, Three to Tango, Glitter. Robocop, Getting Along Famously, Sue Thomas: F.B.Eye, Road to Avonlea, Traders, Due South, Red Green, Doc, Monk, Kojak, Dan For Mayor, Skins, Murdock Mysteries.

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ROSANNA SARACINO (FUNDAMENTALS OF ACTING)

Rosanna Saracino is an Italian-Canadian director, dramaturge, and educator. She was Director in Residence at the Canadian Stage in 2015/2016, is the Head of the Acting Division at the Randolph Academy for the Performing Arts, and is the Artistic Director of the soon to be launched Recollection Theatre. She has directed upward of 70 productions for the stage, and has co-produced, written and directed in film and television. Her freelance work has extended to companies such as The Canadian Opera Company, The Classical Music Conservatory, The PowerPlant, and One Yellow Rabbit. As an educator Saracino has taught at York University (Creative Ensemble, Acting Division), RAPA (Acting Division), Fanshawe College (Auditions/Actor Prep), and has taught workshops across Ontario. Directing credits include: Killing Game by Ionesco, No Exit by Sartre, As You Like it, Lord of the Flies by Golding, Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead by Stoppard, and also, she is known for her adaptations and large cast, devised theatre projects. Saracino is currently in rehearsals for her new work, Suitcases, which will be presented at the Artscape Sandbox in November, 2016.  

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JAMES SIMON (ARTISTIC DIRECTOR, DIRECTOR, BUSINESS OF ACTING, SCENE STUDY)

James Simon is a director and acting instructor. He holds an M.A. from the University of Alberta, B.A. from McGill University, and has studied at the Banff Centre. As an instructor, Mr. Simon has taught at the University of Alberta - Department of Drama, Grant MacEwan Community College (Edmonton), Theatre Ontario, and the Citadel Theatre. Directing credits include productions at the National Arts Centre; the Citadel Theatre; Tarragon Theatre; Young People's Theatre; Blyth Festival; Buddies in Bad Times (Dora nomination); Stage West; Theatre Network; Carousel Players; Theatre on the Move; University of Alberta - Department of Drama; Berkeley Street Theatre; and George Brown Theatre. Mr. Simon has been on the teaching staff for twenty one years, and been Artistic Director of the Theatre School for sixteen years. 

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CHRISTOPHER STANTON (VOCAL MASQUE)

Christopher Stanton has been creating work for stage and screen for over twenty years. His practice is exceptionally wide-ranging, spanning from performer to director, writer, sound designer, and composer. His stage work has taken him across Canada to Toronto, Edmonton, Ottawa, Winnipeg, Vancouver, Montreal – and internationally to New York, Bogotà, Munich, Brisbane, Dublin, and Vienna. He has been nominated for 11 Dora Awards across disciplines, winning in 2011 for his performance in Enda Walsh’s New Electric Ballroom. He was nominated for the Pauline McGibbon Award (Directing), and was ‘harolded’ by Brendan Gall in 2009 for a Harold Award. Stanton is also the Artistic Producer of Toronto-based indie performance company ARC. onebandoflight.com

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DAVID STORCH (GUEST DIRECTOR, SHAKESPEARE SCENE STUDY)

David has worked across Canada as an actor, a director, and a teacher.  Recent work as a director includes Instructions to Any Future Socialist Government Wishing to Abolish Christmas (Coal Mine Theatre), Munsch-o-Mania, I’m So Munsch (George Brown), The Hours That Remain (Gwaandak Theatre, Saskatchewan Native Theatre, Native Earth Theatre), The Road to MeccaSpeed-the-Plow, Glengarry Glen Ross(Soulpepper), Restoration (York University), Arcadia (National Theatre School), Robin Hood, Metamorphoses (Globe Theatre), The Palace of the End, A Number, Omnium Gatherum, Sunday Father, Twelfth Night, Misery (Canadian Stage), “Art” (Arts Club), How I Learned to Drive (Manitoba Theatre Centre, Belfry Theatre), Einstein’s Gift, The Goat, Blue/Orange, Beauty Queen of Leenane (Citadel Theatre).  Recent work as an actor includes Arigato, Tokyo (Buddies in Bad Times), Cake and DirtIn the Next Room, or The Vibrator Play, The Misanthrope (Tarragon), A Month in the Country, Antigone, Travesties, Mary Stuart, King Lear, Translations (Soulpepper), The Overwhelming (Studio 180), What Lies Before Us (Crow’s Theatre), Frost/Nixon (Vancouver Playhouse, Canadian Stage), Hamlet, Servant of Two Masters, Measure for Measure, Wit (Citadel Theatre). He has recently begun directing for television.

