Katey Lois Wattam is an emerging director of mixed settler and Anishinaabe ancestry based in Montreal. After completing an Honours B. A. in Drama & Theatre at McGill University, she founded MoonCow Theatre Co., which was nominated “Most Promising English Company” at the Montreal Fringe Festival for her direction of David Gow’s Cherry Docs. In 2017-2018 with the support of the MAI (Montréal, arts interculturels) mentorship program, she directed Jovette Marchessault’s Night Cows which debuted at the MAI in May 2018. Night Cows has since been a part of short feminist works festival Revolution They Wrote in Montreal, and will be at Toronto Fringe this summer, and at Weesageechak 32 at Native Earth Performing Arts in the fall. She is a recent alum of Black Theatre Workshop’s 2018/2019 Artist Mentorship program with a specialization in directing and creation. Selected directing credits include: Never Swim Alone (BeigeTheatre Co.), Reaching for Starlight(AD, Geordie Theatre), Clean Slate(AD, Talisman Theatre), Her Side of the Story Festival (Festival AD, Imago Theatre), Richard III (AD, Moyse Hall). By day, she works on a participatory research team as a patient partner & research assistant at the McGill Faculty of Family Medicine. Their project centralizes around decolonizing and Indigenizing medical practices through the use of arts and game based learning for patient engagement & participation, and empathy building with clinicians, doctors, and researchers.
For me, drama has the capacity to make the invisible visible, it helps us see, hear, and feel the discourses of the world in a very human way. As an interdisciplinary artist of mixed settler and Anishinaabe ancestry, I approach theatre as a way of mining bodies for their blood memory, uncovering experiences and traumas for the purpose of reclaiming and decolonizing bodies, minds, and spaces. My relationship with theatre has grown into one that places me as a director, however within my practice I consider myself a storykeeper and storyweaver. My work interconnects and interweaves personal narratives, fragments of memory, vivid images, and text to create a complex emotional, cultural, and political tapestry in an overlay of interlaced designs.
My mind thinks in pictures. Imagery is the real language of my mind. My process is one that accesses and pulls from ones’ corporeal realities. Theatre allows me to take the vivid imagery I experience and tether it to the text and actors I work with and place it in space(s). Voice, breath, clown, mask, and sensory/movement-based modalities are at the core of my current practice. Using the controlled setting of theatre to self-inflect harm in a way that recalibrates it into a coping mechanism, my work seeks to touch trauma in a feasible way. In this sense, not all harm is bad. In fact, harm can have a productive purpose for some, functioning as a sight of control to re-live and re–write histories.
For any inquires about my work, working with me & past/present/future projects please feel free to send me a message!
Montréal, Quebec, Canada
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