Posts tagged toronto

INTERVIEW: Shira Taylor, Creator of SExT: Sex Education by Theatre, Talks About ‘Bodak Consent’

Shira Taylor created SExT: Sex Education by Theatre back in 2014 for her dissertation during her time at the University of Toronto, in order to explore the use of theatre for sex education aimed at young students. The play, SExt, has been performed by youth peer educators at Canada’s largest theatre festivals to thousands of students in schools and indigenous reserves across Ontario and Saskatchewan. She has also worked with teachers to implement sex education in an art-based, culturally-inclusive and impactful ways.

“Bodak Consent”– a Bodak Yellow (Cardi B) parody– was created through SexT’s partnership with the Canadian Foundation of AIDS Research (CANFAR). Read the interview below with Shira to find out more!

Thank you so much for talking to Defective Geeks and answering our questions today. Can you tell us about SExT: Sex Education by Theatre, how it was founded and why you wanted to start it in the first place? What are the programs’ main goals?

Five years ago, I walked into one of Canada’s most diverse and over-populated high schools, located in an immigration destination of Toronto, with the idea of having sex education more comprehensive, relevant, and impactful by emboldening youth to sing, rap, and dance about everything from chlamydia to homophobia to racism. This visit led me to create the peer education program, SExT: Sex Education by Theatre, as my PhD Thesis (Public Health, University of Toronto) to empower youth from communities where talking about sex is cultural taboo to take center stage. Our main goal is to support young people to reflect on, challenge, and communicate their realities and celebrate their unique identities through performance art. Youth are invited to tackle current issues head-on in a non-judgmental environment that promotes education, discussion, creativity, and personal discovery.

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INTERVIEW: Michelle Alexander on Rising from a Small Town and Playing a Serial Killer on ‘Darknet’

Michelle Alexander is a Toronto based actress, known for her chilling role in the Canadian horror series, Darknet. Inspired from a young age to pursue a career in acting, Michelle has never stopped pursuing her passion since. You can see her in other shows such as Orphan Black and Shadowhunters. Get to know where she came from and what inspires her– read the interview below!

Tell us about yourself. How did you get into acting and who/what were your inspirations? When did you know you were going to pursue a creative career?

Alright, buckle up, here we go! I am a born and bred Vancouver Islander, I grew up in a small town called Mill Bay–I mean small. We have two fast food restaurants and one traffic light. I come from a family of five whose careers include: a high school principal, an elementary librarian, a rocket scientist and an entrepreneur. AKA, I’m the one and only artist. When I was in preschool we were asked to do one of those MadLib type activities where you fill in the blanks and declare your future, probably so you can chuckle at how wrong you were when you’re in your 20’s. Anyway, at four years old, under ‘When I grow up I want to be a…’ I wrote actor and never looked back.

I started acting “professionally” when I was nine years old in a children’s touring theatre troupe that performed dramatizations of novels in elementary schools. My first role was Becky Thatcher in Tom Sawyer and the moment I stepped out on stage (aka, the gymnasium floor) I knew I was hooked.

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INTERVIEW: Megan Hutchings Stars in BET’s ‘In Contempt’ and Finding Confidence in Herself

Megan Hutchings plays the daring and seductive lawyer in the show, In Contempt. Megan began her journey into acting at age 18 and have already landed roles in shows such as Beauty and the Beast (The CW), The Smart Woman’s Survival Guide (W Network), Reign (The CW) and The Good Witch (Hallmark Channel). Find out more about her career in the interview below!

Tell us about your upcoming show, In Contempt, and your character, Tracy Campbell. What do you love best about Tracy?

In Contempt is a really entertaining show filled with all the drama of love, relationships, broken friendships, rivalries, etc. that audiences crave but it also focuses on some real, complicated issues that our world is dealing with today. As public defenders we’re dealing with people who are often suppressed because of the colour of their skin, poverty, mental illnesses and other issues.

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INTERVIEW: Jessica Rose On the Vulnerability in Acting and Her Short Film, ‘Alison’

Jessica Rose is a creative powerhouse and you may recognize her from television shows such as Man Seeking Woman and Saving Hope. She has also written and starred in her own short film called Alison which explores the intimacy between a couple during one particular strange night. Read more below to find out what acting means to her and her upcoming projects.

Your short film, ‘Alison,’ is so simple yet conveys so much about a relationship in one single night. I love how the short started out a bit silly then the emotional roller coaster escalates. What was the inspiration for it and what did you hope to show people?

