Soheil Parsa is an award-winning director, actor, writer, dramaturg, choreographer and teacher, whose professional theatre career spans thirty-two years and two continents. In his native Iran, Soheil completed studies in Theatre Performance at the University of Tehran and began a promising career as an actor and director. Arriving in Canada with his family in 1984, Soheil completed a second Bachelor of Arts in Theatre Studies at York University and then went on to establish Modern Times Stage Company. In 1995 Soheil received a New Pioneers Award by Skills for Change for Outstanding Contribution to the Arts by a recent
immigrant to Canada. Soheil’s own work at Modern Times has been recognized with five Dora Mavor Moore Awards a Chalmers Fellowship in 2002, and a Senior Creation Grant from the Canada Council, as well as a number of international prizes and master class requests. In 2007 and 2010 he was short-listed for the Siminovitch Prize in Theatre Celebrating Directors, the highest honour in Canadian theatre. Soheil was awarded the Queen Elisabeth Diamond Jubilee Award for his contribution as a theatre artist to Canadian society.
As an actor and founding member of Modern Times Stage Company, Co-artistic Director Peter Farbridge has appeared in the majority of the productions of Modern Times, including the title roles of Modern Times’ productions of “Hamlet“, “Macbeth” and “Hallaj“. He has also played Vladimir in ‘Waiting for Godot’ and the Old Man in ‘The Chairs’ for which he was nominated for a Dora Award as Outstanding Performance by a Male. Peter has collaborated on six translation/adaptations of Persian plays with Soheil Parsa, four of which were published in an anthology by Playwrights Canada Press. Two of these collaborations received Dora Awards. He has also worked on two
original plays, “Hallaj” (with Soheil Parsa) and “Forgiveness” (with Soheil Parsa and Barbara Simonsen). Peter makes his home in Montreal. He has worked in theatre and film both in English and French. His stage credits in the city include five productions with the Centaur Theatre, as well as several seasons at Repercussion Theatre and a French production at Le théâtre du rideau vert and most recently with Infinitheatre He continues to develop personal projects in Montreal, including writing and directing video.
Head of Administration at Modern Times, Gia has been working as a stage/production manager/administrator in Canada for the past seven years. She is graduated from the University of British Columbia with a Major in Theatre and a Minor in Spanish Literature. She Immigrated to Canada from Venezuela in 2003. Gia has worked extensively as a Stage Manager for productions like: Tony N’ Tinas Wedding (Hoarse Raven Theatre), Wild Rose (Fringe 2008/Bumpershoot 2009), The Honeymoon (Pick of the Fringe: Vancouver 2009), The Talking Stick Festival (2010&2011), and Back to You: The Life and Music of Lucille Starr (Apprentice Stage Manager: Musical Theatreworks), amongst many others.
While working as a Stage Manager she realized she could start training in administration and production and dove into working with Left Right Minds Initiatives as a production assistant. This work allowed her to understand the ‘backstage’ of a production. In Toronto she has been working with the Flamenco community; the Venezuelan community; stage managing, producing and touring Monique Mojicas “Chocolate Woman Dreams the Milky Way”; and assisting company management for “Arrabal”.
“The Cherry Orchard” Creative Team
Arsinée Khanjian’s most recent performance was as the Narrator, (plus writer and director) of AUCTION OF SOULS, at the Maxim Gorki Theatre, Berlin. Stage-work includes Irina Brook’s French-language premiere of Brian Friel’s DANCING AT LUGHNASA, Theatre de Bobigny in Paris and Theatre de Vidy in Switzerland, remounted for a French national tour with festival appearances in Japan and Germany. Also, at Theatre de Bobigny, Goethe’s STELLA, directed by Bruno Bayen. Toronto credits include two productions at Passé Muraille, BEAST ON THE MOON, directed by Hrant Alianak, and WEDDING DAY AT THE CRO-MAGNONS, playwright Wajdi Mouawad, directed by Banuta Rubes. She starred in Marivaux’s Canadian English premiere, COUNTERFEIT SECRETS, directed by John Van Burek and Factory Theatre’s world premiere of Florence Gibson’s HOME IS MY ROAD, directed by Ken Gass. For Canadian Stage, roles include Martin Crimp’s CRUEL AND TENDER and her Dora nominated performance in Judith Thompson’s THE PALACE OF THE END.
Steven has clocked over half a century as actor, director, writer and performance teacher and has been honoured with the Brenda Donohue Award for “distinguished contributions and achievements within the Toronto theatre community.” Author: Beating the Bushes and Conversations with George Luscombe. Actor: Birth (Pandemic Theatre), They Say He Fell (Pandemic/Cahoots), Hallaj and Death of the King (Modern Times) and Blood Weddings/Bodas de Sangre (Aluna/Modern Times). After wanting to act Chekhov for years, Soheil finally cast him in one!
