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Season: 2020-2021

Company Town Poster by Lillian Ross-Millard in the photo.

Company Town

Going Live July 13 2020, visit Artspace July 13-19 2020

Visit the Website

10am-4pm, Doors open for 2 visitors at a time. Night viewing is also encouraged.

In conjunction with Anne White’s 2019-2020 Artist in Residency at Public Energy Performing Arts.

Company Town is a live and online installation that maps the complex legacy of the General Electric factory in Peterborough/Nogojiwanong. We see mapping as a creative tool for addressing the factory site as a layered space:a 50-acre lot of buildings mostly sitting in a state of disuse in the south end of the city and a non-literal space imbued with memory, imagination and association. We undertake this project at a moment when the representation of this factory as a benevolent local force is being contested by horrific information brought forward by former workers. 

How do these revelations unsettle our relationship to the mythic image of this factory? We are working across film, performance, visual art and the media artform of a website to provide our own locations of return, reentry, remembrance and grieving. We hope that our work can invite reflection an...

Mnoominkewin  in the photo.


“Mnoominkewin” the art of wild ricing.

On September 26th, 2020*, elders and youth, knowledge keepers, artists and witnesses will gather on the shore of Wshkiigimong (Curve Lake) under the Mnoomin Giizis (Wild Rice Harvest Moon) to celebrate the resurgence of a staple food source that has nourished Nishnaabeg for generations- MAN-OH-MIN.

Mnoomin, meaning the good seed or spirit seed, inspires us to gather to harvest. To plant, to sing, to dance and to celebrate mnoomin’s continuing presence in our collective story as Nishnnaabeg.

With collective spirit and celebration, we wish to inspire generative discourse and illuminate all that is good about our local food source. Its presence inspires ecological attention to our waters, our lands, our mud, the crawlers, the swimmers, the four leggeds and the flyers.

Although this year’s gathering, due to the pandemic, is limited, we will be sharing on various social media platforms for all to learn and enjoy. All COVID-19 safety protocols will be followed throughout the in-person event.

Chi miigwetch to Rhonda Taylor, Shirley Williams and Wes Whetung for Nishnaabeg language support.

Mnoominkewin illustration (right) by Chief Lady Bird.

*Rain date is set for September 27th, 2020.

Generously Supported by Public Energy, Niijkiwendidaa Anishnaabekwewag Services Circle, Lovesick Lake Women’s Association, Kawartha Sexual Assault Centre, New Horizons for Seniors, Indigenous Diabetes Health Centre, Black Duck Wild Rice, O’Kaadenigan Wiingashk, Camp Kawartha and Madd Hatter D...

The Pivot Series  in the photo.

The Pivot Series


An outdoor fall performance series to be presented between October 2-18 2020 in Peterborough/Nogojiwanong. The Pivot Series is intended for socially distanced outdoor audiences in response to COVID-19 measures. Public Energy Performing Arts has partnered with the Peterborough ReFrame Film Festival to create a short documentary about the Pivot Series for screening at the 2021 ReFrame festival.

The Pivot Series is inviting artists to re-imagine existing work, or create new work for an outdoor site-specific public setting in Peterborough/Nogojiwanong. Locations include parking lots, parks, park pavilions and many more. Performance works are 15-30 minutes in length.

Watch the documentary now: PIVOT performance in a pandemic

GET TICKETS ONLINE or reserve by phone 705-745-1788.
Walk-ups allowed too!

Performance Schedule:

Love in the Time of Covid created and performed by Kate Story & Ryan Kerr; music by Arvo Pärt, Lou Reed, Curtis Driedger
Oct 2 & 3, 7:00PM, behind The Theatre On King, 171 King St

Le Flâneur created and performed by Bill Coleman; music by Curtis Dried...

Love in the Time of Covid photo shot from behind of Kate Story with her hand on a brick wall in a parking lot in the photo.

Love in the Time of Covid

Click to view Program

created and performed by Kate Story & Ryan Kerr; music by Arvo Pärt, Lou Reed, Curtis Driedger


7:00 PM

LOCATION: The parking lot behind The Theatre On King, 171 King St.
SHOW LENGTH: 20 mins

*Please arrive 15-20 minutes early

Photo of Kate Story by Ryan Kerr

Love in the Time of Covid plays with an idea that the forbidden is also erogenous, that love and trust are always hard, and that the aged body can love.

Kate Story revisits previously unfinished work, a duet set to the music of Arvo Pärt, reinterpreting this bizarre mating ritual for present times by expanding on themes of forbidden zones: mouths and hands. Returning to his first independent choreographic work, Ryan Kerr presents audiences with a lyrical and hopeful affirmation of connection, love, and the present. The choreography is accompanied by musician Curtis Driedger, interpreting Lou Reed’s “Perfect Day.”

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Curtis Driedger has been a presence in the Peterborough cultural scene over the past four decades, beginning with his band, the CeeDees, which he formed here in 1979. At that time there was ongoing involvement with ArtSpace productions and events, in the era of Dennis Tourbin, Marian Lewis, David Bierk and other pioneering arts greats. 

Having enjoyed considerable success in Toronto during the 80’s, Driedger moved back to the Peterborough area in the 90’s, which began a steady association with cultural activities in the area. In addition to maintaining half a dozen or so musical collectives at any given time, Driedger is continuously involved in bringing people together over music, from seniors to children. Possibly most notable is the Zippity Doo Dah Community Soul Chorus, which has enjoyed a ten year run, now in hiatus only due to Covid 19. 

