It's time for a blast of performance, visual art and more by black women artists and artists of colour, all part of the 11th annual rock.paper.sistahz Festival sponsored by b current.
The fest gets underway tomorrow (Friday, May 4) with a fashion event and runs through May 11, but the theatre pieces, all of them works in progress, are on tap Tuesday through Thursday (May 8 to 10).
Look for workshops of 10 plays over the three days.
The Tuesday offerings are Espoir, presented in French by Les Héritières de Toto B. (Djennie Laguerre and Carline Zamar), about three Haitian-Canadian women; Naomi Abiola's Seventh Heaven, a monodrama about a woman with seven children; and Roselyn Kelada-Sedra's Six And Eight, a courtship in several forms.
On Wednesday you can catch Navneet Rai's Famous, in which an aging woman is determined to make her movie-star dreams come true; Teneile Warren's Her Good Man; Nice, a collective creation by b current's young rAiz'n Ensemble; and Andrea Scott's Eating Pomegranates Naked, in which five guests at a dinner learn too much about each other.
Scheduled for the final evening, Thursday, are Getting To Heart, by Najla Edward, in which a woman's emotions and experiences develop personalities of their own; Asanda Phewa's A Face Like Mine, an exploration of culture and identity; and Mason Haigh's Keeping Mum, an urban comedy about motherhood.
The festival includes a number of dance performances, too, notably the May 11 soooOOUL TRAIN!, featuring a multicultural take on the 70s Soul Train movement, hosted by Rehaset Yohanes.
Want to see drama straight from the source? You couldn't do better than the semi-annual Playwrights Canada Press event on Monday (May 7).
The spring book launch has playwrights reading from their works, and who can sell the material better than they can - especially since many of them are performers as well?
Reading from newly published works are Maja Ardal (The Cure For Everything), Catherine Banks (It Is Solved By Walking), Ronnie Burkett (Penny Plain), Robert Chafe (Oil And Water, running at Factory Theatre), Trina Davies (The Romeo Initiative), Sky Gilbert (The Mommiad) and Anusree Roy (Brother #9).
NOW's Susan G. Cole and Jon Kaplan host.
The free event - gratis hors d'oeuvres and cash bar - is 7 pm at Revival (783 College).
Highlighting the Harolds
At the same time as the Playwrights Canada Press launch - damn - is one of the most partying theatre events of the year, the Harold Awards.
This 18th annual Harolds evening - named in memory of theatre-lover and live-action, in-the-minute commentator Harold Kandel - celebrates the rabble-rousing, subversive aspect of theatre. Those who have been inducted over the years include the indie community's movers and shakers, often those who have made an outstanding contribution to the local performance scene but who haven't necessarily been recognized for their dedication.
This year's evening is hosted by Caroline Gillis, with contributions by Blair Irwin and John Hughes.
A celebration as well as an honouring of 13 artists from various disciplines, the Harolds take place Monday (May 7) at the El Mocambo. Bring a canned good for charity.