Obsidian Theatre has been developing new Black voices through our Playwrights Unit, our Development Series, and our Resident Playwrights for over 15 years.
The Playwrights Unit is an intensive yearlong process that runs annually from September to June. Through monthly meetings with the group and individual guidance to serve each artists’ needs, artists delve into the creation process in a supportive and nurturing environment that challenges themselves to investigate their writing process. The Unit has an emphasis on professional development and the business of being a professional artist in Canada.
OUR 2018-2019 PLAYWRIGHTS UNIT
Chiamaka G. Ugwu
Troy De Four
Chiamaka G. Ugwu is a actor-creator. Within the Toronto theatre, Chiamaka’s work has been centred on collaboration and fostering new voices, particularly as an actor and director in new play development. Most recently, Chiamaka has been spending time connecting to the performance traditions of her Igbo heritage, doing research that has taken her around the world with her Chalmers Fellowship award, and is excited to use this knowledge in shaping her storytelling.
David Lewis-Peart is an emerging writer, playwright and creative. In addition to Obsidian Theatre Company’s Playwrights Unit, David is undergoing a residency with Buddies in Bad Times Theatre and completing his first book of poetry, Pray You Break, crafted in collaboration with Trinidadian artist AJ Rogers. Most recently, David was recipient of the Christopher Hewitt Award for poetry, Honorable Mention and was included as a community curator as part of Lambda Literary Festival – Los Angeles.
Troy De Four is a Toronto based producer and creator in the musical / music theatre sector. His background began in song writing, performance, and technical design. Troy also works in the advertising, film and television industry as a Producer. His goals and passions with Obsidian are to create musical theatre or music based stories for artists and audiences of Canada’s black identified diaspora.
Applications for the 2019-2020 Playwrights Unit will be available in the summer of 2019.
OBSIDIAN PLAYWRIGHTS UNIT ALUMNI
2017/2018 Fatuma Adar, Intisar Awisse, Dainty Smith
2016/2017 Motion, Stephen Jackman-Torkoff, Sashoya Shoya Oya
2015/2016 Kanika Ambrose, Peter Bailey, Daniel Ellis, Alicia Richardson, d’bi young
2014/2015 Kanika Ambrose, Sebastien Heins, Tia McGregor
2013/2014 Tawiah McCarthy, Makambe Simamba, Teneile Warren
THE DEVELOPMENT SERIES 2013/14 Lisa Codrington, Meghan Swaby
2012/2013 Peter Bailey, Lisa Codrington, Donna-Michelle St. Bernard, Meghan Swaby
THE DEVELOPMENT SERIES 2011/12 Joseph Joe Pierre, Leah-Simone Bowen, Motion
2011/12 Audrey Dwyer, Meghan Swaby, Andrea Scott
Playwrights Unit Tier Two 2009/10: Leah Simone Bowen, Roxanne A. Joseph
2008/09: Laurence Anthony, Aisha Sasha John, Motion
2007/08 Leah Simone Bowen, Rita Deverall, Rachael-Lea Rickards, Rosemarie Stewart
2006/07 Dian Marie Bridge, Rebecca Fisseha, Edwige Jean-Pierre, Marcia Johnson, Donna-Michelle St. Bernard