Announcing our 2024 Emerging Creators Unit

The Emerging Creators Unit offers an intensive opportunity to develop your artistic practice and producing skills. As part of this program, artists are invited to apply with a project—or a seed of a project—that will serve as a vehicle to advance their artistic practice.

This year, the unit is facilitated by theatre-maker, performer, and multidisciplinary artist Stephen Jackman-Torkoff. Workshop and masterclasses will be curated around identified areas of growth from participants. The Unit will conclude with a micro-residency at Buddies and a sharing of an artistic offering as a part of Buddies’ Queer Pride Festival in June 2024.

A close-up headshot of isi bhakhomen. They have dark skin and short black hair.

isi bhakhomen is a Toronto-based playwright, performer and producer of Afro-Peruvian and Nigerian descent. Since graduating from the National Theatre School of Canada in 2021, they have made it their mission to champion stories that give black folks the freedom to laugh, to cry and to breathe. Recent credits include: Mami (Rhubarb Festival), refracting giants (Toronto Dance Theatre), and BOOM! (Paprika Festival). You can discover more at www.isibhakhomen.com

“During my time at Buddies I’ll be focusing on incorporating traditional Afro-Peruvian and Indigenous rhythms and movements into my piece, Mami. I want to expand it by digging deeper into cultural elements that would benefit the world building of this story.”

A black and white image of figure with a blurred face.

Heddy Vargas Graterol

Driven by visual metaphors and compositions that speak about human curiosity, resistance and resilience, I dance in between images of memories, past and present, to manifest a future I dreamt when I was little. Using my body to communicate my experience as a queer Venezuelan living in diaspora and allowing it to fuse with its context on stage to create a new tableau of possibilities, my work focuses on finding home in the act of creation and its power to translate, heal and connect. I feel safe when I create… and these are the stories I tell. Heddy-

Photo of Sebastian Urmom - they have a shaved head and are wrapped in a pink crinoline. The background behind them is red bricks.

Sebastian Urmom is a multidisciplinary storyteller and community organizer.  Creation accomplishments include The Crossroads Trilogy (2021-2022,) Seb’s PLAYPEN (2023-Present,) and At the Dinner Table with Theatre Passe Marille (2023.) Guided by telling stories from their carbiean upbringing, they hope to create stories and art that gives you hug and a good belly laugh.

About Please Touch my Hair
Please touch my hair is a storytelling performance piece playing with the perspective of an AuDHD mixed kid… Sebastian learning about social cues and dynamics from select retellings how the weaving of hair helped to weave the space they take up.