Stage Door News

Toronto: The Paprika Festival runs May 20-26 at the Aki Studio

Wednesday, May 15, 2019

For the fourth year running, we're delighted to partner with Paprika Festival for their 18th annual youth-led performing arts festival happening on May 20-26 at Aki Studio. For the full line-up of the festival, click here.

This year's Indigenous Arts Program Showcase is a full day of art, community, and conversation featuring three new works by Cole Forrest, Joelle Peters, and Theresa Cutknife & Jesse Wabegijig which shed new light on decolonizing our understanding of love and community through environmentalism, language, and comedy.

The day also includes a panel discussion on Indigenous love and how it informs art-making with Falen Johnson, Jeff D'Hondt, Lila Pine, and Michaela Washburn. Plus, a cabaret-style soiree of music, dance, drag, poetry, and performance featuring Aqua Nibii Waawaaskone, Ashley Bombay, Rhinestone Chickadee, Sophie Dow, Brendan Chandler, Jay Northcott, Olivia Shortt, and Ravyn Wngz, curated by Ty Sloane.

May 25th at Aki Studio

2:00 PM - Pre-Show Panel Discussion

3:00 PM - DOUBLE BILL: Firestarter & Kisâkihitin/Gizaagin

4:30 PM - Cabaret in the Artscape Lounge (with food & drink)

7:30 PM - Niish

Written & Directed by Cole Forrest

Declan and Mable are two teenagers from the same reserve. They hang out in the forest near the rez and shoot fire from the palms of their hands. One night, they accidentally start a fire in the very forest in which they love to play. The fire grows and grows, until it threatens their community and everyone they care about.

Written by Theresa Cutknife
& Jesse Wabegijig

What is Indigenous love? What does it mean? To answer this, we must first know who we are. Through different stories, this play re-imagine love within colonial spaces. With the world focusing so much on trauma, hate, and the darkness of the world, now is the time for us to be the light.

Written by Joelle Peters

Neither Sam or Lenna were expecting much from another summer on the rez but sometimes, life has other plans. Told with heart, humour, and rez nicknames, Niish explores themes of love, loss, and healing within a family, a community, and oneself.

Reserve tickets at