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Artist Bios

L.A. Alfonso is an artist/academic known for his films, ukulele-inspired podcasts, 35mm street photography, and large-scale video projection mapping events. His work has established him as a genre-defying multi-media maverick. In 2021, he staged a nine-week live performance called Agent Sunless. His documentary Circus Boy is now available on AppleTV.

Saleen Ansari is Hip-Hop Emcee and Spoken Word Poet, hailing from Windsor, Ontario and currently residing in Cambridge. His writings touch upon world issues, spirituality and social “norms”. Since 2011 Saleem has pursued his art professionally, performing across Canada in countless venues for shows, conferences, and festivals.

Bennett Bedoukian is a drummer, primarily playing in the duo Horseman, Pass By, and runs a letterpress printshop, O Underworld! Press, focusing on fine press books and broadsides. He lives outside of Havelock, Ontario, in Treaty 20.

Kim Beavis Sanderson is a new media, animator and installation artist. They are educated in AutoCAD/AutoDESK and many Animation and Graphics Programs. Beavis has participated in the Toronto Animated Image Society Showcase. They have shown installations in Peterborough at First Friday, and instruct workshops on computer animation and graphics.

Dreda Blow is a dancer, choreographer, and arts educator who moved to Nogojiwanong in 2018 after a 14-year ballet career in Europe. With Northern Ballet in Leeds, U.K. she danced principal roles including Juliet, Jane Eyre, and Daisy from The Great Gatsby, and co-choreographed two full productions, The Ugly Duckling and Tortise and The Hare.

David Bobier is a hard of hearing and disabled media artist whose creative practice is researching and developing vibrotactile technology as a creative medium. He established the creative multi-media, multi- sensory centre VibraFusionLab in London, Ontario in 2014. He has had 18 solo and over 30 group exhibitions in Canada, the US and the UK.

Brad Brackenridge has been performing and designing for theatre and film for 30 years. The Shaw Festival, 4th Line Theatre and Old Trout Puppet Workshop to name a few. In 2009 he created The Nervous System, a puppet-based theatre company. In 2018 he was recognized as Outstanding Mid-Career Artist at the inaugural Peterborough Arts Awards.

Canadian Images in Conversation (CIIC) is an ad-hoc artist collective that showcases artistic excellence in Canadian moving image culture through screenings, exhibitions, performances and artist talks. While emphasizing Canadian works and focusing on Canadian perspectives, their goal is to expand and disseminate critical discourse specific to Canadian culture.

Kyle Chivers is a singer/songwriter based in Peterborough, playing indie/folk/reggae after years of performing with Elk the Moose. At times dealing with the more difficult aspects of life, Kyle’s music is deeply personal yet still finding a common relatability with his listeners. Paired with backup vocalist Megan Hunter, these beautiful melodies and warm tones provide an atmospheric soundscape.

Jenn Cole (Mixed Ancestry Algonquin Anishinaabe) is a performer, Associate Artistic Producer at Nozhem First Peoples Performance Space and an Indigenous Feminist Performance scholar in Gender and Social Justice at Trent University. She has performed in dance, film, and installation work in Nogojiwanong, Minneapolis, Washington DC, and Toronto.

Brad Copping is a sculptor and functional glass blower whose work has been exhibited broadly. He has been reviewed in the New Glass Review, received support from the Canada Council and Ontario Arts Council, and is in the permanent collection of many museums, including the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts.

D’Scribe the poet, is a national champion indigi-queer spoken word artist. They have had the honour to perform on stages across Turtle island and are excited to spend time with y’all.

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C.M. Duffy is a visual artist working in Toronto, Canada. He holds a BFA from the School of Visual Arts in NYC. In 2021 he collaborated with the Department of Canadian Heritage to bring a large installation of his work to Ottawa’s Confederation Park and Frankfurt, Germany to celebrate Canada’s Guest of Honour status in the Frankfurt International Book Fair.

Kelly Egan is an Associate Professor in Cultural Studies at Trent University whose work focuses on materiality and obsolescence, looking beyond hierarchical, canonical and linear histories. Her award-winning films have screened internationally, including at the Toronto International Film Festival, New York Film Festival, Edinburgh International Film Festival, Images Festival, amongst others.

Jennifer Elchuk (Opal) is a multi-disciplinary artist whose focus is circus and inter-art performance. Her art often explores human connection to landscape and relationships between bodies, in site specific work. She enjoys working with the Peterborough Academy of Circus Arts as a coach, performer, and studio manager.