Driedger has been involved in local dance productions from the beginning. Projects have included ones with Bill Coleman, Bill James, Old Men Dancing, Anne Ryan, and most frequently, with Kate Story, more recently including Ryan Kerr. A versatile instrumentalist and singer, Driedger has proved himself adaptable to almost any performative situation, and is looking forward to discovering what is next over the horizon, in these profoundly altered times.

Ryan Kerr is the owner/artistic director of a small black box theatre The Theatre on King (TTOK) in Peterborough. In the eight years TTOK has been open, it has become Peterborough’s hub for new and risk-taking performance creation and presentation, and a home for arts presentations of all kinds. TTOK supports the creation and presentation of work by regional independent artists, and provides production facilities and services dedicated to regional art production. Ryan has overseen over 500 productions and events, and has trained five new technical personnel in the process. With the opening of TTOK Ryan began an annual Playwright’s Festival, bringing over a half a dozen brand new scripts to production and presentation. He also began an annual dance festival, “small dance for a small space,” which has seen over forty new pieces of choreography created and presented. Ryan is a co-founder of Peterborough Dance Works and has been technical director of Public Energy for over a decade. He is the alumni representative on the board of Theatre Trent, and is a member of the newly-formed Peterborough Performing Arts Recovery Alliance, formed in response to the Covid crisis. 

Inspired by the idea that dance begins when words fail, Ryan founded Fleshy Thud in 2008, a performance production company bringing a number of independent artists together over several projects, including multidisciplinary festivals A Certain Place: the Bernie Martin Festival and the biennial Precarious: Peterborough ArtsWORK Festival. Ryan has created nearly twenty original dance works over the years in both theatrical and site-specific settings, working with both trained dancers and non-dance artists and community members. In addition he has worked as a dancer with Bill James, Anne Ryan, Kate Story, and many other choreographers, and has taken may workshops over the years, notably with Denise Fujiwara (Butoh) and Kaeja Dance (elevations). His most recent dance works include Dazzle Ships (2016) and Big Science (2019).

Ryan was introduced to theatre in high school where he went on to win awards in the Sears Drama Festival. Moving to Peterborough in 1992, he won the Union Theatre’s First Playwright Competition and was introduced to dance/movement at the age of 24. He has created or co-created many dance works, many of which have been performed at Public Energy’s Emergency Festival and Toronto’s Ffida. He has also been commissioned as a playwright by local theatre companies including 4th Line Theatre and Arbor.

Kate Story is a writer, performer, director, and choreographer. She is a recipient of the Ontario Arts Foundation’s K.M. Hunter Artist Award in theatre, and as part of Peterborough’s centennial celebrations she was named one of the region’s 100 most important performing artists. Kate is a core artist at The Theatre on King, Peterborough’s hub for new and risk-taking performance. Artistic director of three month-long multi-arts festivals themed on precarity in Peterborough, Kate works with a wide array of arts and non-arts community partners to deliver the bi-yearly Precarious Festival, which includes workshops, learning and mentorship opportunities for youth, panel discussions, and original performance, music, visual art, and media works. She has been the director for Public Energy’s Alternating Currents program for the past 4 years, facilitating creative processes for wildly diverse artistic projects. She was also one of the participants in the innovative Navigating Home: NL Dance Project, bringing together Newfoundland dance artists for an innovative 3-year process with choreographers Christopher House and Anne Troake. Along with Ryan Kerr and Victoria Mohr-Blakeney, Kate co-founded Peterborough DanceWorks with the mission to increase the profile and quality of local contemporary dance. Since forming in 2016 PDW has originated 7 original dance works involving 30 dance artists, presented as part of Artsweek Peterborough, Precarious Arts Work Festival, Emergency Festival, and Small Dances for a Small Space Festival. In partnership with Public Energy, PDW is currently running a series of workshops for local dance artists featuring Karen Kaeja, Propellor Dance, Tedd Robinson, and Denise Fujiwara. 

Kate is vice-chair of Peterborough’s arts council the Electric City Culture Council, and chairs the advisory committee and Board of The Theatre on King. She also sits on the Theatre Trent Executive, and is a member of the newly-formed Peterborough Performing Arts Recovery Alliance, formed in response to the Covid crisis.

Kate has co-created and/or worked with diverse theatre and dance artists, including The Theatre on King, 4th Line, DNA Theatre, Caravan Stage Company, R. Murray Schafer, Bill James, Chartier Danse, The Nervous System, Ker Wells, and many others. Her own works cross boundaries between theatre, performance art, and dance, and have been featured in festivals and mainstage performances in Peterborough, Toronto, and St. John’s. 

Kate’s first novel Blasted received the Sunburst Award’s honourable mention, and her third novel This Insubstantial Pageant was tipped by the Toronto Star as a top SF pick: “Exotic, funny and very sexy . . .” 2018-19 saw the publication of her first young adult fantasy, the Antilia duology. Her short fiction has been published in World Fantasy Award and Aurora Award- winning collections, won honourable mention for the Sunburst Award, and has been shortlisted for the CBC Literary Awards.