Ms. Oladejo graduated from the prestigious Humber School of Creative & Performing Arts in Toronto, having immigrated to Canada from Nigeria in her teens. Within a year of graduating she was cast in a production of IN THIS WORLD, by Roseneath Theatre, for which she won Toronto’s top theatre award, The Dora Mavor Moore Award for Outstanding Performance. Oyin was then asked to join one of Canada’s most acclaimed theatre companies, Soulpepper Theatre and went on to do several productions with them including: CRUCIBLE, TARTUFFE, EURYDICE, A DOLL’S HOUSE and NOISES OFF. An innovative production of TOMORROW LOVE with Outside the March followed, in which the actors were told nightly which roles they’d play by the audience. In film and television, Oyin again bounded to the top very quickly, landing the series regular role of “Joann Owosekun” on the currently airing hit series STAR TREK: DISCOVERY for CBS, opposite Jason Isaacs, and Sonequa Martin-Green , while shooting the CBC/Hulu/NBC series ENDLINGS simultaneously.
Colin is an award winning actor, writer, and theatre producer. He has performed all over Canada, the United States, and Europe. Selected theatre credits include: Monday Nights (6th Man Collective, Theatre Centre) Mr. Burns: A Post Electric Play (Outside the March), The Tragical Comedy of Punch & Judy, Head Over Heels (Caravan Farm Theatre) Peter Pan(MTYP), Sultans of the Street (YPT, Dora Award Winner Outstanding Performance & Ensemble) Weather the Weather(Theatre Columbus) Offensive Fouls (Hustle N’Bustle Theatre, Theatre Direct), Danny King of the Basement (RoseneathTheatre), Ivan vs Ivan (European Tour Talk is Free) The Corpse Bride (TheatrePANIK), Mourning Dove (Ark Collective). TV/Film Selected credits: Man Seeking Woman, 11/22/63, Murdoch Mysteries, Flashpoint, The Reception, FANGBONE! Special Thanks: Soheil and this beautiful company of artists, his parents, his agents, and his friends who are all rooting for him. www.colindoyle.ca
Diana Tso is a theatre artist, playwright, storyteller, artist in education & Dora award winning actor. She’s a graduate of the University of Toronto with an honors BA in English Literature & of Ecole Internationale de Théâtre de Jacques Lecoq in France. She’s worked with diverse theatres internationally for over 18 years. Most recently she performed in Les Misérables with Theatre Smith-Gilmour and at the 2017 Stratford Festival in Bakkhai and The Komagata Maru Incident. As artistic director of Red Snow Collective her theatre vision merges east & west storytelling art forms through music, movement & text. Her plays, Red Snow (2012) and Comfort (2016) bring to light the stories of World War Two in Asia and are available at http://www.playwrightsguild.ca/playwright/diana-tso Upcoming: Her new play, The Monkey Queen premieres November 16- December 2, 2018 at the Theatre Centre www.redsnowcollective.ca.
Theatre: Hamlet (Tarragon), Picture This (Soulpepper), The Heir Apparent (Chicago Shakespeare , Nominated Best Supporting Actor), Les Misérables(Broadway), The 39 Steps (Broadway/Boston, IRNE Award Best Supporting Actor), The Lord of the Rings, The Drowsy Chaperone, Beauty and the Beast(Nominated Best Actor), (Mirvish). Elsewhere: Stratford, Drayton, Canstage, Citadel, Grand, YPT, Aquarius, Blyth. Film/TV: Northern Rescue, Frankie Drake, Baroness Von SketchShow, The Detail, American Gods, Saving Hope, Murdoch Mysteries, Louis Cyr, Outlander, Spider, Lost Girl, Open Range, Chicago, Monk
Aaron Willis is an actor, director, educator, and co-founding artistic director of Convergence Theatre (with Julie Tepperman), where he has produced and directed The Unending, Passion Play by Sarah Ruhl, the Dora-nominated The Gladstone Variations and AutoShow. Recent directing: The Preposterous Predicament of Polly Peel (Toronto Fringe 2018) The Testament of Mary (Soulpepper), Stupidhead! (Theatre Passe Muraille), Meet Cute (Roseneath Theatre – Dora nomination)Upcoming: Directing Athabasca at the 2019 Next Stage Theatre Festival.
Alix Sideris is an actor, movement/stage/intimacy director, writer and acting facilitator. As an actor, Alix has performed in many productions and also assisted in the development of new works at The National Arts Centre, Opera Lyra, Theatre Calgary, The Great Canadian Theatre Company, The St. Lawrence Shakespeare Festival and The Stratford Festival, to name only a few. Alix was a member of the National Arts Centre’s Resident Acting Company Ensemble in 2012/13. Other recent projects include Movement Direction for The Monkiest King (CCOC), Peer Gynt (RAPA), In the Eyes of Stone Dogs (Evolution Theatre), L’Araignée (Filament Theatre). She also recently directed Alchemy, MoonScape (Pelee Island Stone and Sky Festival), The Mists of Avalon (Amphus Music), The Magic Flute, Pirates of Penzance Opera Lyra) and [boxhead] (Evolution Theatre). Alix has two series airing: No Easy Days and Played and is a re-occurring character in Assassin’s Creed – Odyssey. Website: alixsideris.com
50 years in theatre (one pick from each decade): ’60’s Theatre Passe-Muraille’s first show – Tom Paine (Chief Justice).’70’s Chekhov’s Uncle Vanya (Dr. Astrov).’80’s DNA Theatre’s 8-hour Hamlet (Hamlet).’90’s King Lear, Shakespeare-By-The-Sea, Halifax (King Lear).’00’s Modern Times Stage Co. – Aurash at a festival in Iran.’10’s On the CaravanStage ship around the Adriatic Sea. (singer)’20’s Keep on Truckin’.