Laura Fedynyszyn is a printmaker from Toronto. She completed her BFA in the OCAD University Printmaking Program and went on to study Art Conservation at Fleming College. Her artistic practice blends these two fields of study through reuse and reimagining of old materials, with themes related to nature conservancy.

Born in Montreal, raised in Ontario, descendent of settlers, home-children, and a war bride, Elizabeth Fennell traces the Trent-Severn waterway travelling between the Kawarthas and ‘The County’. Artist, curator and archivist, she returned to painting in 2021, focusing on local landscape, regionalism, and the traces of settler-colonialism.

Josh Buster Fewings is the owner and curator of The Fewings 16mm Education Film Collection. Besides working with old films, Josh is completing his B.Ed. at Queen’s University in 2022 and has been a member of Peterborough-based alternative-folk duo Mayhemingways since 2013. He is happy to bring the films and projectors back to life for Erring at King George.

Rob Fortin and Susan Newman have spent decades together writing songs for theatre including Cavan Casanova (book by Robert Winslow, 4th Line Theatre, 2003), Hungry (book by Kate Story, Public Energy, 2008) and Beneath Springhill (book by Beau Dixon, Firebrand Theatre, 2015 Dora Mavor Moore Award winner).

Initially trained as a welder, Garrett Gilbart received his BFA Intermedia from NSCAD in Halifax before studying at the Rietveld Acadamie in Amsterdam.

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Lesley Givens holds a BFA, Sculpture from the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design, BA, Cultural Studies from Trent University, and BEd, Artist in Community Education from Queen’s University. Her site-specific installation work honours a tradition of remembrance and directly responds to the surrounding environment, drawing on everyday experiences.

Jon Hedderwick is a poet and spoken word artist. He is the Peterborough Poetry Slam’s Artistic Director, one of the lead artists in Take-out Poetry, and is in the spoken word duo, WordCraft. He recently performed his first solo show, Bubbie’s Tapes, and is currently workshopping a piece called Enkidu.

Miguel Hernandez is a Venezuelan artist and designer living in Peterborough, Canada. Miguel creates oil paintings, pencil drawings, and murals. He’s inspired by events and emotions that changed his life. Miguel has participated in multiple juried shows and created multiple public pieces in downtown Peterborough and surrounding areas.

Ann Jaeger is a multidisciplinary artist whose work intersects literary, theatre, and visual arts. She has designed sets for The Theatre on King and participated in arts festivals such as Erring on the Mount, Precarious Festival, ReFrame Film Festival, and Artsweek. She writes the local arts blog Trout in Plaid.

Jasher divides her time between the harsh Arabian desert in Central Saudi Arabia and the rural backwoods outside of Peterborough. A clash of culture, language, and aesthetics, Jasher’s poetry explores themes of Islam, politics, identity, race, privilege, family, mental health, and motherhood.

Elizabeth Jenkins is a poet, spoken word artist and activist. She finds beauty in broken by embracing hard edges. She is the Peterborough Poetry Slam’s Artist Liaison and co-organized the 2017 Canadian Festival of Spoken Word. She’s performed across Canada and is a two-time Canadian Independent Poetry Slam Championship finalist.

Morgan Brie Johnson is a theatre creator, clown, and co-artistic leader of Animacy Theatre Collective. She has been performing in mask and clown for many years; she studied at the Clown Farm and holds a BFA from the University of Windsor. She is also working on her doctorate at York University.

….dubzz/poet/at/large clifton joseph is a poet and journalist living in toronto. he’s performed across canada, usa, uk europe, and the caribbean. he’s the author of “metropolitan blues” and “oral transmission” of poetry and music. his latest single is “not poem”. his forthcoming album is called “shots on eglinton”.

Ryan Kerr is the artistic director of The Theatre on King. Since moving to Peterborough in 1993, he has been involved in the local performance scene as a playwright, actor, dancer, lighting designer, and many other things.

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Drawing from the Anishinaabe blood from of his mother, William Kingfisher sees through his own mixed-blood eyes, possibilities for connections and bringing different worlds together. His work with gitigaans, stories, and images gathered tell him how important it is to think of life in terms of relationships, rather than as isolated individuals. Art is possibility; it can show us the way.

Peyton Le Barr has been a theatre creator/performer for almost 20 years working in the United Kingdom and across Canada. She specializes in trauma-informed storytelling workshops designed to empower marginalized voices within communities. Peyton holds a Masters in Acting with Merit from East 15 Acting School, UK.

