NEVER SWIM ALONE

WRITTEN BY DANIEL MACIVOR

A beach. A bay. The point. 13 rounds. A competition of compassion. The opponent a reflection. The desire to be first is the point.

Welcome to our absurdist world; a cyclical space governed by a REFEREE.

Two men enter a room. The first man seems very much like the second man and the first man seems very much like the second man. Yes. But they are not. For two reasons. One: one man is the first man and two: one man in his briefcase has a gun.

Which man is the first man and which man has the gun?

The piece stages a crisp, echoing game tinged with the ghost of a tragedy. Two men, FRANK and BILL battle in the heightened arena of the stage to outperform each other’s masculinity. MacIvor brings the toxicity of masculine gender performance to the fore of his piece through the game, whilst the REFEREE, a woman, organises each round. Using plain yet virtuosic language as a compositional force, MacIvor shows us broken masculinities and their tragic human-cost but his truest tour-de-force is to preserve the agency of his REFEREE throughout the piece. This re-mount tackles MacIvor’s rich text with an outstandingly precise and generous staging, adding a dark, ironic parody to conversations surrounding dominant gender norms.


Runtime: 45 mins

June 2016 

Players' Theatre | Montreal. Quebec


ROLE:  DIRECTOR


REVIEW

CHERRY DOCS

WRITTEN BY DAVID GOW

The story follows Mike, a neo-Nazi Skinhead who is charged with murder, and Danny, a liberal Jewish Lawyer who is assigned as his public defender. An epic battle leaves each man marked by the other’s belief, Cherry Docs is a provocative exploration of the inescapable and insidious presence of hatred in our society.

A NOTE FROM THE DIRECTOR

In 2017, many of the themes depicted in Cherry Docs are as relevant as they were at the play's conception 20 years ago. Why is that? Why have we not listened to history? I believe that this show is particularly important to stage because, in order to reflect, we need to expose the ugliness, the hatred, the horrible acts that we as humans are capable of committing. Let us then reflect on our own realities, our own prejudices, and how our native justice system here in Canada deals with those who are incarcerated.


Canada is a multicultural country. We know that. We are taught it in school and, for Canadians, especially those living in big cities, we see and hear it around us every day; written on restaurant signs, advertising delectable ‘ethnic’ cuisine, and on crowded metro cars and buses where chatter abounds in a multiplicity of tongues. But what does it actually mean? What does it mean to live it? Why are hate crimes, the tensions, the injustices covered with a flashy sticker deeming Canada a ‘multicultural’ and ‘tolerant’ place? If multiculturalism leads to either a ‘melting pot’ or segregation, and tolerance implies a power dynamic, what does that say about racial, ethnic, and cultural tensions in Canada? I want to make it clear that this story was written by a white man, performed by white men and directed by an indigenous woman in the cultural context of Canada in the 1990’s. It’s talking about and representing white thoughts and experiences of/with visible minorities who are not on stage. I don’t want you to leave this play with answers. I want you to leave it with criticisms and questions, about what these characters say and why, how they view others, how they view themselves, and what that says about their world.


This play is not about good and evil. It’s about how race, class, ethnicity, and culture intersect and interact with the institutions that are upheld by the privileged. It’s about how the society we are complicit in shapes us. It’s about breaking that mould and the tedious process of learning and unlearning the way we interact with others. It’s about pain. It’s about hope.


Runtime: 90 mins

June 2017, Montreal Fringe Festival

Montreal Improv Theatre


ROLE(S):  DIRECTOR, DESIGNER


NOMINATED FOR 

MOST PROMISING ENGLISH THEATRE COMPANY

AWARDED BY THE SEGAL CENTRE 


REVIEW

RADIO INTERVIEW

ARTICLE

richard iii

WILLIAM SHAKESPEARE ADAPTATION

 I am determined to prove a villain / And hate the idle pleasures of these days.


Reviled and cursed, Richard III is Shakespeare's greatest anti-hero, a sinister court jester, and our charming confidante in a bloody tale of murder, betrayal and war on an epic scale. Our production boldly re-envisions Richard III as a violent, psychedelic world of ghosts and prophesy, where murderers lurk in the shadows and mourning widows glide, haunted, through empty spaces.   


In this nightmarish theatrical vision, created by an ensemble of masked storytellers, our Richard is indeed three, merging and splintering within the unbounded landscape of his tormented imagination. As Richard embraces treachery and evil, the limits of realism, and Richard’s own selves, are shattered.  


Runtime: 120 mins

March 2017, Moyse Hall Theatre

McGill University Department of English

ROLE(S): ASSISTANT DIRECTOR, MASK MAKER


Design Influences & Concept Statement