From a gathering of Elders, these never-before heard stories of hope, resilience and ancestry are the guiding force of Kiitistsinnoniks. Written, directed and designed by an all-female cast and crew, our newest production is in solidarity of our Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women.
Women have always been the backbone of our culture and we ask ourselves, what happens to a culture when the women disappear?
Creating the Show
Consistent with the Making Treaty 7 Cultural Society process of learning from Treaty 7 peoples, for the first time in our history we will be hosting a two-day retreat for a group of female Elders from Treaty 7 Nations. The Elders will be sharing stories with the cast and designers of Kiitistsinnoniks. That shared experience is at the heart of all creative elements of this production.
In addition to our source information and the blessing from our Elders to share our stories, the cast and crew are consulting with experts in fields pertaining to missing and murdered Indigenous women in Canada to help further inform us and include a national perspective in the performance.
With this inspiration from the Elders, the creative team uses our stories of hope, resilience and ancestry as the guiding force for their work. The result of this collaboration will be this world premiere of Kiitistsinnoniks.
Kiitistsinnoniks Cast and Crew
Alanis King is an Odawa playwright originally from the Wikwemikong Unceded Indian Reserve. Her playwrighting credits include Bury, Morning Becomes Electa, Kawabin Elvis, Born Buffalo, Teacher, Kohkum’s Good Medicine Journey, Treaty Daze, Bye Bye Beneshe, Song of Hiawatha: An Anishnaabec Adaption, Order of Good Cheer, Gegwah, Lovechild, The Artshow, Heartdwellers, The Manitoulin Incident, Tommy Prince Story, and If Jesus Met Nanabush. 3 Plays by Fifth House Publishers will also be publishing The Manitoulin Incident in the fall. Alanis is Past Artistic Director of Askiy Productions, Saskatchewan Native Theatre Company, Native Earth Performing Arts, Debajehmujig Theatre Group, Mazinaw Rocks Productions and currently Odawa Native Theatre. She has been commissioned to write plays for the University of Wisconsin, the Centre for Indigenous Theatre, Shadowland Theatre, Saskatchewan’s Awasis and the Wabano Centre for Aboriginal Health. She is a graduate of the National Theatre School of Canada. Alanis lives in Ottawa where she works as a Cultural Ambassador in tourism and is a proud Nokomis!
Nova Lea is pleased to be working on a new project with the Making Treaty 7 Cultural Society. Although this is her first show with the society, she enjoyed getting to know the team while working on We Are All Treaty People, a collaboration between the Making Treaty 7 Cultural Society and Quest Theatre. Her summers have been filled with the Calgary Stampede Grandstand Show (1999-2018). Her career has also kept her busy working on such shows as I Meta Bully on the Hill, My Grandma’s Eyes, The General, Baloney! (Quest Theatre); That’s Danger (Work Plays Schools Program); That Men May Fly (Lunchbox Theatre), A Christmas Carol (Theatre Calgary), Sister Mary Ignatius Explains it All For You and The Actors Nightmare (The Citadel Theatre), Private Lives (Northern Light Theatre). She also enjoyed the opportunity to return to her home province to work on The Hobbit (Theatre New Brunswick).
Assistant Stage Manager
Melanie is thrilled to join the Making Treaty 7 Cultural Society and to be assisting Nova Lea again. She is very thankful for all of the love and support from her Family and Friends as well as her fiancé Jacob. Past credits include Cariboo Magi Rosebud Theatre, Nine Dragons Vertigo, Macbeth TSC, GZT H&M, The Three Musketeers TSC, GZT, H&M, Frank Dickens Christmas Carol Rosebud School of the Arts, Goodnight Desdemona Good morning Juliet TSC and Handsome Alice, Macbeth TSC GZT H&M and Vertigo, Bookclub Lunchbox, Snow angle Quest and Umbrella Quest.