Bethany LeBlonc is an emerging artist, currently working in Peterborough. She is a self taught painter, with a background education from the Haliburton School of Art & Design. Using primarily acrylic paint & ink, her paintings are a reflection of life in her community, through various perspectives.

Casandra Lee is a mixed Asian-American multimedia artist, based in Peterborough. She has written and illustrated two children’s books, The Sun Dance and Building a Home. Casandra also works as a Montessori educator at Kawartha Montessori School. She is passionate about storytelling and capturing feelings better expressed through art.

Sarah Lewis is an Ojibwe/Cree spoken word artist from Curve Lake First Nation. She is Nogojiwanong’s first Poet Laureate and has been featured on Global News and CBC radio, as well as CBC Arts’ ongoing video series: Poetic License. Her poetry uncovers how Indigenous communities are reclaiming their identities, culture, strength, and sovereignty.

Jane Lowbeer is a mixed media visual artist. She has exhibited at the Art Gallery of Peterborough, Visual Arts Clarington (VAC), and the AH Centre in Warkworth. She was a member of the now defunct Loop Gallery in Toronto. These last few months of Covid, Jane has really enjoyed making things for Circus Repurpose.

Katie Lowen was a national level gymnast before pursuing an NCAA university basketball career at Simon Fraser University. In Vancouver Katie co-founded and continues to co-direct, the alternative performance space Boombox (in a semi-truck trailer) which has hosted the research and creation of over forty multi- generational artists in a variety of presentation formats.

Nicole Malbeuf is a theatrical aerialist based in Peterborough. A graduate of OCAD University (material art) and Fleming College (agriculture), Nicole is naturally interested in art-making and the environment. She operates under Trellis Arts, an aerial-dance-theatre company producing shows and learning experiences.

John Marris is an artist and community activist who has a passion for bringing art making and creativity to members of our community who do not normally have access to the arts. His art practise includes ceramics, photography, print-making, collage and pen and ink work.

Lighthearted and fun, this trio transports their audience to a European café with their unique take on classic jazz standards. Excited to be back performing live again, Marsala and the Imports tell the old tales of love and loss – getting your toes tapping and your faces smiling … or perhaps even singing along! This trio loves the music they play, love performing with each other, and love bringing audiences beautiful and joyful entertainment.

Kelli Marshall (Anishinaabe {Ojibway} from the Mississauga territory of Hiawatha First Nation) is an indigenous dancer, activist, and storyteller. She is an Ojibway from the Mississauga territory of Hiawatha First Nation. She was born and raised in Nogojiwanong (Peterborough). She has been dancing since she could walk, and enjoys sharing, learning, and teaching her culture with others.

The McDonell Street Gospel Quartet is a quartet featuring authentic vintage/roots gospel songs from the 1930s and ‘40s era. Tight harmony vocals and a cool acoustic sound. Colin MacAdam has been singing in community choirs for many years. He’s a member of Old Men Dancing. He carries the bass line in the McDonnell Street Gospel Quartet. Kristine Fisher (Rose), a life long dancer, choreographer, and teacher, is MSGQ’s soprano voice. Presently, she enjoys performing music and fulfilling people’s Real Estate dreams. Kristine has toured extensively as a singer and Mandolin player with Washboard Hank’s band, and treasures performing with the gospel quartet. Dianne Latchford has been acting for 40+ years, appearing on stages from Shaw Festival to Rainbow Stage, locally at New Stages, TTOK, 4th Line and more; on screen in Murdoch Mysteries, Queer As Folk and SCTV. She is also a musician, singer-songwriter and visual artist. Curtis Driedger is the leader of the McDonnel Street Gospel Quartet, formed in 2018. Before the pandemic, he directed the Zippity Doo Dah Community Soul Chorus, as well as the Mandolin Society of Peterborough. He has been a musician for too long.

Leslie Menagh is an interdisciplinary artist, craftsperson, community organizer, and curator with a BFA from NSCAD. Her work explores belonging and intimacy through story-telling, screen printing and sewing construction, installation, video, sound, and performance. She is the founder of Madderhouse Textile Studios in Peterborough.

Originally from New Zealand, Bruno Merz worked for many years as a 2D animator and illustrator in the Netherlands and the UK. He has illustrated numerous children’s books and worked as a senior illustrator in the greeting card industry. Now he lives in Peterborough and works primarily as a singer/songwriter and composer.

Justin Million is a print and digital media poet, a performance artist, the founder of the Show and Tell Poetry Series, a co-founder and poetry editor at bird, buried press, and is the author of EJECTA: The Uncollected KEYBOARDS! Poems (2020) from Ottawa’s Apt. 9 Press.