Thank you! I think relationships are a subject that have always fascinated me. There is a specific kind of intimacy you develop in long term relationships that I hadn’t seen on screen before, and a particular kind of work involved that isn’t often talked about. There is a vulnerability, sometimes a very dark side, that we share with our partners that no one else sees. I know many couples who appear to always be fighting or dealing with some sort of drama, but they remain extremely determined and committed to staying together. Love is complicated, and our need for intimacy and partnership is powerful. I’m fascinated by the equation behind it: what and how much we are willing to endure in order to keep a relationship going, and whether the rewards of companionship outweigh the challenges.

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INTERVIEW: Lee Lawson on Future Projects and Becoming an Actress in Toronto

Lee Lawson is both an actress and a writer based in Toronto, Canada who can be seen playing a diverse range of roles onscreen. She can be seen in independent films starring as as a soldier dealing with PTSD in director Tamara Moos’ Kavod, a young teacher navigating the childhood crush of a gifted student in Hue’s Theatre and as Leaf Girl in Joëlle Wallinga’s conceptual collaboration with child writers; Cave Big, Cave Small. We chatted with her about her journey in acting and her upcoming projects.

Tell us more about yourself and what inspired you to become a creative person and pursue acting. What has that journey been like for you?

Hi! so happy to be chatting with you! It’s funny; I certainly wasn’t the typical actor kid. I was quite shy; a day dreamer. It took me a really long time to find my way into onscreen acting. I always felt this instinctive pull towards story telling, but theatre never fit quite right. It was so freeing when I finally discovered the Independent film scene. In front of the camera I felt like there was no distance to contend with. For me, acting for camera is an incredibly intimate experience. My artistic journey has been all about finding the right medium, material and community to work within.

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Interview: Award Winner Director, D.W. Waterson on That’s My DJ

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D.W. Waterson is not only one of Toronto’s most in-demand DJ, she is also a powerhouse of creativity. She is the creator and director of award winning web series, That’s My DJ, a fast-paced slice of life show that takes a look inside the new order of rave. The series won for Best Editing at the 2016 11th Annual Independent Television and Film Festival and Waterson won Best Director at the New York Television Festival (NYTVF) 2016 Independent Pilot Competition.

Read our interview with her below!

First of all, congratulations on your win at the NYTVF and ITV Fest! Tell us about about your web series, That’s My DJ, and how the show came together.

Thank you so much! That’s My DJ is a series more or less based off my life and experiences being a DJ in Toronto. Each season follows a different character in the social circle of raves, promoters & night life. Started writing the show about three to four years ago and shot Season One. After a great response from the first season I jumped back into the creating chair and started hustling on Seasons Two and Three.

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INTERVIEW: Alain Chanoine of ‘Evil Feed’

Alain Chanoine I recently was lucky enough to interview male actor and stuntman Alain Chanoine who can be seen in the upcoming horror comedy flick Evil Feed. The movie will premiere October 23rd at the 2013 Toronto After Dark Film Festival, so if you’re in the area make sure to check it out! In this interview Alain talks about his character Tyrone, who sounds like a total badass, what it’s like to do stunt work and acting, what it was like to prepare for the roll, how he’s a martial arts geek, and how he’s totally psyched about the upcoming Ninja Turtles movie.

Alain has an optimistic attitude that is infectious and it was a lot of fun chatting with him. Make sure to check out Evil Feed and Alain’s other projects.

What inspired you to become an actor?

I always wanted to be. When I was a kid I always loved movies, I always wanted to be an artist, and I was in theater production in high school, but I never actually thought back then that it was how I was going to make a living. With some kind of weird story I just kind of ended up in the business, but it was kind of always meant to be.

What led you into stunt work?

I have been doing martial arts since I was eleven and my teacher, Jean Frenette, was a stunt coordinator and a stunt man and I always wanted to do it too. It’s funny because I wanted to be an actor first, so I got into the business and saw a lot of people doing stunts and thought, “I can do this, I want to do this.” I just ended up going for it too. My transition was from actor to stuntman, but I’m an actor first. I really love stunts and it’s a great profession.

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Ep. 109 Marty Adams

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We talk to actor, comedian and writer, Marty Adams who you may have seen in The Lost Girl, Scare Tactics and Saw IV. He is also going to be a recurring character in the upcoming Netflix original series, Hemlock Grove. We chat about horror and scaring people to tears to comedy and making people laugh. Gizzy B also finds away to nerd-terrorize him and