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New Ideas Festival 2017 - Week 2

March 15 – 19, 2017

Wednesday to Saturday, 8 pm; Saturday & Sunday, 2:30 pm; Reading, March 18, 2017 12:00pm

Week 2 plays (click on show for details): The Red Lacquered Box • Parallax • Y •​
Professionally Ethnic • Who You Callin Black, Eh? (reading)


In the late 1800s, in Paris, France, a tragic incident shocks polite society. Madame Giles, secretary to Madame Tullée, relates the details of the terrible event, casting light on this dark mystery.

Director: Lynn Weintraub*
Stage Manager: Ksenia Sabouloua
Cast: Aleksandra Maslennikova


Burke Campbell is a journalist, blogger, playwright, and photographer. Burke has authored
major reports for the federal government of Canada on technology, and its influence on culture,
business, and the arts. Known primarily as a freelance journalist writing for elite publications
such as the Financial Post, the National PostThe Globe and Mail, and the Ottawa Citizen, Burke is also a photographer and, in 2006, received an exhibition of his work at the O’Connor Gallery, Toronto. In 2015, his comedy Beyond Belief was successfully produced at the Red Sandcastle Theatre, Toronto.

Lynn Weintraub is an experienced actor and teacher who has turned her focus to directing. She earned her BFA in Acting Performance from the University of Alberta after training extensively throughout North America, including at McGill University, The Banff Centre, and Interlochen Center for the Arts. She has taught drama, acting, and scene study workshops for YPT, Theatre Aquarius, Theatre Ontario, The York School, UCC, Tarragon Theatre, the TDSB, and her own company, The Players Theatre Company. Lynn was program coordinator and senior faculty for Seneca College’s Theatrical Performance Certificate Program. She’s a proud member of ACTRA and Equity, appearing in local and regional theatre, film, television, and commercials. 
*With the permission of Canadian Actors’ Equity Association

Ksenia Sabouloua is happy to be a part of the festival!


Aleksandra Maslennikova immigrated to Canada several years ago, and all this time Toronto’s unique artistic vibe has been nurturing her passion for the performance arts. This is the third time she has joined New Ideas Festival, and she is thrilled to be in The Red Lacquered Box, a challenging and hauntingly beautiful piece. Some of her favourite theatre credits include Estelle Rigault in No Exit (Theatre NSK) and Edith Frank in The Diary of Anne Frank (Marion Abbott Productions); besides theatre she’s been working on various short and feature film projects.

PARALLAX by Michelle Glennie

Past and Future collide when one woman wants to go to a world that another woman can’t wait to leave. What, if anything,
​will ground them?

Director: Ara Glenn-Johanson
Stage Manager: Melly Magrath
Cast: Melanie Leon, Duncan Rowe, Wendy Fox, Taylor Shouldice



Michelle Glennie lives on Montreal’s South Shore and is currently a graduate student in creative writing at UBC. Her play Spare Change was produced by the InspiraTO Festival, winning a People’s Choice Award. Her play Keep Me Dreaming was part of The Grand Theatre’s Playwrights Cabaret. Michelle’s poetry has been published in Canadian literary journals and shortlisted for the Winston Collins/Descant Prize for Best Canadian Poem.  

Ara Glenn-Johanson is a director/choreographer/performer working in theatre, dance, and contemporary performance. Projects include The Lily’s Revenge (American Repertory Theater), The Magic Fish (Outside the Box Festival), She Kills Monsters (Boston Center for the Arts), Glory Glory (Northside Theatre), Man of La Mancha (UC Davis), Hypothesis: Or Overthinkers in Love (Videofag), and Mankind (UK Tour). Her contemporary performance works have been curated in New York City, San Francisco, Toronto, San Diego, and Boston. Training: NYU-Tisch School of the Arts (BFA); UC Davis (MFA). Honours: Artist-in-Residence at The Headlands Center for the Arts and San Francisco’s The Garage; Fort Mason in Performance Grant (Hewlett Foundation).

​MELLY MAGRATH, Stage Manager
Melly Magrath is a multidisciplinary theatre artist from Toronto. She is co-owner of Small but Mighty Productions. Past SM work includes The Life (Call It a Day Productions), Den of Thieves (Triple Bypass Productions), Perk Up! Pianist (Hagen Does Theatre), and Fourplay (Daisy Productions).