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JULIE TEPPERMAN(BUSINESS OF ACTING)

is an actor, playwright and educator, as well as co-artistic director (with fellow GB grad Aaron Willis) of Convergence Theatre, creators of the hit plays AutoShowThe Gladstone Variations, and YICHUD (Seclusion).  In June 2013, they co-produced (along with Outside the March and Sheep No Wool) the Canadian premiere of Sarah Ruhl’s three-part epic Passion Play, which won a Dora Award for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble.  Most recently they premiered The Unending - three short places at the Toronto Fringe, that took place at Aunties & Uncles Restaurant and two secret locations! Julie’s playwriting credits include: YICHUD (Seclusion) (Convergence/Theatre Passe Muraille/Magnetic North Theatre Festival; published by Playwrights Canada Press, nominated for a Capital Critics' Circle Award), I Grow Old (as part of The Gladstone Variations – 4 Dora nominations including Outstanding Play; listed as one of NOW Magazine’s “Top Ten Toronto Productions of the Decade”), ROSY (as part of AutoShow; Best of The Fringe), and a re-imagining of the August Strindberg play The Father (Winnipeg Jewish Theatre/ Manitoba Theatre Centre’s 2011 Master Playwright’s Festival).  Julie was Playwright-In-Residence at Theatre Passe Muraille in 2010-11 with the support of the Canada Council.  Recently, Julie has been commissioned to develop two new musicals - The Preposterous Posthumous Predicament of Paulie Peel with Acting Up Stage which was inspired by Paul Peel's 1891 painting The Young Biologist, and Selfie with Tapestry Opera. which explores Slutshaming and Cyberbullying. Selected acting credits include:  TEASE (as part of Crow's Theatre's Solo Festival for which she appeared on the cover of NOW Magazine), Mary 2 in Passion Play (Ensemble Dora Award), The Audience Guide in Mr. Marmalade (Outside The March; Dora award for Outstanding Indie Production), Liza in Out The Window (The Theatre Centre), Rachel in YICHUD (Seclusion), and two seasons at The Stratford Festival as well as their Conservatory for Classical Theatre Training.  As an educator: Julie has been an Artist-in-the-Schools with the Stratford Festival’s Teaching Shakespeare Program since 2002, is on faculty at Ryerson University’s Act II Studio, teaches “The Business of Acting” at George Brown Theatre School (where she herself graduated in 2001), has mentored the graduating class at Humber College for their “Backspace Project”, has twice facilitated the Paprika Festival’s Creators’ Unit, and is a regular workshop facilitator with the Luminato Festival.  Julie regularly teaches self-producing workshops for the Toronto Fringe Festival, SummerWorks, Nightwood Theatre and Convergence Theatre, as well as playwriting workshops for the JCC, Convergence, and at the University of Toronto.  ETC:  Julie has been nominated for the K.M. Hunter Artist Award (OAC) and is the President of the Board of Generator (formerly STAF). NOW Magazine has twice listed Convergence Theatre as the "Best Site-Specific Theatre Company in Toronto", and Aaron & Julie have been listed as"Toronto's Most Respected Theatre Duo".  RECENTLY:  Julie co-created, co-wrote and co-directed Brantwood (with Mitchell Cushman / Sheridan's Canadian Musical Theatre Project) which has over 15 hours of scripted material (including 40 songs) which unfold all over an old high school. Brantwood won the 2015 Audience Choice Award Dora and is currently on the hunt for a home in Toronto where it might enjoy a longer run - stay tuned! 

