resume – theatre

Sign Language/Interpreted Productions

2011
The Pedaler’s Wager (advisor)
Clay and Paper Theatre – Toronto

Montparnasse (integrated; advisor)
Theatre Passe Muraille – Toronto

Brothel #9 (advisor)
Factory Theatre – Toronto

2010
Africa Trilogy (integrated; advisor)
Volcano Theatre – Toronto, ON

2009
East of Berlin (traditional)
Tarragon Theatre – Toronto, ON

Sound in Silence (integrated)
The Theatre Centre – Toronto, ON
(review at bottom)

Between Sea and Sky (integrated; advisor)
Clay and Paper Theatre – Toronto, ON

2008
Shumskawsling (signing/voicing actor)
Talk is Free Theatre – Barrie, ON

Classical Project – Shadows in the Sun (advisor)
Realwheels Theatre/Pound of Flesh Theatre – Vancouver, BC

2007
The Dispute (voice)
Picasso Pro – Toronto, ON

2006
ASL Showcase (producer; signing actor; writer)
Harbourfront – Toronto, ON

2005
Midsummer Night’s Dream (voice)
National Technical Institute for the Deaf -Rochester, NY

Ivanka Takes a Gamble (integrated)
Talk Is Free Theatre – Barrie, ON

Hamlet (traditional)
Soulpepper Theatre Company – Toronto, ON

2003
Merchant of Venice (advisor)
Shakespeare in the Rough – Toronto, ON

Twelfth Night (traditional)
Canadian Stage Company – Toronto, ON

Stray Barries (integrated)
Talk is Free Theatre – Barrie, ON

Miracle Worker (traditional)
Lorraine Kimsa Theatre – Toronto, ON

2002
Othello (integrated)
Shakespeare in the Rough – Toronto, ON

Midsummer Night’s Dream (traditional)
Canadian Stage Company – Toronto, ON

2001
Phoenix Rides A Skateboard (traditional)
Theatre Direct Canada – Toronto, ON

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An excerpt from a review by Paula Citron:

Sound in Silence is a poignant show that combines dance with science. Creator/director Gwen Dobie is herself deaf, yet she had a career in dance before becoming an assistant professor in York University’s theatre department. The show is the story of Dobie’s struggle over adversity using a mix of movement, text, live music and both taped and live video projections.
The piece takes place within William Mackwood’s set where the audience sits on scattered swivel chairs among hanging diaphanous material that represents grey matter. There are projection screens on each wall. The configuration places the audience within the complex workings of a deaf person’s brain.
…What was particularly fascinating was how sign language interpreter Joanna Bennett was integrated into the dance itself. She functioned as the rendering of the spoken word, and as the livecam focused on her beautiful hands that were signing, she also moved in choreographic fashion as part of the group. Bennett is an actor, so she understands expressive bodies, and was the first Canadian to attend the “Interpreting for the Theatre” program at New York’s famed Julliard School. Her performance was just lovely – evocative yet practical, as it were. She herself is a graceful mover.
In the final analysis, Sound in Silence was both informative and touching. Clearly, an inventive creator can use the beauty and majesty of the arts to convey needed information within an imaginative aesthetic medium. Dancer Chung was the centre of the work, even though bustling activity was all around her. This was the triumph of Sound in Silence – a story well told in dramatic fashion.

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~ by Jo Bennett on November 22, 2010.