WE’RE THRILLED TO INTRODUCE MULTIDISCIPLINARY ARTIST CHADIA AS THE RECIPIENT OF AMPLIFIER, A FULLY SUPPORTED EXPLORATORY CREATION PROCESS FOR PLAYWRIGHTS.
hi hi hi. my name is chadia, and I am a multidisciplinary artist currently based in Tiohtià:ke.
Before moving to Tiohtià:ke to pursue my artistic endeavors, my parents and I immigrated from a refugee camp in Turkana, Kenya to the Algonquin land. being the eldest of five to two African no- BURUNDIAN parents… *deep therapeutic sigh* art was not something they had in mind when deciding to seek refuge, and build capital in this deeply, cold country. ALSO, gay/queer/gender non-conforming AND having no filter? A doomed future… said “yes!” to ‘doom’, ditched one university for another, I received my B.A in theatre (2019), and booked my first professional acting gig with geordie productions by embarking on the 2playtour. 6 and half months into the tour, the tour was canceled due to the “panasonic” we are living through. However, throughout the “peppa pig” I was able to work with some pretty amazing artists on projects such as most recently, from the stars in the sky to the fish in the sea adapted by Gabe Maharjan (2022). Aside from performing I am also a playwright, director, and singer. I had the chance to showcase my first play, “niggas in pontreal1” at MLTFringe (2022), where I was also the director, co-producer, and ⅕ of the performers. We were nominated for 3 Frankie Awards including Most Promising English Text, Best English Comedy, and Best English Production. I have since then, been focused on creating and collaborating with artists on finding the essence of what is “canadian theatre”… I strive to create and support works that instigate conversations and challenge societal norms.
instagram: @dissruptivtheatre, @chadiaisdissruptiv
about the project
“niggas in pontréal¹: ACT I” is a court-based play, that questions 3 out of the 5 students accused of planning a secret blackface-themed party, while simultaneously prepping, and providing the reader/audience tools in approaching the 2nd part of the project. “whose to blame?: ACT II ” is THE “evidence-based” play. The play provides the reader/audience context, and a firsthand account of the crime accused.
— *SPEAKING IN FIRST PERSON*–
I write for negros. I am writing for black readers. I am writing for black actors. I am writing for black directors. I am writing for black audience members. My characters can only be played by black actors. What does that do? This project will be exploring how justice can be presented through art, examining and reflecting on the role of violence, and how can that be presented with thought, care, and compassion. Is violence even necessary? How can we navigate and talk about the violence associated with anti-blackness? Can violence be depicted through the black body without it being at the expense of the black psyche? Is that possible? How can I as a playwright ensure that the story I’ve written is told and processed with compassion, empathy, joy, and truth? Not just for the text itself, but the making of that process? What sort of… responsibilities do we have as playwrights? I’m seeking to create content that advocates, questions, and exercises those points.
AMPLIFIER is a program by Playwrights’ Workshop Montréal (PWM), LA SERRE–arts vivants (LA SERRE) and the Conseil des Arts de Montréal (CAM) which offers sustained dramaturgical and artistic support to one working playwright residing on the island of Montréal. Over the course of 2 years, this will include dramaturgical consultation, a creation workshop, and a creation production residency which is followed by a laboratory presentation.
The program aims to support the artistic practice of theatre artists who identify as Indigenous (First Nations, Métis, and Inuit), Black, POC, racialized including 1st or 2nd generation immigrant artists (as defined in the Conseil des Arts de Montréal’s glossary) working creatively in one of Canada’s official languages. Additionally, it seeks to foster dialogue between Montréal’s English- and French-speaking theatre communities, as well as intercultural exchanges and greater representation for culturally diverse artists within the theatre community and on Montréal’s stages. This is the second iteration of PWM’s Amplifier program, after first supporting the work of Sylvia Cloutier.
The program is designed to alternate the language it runs in every two years between the partner organizations who run it, with PWM facilitating through the name AMPLIFIER, and le Centre des auteurs dramatiques conducting Voi.e.s.x Théâtrales.