​MELANIE LEON, Marie Soleil
Melanie Leon’s recent credits, since graduating from the University of Victoria’s acting program, include playing Tourvel in Les Liaisons Dangereuses (Amicus), Elisa in Marie Antoinette: The Colour of Flesh (Urban Arts Productions), and Marie Ange in Les Belles Soeurs (Village Playhouse). She is a winner of the Toronto Monologue Slam, can be seen as “Claire” in the new web series AntiSocial, and is part of the 2016/17 Mechanicals program with Factory Theatre. Upcoming projects include Post No Bills, a collective creation piece that explores the history surrounding St John’s Ward, Toronto’s first immigrant neighborhood (Toronto Fringe Festival 2017).

Duncan Rowe is exhilarated to make his debut at the New Idea’s Festival and to breathe life into the character of Rock. Duncan is a Toronto-based actor, writer, director, and producer. He is a graduate of the University of Windsor’s B.F.A acting program and also trained at the Moscow Art Theatre School, completing his “Month in Moscow.” Film credits: Tyler (A Good Man Is Hard to Find) Theatre credits: Roy Stilz (Commercials for Hamilton), Sebastian (Twelfth Night), Andrew Borden (Blood Relations), and Oberon (A Midsummer Night’s Dream). Writing credits: The Heavy Weight (2016), Green in Blue (2016), and The Man on the Other Side (2015).

​WENDY FOX, Louise
Wendy Fox is excited to be part of the New Ideas Festival! Select credits: Makayla in Sick Kids Wanna Talk to You (New Ideas Festival 2016); Kafka/Dawn/Waitress in All in the Timing (Toronto Fringe); Angelina/Princess/Phyllis in A One Night Stand with Shaw (Never Wrestle with Pigs); Wendy would like to thank the cast, crew, her school chums, and her family for their continuing love and support. Twitter: @thewendyfox.

Taylor Shouldice grew up in small town Ontario. Fueled by a small and attentive arts community, she developed a passion for singing and acting. Taylor moved to Toronto to attend Randolph Academy for the Performing Arts and quickly found a home in the city. As a recent graduate, she has felt inspired by her independence and has had wonderful opportunities to work with her own original work as well as her friend’s. Now, however, she is extremely inspired by the role of Laura and a new group of people to work with.

Y by Rosemary Doyle

Y is a play about why we say things and why we don’t. Why some things are private, and why some things are secret. Do we ever really know why? If X equals a kiss, what is Y?

Director: Sandra Cardinal
Stage Manager: Mark Hastings
Cast: Sandi Globerman, Aury Barnett, Taylor Bogaert, Alyson Parovel


Rosemary Doyle’s first play, Carl, Suzanne and the Taximan, was created during Alumnae Theatre’s WRITE NOW! That was many years ago; now she is a playwright, penning over 30 or more plays that have each had at least one production. Rosemary is the founder of the Red Sandcastle Theatre. ​

Sandra Cardinal is a Toronto-based theatre-maker. She recently directed Seven Ages by Nina Kaye for the Eos Festival. Recent acting credits include Rose (Washing the Dead, Inspirato 2016) Sharon (The ___Wedding, The Gay Plays 2015), Sadie Franklin (Sizzle and Spin, Toronto Fringe 2015), Maude Larabee (Sabrina Fair, Amicus Productions 2015) as well as several film and media projects. Sandra’s writing credits include Laura Secord (2013), Festival Players of Prince Edward County, directed by Eliza-Jane Scott; The Magyar (2014), produced by InspiraTO and directed by Kitti Laki; and Sizzle and Spin (2015), directed by Kitti Laki and self-produced at Toronto Fringe.

​MARK HASTINGS, Stage Manager
Mark Hastings is excited to be stage managing the Alumnae Theatre’s New Ideas Festival production of Y, which will be his first production in 12 years. Some of Mark’s most memorable stage management credits include Pirates of PenzanceRun for Your WifeSister Amnesia’s Country Western Nunsense JamboreeLeaving Hope, and Faith Healer.


Sandi Globerman is excited to be treading the boards in the New Ideas Festival production of Y. After joining Ryerson’s Act II Studio in 2012, she wrote and performed a one-woman show, Dethroned; played Adriana and Mopsa in scenes from Shakespeare for a show called Shakespeare’s Magic Carpet; Sara in David, Sarah and Me; and Molly in The Frog Princess. She also played Annette Tournay in The Lady from Maxim’s for Convergence Theatre, and Mrs D. in the ThinkFeel film production Crystal, which premiered at the South by Southwest Film Festival in Austin, Texas.