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red brick build office building with many windows and a parking lot in front

An outdoor fall performance series to be presented between October 2-18 2020 in Peterborough/Nogojiwanong. The Pivot Series is intended for socially distanced outdoor audiences in response to COVID-19 measures. Public Energy Performing Arts has partnered with the Peterborough ReFrame ...

Le Flâneur photo of Bill Coleman on train tracks by Wayne Eardley in the photo.

Le Flâneur

Click to view Program

created and performed by Bill Coleman; music by Curtis Driedger


2:00 PM

LOCATION: Millennium Park, 130 King St.  South (Silver Bean Cafe)
SHOW LENGTH: 20 mins

*Please arrive 15-20 minutes early

Photo of Bill Coleman by Wayne Eardley

Special instructions: This performance moves through the park northwards following the railroad tracks pausing at each crossing (Boathouse/bottom of King Street). Audiences are encouraged to view the performance from any position.  For those who are not mobile, would like to sit or view from a stationary position gather at the crossing by the boathouse (Silver Bean Cafe) .

A costumed dancer and musician perform a series of unplanned performances that traverse the city. The spontaneous nature of the performances, and the travelling-through, avoids gathering of crowds and affects the public through unintentional encounters.

The traditional way of travelling – by foot – has long been the mode of transportation for minstrels, vagabonds … and la flâneur. Flâneur – “to wander with no purpose” – a deliberately aimless pedestrian, unencumbered by any obligation or sense of urgency. Reflecting on this method of traversal, this performance hopes to leave a trail, an experiential presence, reverberating through the people who are indirectly and unintentionally affected.

Wanderers and travellers have traditionally appeared throughout history on our streets and roads following upheaval and change. As a response to COVID-19 pandemic, to unleash our art freely in this manner seems an appropriate response.

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Bill Coleman has danced with Bill T Jones/Arnie Zane Company, Martha Graham Dance Company, Toronto Dance Theatre, Tere O'Connor, Fondation Jean-Pierre Perreault, Wiesbaden Ballet, William Douglas Danse and currently Tedi Tafel and Dance Theatre David Earle.

Bill created Hymn To The Universe performed with the legendary Sun Ra Arkestra, Inverted Mountains with John Oswald and Emile Morin in Banff National Park and OutSideIn, a 3D film by Anne Troake with Carol Prieur, which was screened at the 2015 Venice Biennale. Bill’s collaboration with Gordon Monahan – Dollhouse – has been presented in Toronto, Hong Kong, Poland, Edinburgh, and across Canada. Currently Bill is collaborating with writer Lee Maracle and touring an interactive work entitled FELT.

Bill received the 2018 Walter Carsen Award for Lifetime Achievement in dance. Bill has performed in Peterborough more than in any other City. Bill and Curtis have collaborated several times including Glory Days, a full length dance production presented at Market Hall and Winchester street Theatre in Toronto, Duets presented by Toronto Dance Theatre, People for Education Fundraiser CBC Glen Gould Studio, Toronto and several times for Public Energy fundraisers and other gatherings. Most recently Bill tap dance with Curtis’s Cajun Band.

Curtis Driedger is a prolific composer, multi-instrumentalist and gardener. He has collaborated with numerous artists in Peterborough for over 30 years, creating original soundscapes and songs for dozens – too numerous to count – dance, theatre and interdisciplinary projects. All this in addition to leading community-based mandolin and choral ensembles.

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photo of train tracks










An outdoor fall performance series to be presented between October 2-18 2020 in Peterborough/Nogojiwanong. The Pivot Series is intended for socially distanced outdoor audiences in response to COVID-19 measures. Public Energy Performing Arts has partnered with the Peterborough ReFrame ...

Essential Circus Stage Three photo of Jennifer Elchuk performing firespinning in winter clothes in the photo.

Essential Circus Stage Three

Click to see the Promo

Click to see Program

Created and performed by: Jennifer (Opal) Elchuk, Tegan Moss, and Jeremy Pastic


7:00 PM

LOCATION:Peterborough Square courtyard
SHOW LENGTH: 20 mins

*Please arrive 15-20 minutes early

Photo of Opal Elchuk by Mossworks Photography

The illuminated Clock Tower & Market Hall provide an iconic backdrop for a stunning fire performance. Arriving at dusk spectators have a chance to experience the extraordinary in a seemingly ordinary location. Opal, Tegan and Jeremy will dance with an exciting array of fire props. The spinning flames are accompanied by electro swing music that has an energetic excitement accessible across generations. Join us for this playful and entertaining act that invites the whole family to enjoy the magic of the circus.

Music: The Grand Bizarre by Beats Antique, Catgroove by Parov Stelar, Mighty (feat.JFTH) by Caravan Palace

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Jennifer (Opal) Elchuk

Elchuk currently manages the Peterborough Academy of Circus Arts(PACA), a non-profit  organization dedicated to teaching and creating circus arts locally. She has been part of PACA since it was  founded in 2014 instructing youth and adults, performing, and producing shows. Holding degrees in both Fine  Arts and Education, Elchuk is also a graduate of Circus Instructor training at the National Circus School. She  performs aerial arts, fire dancing and stilt walking with Trellis Arts and Entertainment and Uncommon  Entertainment.  