Originally from Siksika Nation, Elizabeth is a Calgary based artist focusing on theatre and dance. Select stage acting credits includes: We Are All Treaty People (Quest Theatre, Making Treaty 7 Cultural Society), Survival Cycles, The Small Room at the Top of the Stairs (TheatreXtra), The Christmas Tree (Torchlight Theatre), Carrie: The Musical, Dreams (University of Lethbridge). Elizabeth would love to thank her friends and family for their constant love and support.
Stacy Da Silva
Stacy’s’ Indian name is Sunrise Eagle Woman from Saddle Lake First Nation, Alberta. She is a proud mother to her 3 sons. Stacy has been acting in theatre for 25 years and for the past 23 years has been pursuing a career in film and television. Some of the work that Stacy has completed is CBC television series “North of 60”, “Dreamkeeper” and educational DVD “Picking up the Eagle Feather”, a documentary “Dream Makers” and as a back-up lip singer for “National Aboriginal Achievement Awards”, and a feature length film in which she had the female lead “Hank Williams First Nation”. Stacy’s dream came true when she won a most prestigious award for “Best Actress” at the American Indian Film Festival in San Francisco for “Hank Williams First Nation”. Stacy worked with Crazy Horse Theatre for over 6 years, as well as having performed pantomime with Neo Eccentric Entertainment. Having obtained training in Forum Theatre Stacy works on facilitating workshops that surround issues of oppression and social injustices that youth face in their communities.
Alanna Blue Bird
Alanna is a Blackfoot Dene writer, poet, and a performing artist who uses her creativity to empower youth. She is from Tsuut’ina Nation and expresses herself through poetry, photography, film & Quillwork. She has travelled to multiple countries and communities to share her spoken word poetry, and facilitates Native Wellness Institute workshops. Alanna gets inspiration for her poetry from her traditional and spiritual way of life. 2015 was the first time she shared her spoken word to the public. Since then she brought this talent to several diverse audiences. She received an award scholarship from the Alberta Foundation for the Arts where she was recognized as a “ 2017 Emerging Artist”. One highlight of this journey was when Alanna went to New Zealand and was apart of the “2016 Uplift Spoken Word Poetry Tour”. Recent projects that she is very proud of is a tour in southern Alberta of 50 elementary schools, with the theatre production, “We are all Treaty People”. A powerful 45 minute play that told the dynamic story of Treaty 7 people and its beginning. Alanna had the wonderful opportunity to work as Artistic Director for the Calgary Stampede Show Band 2017 production of “Mosaic”. She worked alongside with the Directors to create a production that addressed Indigenous peoples history in Canada. Alanna currently resides in Calgary, AB where she continues to create multifaceted art.
Deedra Salange Ladouceur
Deedra Salange Ladouceur recently moved to Calgary, after completing her B.F.A at the University of Lethbridge’s theatre program. She is fascinated with all mediums of storytelling within the entertainment industry; including acting, singing, podcasting, poetry and standup. Her desire is to gain experience in all relevant platforms of expression, propel Canadian diversity with theatre and inspire self acceptance. She knows the courage to tell your own story comes at a high cost of vulnerability. Likewise empathy is needed to listen to others. It is her wish to rouse the empathy and courage necessary, to allow those stories to come to fruition. She believes “we each have our own story to tell” and looks forward to not only telling her own, but also helping conduct other stories to the publics’ eye.
Lauren Crazybull is an Edmonton-based Blackfoot, Dene visual artist whose deeply sensitive rendering of visual language testifies to the empathy, emotional intelligence and passion of the artist herself. Lauren’s work is informed, in part, by several years of justice organizing, Indigenous advocacy and tireless work as an artistic facilitator and mentor for youth throughout her home province of Alberta. As such, Lauren’s visual repertoire–whether expressed through portraiture, line drawings or comics–consistently seeks to create pathways of vulnerability, understanding, connection and emotional rigour between herself and the viewer. For Lauren, visual art is a way of grappling with the complexities of a terrifying and beautiful world as an Indigenous woman whose existential, emotional, physical and creative freedom depends upon the world’s ability to expand its understanding of justice, humanity and decolonial love.