Tara Nicodemo is a graduate of the Stella Adler Conservatory in New York City. She has since been acting on stage, in film and television across the country. A two-time Dora Mavor Moore Award nominee, Tara’s most noteworthy projects include Hamlet directed By Graham McLaren, director of The Abbey Theatre, and world premiere theatre productions such as Cringeworthy, The Watershed, Five Faces for Evelyn Frost and Successions. This year, you can catch her on TV in Star Trek, Discovery and on the big screen in Chaos Walking.
Keshia Palm is from Treaty 6 Territory. She’s the online content producer for ArtistProducerResource.com at Generator, and the dramaturgy intern at Cahoots Theatre, made possible through Theatre Ontario’s PTTP. Favourite credits:Lieutenant Nun (Theatre SKAM, SNAFU, Puente Theatre) and Shadow Girls (Rhubarb Festival) which she co-created with Claren Grosz. Upcoming: assistant directing Beautiful Man at Factory Theatre. Keshia’s thrilled to Chekov this play from her bucket list, and to be working with this amazing team!
Soheil Parsa is an award-winning director, writer, actor, dramaturg, choreographer and teacher, whose professional theatre career spans thirty-two years and two continents. In his native Iran, Soheil completed studies in Theatre Performance at the University of Tehran and began a promising career as an actor and director. Arriving in Canada with his family in 1984, Soheil completed a second Bachelor of Arts in Theatre Studies at York University and then went on to establish Modern Times Stage Company, one of the most innovating theatre companies in Canada. In 1995 Soheil received a New Pioneers Award by Skills for Change for Outstanding Contribution to the Arts by a recent immigrant to Canada. Soheil’s own work at Modern Times has been recognized with five Dora Mavor Moore Awards, a Chalmers Fellowship in 2002, a senior artist creation grant from the Canada Council, as well as a number of international prizes and master class requests. In 2007 and 2010 he was short-listed for the Siminovitch Prize in Theatre Celebrating Directors, the highest honour in Canadian theatre. Most recently, Soheil has been awarded the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal for his contribution as a theatre artist to Canadian society.
Erika is thrilled to be returning to Modern Times after stage managing both the 2017 and 2015 productions of Blood Weddings. Other credits include Rose: A New Musical (Soulpepper Theatre), Ghost Light, Metis Mutt, Anne of Green Gables, Jesus Christ Superstar, The House of Martin Guerre – In Concert (Charlottetown Festival), The Monument (Factory Theatre), Alien Creature (Theatre Passe Muraille), A Christmas Story, Million Dollar Quartet, It’s a Wonderful Life (Sudbury Theatre Centre), One Thing Leads to Another (Young People’s Theatre), Reframed (Musical Stage Company), Reflector, Avaricious, Raging Dreams (Theatre Gargantua) and six seasons at Lighthouse Festival Theatre. Erika is also a proud member of CAEA’S National Council. Thanks to Troy, Al, and Kev.
Set and Lighting Designer
Trevor is a Toronto-based scenographer – designing sets, lighting, and video for performance with independent artists. He is Artistic Producer of Aluna Theatre, and in 2009 – 2010 was Designer-in-Residence at the Theatre Centre. He directed, designed, and dramaturged Nohayquiensepa (Nooneknows) for Aluna Theatre, and designed La Comunión, Madre, and For Sale. He is currently developing a focus on the integration of artistic disciplines and intercultural practices through a Chalmers Fellowship. Trevor has collaborated in theatre and dance with Modern Times, Jumblies, Fixtpoint, Alameda, Cahoots, Buddies in Bad Times, Obsidian, Tarragon, Small Wooden Shoe, One Reed, Marie-Josée Chartier, Ame Henderson’s Public Recodings, Susie Burpee, Sasha Ivanochko, Meagan O’Shea, and others. He has three Doras (of 11 career nominations), a Harold, and a Children’s Choice Award.
Thomas Ryder Payne is a composer and sound designer for theatre, dance and film. Selected past work includes designs for Stratford, Shaw, Mirvish, Soulpepper, CanStage, Tarragon, Factory, TPM, YPT, Crows, Modern Times, Aluna, BIBT, Nightwood, Toronto Dance Theatre, NAC, Theatre Calgary, GCTC, RMTC and many others. Thomas has received 2 Dora awards and 17 nominations.