Jeremy Pastic

Jeremy Pastic was born in this lovely town of Peterborough, and  continues to work, play and perform here. He developed a passion for movement  from a young age – probably from watching Power Rangers – which led him into  martial arts and gymnastics. Combining these disciplines with a more recent  passion for circus arts, Jeremy has pursued performance more seriously in the last  3 years. You may have seen him display his talents and tricks on stilts and/or with  fire as a soloist recently with Trellis Arts & Entertainment at Belleville Multicultural  and Waterfront Festival (2019), Picton Firelight Lantern Festival (2019) and in their  virtual Canada Day Programming (2020), or in productions with Peterborough  Academy of Circus in Circus Screamland (2019) and Cirquelesque (2018/2019). He  last performed fire with a fire trio at Picton’s IceBox Festival and Havelock Fire &  Ice Festival (2020). He hopes to expand his professional performance portfolio,  and continue to learn from those around him. While not performing, he makes nice  things out of wood for The Little Building Company. Jeremy loves dogs.

Tegan Moss

Professional circus artist performing primarily in flow arts disciplines with additional works  in aerial arts. Over 10-years performing with hula hoops and poi that are illuminated with fire,  LED lights, or static colours. Over a decade of experience choreographing original works as a  soloist or in duet, and more recently for groups of up to five circus artists.

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photo of the sculpture in Peterborough Square courtyard










An outdoor fall performance series to be presented between October 2-18 2020 in Peterborough/Nogojiwanong. The Pivot Series is intended for socially distanced outdoor audiences in response to COVID-19 measures. Public Energy Performing Arts has partnered with the Peterborough ReFrame ...

Bridge Over Troubled Water photo of two people at a table on holding the other's hand. a camera on drinking glasses and cutlery are on the table. in the photo.

Bridge Over Troubled Water

Click to see Promo

Click to see Program

by Aria Evans; created with and performed by Irma Villafuerte and Kevin Jones, Nikki Shaffeeullah and Sasha Tate-Howarth, Belinda Corpuz and Malcolm Connor, Aria Evans; accompaniment by Eirene Cloma


6:00 PM

LOCATION: Inverlea Park, Corner of Denistoun and Parkhill
SHOW LENGTH: 25 mins

*Please arrive 15-20 minutes early

Photo of Irma Villafuerte and Kevin Jones by Kevin Jones

Taking place at Inverlea Park, with a bridge present in the background, three duets occur. Working with pairs of two artists from different artistic disciplines, different cultural backgrounds and different sexual orientations – who have been living together during the pandemic – each duet uses the metaphor of how a river flows and changes to portray how relationships also shift over time.

Aria Evans is a queer, Toronto-based, award winning interdisciplinary artist working in dance; creation, performance and film. Aria draws on their experiences with Afro-Indigenous, settler heritage as well as their BFA (2012) to capture meaningful social and cultural themes through their interactive art. Collaboration is the departure point for the work that Aria creates with their company Political Movement.

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Political Movement was founded in 2015 out of a desire to create contemporary dance theatre that uses a choreographic process to reflect the ideals of socially conscious art. Collaboration is a key component to how the company works and the projects that Aria undertakes. Centring the artists in each creative process, part of Artistic Director Aria Evans’ personal mandate is to showcase diversity by representing Turtle Island’s rich cultural landscape. The seven works Aria has created under Political Movement, to date, have all been created from a social/political lens while examining personal narratives and experience.

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photo of a bench in a park, overlooking a river with a bridge crossing it










An outdoor fall performance series to be presented between October 2-18 2020 in Peterborough/Nogojiwanong. The Pivot Series is intended for socially distanced outdoor audiences in response to COVID-19 measures. Public Energy Performing Arts has partnered with the Peterborough ReFrame ...

Inside the Sculpture  in the photo.

Inside the Sculpture

Click to view Program

choreography by Irèni Stamou; performed by Dreda Blow, Irèni Stamou


12:30 PM
5:30 PM

LOCATION: Peterborough Square courtyard, in the sculpture (audience in the round)

*Please arrive 15-20 minutes early

Show length: 20 mins

A daytime performance dance piece inside the sculpture -“Figures Dancing” by Don Frost- situated outside Market Hall / Peterborough Square. A variation from my ongoing creation Bone Stories with myself, Irèni Stamou, and dancer Dreda Blow. I believe this site-specific performance inside the sculpture, like the city’s soul, is relevant as a metaphor for the sign of our times. From inside the sculpture, we see social change, we acknowledge the separation of the live arts during the pandemic crisis, feel the void, and long to create, perform, connect.

Reflecting a sign of our times, exposed, vulnerable and courageous, the dance takes different rhythms, dynamics, and forms like forces of nature, spiralling in an intertwining of dancer and sculpture as part of life. Like dance and nature, the sculpture invites us into its space to move from inside itself, step on the limbs and become part of it. In this landscape, we also reimagine, reorient, pivot and witness the audience and performer, between movement, presence and stillness as a healing process.

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Irèni(Irene) Stamou is a Canadian choreographer and dance artist. For over three decades, Irèni has created and performed a body of work consisting of 30 choreographies. A graduate of Concordia University/Montreal: Bachelors of Fine Arts in Contemporary Dance in 1989, Irèni received the award for outstanding achievements in choreography. She directed her dance company Métaspora Danse (beyond dispersion) from 1994 to 2004, performing as a soloist and creating group choreographies presented in Canada, Europe, New York City and Costa Rica. Her first performances started at Tangente Danse Actuelle where she performed the core of her work for 16 years. Irèni also performed at The Canada Dance Festival, Festival de la Nouvelle Danse, the Multicultural Festival in Ottawa, Dancing on the Edge, Vancouver, Guelph Dance Festival, L’Agora de La Danse, Montreal, and the Ottawa Dance Collective. Irèni received Artist in Residence projects in Lille France (Danse a Lille), Le Usine C, Montreal, Estudio Los Almendros, and Nosara Retreat in Costa Rica.