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SEVERN THOMPSON (SHAKESPEARE SCENE STUDY)

As an actor Severn has appeared in theatres across the country.  Most recently she performed the title role in Elle at Theatre Passe Muraille, a play that she also adapted.  Severn will be performing Elle at PTE in Winnipeg in February, 2017.    Other selected credits are: Seeds (Blyth Festival); Cat on a Hot Tin Roof (Segal Centre); Hannah’s Turn (SummerWorks Festival); The Merchant of VeniceFuente OvejunaThe Liar (Stratford Festival).  Severn also appeared in several seasons at the Shaw Festival in plays such as The Cherry OrchardJohn Bull's Other Island and Diana of Dobson’s.  TV/film credits include The Mystery of Mazo de la RocheHannibalSaving Hope, and Helix.  At George Brown, Severn directed The Munsch Bunch and assistant directed Liaus, directing its remount for the City of Wine Festival (Theatre Passe Muraille).  Other directing credits are The Farm 2012, Beyond the Farm Show (Blyth Festival); and Madam Mao  (SummerWorks Festival & 2016 remount at Tarragon Extra Space).  Severn has worked as an acting coach and teacher for the last ten years and is a graduate of the National Theatre School as well as Stratford's Birmingham Conservatory.

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J. RIGZIN TUTE (MUSIC)

Rigzin maintains an active career as a composer, teacher, conductor and singer. He has written songs for 17 of George Brown's Plays for Young Audiences, numerous songs and incidental music for George Brown's Third Year productions, as well as professional productions such as, Three Men in A Boat for Pea Green Theatre (2014/2015), Love You Forever . . .  And More Munsch for LKTYP (2008), Medici Slot Machine for Pea Green Theatre (2006), Ah, Wilderness! for Shaw Festival (2004), and Love's Labour's Lost for Resurgence Theatre (2003). In addition to teaching singing at George Brown, Rigzin’s private students have been accepted into voice programs at the Universities of Toronto, York, Windsor, Westminster Choir College and the Berklee School of Jazz in Boston. He also coaches professionals performing in music theatre and as soloists with such organizations as the Toronto Mendelssohn Choir, the Kitchener-Waterloo Philharmonic Chorus and the Elora Festival Singers. Rigzin is formerly the conductor of the University of Waterloo Concert Choir and Chamber Choir, Guelph's Rainbow Chorus and Toronto's Interlink Choir. He has performed as a soloist with choirs and orchestras throughout North America and Europe. He has also been featured in major operatic, concert and music theatre productions at the Spoleto Festivals in Charleston, South Carolina and Spoleto, Italy, The Elora Festival, The New York Philharmonic, The Philadelphia Orchestra and Princeton's Westminster Choir. He is a founding member of Mirror Image, an avant-garde vocal ensemble with performances of major Canadian commissioned works for the Winnipeg Symphony and the K-W new music festivals. He was also a long time member of The Gents, a 6 man a cappella vocal ensemble.  Rigzin music-directed Sunday in the Park with George for George Brown/Equity Showcase Theatre,  The Threepenny Opera, The Baker’s Wife and Happy End for George Brown Theatre. Rigzin has recently combined his love for music, theatre and ritual by qualifying as a Life-Cycle Celebrant, becoming a creator of, and officiant at weddings, funerals and other significant celebrations for people wishing to mark these life-events in a personal and unique manner. He can be contacted at: jrigzintute@mac.com

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AARON WILLIS (GUEST DIRECTOR)

