Margaret Ormsby, catalyst & mentor

As one of Canada’s first accredited female historians, Ormsby’s first desk as a professor in 1940 was in the women’s washroom at McMaster. Now she’s the namesake for The Ormsby Review. FULL STORY

Ow’et / Lost Lagoon in June

May 16th, 2016

Directed by Marisa Emma Smith of Alley Theatre, Quelemia Sparrow is a First Nations actor and writer from the Musqueam Nation who created an autobiographical, one-woman performance play, Ow’et / Lost Lagoon, described as a visceral, spiritual canoe journey of healing. It explores intergenerational trauma through the life of a mixed race aboriginal woman who has had an international modeling career but has been equally influenced by fishing trips with her father. O’wet (oh-wee) is a verb colloquially used to denote propelling a canoe. The word is also connected to a shaman’s canoe ride to the land of the dead to retrieve a lost soul. According to Sparrow: “Some say your soul will leave your body during a terrible fright. You must journey to retrieve it.”

Ow’et / Lost Lagoon will be presented at the Firehall Arts Centre in June and at the Playwrights Theatre Centre where Sparrow is an Associate Playwright. O’wet / Lost Lagoon was originally commissioned by Full Circle: First Nations Performance as part of a larger work, and benefited from the work of the Full Circle Aboriginal Ensemble, including director Margo Kane, dramaturg Michael Springate, and Associate Dramaturg and Researcher Kwasuun Sarah Vedan.

Sparrow, Quelemia 3

Quelemia Sparrow

The play will be performed at the Firehall Arts Centre at 280 East Cordova Street from June 21 to 25 (Media Opening Wednesday, June 22nd @ 8pm).

Additional community engagement activities:

Public in-progress reading May 27 @ 7:30PM at Playwrights Theatre Centre (739 Gore Ave)

Free Performance June 17 @ 7:30PM at Vancouver Aboriginal Friendship Centre (1607 E Hastings St)

A graduate of Studio 58, Sparrow has written screenplays and appeared in productions that include Our Town (Osimous Theatre), The Edward Curtis Project (GCTC/NAC), The Penelopiad (Arts Club Theatre), Where the Blood Mixes (Playhouse/WCT) and The Fall (Electric Company).

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