Irèni received between 1994 and 2004 project-based grants from The Canada Council, The Montreal Arts and letters, Multiculturalism Canada, and The Montreal Arts Council. In 2004 at 40 years old, Irèni decided to start a family and moved to join her partner in Southern Ontario. Irèni performed Tenfold (for peace) at The Art Gallery of Windsor in 2005.

Between 2006-2017 Irèni lived mostly in rural Costa Rica, being a mom, practicing sustainability and studying the Healing Arts. Irèni has received numerous certifications in somatics, yoga therapeutics, aerial yoga and bodywork. In her Costa Rica residencies, Irèni researched somatic improvisational movement for sustainability and longevity, a process that helped her with spinal issues and identifying blockages in the body-mind. Following this exploration, Irèni was one of the winners at The Choreographers festival for her choreography Mia Zoi “One Life,” a solo for Daniel Marenko, a cancer survivor. She travelled to Nicaragua, where she performed and taught workshops for homeless children at La Casa de Tres Mundos. Irèni taught somatic seminars at the University of Costa Rica for the Theatre and Dance departments. Recent choreographies include Body stories; Quartiers Danse Festival Montreal 2015. Oresteia, the Spanish adaptation of the ancient Greek play by Aeschylus with The National Theatre of Costa Rica 2017.

Irèni relocated to Peterborough /Nogojiwanong, Ontario, in 2018 with her family. Irèni participated in the 25th anniversary of Public Energy ‘s community project Transdance a choreography by Bill Coleman. She created new choreographic work and collaborated with local dance artists, Anne Ryan and Janette Fronz: SoulStories 2019, and Bonestories with the dancer Dreda Blow 2020, presented at The Theater on King Small Dances for a small space festival / Public Energy production.

Dreda Blow is a dance-theatre artist, choreographer and arts educator now based in Peterborough, ON. Dreda returned to Canada in 2018 after a 15-year international career as a ballet dancer in Dutch National Ballet, (Amsterdam) and Northern Ballet (Leeds, UK) where she performed a wide range of classical, contemporary and narrative work, including roles like Juliet, Jane Eyre, and Daisy in The Great Gatsby. She now teaches dance, drama and creative movement to all ages, choreographs her own solo work and collaborates with local actors and dance artists. She is delighted to be working with Ireni again after performing in her work, Bonestories, at the Theatre in King earlier this year.

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Photo of Irèni Stamou by Anita Erschen-Pappas

photo of the sculpture in Peterborough Square courtyard


An outdoor fall performance series to be presented between October 2-18 2020 in Peterborough/Nogojiwanong. The Pivot Series is intended for socially distanced outdoor audiences in response to COVID-19 measures. Public Energy Performing Arts has partnered with the Peterborough ReFrame ...

Between the Dragon and the Tiger: how to maximize your energy in public Coman Poon and Naishi Wang shown from behind over water. in the photo.

Between the Dragon and the Tiger: how to maximize your energy in public

Click to view Poster

Click to view Program

by Coman Poon & Naishi Wang


12:30 PM
5:30 PM

LOCATION: University Court outside Bata Library at Trent University
(This location is barrier free. Paid parking available, credit and debit only. Reachable by bus.)

SHOW LENGTH: 30 mins

*Please arrive 15-20 minutes early


Image by Coman Poon and Naishi Wang

Between the Dragon and the Tiger: how to maximize your energy in public is a new dance/ritual collaboration between two Chinese-Canadian artists that enjoy working site-specifically. We offer an artistic approach that embodies an exploratory and culturally-hybridized process that centres on feng shui principles of establishing and sustaining environmental harmony. In this time of conflict and separation, we invite all to interact and dialogue with each other, as a bridge to intercultural understanding.

Literally translated as “wind-water” in English, feng shui (Traditional Chinese: 風水/Simplified Chinese: 风水) is a form of Chinese geomancy, an ancient metaphysical divination practice of working with terrestrial energy. Briefly known as a “mystery patterned study”, the contemporary practice traces the energy circulation with/in built form with the aim to bring good fortune and personal nourishment. Seeking outward and internal harmony, it is a belief system and an everyday practice embraced by the people in China for generations.

At the time of early British colonial contact, feng shui was the guiding principle Chinese Emperors relied on for the location of whole communities, bridges and other infrastructure such as canals. It was an applied worldview that infuriated Westerners trying to build railroads to make opportunistic inroads into China. With the People’s Republic of China now a global economic power, it seems fitting to bring this old practice full circle as an homage to ancestral Chinese wisdom.

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Coman Poon | 潘灏 is a Tkaronto-based interdisciplinary artist, activist, curator and producer working within context of decolonization and intercultural exchange. He is a bilingual, English/Cantonese community-centred Torontonian of Hong Kong & Canadian upbringing.