Patrick Moore is an artist with a long exhibition history of landscape paintings and prints. Patrick is also an accomplished, in-demand arts educator. He’s currently in his 4th year as Artist-in-Residence at Toronto’s Beverley School, where he facilitates large-scale art works with students with multiple disabilities.

Josh Morley is a self-taught illustrator and screen printer based in Peterborough. He has always had a love of illustration and enjoys the tactility of printing his designs by hand. Lately his work has focused on people, nature, and the connection between the two.

Susan Newman and Rob Fortin have spent decades together writing songs for theatre including Cavan Casanova (book by Robert Winslow, 4th Line Theatre, 2003), Hungry (book by Kate Story, Public Energy, 2008) and Beneath Springhill (book by Beau Dixon, Firebrand Theatre, 2015 Dora Mavor Moore Award winner).

Phuong Nguyen is a multi-disciplinary artist born and raised in Toronto. Much of her work explores the complexities of her position as a first generation Canadian. A graduate of OCADU (2014), she has shown her work in Toronto, around Turtle Island, the UK, and an aunt owns a painting in Vietnam.

Brian Nichols is a retired expressive arts therapist who hangs out in our community making all kinds of art with others. Marginalized people have become his mainstream as he learns more about empathy, our shared humanity and collective inner spaces. He has never been happier.

Kelly O’Neill is a multidisciplinary artist and curator living in Selwyn, Ontario. Working with assemblage and text, video and projection, and incorporating traditional textile methods with unconventional materials, Kelly creates objects and experiences that explore the fluidity and impermeability of embodied experience. She has a BFA/Sculpture and Installation (OCADU).

Laurel Paluck is an interdisciplinary artist whose work engages professional artists, students and community members towards creating visually charged performances, exhibitions and curriculum-based classroom art projects. She is the artistic producer of Atelier Ludmila Gallery, featuring regional female artists in monthly solo exhibits, and is trained as an Artist-Educator through the Royal Conservatory.

Hailing from the murky shores of the Otonabee River, Pays d’en Haut enhances the traditional Cajun songs of rural Louisiana with a sound that is influenced by their own geography and local culture. The band features Matt Watson (vocals/guitar), Benj Rowland (accordion), Curtis Driedger (fiddle), Jim Gleason (Upright Bass) and Leslie McGrath (‘tit fer).

Deanna Peters/Mutable Subject is an artist working in and around dance for the past 18 years. Incorporating improvisation, House dance, somatics, and everyday gestures, Mutable’s live worx subvert distinctions between so-called “high” and “low” art. They present a fluidity of persona, within ourselves and with other bodies and things. Embodied practice informs all of their work.

Janette Platana’s writing has been long and shortlisted for the CBC Literary Awards (four times), the PRISM International Award, the Disquiet Award, and the Ontario Trillium Book Award, and won This Magazine’s Great Canadian Literary Hunt. She has taught kindergarteners and undergraduates, and has studied at schools from Saskatoon to Southern France.

Led by Artistic Leads Renata Soutter, Liz Winkelaar, and Shara Weaver, Propeller Dance has been an innovator in the field of contemporary integrated dance and diverse performance practices in Canada since 2007. Propeller Dance is committed to excellence — creating, teaching, performing, and presenting integrated dance and disability arts performance. Our artistic work is at the centre of all we do. Our choreographic work draws on the creative processes of disability arts making and diverse artistic practices. Propeller Dance has grown into a professional dance company and training program that operates year-round and reaches more than 5000 people annually. We are in our eighth year as the Great Canadian Theatre Company’s (GCTC) Company-in-Residence.

Sahira Q is a quirky, yet lovable, drag queen who has performed at various stages, backyards, and local watering holes across southern Ontario. Sahira emigrated to Canada from Zanzibar, Tanzania more than twenty years ago but misses the island sun every day.

Karyn Recollet is a Cree diasporic maker and academic. Contemplating Nazbah Tom’s provocation ‘what are the shapes of our gatherings’; Peter Morin’s invitation to consider time travel technologies of land-ing and Tiffani King’s question ‘how do we land into relation’, Recollet embodies and activates a durational practice of thinking with land-ing, and falling into relation.

Sara O. Shahsavari (Shahrazi) (she/they) is a multidisciplinary artist, musician, performer, and cross cultural community-builder. Born to a family of migrants who came to Canada as refugees from Iran and Poland, Sara uses art to express and explore themes of gender, culture, self, home, nature, spirituality, freedoms, dreams, borders, traumas, destruction, migration, change, creation, and growth.