Aaron Willis is an actor, director, educator, and co-founding artistic director of Convergence Theatre (with Julie Tepperman). Directing: The Testament of Mary (Soulpepper), Stupidhead! (SummerWorks 2015), Who's Your Daddy? (Crow's Theatre East End Performance Crawl) The Thing Between Us (mcguffin company), The Crucible (Theatre Erindale/UTM) Danny and the Deep Blue Sea (Baro Theatre) Passion Play (Convergence/Outside the March/Sheep No Wool), Miss Caledonia (Tarragon Theatre), When The Ice Breaks (Down n Out Productions/Campbell House Museum), Other People (Mutual Friends Co-op), YICHUD (Seclusion) (Theatre Passe Muraille/Convergence Theatre, The Gladstone Variations – The Tearful Bride (Convergence Theatre, Dora nomination), AutoShow (Convergence Theatre/Toronto Fringe 2006). Acting: Murderers Confess At Christmastime (Outside the March/Summerworks 2013), YICHUD (Seclusion) (Theatre Passe Muraille/Convergence), The Incredible Speediness of Jamie Cavanaugh (Roseneath Theatre), Zadie's Shoes (GCTC), Abattoir (Kaeja d'Dance/Harbourfront Centre), The Russian Play (Factory Theatre), Wrecked (Roseneath; Dora Nomination – Best Performance TYA); The Merchant of Venice (Shakespeare in the Rough), (nod) (Theatre Gargantua), Waiting for Lefty and Awake and Sing (The CO.), Well, (Tarragon Theatre). Film/TV: Reign, Flashpoint. Education: Aaron is an "Artist-in-the-Schools" with the Stratford Shakespeare Festival, The Luminato Festival, and an instructor at Ryerson University's Act 2 Studio. Other: Assistant Director on Phillipe Boesmans' opera JULIE at Canadian Stage (2015) and on EVITA (2010) and Much Ado About Nothing (2012) at the Stratford Festival's Michael Langham Workshop for Classical Theatre Direction. Aaron has a BA Honours in Drama from the University of Alberta and is a graduate of George Brown Theatre School.

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PETER C. WYLDE (TEXT STUDY)

Peter C. Wylde began his professional career in 1953 at the Bristol Old Vic and subsequently appeared with the Salisbury Arts and West of England Theatre Companies, Glasgow Citizens’ Theatre, Carlisle Repertory, two Edinburgh Festivals, and the Stratford Festival of Canada in its last year under canvas, and in the Tyrone Guthrie production of Tamburlaine the Great on Broadway.  He performed with and subsequently co-managed the Straw Hat Players for three seasons in Port Carling and Peterborough, Ontario. He took degrees in Modern Languages and Literatures, and in Slavic Languages and Literatures from the University of Toronto and at Harvard, subsequently teaching at Harvard, U. of T. and Smith College in Northampton, Massachusetts. He was invited by Leon Major to become dramaturge at Toronto Arts Productions, (1973-1980), where his translation of Chekhov’s Three Sisters had been produced in 1972. He was Head of Acting at George Brown Theatre School for thirteen years, (1986-1999), teaching also at the Royal Conservatory Opera School, the National Theatre School of Canada, (1980-2001), the Birmingham Conservatory for Classical Theatre at the Stratford Festival, and at Ryerson University Theatre School, (2000 to 2010). He then established the Wylde Project, (www.wyldeproject.com), teaching and coaching independently (studio@wyldeproject.com ). His directing credits include work with the Toronto Children’s Opera Chorus and the Pacific Opera Victoria, B.C. He continues to work as a professional actor, and appeared in an independent production of Duet for One with George Brown graduate Liz Dixon, directed by Dorothy Ward, the Canadian Stage production of The Beard Of Avon directed by former NTS student David Storch, at the Bluma Appel Theatre in Toronto, and Like A Dog, (Fringe 2012), a new work written for him by Ryerson graduate Matthew Gorman and starring George Brown graduate Andy Trithardt. He has given lectures on the cultural and historical backgrounds of numerous plays for acting companies such as Soulpepper and Stratford in their early rehearsals, written programme notes, and created for Brian Bedford a one-man show, Ever Yours, Oscar, drawn from the correspondence of Oscar Wilde. He can occasionally be caught, very late at night, in a re-run of a sci-fi movie called Carver’s Gate a.k.a. Dreambreaker. His former students now populate stages all across the country and are keeping him poor. During the summer of 2013 he made his first foray into the works of Harold Pinter, invited to direct two George Brown students, (and one from Ryerson), in The Lover at the Alumnae Theatre.  He continues to offer private classes and coaching upon demand.

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