Photo from behind of Coman Poon over waterThe Triangle Collective comprises of Edgardo Moreno (Hamilton, Ontario), Coman Poon (Toronto, Ontario) and Olga Barrios (Santa Marta, Colombia). As a collective of im/migrants from Chile, Hong Kong and Colombia, we conjoin the movements, aesthetics and sonorities of a seasoned choreographer, a visual/performance artist and a musician/composer. Since 2020, we have embarked on a new research and development for a digital artworks platform entitled Triangle Project: Art & Life in Times of COVID.

[ field ] is an ongoing series of performance and installation collaborations between architect-installationist Brian Smith and performance artist/live art researcher Coman Poon. As a site for numinous research and a death meditation on intergenerational, queer and cross-cultural sites of love, 1+1+0: performances in preparation for death premiered at Dances @ MuCCC, Rochester (2018); closed The Gathering (2018) with Mohawk Elder Danny Beaton (Tkaronto), Su-Feh Lee (Vancouver), Charles Koroneho (Aotearoa), Tedd Robinson (Bristol), Sylvie Tourangeau (Sainte-Agathe-de-Lotbinière) & was featured at Pi*llOry, an LGBTQ+ performance art series in Toronto (2020).

Inspired by a maternal ancestral lineage in Feng Shui | 風水 (Chinese geomancy), his performance and visual art practice currently explores the ‘ritual body’ in relationship to natural and built environments. Aside from current studies of biofield tuning and toning with Eileen McKusick, his collaboration with dancer/choregrapher Naishi Wang offers an interdisciplinary platform for this embodied research and life/art practice.

He writes about live art, dance and performance and profiles diverse artistic practices as a journalistic act of re-centring on the margins.

Naishi Wang

Born in Changchun, China, Naishi Wang began with Chinese Classical dance and Chinese Folk dances training at Jilin College of Art. In 2004, moved to C

Photo from behind of Naishi Wang over water

anada and joined Toronto Dance Theater for nine years. In 2015 the award-winning performer was inspired to work and develop as an independent choreographer. With a belief that performing arts create an imaginary perspective and push the form of what dance could be in the 21st century. His creative drive started with a solo work entitled Taking Breath, a work about using air as a form of communication. From the beginning to the present, he received much support and many invitations across Canada and had a German Premiere in Hamburg. In 2020, Naishi is one of the residency artists at La Serre Montreal and international creative collaboration with a UK based dance artist Jean Abreu.

Besides his own projects. Naishi is focusing on how to share his personal nature perspective with colleagues throughout different communities. He is a guest choreographer for Nostos dance collective and co-founder of 3+ collective, Returning River Collective and Temporary Collective.

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An outdoor fall performance series to be presented between October 2-18 2020 in Peterborough/Nogojiwanong. The Pivot Series is intended for socially distanced outdoor audiences in response to COVID-19 measures. Public Energy Performing Arts has partnered with the Peterborough ReFrame ...

Point of Origin Photo of a river. in the photo.

Point of Origin

Click to view Promo

Click to view Program

concept/choreography by Returning River – Jen Hum, Naishi Wang, Emily Law, Pam Wong- Shoebottom, Henry Mak; performed by Jen Hum, Naishi Wang, Pam Wong- Shoebottom


7:00 PM (Pre-show projections beginning at 6:15pm)

LOCATION: The Boathouse at the Silver Bean Cafe, 130 King St. 
SHOW LENGTH: 20 mins

*Please arrive 15-20 minutes early

Image by Returning River

‘Point of Origin’ is a project we at Returning River have been developing for 2 years. Presently we are working from three separate points of entry into exploring the multilayered concepts of Identity, Face, and Voice with broad strokes gesturing to an alternative voice, societal stereotypes, the philosophies of East and West, transformation, history and representation.  

Stream ‘one’, our identity location solos, flows from personal connections with specific, physical locations in Toronto that are tied to our memories, name, ancestry, and hence our sense of self. Stream ‘two’ is based on the examination of “What is it like to live with this face?”. We examine face as our main physical identifier and the friction between how we self-identify and how others identify us. “Face” is also a complex and nuanced concept in East Asian culture seen as one’s social currency. Stream ‘three’ is to be a performative transformation of the concept of bi- culturalism. Working with ideas of food, names, voice and movement, the artists embark on a journey that includes stories of receiving a second name, the effect of one’s name on self, vocalizing naming and renaming articles, and using cooking as a metaphor for the passing down of culture. 

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Returning River

Returning River is a collaborative effort between dance artists Jen Hum, Naishi Wang, Emily Law, and Pam Wong- Shoebottom with support from videographer Henry Mak and outside eye Andrea Nann.  Each dance artist has over 10 years of separate performance experience and together we are creating work that is thoughtful and theatrical, virtuosic yet subtle, and connected to both our ancestry and to the present day. The well-spring of our inspirations are fed by our different experiences of being Chinese Canadian and the idea of a river is the representation of how we work. The work is to move forward, replenish ideas, envelop blockages and find new passages in order to present performances rooted in movement and accentuated by images and sound that create empathy with diverse audiences. The word return is symbolic because a river can never return back to its exact self just as people can go back to a place or position, but never back in time. As a collective, shaping our artistic vision includes returning to our ancestry, returning to significant locations, reflecting on past personal and societal events, re-imagining viewpoints and the usage of space and in general: returning back to recognize the past in order to move into the future.

