rendezvous with madness 2019

The Rendezvous with Madness Festival (RWM) is the first and largest mental health festival in the world. The festival presents local, national and international work exploring themes of mental health and addiction issues. We are thrilled to announce the full programming line-up for the 27th annual Rendezvous With Madness Festival. Opening on World Mental Health Day, the Festival runs October 10 – 20, 2019 and showcases 14 feature films from around the globe, 4 live performance pieces, a visual and media arts exhibition, and the addition of a new event, Laughter vs. The Universe – a one night only comedy showcase designed to remind us that sometimes laughter truly is the best medicine.




Opening Night Film Conviction & Reception

With more resources being invested into prisons than communities, women have become the highest growing prison population in the world. A team of documentary filmmakers gain access to a female correctional facility in Nova Scotia to tackle the crisis from within.

Dir. Nance Ackerman, Teresa MacInnes, Ariella Pahlke / 2019 / Canada / 78 min. ASL & Open Captions. 

Date/Time: October 10 (World Mental Health Day)– Reception- 5PM, Film Screening – 6PM

Location: Hot Docs Ted Rogers Cinema, 506 Bloor Street W (Accessible Building)


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Making Mad: How Expressions of Vulnerability Connect Us

Through humour and pathos, the artists in Making Mad explore the ways in which depictions of vulnerability in their work resonate on a human scale .

Featuring: Alison Crouse, Peter Dillman, Esmond Lee, Ben McCarthy & SpekWork, Sarah Trad and Véronique Vallières Curator: Claudette Abrams                                                                            

Date/Time: October 10 - 20, 2019. Reception: October 10, 7-11 PM.

Location: TMAC, 32 Lisgar St (Accessible Building)                        



My Soul Drifts Light upon a Sea of Trees

Zen Buddhist Ittetsu Nemoto has made it his life’s work to support individuals struggling with depression and suicidal ideation, taking a community-focused, holistic approach to healing trauma. This documentary follows Nemoto as he helps three people find life after limbo.

From the traditional territories of the Micmac Nation of Gespeg to the small town of Gaspé, Québec, director Rick Miller reveals to the audience his family’s lineage and how it has defined and illuminated his relationship with mental health.          

Screening with: Ancestral Landscapes | Rick Miller | 2019 | Canada | 15 mins | World Premiere.

Date/Time: October 12th,2019. 8:30PM

Location: AGO, 317 Dundas St. W




Psychiatrist Kenneth Paul Rosenberg takes on the role of documentary filmmaker to examine a national health crisis in the US. Bedlam takes us inside Los Angeles County’s overwhelmed and vastly under-resourced psychiatric ER; a nearby jail warehousing thousands of patients; and people suffering from severe mental health issues in their homes and homeless encampments, where silence and shame often worsen the suffering.

Director Eric Thiessen captures behind-the-scenes experiences of Saskatoon’s Mobile Crisis Centre staff as they provide 24/7 crisis resolution to people in distress.

Screening with: Talking at Night | Eric Thiessen | 2017 | Canada | 6 mins  

Date/Time: October 16,2019.7:00 PM

Location: AGO, Jackman Hall, 317 Dundas St. W.


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Laughter VS. The Universe  

Join us for a very special celebration of some of Canada’s finest stand-up comedians! Featuring a star-studded line up including guest appearances from Christophe Davidson, Tamara Shevon and a special headline performance by Jackie Pirico.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               


Date/Time: October Saturday October 19, 2019 - 7PM   

Location: Comedy Bar, 945 Bloor St W (ASL Interpretation)                        



Irene’s Ghost.

Irene’s Ghost is a stunning documentary that follows a son’s search to find out about the mother he never knew, discovering the truth about her in the process, piecing together fragments of the past to make sense of the present.

Regina Pessoa’s latest animation beautifully illustrates her childhood memories of her charming and idiosyncratic uncle. This film is a testament of Pessoa’s love and admiration for her uncle’s unique spirit.

Screening with: Uncle Thomas: Accounting for the Days | Regina Pessoa | 2019 | Canada | 13 mins | Toronto Premiere                                                                                           

Date/Time: October 19, 2019. 8:30PM 

Location: Workman Arts Theatre, 651 Dufferin St 







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