Theatre New Brunswick stage a world premiere by Indigenous visual artist-turned-playwright Natalie Sappier.
Theatre New Brunswick is getting ready to stage its first world premiere production by an Indigenous playwright. Finding Wolastoq Voice, written by Natalie Sappier of Tobique First Nation, has been in development for more than a year with Sappier working closely with TNB Artistic Director Thomas Morgan Jones to shape her first work for the stage.
A dedicated visual artist, Sappier’s paintings and murals can be found in galleries, schools, libraries and private collections across the province. After working as a designer and cultural advisor for TNB Young Company’s 2014 production of The Eighth Fire, Sappier was inspired to expand her visual storytelling into something larger, moving from the canvas to the stage.
“I realized I’m at a point in my life now where my stories need to be louder than a painting can speak,” said Sappier. “I think it’s time to bring our stories to the stage and time for them to be heard through dance and movement and song. This is what I always want to do.”
Combining elements of theatre and dance, together with original music composed by Sappier, Finding Wolastoq Voice is very much a coming of age story centred around a young Wolastoqiyik woman awakened by the voices of her ancestors.
“This story is about healing, relationships, family and my experiences as a young girl,” said Sappier.
In this solo dance-theatre hybrid performance, Toronto-based dancer/choreographer Aria Evans interprets the flow and rhythm of Sappier’s words and music. The fictional world of Finding Wolatoq Voice is further brought to life by the work of set and lighting design by Andy Moro and sound designer Michael Doherty. Together they create a culturally diverse theatre experience rich in imagination and relevance.
Finding Wolastoq Voice | Open Space Theatre | Fredericton | March 8-18 | Buy Tickets
March 21 | St. Andrews, NB | W. C. O’Neil Arena Theatre
March 22 | Saint John, NB | BMO Theatre
March 23 | Moncton, NB | théatre l’Escaouette
March 24 | Bathurst, NB | Bathurst High School
March 25 | Elsipogtog First Nation | Elsipogtog, NB
March 26 | Sackville, NB | Purdy Crawford Centre for the Arts
March 29 | Toronto, ON | Native Earth Performing Arts
March 30 | Toronto, ON | Native Earth Performing Arts
March 31 | Toronto, ON | Native Earth Performing Arts
April 4 | Burnt Church First Nation | Burnt Church, NB
April 5 | Tobique First Nation | Tobique, NB
Learn more at tnb.nb.ca