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An outdoor fall performance series to be presented between October 2-18 2020 in Peterborough/Nogojiwanong. The Pivot Series is intended for socially distanced outdoor audiences in response to COVID-19 measures. Public Energy Performing Arts has partnered with the Peterborough ReFrame ...

Meeting At Thebes Photo of statue with outstretched palm at Peterborough Citizens War Memorial in the photo.

Meeting At Thebes

Click to view Promo

Click to view Program

by Lee Bolton; performed by Peyton Le Barr, with Mithila Ballal and Jim Angel


6:00 PM

LOCATION: Confederation Square, 499 George St N.
SHOW LENGTH: 20 mins

*Please arrive 15-20 minutes early

Photo of Confederation Square statue by Tim Laye, Ontario War Memorials

Meeting at Thebes is an interactive storytelling journey that blends practical community action with ritual, physical theatre and contemporary text. By combining an ancient story told at a local site of profound modern and historical resonance with a performance that fully embraces the present moment, Meeting at Thebes speaks directly to relevant social issues while offering room for us as a community, amidst months of isolation and uncertainty, to come together and enact the core ingredient of healing: a collective catharsis.

Meeting at Thebes is based on Bolton’s play Jocasta, first produced in Leeds, UK in 2009.

Jocasta is a feminist reimagining of  Sophocles’ Greek tragedy Oedipus Rex. Sophocles wrote about kings, gods and inescapable fate against the backdrop of a plague threatening the city of Thebes. Jocasta shifted the focus from the powerful to the powerless, not only the doomed mother/wife of the title but the marginalized of the city.

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As the world came to a halt in March of 2020, Lee found herself standing at a sink remembering the  profound experience of ritual handwashing with which performers greeted the Jocasta audience. She had begun reworking the piece when Public Energy’s call for the Pivot Series pivoted that reworking into its current form – young Jocasta speaking to the people of her city while pregnant with Oedipus, accompanied by a two person movement Chorus.

Lee Bolton

Recently I returned to Peterborough after more than three decades working as a theatre maker, teacher  and curator. I have worked from sea (Artistic Director, Yukon Educational Theatre) to sea (Artistic  Director, Silk Purse Theatre Vancouver) to sea (Executive Director, Imperial Theatre Saint John) and also  across the sea in Leeds & Glasgow, UK.  

Peyton Le Barr

Peyton has been a professional actor for over a decade. She is a masters graduate from England’s East 15 Acting School and has performed on such highly acclaimed stages as Shakespeare’s Globe. In 2018 Peyton was a guest artist at Humber College teaching the art of site-specific theatre, a style of  performance that she has an extensive background working in both as a performer and a producer. She  is currently a Peterborough resident. 

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Photo of Peterborough Citizens War Memorial and Veterans Wall of Honour












An outdoor fall performance series to be presented between October 2-18 2020 in Peterborough/Nogojiwanong. The Pivot Series is intended for socially distanced outdoor audiences in response to COVID-19 measures. Public Energy Performing Arts has partnered wi...

2020 Wrap Up The Public Energy logo wraped with ribbon like a present. Reads Wrapping up 2020 with Public Energy, Click to unwrap. in the photo.

2020 Wrap Up


John & Waleed Photo of John Millard and Waleed Abdulhamid performing on stage in the photo.

John & Waleed

Public Energy presents a Theatre Passe Muraille Digital Production

Written & Performed by John Millard and Waleed Abdulhamid

Streaming from Toronto’s Theatre Passe Muraille One Night Only

Sunday, January 31, 2021 at 7:30pm

This is a free event. No prior registration is required. On January 31 just come to this website and click on the link we will provide to view the show. Join us for a Q&A with the artists immediately following the show.

Download the show program
Download the text only program
Download the lyrics in English and arabic

Music Lessons For Newcomers Fund Instead of an admission charge, Public Energy is using this event to raise funds toward the cost of music lessons for newcomers in need. Music lessons can be prohibitively costly for low income individuals. Therefore, in the spirit of the John & Waleed show we have created a fund to gather donations that will be made available to newcomers to Canada who are seeking music (including voice) lessons with professional teachers.

How To Donate and How To Apply
Click on the button below to either donate to the fund or apply for a subsidy.

to subsidize music lessons
for newcomers.

to support your music lessons.

Apply for a subsidy by February 15th.

This remount of the hit 2017 show John & Waleed had been scheduled to tour Ontario in 2020-21. Due to the pandemic, plans were made instead to perform live for one night only, streamed to a number of presenters across Ontario to bring the show to l...

Alone, with you A woman sitting at a laptop in a dark room. in the photo.

Alone, with you

View Poster

Created & Performed by Noah Sisson and Ashley Frederick

A virtual theatre experience

Premieres on Saturday, March 6, 2021 at 2:00pm

Show Length: 45 Mins
Available for viewing until March 21, 2021.

Noah Sisson – Co-creator, performer (Lucian)
Ashley Frederick – Co-creator, performer (Emelie)
Eryn Lidster – Stage manager
Kate Story – Mentor/outside eye
Philip Ratcliff – Assistant stage manager

The effects of COVID-19 linger in 2023, when a new virus is suddenly discovered in North America. Fearing the worst, a young woman named Emelie immediately isolates herself in her 500 square foot Toronto apartment. In the months that follow, the psychological toll of paranoia, anxiety, and digital surveillance fuels a reconnection with a familiar individual as she calls on her past for guidance.

