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 “A Side of Dreams” by Paper Canoe Project. 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 Dreamcatcher 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.

Upon her return, Haisa not only calls her daughters name for ASOD-Press-Release-NB02the 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


Material Witness February 19, 20 & 21

Red House Arts Center is proud to host Spiderwoman Theater as part of its 2015 Artists in Residence Series. The company will be housed at Redhouse for two weeks in which they will further develop and perform their latest show, Material Witness. Performances will take place in the theatre on February 19, 20, and 21.

Material Witness is centered on personal and family stories of violence and the healing journeys of Indigenous women. The piece will explore violence and focus on stories of healing. It is a story of positivity, hope and humor, of Indigenous women who have personally experienced inconceivable violence and who are now on the other side, moving forward. The name Material Witness evokes the legacy of our histories, how they intersect and how our societies that have been ripped apart, are being woven together again.

Spiderwoman Theater’s work bridges traditional cultural practice and contemporary Western theater. This has given rise to a recognized Indigenous performance practice recognized around the world. The company offers exceptional theatre performance and training which address cultural, social and political issues of concern to the Indigenous and women’s communities. Spiderwoman Theater has pioneered the use of storyweaving, which encompasses story and text, language, dance, movement, music, sound and image Through storyweaving, where the elements are layered and woven together, the narrative for our productions and a training and performance framework for Indigenous actors, dancers and singers is created.

Among the founding members of the company are Kuna/Rappahannock sisters: Lisa Mayo, Gloria Miguel, and Muriel Miguel. The group has received honorary Doctorates of Fine Arts from Miami University in Oxford, Ohio for their life’s work in theater, have received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Women’s Caucus for Art and have been awarded an Otto René Castillo Award for Political Theatre.
Material Witness is a collaboration with Aanmitaagzi, a professional multi-disciplinary arts company from Nipissing First Nation, Ontario. Aanmitaagzi provides educational, land based, and community focused arts activities. They have been investigating and practicing contemporary arts and its relationship to historic indigenous arts and worldview. They carry forward the legacy of intergenerational art-making which engages professional artists and community. Aanmitaagzi produces arts festivals, theatre productions, and projects which carry forward these historic practices in meaningful ways.

Material Witness will be directed by director, choreographer, actor and playwright Muriel Miguel (Kuna/ Rappahannock). Members of the acting ensemble include actor and writer, Cherish Violet Blood (Blackfoot); actor, dancer and Artistic Director of Leaf Arrow Native American Storytellers, Donna Couteau (Sac and Fox); actor and playwright, Gloria Miguel; Tanis Parenteau (Métis/ Cree) a film, theatre, television and voiceover actor; choreographer and dancer/theatre artist, and Co-Artistic Director of Aanmitaagzi, Penny Couchie (Anishinaabe), and performer, playwright, and theatre creator, Angela Loft (Mohawk).

Also in residence will be scenographer, Karmenlara Ely, the Artistic Director of Acting at the Norwegian Theater Academy in Fredrikstad, Norway; Scenic Designer, Soni Moreno (Maya/Apache/Yacqui); Co-Artistic Director of Aanmitaagzi and assistant director, Sid Bobb (Sto:lo).

About Red House Arts Center: Red House Arts Center is a nonprofit, multi-arts organization dedicated to the production and presentation of interdisciplinary works, new theatre, music, visual art, and is a regional provider of community based arts education. Red House supports the creative process by providing a unique platform for regional, national and international artistic expressions. Through our public programs and community engagement initiatives, Red House aims to stimulate cultural activities and contribute to community development throughout Central New York. For more information visit