AURY BARNETT, George / Arthur
Born and raised in the small town of Dunnville, Ontario, Aury Barnett was always fascinated by big city life. Since he was a young boy, Aury had a great passion for the arts and would frequently have his friends over to act out skits that he had written. After running into some trouble as a teenager, Aury spent 9 years working in construction, but the acting itch never left him. In 2012 he relocated to Toronto where he trains in the Meisner technique at Robyn Kay Studio. Aury is excited to have New Ideas Festival production of Y be his first full play performance in 15 years.

​TAYLOR BOGAERT, Henry / Thomas
Taylor Bogaert recently relocated to Toronto, and this is his first production in the city! He is a graduate of Fanshawe College’s theatre arts program. He has performed in multiple new Canadian plays in his hometown, London, and is very excited to continue that tradition. His past roles have included the nephew of a Cheese Poet, a diabolical mouse, and at least 3 Eds.

​ALISON PAROVEL, Fyona / Helen
Alyson Parovel is a graduate of the University of Windsor’s BFA acting program, where her performances included Georgette in Five Women Wearing the Same Dress and Henriette in A Party to Murder. Recent theatre credits include Yes, Sorry, Thank you (150 Stories Festival) and Sculpted (Hamilton Frostbites Festival).


An “ethnic” actor is offered a chance at stardom from a white artistic director if he is willing to play up an ethnic stereotype he does not identify with.    

Director: Rouvan Silogix
Stage Manager: Nicole Brus
Cast: Ronak Singh, Chantel McDonald, Simon Bennett, Rob Candy


​BOBBY DEL RIO, Playwright
Bobby Del Rio is a critically acclaimed, published playwright. His most recent play, The Trial of Ken Gass, received stellar reviews and two productions. It starred Canadian actors like David Fox, Peter Keleghan, Diane Flacks, Andrew Moodie, Anand Rajaram, etc. His play The Market was recently adapted into a feature film – which Bobby also directed. It has played at film festivals in India and Italy. Bobby is also the creator and showrunner of IRL the Series – a web series sold to television (Bell Media’s FibeTV1). Bobby was the subject of a documentary that aired across Canada on Bravo!

Rouvan Silogix is an actor/writer/director new(ish) to Toronto (having moved from NYC recently). He is most drawn to works that are on the edge, including surrealist/absurdist works – especially those of Ionesco, Artaud, and Brecht. He has acted off-Broadway, and has been lucky enough
to direct some awesome pieces, including The Bald SopranoCloser, and The Pillowman, to name
​a few. He loves The Strokes/James Joyce and is a self-confessed expert on all things Kafka and Jack White.

​NICOLE BRUS, Stage Manager
An American Academy of Dramatic Arts graduate, actor, dancer, this over the top Toronto girl has brought you non-stop smiles and laughs. From music videos to phenomenal class performances at The Second City. She is honoured to be stage managing for the Professionally Ethnic play for the amazing New Ideas festival at the Alumnae Theatre.


Ronak Singh was born and raised in India. Idolizing Marlon Brando and being fond of noir films and plays, he developed his love and passion for acting. He recently graduated from Toronto Film School, where he appeared in short films, student commercials, and had the lead role of Jack Merridew in the stage production of Lord of The Flies, directed by Jonathan Whittaker. Professionally Ethnic will be his first stage play after graduation, and he is honoured to work alongside his wonderful cast and crew. He would like to dedicate this performance to his mentor, Joe DiMambro.

Born and raised in Toronto, Chantel McDonald has appeared on stages and screens throughout the city. Select theatre credits include Agnes in Orphaned Egret’s She Kills Monster, Cassius in UC Follies’ Julius Caesar, narrating a staged reading of Trey Anthony’s Black Mother’s Don’t Say I Love You (retitled), and Paulette in Amanda Nicholl’s Unknown Territory. She has appeared in Kazik Radwanski’s feature film Tower, and Lovely Blues short Muna. She is excited to be a part of Professionally Ethnic.

Simon Bennett is excited to join the cast and crew of Professionally Ethnic and to be a part of the 2017 New Ideas Festival at the Alumnae Theatre. Recent roles include Danny Zuko in Grease and Amos Hart in Chicago with the Performing Arts Collective; Joe E. Brown in Shakespeare in Hollywood with Amicus Productions; and George Horvath in the Scarborough Players production of Parfumerie, winner of the 2016 THEA for Best Ensemble in a Comedy. Thank you all for coming out to support NIF and the Toronto theatre community. 