Alone, with you is a work of experimental virtual devised theatre by Noah Sisson and Ashley Frederick, two emerging artists and recent graduates of York University’s devised theatre program. The work reflects on our current experience from a near-future perspective. It explores the psychologica...

White Rabbit Red Rabbit  in the photo.

White Rabbit Red Rabbit

Click here to view the Poster

Click here to view the Program

Written by Nassim Soleimanpour

A play performed entirely without rehearsal, performed by an actor
who walks on stage and is handed a script they have never seen.

Let There Be Theatre – A Call to Action on March 13!
Public Energy presents an Aurora Nova production as part of a global one-day theatre movement marking the one-year anniversary when theatres around the world went dark.
Theatres everywhere have the option of performing the play for in-theatre and/or online audiences on March 13 at 8pm. Here in Peterborough we have opted for an online audience only, due to the community outbreak of a COVID variant.

Saturday, March 13, 2021 at 8:00pm
Performed live by Beau Dixon BioOpens New Window
at Market Hall Performing Arts Centre

Get Tickets

Just like going to the theatre, this play can not be viewed a second time. It is available for viewing once as a real-time performance.

How to watch: This event will take place via Zoom. You will receive a link to the Zoom meeting the day before the event, and a reminder an hour before the event. The link will also be available on the Eventbrite page on the night of the event.

About White Rabbit Red Rabbit:

Will you participate? Will you be manipulated? Will you listen? Will you really listen?

With no rehearsal, no director, a different actor each night, and a script waiting in a sealed envelope on stage, internationally acclaimed White Rabbit, Red Rabbit, by Ir...

Common Threads Collective Two cardboard or cloth cutouts of human silhouettes in front of tents. in the photo.

Common Threads Collective

2020-2021 Artists in Residence
with Public Energy Performing Arts

Common Threads Collective is a diverse group of newcomer and non-newcomer artists. The spark for our initial formation was a powerful newcomer story developed and shared by Reem Ali, NCC’s Workplace Integration Liaison. CTC’s creative process during the Public Energy artistic residency involves designing and delivering workshops in our various fields of expertise, prioritizing newcomer participants, although also open to non- newcomer community members. This work, and the skills and connections forged in the community, will then become the basis for a larger presentation called Land(ing).

Over the course of the residency CTC artists will document the workshops, continually sharing and discussing our creative findings, building a shared vision for the final project. We will explore links between workshop outcomes and the original newcomer story, and discuss possible approaches to animating this story with community participants, using skills and ideas developed during the Public Energy residency.

The Public Energy residency will provide us with creative material and direction, and forge connections between artists and community members, offering invaluable preparation so that we can move into the production stages for Land(ing) with a deep and complex understanding of the communities this project is serving. The residency will culminate in a filmed documentary of the process, and an artist talk.

Photo by Brad Brackenridge

Common Threads Collective Workshops (Upcoming):

Introduction To Puppetry

Common Threads Collective Workshops (Past):

Finding Your Story Through Movement

Text As A Design Element In Costume Design

Story Telling Through Textile

Common Threads Collective

Common Threads Collective is a diverse group of newcomer and non-newcomer artists, Shahed Khaito, Mithila Ballal, Kate Story, Leslie Menagh, Brad Brackenridge, and Peyton LeBarr, as...

Irèni Stamou Ireni Stamou dancing, black and white photo. in the photo.

Irèni Stamou

2020-2021 Artist in Residence
with Public Energy Performing Arts

During the 2020-2021 season, Irèni Stamou is one of the Artists in Residence with Public Energy Performing Arts in Nogojiwanong “place at the foot of the rapids,” Peterborough Ontario. In her new choreography, Bone Stories, Irèni explores multiculturalism, violence against women and restoring our connection to the earth within a series of solo pieces in collaboration with dancer Dreda Blow. She is in the process of re-imaging the logistics of safe and creative audience viewing in site-specific and unusual settings amid COVID-19.

Photo of Irèni Stamou by Anita Erschen-Pappas

Photo of Irèni Stamou by Anita Erschen-Pappas

Irèni(Irene) Stamou is a Canadian choreographer and dance artist. For over three decades, Irèni has created and performed a body of work consisting of 30 choreographies. A graduate of Concordia University/Montreal: Bachelors of Fine ...

Nicole Malbeuf Nicole Malbeuf suspended by her hair on a yellow background. in the photo.

Nicole Malbeuf

2020-2021 Artist in Residence
with Public Energy Performing Arts

A Hen Called Freedom is a new work that will examine how humans relate to, feel about, and understand the lives of animals and the natural cycle of living things. Nicole Malbeuf will create an immersive theatrical installation using hand-made costuming, innovative prop/apparatus design and the circus discipline of hair suspension. A Hen Called Freedom follows a winged character through a journey of compulsion, fear, distress, reward and repetition – a mini story that Nicole intends to be part of a larger story and show. Further to using this residency to explore movement, narrative and set and costume design, Nicole will investigate modes of presentation that adapt to these COVID 19 times.

Photo of Nicole Malbeuf by KayLens Photography

“I’m most excited about combining all my passions into this work. My heart is really in it. I also like the idea of having one place to examine and unite a multitude of things, like sitting down to a plentiful plate of all different food groups, or being allowed to sift through a tidy...