Alexandra Simpson is an interdisciplinary artist and actor with a background in physical theatre, mask (building, performance, and facilitating), directing, and playwriting. She is co-artistic leader of Animacy Theatre Collective and a PhD candidate in the Faculty of Environmental and Urban Change at York University.

Daniel Smith is an actor and improviser from Peterborough. Amidst the lockdowns Daniel appeared online in The Cut and Paste Macbeth and Testing… Recently Daniel appeared in The Theatre on King’s production of The Bald Soprano. Daniel also runs improv classes for children and teens through PAPA.

Irèni Stamou is a choreographer and dance artist based in Peterborough/Nogojiwanong. Recent projects include Inside the Sculpture and Bone Stories as part of the Public Energy Performing Arts Pivot Festival and an Artisit Residency in 2020-2021. Irèni is passionate about somatic movement, research, yoga, and leads programs with Irèni Movement Arts.

Sheldon Storey is a queer multidisciplinary artist working primarily in found material installations. Using traditional and experimental techniques he bridges a system of wonder through experiences of grief, gender, and the environment. His studio practice focuses on the familiar pull of familial objects, conjuring subjective notions of home, sexuality, mental health, and relationships.

Kate Story is a genderqueer writer and theatre artist. Kate works in multiple genres: devised theatre and dance, as well as literary and speculative fiction. She is artistic director of Precarious Festival, and loves to support the creation of new regional performance work. Kate is a recipient of the Ontario Arts Foundation’s K.M. Hunter Award for theatre.

Ále Suárez is a queer, trans, non-binary, Venezuelan-American, Canadian immigrant, multi-instrumentalist, Expressive Arts Therapist and singer songwriter. They are currently a Masters of Divinity student at Luther Seminary. Their dream is to create a safe space for the LGBTQI2SA+ community to dwell and commune with the divine and spirituality. They believe the arts speak the language of our souls, which gives us direct access to our most authentic self.

Laura Thompson is a media artist working with computer programming to develop immersive experiences. Laura is in the early stages of her professional career but has already built a diverse portfolio of traditional graphic design work, video projections as well as live interactive digital media.

Born and raised in Jamaica, Niambi Tree spent her formative years in Peterborough. She is a poet, jewellery-maker, and tarot reader. Her spoken word poetry explores the intersectionality between race, self-worth and mental illnesses. Niambi is a two-time Peterborough Grand Slam Champion and a past Peterborough Poetry Slam Teams performer.

Gillian Turnham is a Peterborough artist working within the tradition of Islamic geometric art. She studied sculpture and metalsmithing at NSCAD University, before honing her practice in Andalusia, Spain. Alongside her commissioned works, Gillian has published writings on Islamic geometry, and produced a radio series about Islamic art.

Norah von Bieberstein, 9, enjoys musical theatre and has performed in Nut.Cracker (The Theatre on King) and Virtual Canada Day (Trellis Arts), both with her mentor Dreda Blow. She has studied at Studio 505, Stagecoach, Toronto Arts Academy, and Showmakers. Norah, who is also an artist, writer, and choreographer, lives in Nogojiwanong with her adorable puppy, Panda.

Ziysah von Bieberstein is a parent, poet, editor, community cultivator, and unsettled settler on Michi Saagiig Anishinaabe territory. Their work seeks to connect us to our imaginations, our responsibilities, and each other. Co-founder of Take-out Poetry and the Peterborough Poetry Slam, Ziy’s writing has appeared in various magazines and anthologies as well as in their most recent collection, Consents+/=/- Severances.

Charlie Watson is a young local artist who loves reading, drawing, playing music, and making radio. She is currently obsessed with fabric arts. She drives her mother bonkers with the incessant clicking of her knitting needles, so has recently learned to crochet and is experimenting with sewing and embroidery.

Alice Williams is an Anishinaabe artist (Curve Lake First Nation) who holds a BA from Trent University. Her quilts and wall-hangings have been exhibited at the National Museum of the American Indian (the Smithsonian), Michigan State University, Thunder Bay Art Gallery, Wanuskewin Heritage Park and the Art Gallery of Peterborough.

In the decades that bookended the turn of our century, Lotus Wight travelled the world, searching for music that inspired him. As a teacher of instruments and dance to the families in the royal Danish court, he became a highly in-demand performer and clinician across Europe. Lotus relocated to Canada in 2020.

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