​ROB CANDY, Gerrard
Rob Candy has performed with Alumnae Theatre in August: Osage CountyRadicalBlood RelationsThe Lady’s Not for BurningThe KilldeerThe Real Inspector HoundAfter Magritte, and Delicate Balance. Other recent shows include Sense and Sensibility (Amicus), Joyful Noise (East Side) and Mr Pim Passes By (Village Players).

WHO YOU CALLIN BLACK, EH? by Rita Shelton Deverell

Who You Callin Black, Eh? is a coming of age play, set in Canada’s largest, most multicultural, multilingual city, that is not about sexuality, but about colour. Wherever Our Heroine goes, she is not Black Enough or White Enough to find her people.

Director: Donald Molnar
Stage Manager: Taylor Young
Cast: Vivian Or, Maddy Swinkin, Jason Pilgrim, Adam Bonney, Faly Mevamanana


Rita Shelton Deverell, C.M., Ed.D. is a theatre artist, broadcaster, university professor, and television producer/director/writer. Deverell has received numerous awards, including two Geminis, the Black Women’s Civic Engagement Network Leadership Award, and was appointed
​to the Order of Canada in 2005 for her pioneering work in broadcasting, notably the founding of Vision TV and mentoring her Aboriginal successor at APTN National News. In the last 15 years Deverell has produced 8 nationally broadcast independent TV dramas; written/performed
3 one-woman plays; authored or edited 7 books; and been an actor in 10 professional theatre productions.

Donald Molnar is a bilingual playwright/director living in Toronto. He has won several playwriting competitions and awards. His most recent play, Justice for Maurice Henry Carter, co-written with Alicia Payne, has had play readings in Toronto, Grand Rapids, Austin, Honolulu, and at the National Black Theatre Festival in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. Don is pleased to be part of the Alumnae Theatre’s New Ideas Festival and excited to direct the reading of Rita Deverell’s new play Who You Callin Black, Eh?  

​TAYLOR YOUNG, Stage Manager
Originally from Calgary, Taylor Young is currently a student at Ryerson University, studying performance production. Taylor recently stage managed La part des chrysalides in Ryerson’s Dances 2016, as well as Ryerson Musical Theatre Company’s production of The Drowsy Chaperone. She is passionate about Canadian theatre and is extremely excited to be a part of the New Ideas Festival for the first time. 


VIVIAN OR, Our Heroine
Vivian Or is a recently graduate from the Humber theatre performance program. She is a Toronto-based actor, performance artist, and storyteller born in Hong Kong. Her selected acting credits include Munsch at Play (Tetrault Arts Productions), Delete after Death (TALKALOT Collective), Tin Drum (Humber Theatre), and Pam, the Pizza Pizza receptionist in The Clowns (Humber Theatre). Vivian is also part of Factory Theatre’s Mechanicals for 2016/17.

​MADDY SWINKIN, Mom / Black Lulu Lemon
Maddy Swinkin is an emerging actor on the scene and is thrilled to be a part of the New Ideas Festival! She graduated from the University of Toronto’s drama program and has worked on many contemporary productions, from the workshop stage to the actual stage. She loves working on a completely new show because she is able to bring life into a character that has only ever lived on paper, and there is something very special about that experience.

Jason Pilgrim is a York University graduate, where he majored in English. He received his formal drama training at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama in London, England, and the William Esper Studio in New York City. This past winter Jason appeared on stage for the Scarborough Theatre Guild in its production of Sherlock Holmes and the Case of the Christmas Carol. Jason is excited to be performing at this year’s festival.

​ADAM BONNEY, Hugo Boss / Dreamboy
Adam Bonney is returning to the New Ideas Festival after appearing as Darryl in The Council last year. Recent stage appearances include Widow Twanky in Aladd ‘N His Cat at the Red Sandcastle Theatre, and Campfire Stories and The Paradigm at the InspiraTO Festival. Last year Bonney directed the new play Katherine and Peter at InspiraTO and assistant directed The Stronger, which was part of the Hamilton Fringe 2016. This year Bonney will be directing at InspiraTO: look for The Chinese Life Force coming in June.

​FALY MEVAMANANA, Narrator / Chorus Leader
Originally from Vancouver, BC, Faly Mevamanana is a recent graduate of the Randolph Academy for the Performing Arts. Faly has played various roles in film and theatre. She recently starred in Carrie: the Musical with Hart House theatre. Faly is very grateful to have the opportunity to explore this new work.  


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