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Theatre in the Making Panel (Calgary — May 14)

Theatre in the Making Panel (Calgary)

Tuesday, May 14, 2024
Shelf Life Books
1302 4th Street SW, Calgary 

We’re excited to partner with Shelf Life Books for one of their Industry Night events! Join us Tuesday, May 14th at 7pm for an in-person discussion with a slate of local playwrights, dramaturgs, actors, and directors as we peek behind the curtains to learn what it takes to bring an idea from imagination to stage. Featuring Michelle Thrush, Kodie Rollan, Jenna Rodgers, Clem Martini, Cheryl Foggo, and moderator Kelsey Attard.

About the Panelists

Michelle Thrush is an award-winning actor with over 30 years of experience in film, TV, and theatre. She began her career at 17 with “Isaac Little Feathers” and went on to gain fame as Gail Stoney in “Blackstone,” winning Gemini and Rosie Awards. Michelle is Cree with French and Scottish heritage. She has starred in various TV series including “Tin Star” and “Arctic Air,” and films including “AKA: Jimmy P.” Beyond acting, she co-founded theatre company Making Treaty 7 in 2012. She writes and directs theatre and also has toured with her award-winning solo show “Inner Elder” which will be showing at The National Arts Centre in Ottawa in April 2024. Ms Thrush was honoured as the 2023/2024 Lieutenant Governor Distinguished Artist of Alberta. A motivational speaker, she shares her journey, advocating for women and youth. A mother of two, she resides in Calgary, actively pursuing acting and directing Indigenous-led projects.

Kodie Rollan is a Philippine-born, Scarborough-raised, Mohkinstsis-based playwright, dramaturg, lyricist, and producer. He is a passionate storyteller and community-builder who always aims to create spaces for shared storytelling and arts equity within the nonprofit sector. As a storyteller, Kodie is drawn towards explorations of justice within racialized bodies and how we can move towards abolitionist futures. He is currently the Artistic Director of Chromatic Theatre, the Associate Dramaturg at the Banff Playwrights Lab, and is also currently a facilitator of the Rozsa Foundation’s arts management and education programs. He received his Bachelor of Arts (Honours) and his Masters in Arts Leadership from Queen’s University. He was also one of the recipient of Theatre Alberta’s 2023 Michelle Dias Community Service Award. Outside of theatre, Kodie is glued to his television watching either cooking competitions or the Toronto Raptors

Jenna Rodgers (she/her) is a mixed-race, Treaty 7- based Director and Dramaturg. She is the founding Artistic Director of Chromatic Theatre, the Dramaturg for the Playwrights Lab at Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity, the Board Co-Chair of LMDA, and the Director of Theatre Alberta’s Artstrek Program. She is a graduate of the NTS Artistic Leadership Residency (2020), the Banff Centre’s Cultural Leadership Program (2019), and a member of the artEquity National Facilitator Training cohort (2018). Jenna holds a MA in International Performance Research from the universities of Amsterdam and Tampere.

Clem Martini is an award-winning playwright, novelist, and screenwriter with over thirty plays, and thirteen books of fiction and nonfiction to his credit, including the W.O. Mitchell Award-winning Bitter Medicine: A Graphic Memoir of Mental Illness, The Unravelling, and The Comedian. His most recently premiered plays, Cantata (Rumours of My Crazy, Useless Life) and The Extinction Therapist were published together in a book in 2023. He’s a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada and teaches in the School of Creative and Performing Arts at the University of Calgary. 

Cheryl Foggo is a playwright, author and filmmaker, whose work over the last 35 years has focused on the lives of Western Canadians of African descent. Among her works are: Heaven, John Ware Reclaimed, John Ware Reimagined and Pourin’ Down Rain: A Black Woman Claims Her Place in the Canadian West. Cheryl is a past recipient of the Lieutenant Governor of Alberta Outstanding Artist Award, The Doug and Lois Mitchell Outstanding Calgary Artist Award, the Arts, Media and Entertainment Award from the Calgary Black Chambers, the Women Making History in Alberta Award, the Alberta Order of Excellence and the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee Medal. Cheryl was awarded an Honorary Doctor of Laws from Mount Royal University in June of 2023.

Kelsey Attard is the managing editor of Freehand Books, a literary publisher in Calgary. She has a master of publishing degree from Simon Fraser University, and she has worked for fifteen years in Alberta’s writing and publishing industry. Twitter: @kelseyattard

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