Leah Simone Bowen is a writer, producer, director and host of the podcast ‘ The Secret Life of Canada’. She is a former cast member of Theatre Sports at Bad Dog and The Second City Touring Company. She currently runs the Theatre program at the Toronto Arts Council.
#OCOOS18 WORKSHOP: An Insider's Guide to Grant Writing Saturday, June 2 • 2:45pm Daunted by the idea of grant applications? Leah-Simone Bowen will familiarize you with the process!
Ophira Calof is a producer, writer and performer based out of Toronto. She co-hosts the monthly All Access Sketch Show, and is currently producing a sketch revue titled Generally Hospitalas part of the Toronto Fringe Festival. She has trained in improv at Second City and the Assembly, and is a graduate of Second City’s Writing and Sketch Conservatory Programs. Ophira also has an extensive background as a vocalist, having performed across Canada with the UBC Opera Ensemble and Vancouver Symphony Orchestra, and recently released her first single and music video Still Standing as part of a fundraising campaign that she created.
Ti Coleman got his improv start taking classes at Washington Improv Theatre (WIT) and hasn’t looked back since. After bouncing around a few indie troupes, he auditioned with BIG and got in (the second time). Ti is a member of Casually Dope.
Fuelled with the rage of a thousand suns, Anasimone takes on various stages throughout the city. She is known for her wild and often “zany” stories. Anasimone produces a monthly sold out comedy show called SHADE that aims to diversify the comedy scene. Aside from producing and hosting, she has also opened for Baron Vaughn, Aparna Nancherla, and Emily Heller, and Sam Jay to name a few. www.anasimone.com
om works very closely with the Bad Dog Theatre Company as a producer and performer. He is a founding member of Kinsey Fail, Toronto’s queer improv ensemble and a member of the Season 4 Featured Players. Tom is a graduate of the Second City Conservatory and winner of the Tim Sims Encouragement Fund Award. He is a cast member of Sunday Night Live with The Sketchersons. Tom is half of the award-winning sketch comedy duo Tom & Erica. They have appeared at the NC Comedy Arts Festival, Toronto and Montréal Sketchfest (2017, 2018), the Fundy Fringe Festival and 420 Comedy Festival. As a duo they have won ‘Sketchiest Sketch Troupe’ (Toronto Sketchfest ’18) and Best Ensemble (Fundy Fringe 17′).
You can see Tom’s productions all over the city. Highlights include: The Pageant, HOOK, Kinsey Fail, the Combustion Festival 2017 (Bad Dog Theatre Company), F%CK IT BUCKET, Sketchy Show, and the sold out 420 Comedy Festival.
Your facilitator Hayley Kellett brings 10 years of experience helping individuals and organizations across North America become more open, happy and productive by harnessing the tools of improvisation. Her company, The Making-Box has been nominated for Innovation Guelph’s Start-Up Of The Year (2016) and The Guelph Chamber of Commerce: Community Innovator Award (2018) and Community Spirit Award (2016). Hayley is a receipt of Guelph, Ontario’s Top 40 Under 40 award (2017), a Canadian Comedy Award Nominee (2015) and was recently named a 2018 YMCA-YWCA Guelph Woman of Distinction. Other career highlights include leading an improv workshop in a hot tub.
#OCOOS WORKSHOP: Best Practises for Self Care On and Off Stage Sunday, June 3 • 11:30am Navigating interpersonal dynamics and your own needs on stage, in class, and within a troupe can be challenging. Making Box Theatre's Hayley Kellett will share tips for how to make these moments feel more comfortable.
Sheila is a Professor Emerita at the University of Toronto. Her research has focused on how policies affect the paid and unpaid caring labor that women do throughout their lives (7 books & over 75 articles & book chapters). Currently she sits on the board of directors of several home care agencies. Recently she has focused on documenting the different types of ageism that senior citizens encounter. She has studied Improv at Second City and Bad Dog theatre. Last year she partnered with Daniel Gelfant to found Boom Baby Boom . Everyone in this Improv troupe is 50+.
Victoria Laberge is a Toronto-based arts administrator with her fingers in many pies. In addition to being the Director of Marketing & Development for Nightwood Theatre, Canada's flagship feminist theatre, she's also a Co-Producer for Confabulation, a cross-national storytelling series in Montreal, Toronto and Victoria, BC; publicist for comedy geniuses Sex T-Rex; and Marketing Coordinator for Puppetmongers Theatre, puppeteers since 1974.
#OCOOS WORKSHOP: The Indie Marketer's Toolkit Saturday, June 2 • 2:45pm Trying to build an audience on a shoestring budget? Sex T-Rex's publicist will help you sell a show using tools available to everyone and innovative DIY hacks.
Alia Rasul is a comedian, writer and performer, who is passionate about works that explore the narrative of the Filipino diaspora. She is currently a part of Bad Dog Theatre's Emerging Creator's Unit (funded by the Pat & Tony Freedom Fund) and was recently a part of the theatre's Featured Players program. She continues to perform regularly at Bad Dog Theatre in shows such as Yas Kween, Humans of Improv, and Theatresports. Alia recently made her directorial debut with Kwento, an improvised bedtime story which brought together improvised comedy, illustration, Filipino folk music. Alia is Bad Dog Theatre’s Inclusion Director.
Siobhan Richardson is an Intimacy Director, co-founder of Intimacy Directors International and the only person in Canada recognized as an Intimacy Director by Tonia Sina, founder of the Intimacy For The Stage method. Siobhan is quickly building an impressive resume in this field, including several directing and teaching credits across Canada, Europe, and the USA. Directing credits include Bunny (Tarragon), Serenity Wild(Tender Container), Odd One Out (Human Wick Effect), Dancock’s Dance (The Hogtown Collective), How I Learned To Drive (Trinity College Dramatic Society, University of Toronto), Aunt Dan and Lemon (Shadowtime Productions), The Container (Theatre Fix), The Trial of Judith K (Thought For Food Productions), and assistant to Intimacy Choreographer Tonia Sina on The Bakkhai (Stratford Festival, directed by Jillian Keiley). Recent teaching credits include workshops across Canada and the United States, in Norway, and Germany, with upcoming visits to Sweden, Denmark and Finland, along with numerous post-secondary theatre programs across Ontario. Siobhan is thrilled to be part of the movement that’s creating safer, more respectful workspaces, and bringing Intimacy Directors into the rehearsal hall to support actors and directors in these sensitive moments which are so vital to plot and character development. Look here for her interview on CBC’s The Current: (starts at 22:44).