Material Witness: Pulling Threads

pllingthreads_web Aanmitaagzi with Spider Woman Theatre presents: Pulling Threads, A series of Fabric Workshops as part of Material Witness.

Material Witness is a play that explores violence, healing and renewal in the lives of Indigenous women. The set is a “story-quilt”, a layered landscape of fabrics, of heaps, piles and bundles that holds stories and supports the stories of the women on stage. Each person in the workshop will build a layered piece of the “story-quilt” – her story will be the essence of the piece that she creates. This piece will be sewn/woven into the larger quilt and will travel with the production wherever it goes.

We provide the fabric and the accessories.
Please bring your own fabric if you wish to donate a personal piece.
Come and enjoy some food, some talk and some laughter!

Tuesday April 19, 7-10 pm
Big Medicine Studio

Thursday April 21, 7-10 pm
Big Medicine Studio

Friday April 22, 10-4 pm Fabric Workshop
Temagami (Venue TBA)

Print out this Invitation Fabric Workshop flyer and put it up in your space. 🙂

~The Serpent People~

aan02Ice Follies 2016

Serpent People
This year, Aanmitaagzi’s project, Serpent People, will engage with Ice Follies. Serpent People is a unique multi year community engaged project.  Artists of Aanmitaagzi and community have been researching, developing and creating art in and around historic Indigenous serpent stories and figures. Aanmitaagzi will be presenting works from Serpent People and holding Open Studio workshops throughout the festival.

This is the first year of this multi-platform project. Over three years the project will include partnerships / collaborations, community-engaged workshops, intensives and site-specificart events. These workshops and events will culminate in a full-scale community engaged dance theatre production in 2018.

Serpent People is inspired by an historic Anishinaabe story, The Black Sturgeon, from this area shared by Aanmitaagzi artist, Perry Mcleod-Shabogeesic. Like many of our stories, this project provides an opportunity to gather, reflect and express our stories and imaginings through art-making. During the festival Aanmitaagzi will present works from Serpent People:

  • A performance at the festival opening
  • Installations
  • Open Studio: Community-engaged workshops @ Big Medicine Studio
  • Story Telling Event

Open Studio Workshops at Big Medicine Studio
February 1st – 4th (Monday – Thursday) & 8th – 12th,  from 6-8:30pm
Please note both Wednesday’s will be Big Drum nights. These open studio workshops invite community to join Aanmitaagzi in the creation of installations, giant puppets and performance. All welcome.

Wednesday Nights, from 6:30-8:30pm
Each Week,  POW WOW JAM (all ages and abilities) w/ Tasheena Sarazin & Darren Nakogee

Pathways: Taking place at White Water Gallery 122 Main St E.
Pathways, an installation by Cristina Lella, engages with Aanmitaagzi, Serpent People and community, exploring relationship to local routes and pathways. These open workshops will continue until the festival opening.

Performance: February 13th @ 6pm,
During the Ice Follies Festival Opening, (5:30-7:30pm) at the Waterfront Marina, Memorial Drive, Components from weekly community engaged workshops lead by Aanmitaagzi artists will feed into the performance. In a collaborative creation process, Aanmitaagzi artists and community will perform these works together. Serpent / Black Sturgeon Puppets. Aanmitaagzi will be creating two giant puppets. Installation will also be created in collaboration with Aanmitaagzi artists and community.

Aanmitaagzi Artists
Penny Couchie / Co-AD– Choreography, direction, performer and installation.
Sid Bobb / Co-AD – Story-telling, direction, performer and installation.
Eva Couchie – Guest Artist, installation.
Cristina Lella – Installation, performer.
Meg Paulin – Installation, and performer.
Darren Nakogee – Singier, performer, and installation.
Tasheena Sarazin – Singer / Performer
Clayton Windatt – Multi-media, performer and installation.

New Fall Workshops 2015

aan02~The Serpent People~

Aanmitaagzi is excited to invite the community to explore their newest work “The Serpent People” (working title), based on a regional story about the black sturgeon of the Manitou Islands: a story of transformation, change, consumption and loss within the individual, family, and community.

Through dance, theatre, mask making, installation, painting, drawing, writing, soundscape, and music, we will explore questions like:

  • How does what we consume transform us?
  • What is the nature of what we take in?
  • What lurks in our shadows?
  • What are we running from?
  • What are we running towards?

Material developed in these workshops will contribute to Aanmitaagzi’s production of “The Serpent People” on Lake Nipissing for Ice Follies 2016 in February.

aan01You’re invited…

Drop in for a tea. Stay and Explore.

Monday 7 – 9 pm

Big Medicine Studio

DANCE (ages 16+)

w/ Penny Couchie & live drum accompaniment by Rob Joanisse

Tuesday 330 – 5 pm



Tuesday 7 – 9 pm

Big Medicine Studio


w/ Sid Bobb, Penny Couchie & invited guest artists


VISUAL ARTS (all ages and abilities)

w/ Megan Paulin & invited guest artists

Wednesday 630 – 830 pm

Big Medicine Studio

POW WOW JAM ( all ages and abilities)

w/ Tasheena Sarazin

Thursday 7 – 9 pm

Big Medicine Studio


w/ Cristina Lella & Penny Couchie

…More to be announced!


A Side of Dreams

Presenting September 7th at 3pm at Big Medicine Studio
“A Side of Dreams” by Paper Canoe Projects.
General admission $10 at the door. All welcome!

Description: Loss of culture and generational trauma can silence the best of us. But as one single mother discovers, the spirit of the DreamcatcheA-Side-of-Dreams-Info-Sheet-2r can be awakened with prayer and the ancestors you meet in the world of dreams may not be what you expected. Written by seasoned artist, Jani Lauzon, A Side of Dreams is a multi-disciplinary theatre experience incorporating aeral hoop, puppetry, sound design, music, visual imagery and text.



With the help of Spiderwoman weaving her web, Haisa, (Jani Lauzon) a troubled and silent Métis mother awakens the spirit of the Dreamcatcher where Haisa meets multi-generational ancestors who help her face the truth of family secrets and ancestral/ community violence so that she may regain her voice and reconcile with her angry and isolated daughter Aina (Jessica Barrera).

DSC_2081smallIn the world of dreams, in this land of subconscious reality, Haisa appears as a Banraku puppet, brilliantly manipulated by award winning puppeteer Trish Leeper with Jessica Barrera as her assistant. There she meets a mythical dragon, a Northern Boat man and both Haisa and her daughter Aina face the truth behind the death of Haisa’s mother Katherine.ASOD-Press-Release-NB02

Upon her return, Haisa not only calls her daughters name for the first time in years but is able to complete the making of the Dreamcatcher and teach her daughter the first few steps of the dance, wise advise given to her by one of her ancestors.

Running at 55 minutes, A Side of Dreams will appeal to young audiences as well as grown-ups, ending in a joyful message of reconciliation and the power of regaining one’s voice, as well as the importance of embracing ancestral memory. The journey incorporates an exquisite score composed by award winning composer Marsha Coffey (with Lauzon), and a beautifully executed projection design by Melissa Joakim.

The Side of Dreams gratefully 609smallacknowledges the support of the Ontario Arts Council, National Arts Centre, Canada Council for the Arts, Arcadia Co-op, Thunderbird Centre/Miziwe Biik Employment & Training and AC Mechanical Contractors Ltd.

Paper Canoe Projects
19 Gates Ave. Toronto, ON M4C 1T1