Queering the Way Forward
Three queer theatre makers at various stages of their careers speak about their work, their artistic journeys, and their hopes for the future of theatre.
Queering the Way Forward was produced and created by Nathaniel Hanula-James.
Listen to Queering the Way Forward on our SoundCloud until June 11.
Host + Producer
Nathaniel Hanula-James (he/him) considers himself a queer, mixed, settler actor and creator. He is based in Tkaronto (Toronto), and grew up on the unceded, traditional, and occupied territories of the Musqueam, Squamish, and Tsleil-Waututh peoples (Vancouver, BC). Nathaniel holds a B.A. (Hon) from McGill University in drama studies, and a certificate in acting from the National Theatre School of Canada. Nathaniel is collaborating on a digital version of his solo piece ‘Untitled Flamingo Play’, and working on a project about recovering gifted children. He also collects salt-shakers. He likes to put on little shows with them.
Cole Alvis (she/her) is a 2 Spirit Michif (Métis) artist based in Tkarón:to with Chippewa, Irish & English ancestors from Turtle Mountain. She is one of the leaders of lemonTree creations, manidoons collective, AdHoc Assembly and is on the board of the Dancers Of Damelahamid. Recently, Cole performed in Louis Riel (Canadian Opera Company & National Arts Centre) and directed the Dora-nominated bug by Yolanda Bonnell (manidoons collective & Luminato), Lilies by Michel Marc Bouchard (lemonTree creations, Why Not Theatre & Buddies in Bad Times Theatre) and, alongside fellow Dora-nominated Michael Greyeyes, co-directed an Indigenous opera double bill called Two Odysseys: Pimooteewin / Gállábártnit (Signal Theatre, National Sami Theatre Beaivváš & Soundstreams). This spring, Cole is calling on the women in her matriarchal line to remember together their Michif ancestors.
Jacob Margaret Archer is a non-binary playwright, poet and dramaturge born and raised on unceded Sto:lo territory (Chilliwack, BC). A 2019 graduate of the Playwriting program at the National Theatre School of Canada, their plays include Celestial Bodies (Geordie Theatre), THINK OF THE CHILDREN (National Theatre School), All I Want Is To Be Happy Sometimes (workshopped at John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts), Such A Heart As Yours (Intrepid Theatre), and Miss Somewhere (Theatre BC Mainstage Festival). Their poetry has been published by post ghost press (2020) and Raspberry magazine (2021). Jake is an ameteur guitar player, an even more amateur knitter, and an avid writer of letters.
Donna-Michelle St. Bernard aka Belladonna the Blest is an emcee, playwright and agitator. Her main body of work, the 54ology, includes: Cake, Sound of the Beast, A Man A Fish, Salome’s Clothes, Gas Girls, Give It Up, The Smell of Horses, and The First Stone. Commissioned works include Witness Shift (Obsidian Theatre, 21 Black Futures), Reaching For Starlight (Geordie Theatre), Say the Words (Wrecking Ball), The House You Build (SNTC). Opera libretti include Forbidden (Afarin Mansouri/Tapestry Opera) and Oubliette (Ivan Barbotin/Tapestry Opera). DM has collaborated on the creation of Hope Is A Story with Sunny Drake, They Say He Fell with Nir Bareket and 501: Toronto in Transit with Justin Manyfingers and Bob Naismith. She is co-editor with Yvette Nolan of the Playwrights Canada Press anthologies Refractions: Solo and Refractions: Scenes, as well as editor of Indian Act: Residential School Plays. DM is currently the emcee in residence at Theatre Passe Muraille, associate artist at lemonTree Creations, artistic director of New Harlem Productions, coordinator of the AD HOC Assembly, and of Nightwood Theatre’s Write From the Hip play development program. She’s aight.