Activist community

A two-day forum aims to brainstorm a new community theater project

A theater and cross-creative event is planned for the Orillia Opera House on April 8-9; “Let’s listen, play, share and think about the possibilities!” said official

Calling artists, activists, youth, community stewards, leaders and future leaders! We are very excited to present Theater and Cross Creativity – April 8-9, 2022 – a two-day event that will bring us together to collaboratively imagine a new community theater project. Let’s listen, play, share and think about the possibilities!

On Friday, April 8 at 7:30 p.m., join us at the Orillia Opera House for wine and cheese with our new guests. You will meet Marcia Johnson and learn about her journey as an actress and playwright.

There’s a lot to say – Johnson is recognized by Now Magazine as one of the Top 10 Performing Artists for 2021! Enjoy a playback of her critically acclaimed sound Serving Elizabethwhich you may have seen at the 2021 Stratford Festival. The piece addresses this moment of extreme racial tension and was created in response to the popular television series “The Crown”.

You will also meet Simon Malbogat, co-founder and artistic director of Mixed Company Theatre. Malbogat has facilitated hundreds of workshops for young people and adults in Europe, South America, the United States and Canada. He’s a forum theater expert with 1,000 presentations to his credit, and he comes to our community to share his expertise as an artist who has used his creativity to fight for civic justice.

Finally, don’t miss Desire Leverenz, founder of The Orange Girls and a passionate artist who enjoys disrupting Western artistic traditions in an attempt to decolonize herself, her art and the communities where she works. Leverenz tells us that she “will never wash the soil of Treaty 6 under her feet.” She’s committed to blurring a lot of lines in her stage practice and she’s thrilled to share her story as one of this country’s most dynamic young creators.

During a community workshop for young people, Leverenz will ask, what if we could imagine a perfect utopia? What does it look like? What does it take to get there? Young people are invited to explore their creativity, their imagination and their strangeness through games, writing, music, improvisation, etc. Seven participants will be chosen for a paid position as a youth consultant during our community discussion!

On Saturday, April 9, return to the Orillia Opera House for a day of hands-on fun. We will have morning snacks and a community meeting in the green room from 10-11 a.m. If you have an interest in the performing arts and are between the ages of 10 and 99, join a dynamic forum theater workshop led by Simon Malbogat from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.

The workshop promises an afternoon of play and experimentation. Together, we will examine several ideas and perspectives from the community through a process of creating and analyzing images created by you – the participants!

We hope you will stay after the workshop or come to the theater for refreshments and community dialogue from 1:30-3:30 p.m. We are excited to be planning a new community theater project focusing on the most central topics of our local – and we would love to hear from you!

To register or donate in support, please visit our website here.