The only program in the country solely devoted to the creation of original queer performance works.

Through this program, Buddies commissions and develops new queer work for the stage. Using a bespoke artist-centred approach, we work with writers, theatre collectives, directors, performance artists, and choreographers to create meaningful opportunities to explore new work and the creation process through a distinctly queer lens.

2019-20 Artists in Residence

Bilal Baig + Angel Glady – Khwaja Sera

Bilal Baig’s follow up to Acha Bacha, Khwaja Sera follows two Pakistani teenagers, one growing up in Toronto, and one living precariously as a sex worker and Khwaja Sera, the third gender, in Pakistan. The mystery of their connection is explored in this raw and shocking new work. In addition, Bilal has brought in Angel Gladys, a newcomer artist to Canada, to collaborate with them on the project.

Yolanda Bonnell – White Girls in Moccasins

How do you stay connected to your culture and find your roots growing up in a white-washed world? Through humour, song, and Wheel of Fortune, a young Indigenous woman contends with her inner white girl.

Bruce Gibbons Fell - The Communist Manifesto for Children

The languid and laconic Latin American countryside. The 1950s. Four children steal Marx and Engels’ manifesto and decide to act out passages from the book, leading to introspective journeys, betrayal, and possibly an exorcism. A play for grownups about class, boredom, innocence lost, and the battle between the Spectre of Communism and the Spirit of Capitalism. Which side are you on?

Leah Lewis + Robert Chafe - The Dialysis Project

Newfoundland theatre artist Leah Lewis brings her portable dialysis machine to the stage for a unique performance that navigates themes of disability, illness and resilience via the live ‘performance’ of a dialysis procedure. While her machine cleans her blood, Leah takes us on a journey that travels far from the confines of her treatment chair, weaving visceral visuals with a riveting personal narrative.

Justin Miller – Distant Early Warning

A drag concert extravaganza, Distant Early Warning reimagines some of history’s most popular pro-war rallying songs of the last century, and hopes to make sense of the crisis to come. Wartime wonder and tragicomedienne Pearle Harbour presents a crash course in resistance, revolution, and survival. Are you ready for the fight of your lifetime?

The Queer AF Collective – Undecided

The Queer AF Collective came together through our Emerging Creators Unit – Bilal Baig, Teiya Kasahara, Sofia Rodriguez and Francois MacDonald formed the collective in order to continue exploring their shared identities and communities as young queer people from very different experiences in a dramatic narrative that draws upon their collective strengths as creator/performers.

Heath V Salazar – Antecristo

Drag iconoclast, performer, poet, artist and activist Heath V. Salazar joins the Buddies Residency to continue develop their theatrical voice through continued development of their new work Antecristo, which began as part of the Emerging Creators Unit at the 39th Rhubarb Festival.

The We Other Sons Collective – What’s Done, Must Come

Writer and activist David Lewis Peart gathers a group of artists from a variety of forms to discuss and create a work about shame and sexuality for Queer Men of Colour in this collectively created and searing work.

Open Studios

May 11 – 28, 2019

For three weeks, our resident artists take over the building to write, rehearse, try out new things, and share what they’ve been working on. This is where artists and audiences come together at Buddies to experience the creative process and support the development of new queer performance.

Since launching in 2010, the Buddies Residency Program has yielded the following Mainstage productions

  • Obaaberima by Tawiah Ben M’carthy (Buddies 2012-13 // National Arts Centre + The Cultch 2014-15 // Buddies 2018-19)
  • Of A Monstrous Child: a gaga musical by Ecce Homo Theatre (Buddies 2012-13)
  • The Gay Heritage Project by Damien Atkins, Paul Dunn, and Andrew Kushnir (Buddies 2013-14 // Buddies, The Citadel, The Cultch + The Belfry 2015-16 )
  • Freda and Jem’s Best of the Week by Lois Fine (Buddies 2014-15)
  • Gertrude and Alice by The Independent Aunties – Anna Chatterton, Evalyn Parry, and Karin Randoja (Buddies 2015-16)
  • Body Politic by Nick Green (Buddies 2015-16)
  • Black Boys by Saga Collectif – Stephen Jackman-Torkoff, Tawiah M’Carthy, Thomas Olajide with Virgilia Griffth and Jonathan Seinen (Buddies 2016-17// Buddies, The Cultch, High Performance Rodeo + Black Theatre Workshop 2017-18)
  • LULU v.7 // aspects of a femme fatale by ted witzel, Susanna Fournier, and Helen Yung (Buddies 2017-18)
  • Kiinalik: These Sharp Tools by Evalyn Parry, Laakkuluk Williamson Bathory, Erin Brubacher, Elysha Poirier + Cris Derksen (Buddies 2017-18 // Qaggiavut, PuSh International Performing Arts Festival, Espace Libre, Luminato 2018-19 // Edinburgh International Festival, NAC Indigenous Theatre 2019-20)
  • Shove It Down My Throat by Johnnie Walker (Buddies 2018-19)

If you have questions about the Buddies Residency Program, please contact Mel Hague at mel@buddiesinbadtimes.com

photo of Tawiah M’Carthy, Stephen Jackman-Torkoff, Virgilia Griffith and Thomas Olajide by Dahlia Katz