Dani Rosenbaum has lived in Kitchener-Waterloo since 2012. Prior to that, she lived in Hong Kong, Kingston, Vancouver, and Toronto. She returned to theatre after a 15-year hiatus in 2014, and since then she has performed in several productions with Kitchener Waterloo Little Theatre and Century Theatre Group in Hillsburgh. Dani was a member of the Hong Kong Writers Circle from 2010 to 2012. She has had three pieces of short fiction published in their annual anthologies, and co-edited their 2011 anthology, “As We See It”. Dani is thrilled to have an opportunity to work with Pat The Dog, and she hopes to develop her craft with the help of this amazing, creative group

Photo Credit: Serge Bastien

Catherine Frid is a Guelph-based playwright whose full-length works have been produced at the Toronto Fringe, Guelph Museums, Mixed Company Theatre, Kitchener’s Unhinged Festival, Alumnae Theatre, SummerWorks and others. She also co-creates community-engaged plays in our area. Her publications include Our Voices: Senior Selfies (Art Age Publications) and This Isn’t Toronto in Long Story Short, a Playwrights Canada Press 10-minute play anthology. Catherine has taught dramaturgy at Ryerson University’s Chang School, and been Playwright in Residence at Mixed Company Theatre and Artist in Residence at Osgoode Hall Law School.

Jane Watson has been a creator, actor, director and producer of theater and film in Toronto, KW and Guelph. Her creative career has waxed and waned over the years as she slipped into the different roles of mother, teacher and most recently entrepreneur, however, the underlying passion to create has never abated and continues to fill her dreams. Her company, Evening Swan Productions has produced several theater productions and short films including  Charlie which won WON Kitchener’s inaugural Breaking Films Independent Film and Art Fest and was selected for the Grand River Film Fest, and Liaison which received it’s premiere in November 2019 at the Blood in the Snow Film Festival in Toronto. Recent performances in theater include Pawn, I Hate Hamlet, Rabbit Hole and Twelfth Night. Her newest passion for writing has been inspired by her son, Thomas, who is an avid writer himself who contributes regularly to her inspiration.

As a theatre artist, Irena Huljak gravitates to outrageous work. Her artistic and commercial projects have been performed at the Toronto, Vancouver and Edinburgh Fringe Festivals, as well as at Toronto Island Theatre. Irena is a professional actor working in both theatre and film. Her achievements include a Best Actor Award for Vancouver’s Vertigo Theatre (2002), a nomination for Best Short Script for The Sweeter Half at the Wildcard Script Festival (2003), and producing credits for the theatre production of Finding Nemo and Look Back in Anger as well as the Open:The Web Series. Huljak has also appeared in television series and films such as Warehouse 13, Killing Ruth, Mayday and the upcoming The Boys. Huljak began her theatre training in her teens at the Oxford School of Drama in the U.K., rated one of the top 5 best acting schools in the world. She attended the summer conservatories at the London Academy of Movement and Dramatic Arts and London’s National Theatre School. Irena holds a B.F.A. in Acting from York University and completed a rigorous two-year program in acting and directing at the Tom Todoroff Conservatory in New York City.

Susan Grise: I am a middle-aged (assuming I live to 100) Teacher Librarian who works in a secondary school with
throngs of teenagers, whom I credit with keeping me sharp and a little nuts. I have four children who
make me proud every day and have taught me far more than I could ever teach them. I have a mutt
named Dory, who tries every day to be a little bit more human–while I try to be more like her. Her
anxious personality (likely owing to her identity crisis) gave me the idea to call my future writing
production company “Awkward Dog Productions”. I have a boyfriend who always tells me
well-intentioned lies about how good my chances are for achieving my latest, greatest aspiration, so
any level of belief in my writing can be credited to his unflagging poor judgment and my desire to
prove him right.

I started writing plays for what I think is a fairly common reason; I felt like there were characters
occupying my mind and wanting their stories to be told. I have written two full-length plays and hope to
continue writing for live acting on a stage. When I write, I feel like I am sharing consciousness with the
characters in my plays, as if they are real people who live because their stories are told. I have a
careful confidence about the potential of my plays; with the right community support, I believe that my
writing could do justice to the characters I have imagined.

Rachel Behling is the Proprietress of Auburn Vintage Clothiers in the little town of Conestogo. She has worn and loved vintage clothing all her life. ‘Dressing up’ has carried into her everyday life, not only professionally but as a hobby as well. She has been involved in local theatre as actor, producer, director and most recently, playwright. When Rachel isn’t in the shop or knee-deep in laundry, she’s busy collecting stories to share.

Zehra Nawab is a multidisciplinary artist, working as a journalist, a writer, a director and an actor of stage and screen. Her work garnered critical acclaim and awards during her time in Pakistan. Today, she continues this passion by engaging with the theatre and journalistic community in Canada. The latest chapter in her journey as an actor was Dear Baby, at the Playground New Works Festival 2019. She acted in the adaptation of the Bald Soprano staged at the University of Waterloo and did dramaturgy and stage management for the original musical You Smile. She has been selected for the X Page Storytelling 2020 fellowship on script-writing and performance and will next be seen in the play 1989, Toronto. She is the writer and co-director of the documentary Home Truths, exhibited as part of the travelling Making Heimet exhibit from the Venice Biennale.  Zehra is the recipient of the Agahi Award, Journalist of the Year 2016: Reporting on Culture, for the Herald cover story Seeking Paradise. She has also co-directed the documentary Mad Mad Mad Mad Film World which was funded by, and is now part of the collection at, the Contemporary Art Gallery, Vancouver. Her most current illustration project has been the book cover for New-York based journalist Annie Ali Khan’s posthumously published work, Sita Under the Crescent Moon, published by Simon & Schuster In. She posts about her work most regularly on Instagram @zehra_nawab and on Twitter @zehra_nawab.

Heather Majaury is a local theatre artist of Indigenous and Settler Ancestry (Algonquin Nation originally from the Ottawa Valley). She created a one-woman show, entitled This is My Drum which premiered at the Registry Theatre in 2015.  She then toured with Sheatre in a show that addresses homophobia and bullying called Be Our Ally as a Theatre of the Oppressed Joker. She has been an artistic associate of MT Space since 2009 where she worked as a producer, audience developer, and member of their performance and devising ensemble. In 2018 she played the role of Elena in the Gwaandak Theatre production of The Unplugging which toured several communities in the Yukon. Most recently she collaborated with Lib Spry at Queens University to develop a performative life-size board game. Wanna play? And served as Lib’s Assistant Director during Theatre Kingston’s rehearsals for Almighty Voice and his Wife by Daniel David Moses. This fall she dramaturged and directed US/WE/OURS which was presented as part of IMPACT 2019 at the Conrad Centre and then ran away for a weekend to facilitate a community-based arts workshop in Regina for an ongoing storytelling project called Neighbours. She also loves to sing and write songs with her husband Jack Cooper. They perform house concerts whenever they can squeeze them into their busy schedules. She is really excited about participating in Women + this year and considers Kitchener Waterloo playwrights to be very lucky to have a resource like Pat the Dog in our community.

Nicola Thomas is a passionate caretaker of the environment and is deeply committed to increasing community awareness of urban Food Forestry benefits. Nicola shares her knowledge of restorative agriculture through educational talks, seminars, one-on one mentoring, and hands on practical workshops. She travels for conferences about Food Forestry and has been mentored by top permaculturists from around the world. Nicola is also an active consultant on all things permaculture in the South Western Ontario region.