Friday, March 31 + Saturday, April 1, 2023 | 8:00 PM
Matinee: Saturday, April 1, 2023 | 4:00 PM
Fei and Milton Wong Experimental Theatre
SFU Goldcorp Centre for the Arts
149 W. Hastings St., Vancouver
Tickets: $5 SFU Students / Underemployed | $10 SFU Staff / Faculty / Alumni | $15 General Public
Let there be quiet and play well
From the beginning
Strike up together…
Here you can speed up
Don’t leave any gaps
There, now all together
Just play the notes
~ from Day for Night by François Truffaut
Set on an indoor film set, the story follows the director and the team in the process of making a film. Taking the audience through the landscape of the movie set, we glimpse into the spectrum of desires, following the team both on and off the screen. The film crew becomes increasingly deranged as the days go by in his search for perfection, while they desperately try to find their way out of the obsessive loop, take after take and finish the film they set out to make.
Blurring the lines between installation, film, dance and theater, and taking inspiration from Day for Night / Le Nuit American by François Truffaut and documentaries of film set environments of legendary film directors, STRANGE JOY explores the behind-the-scenes of making a film.
In collaboration with...
Czarina Agustines, Breanne Birk, Zoë Braithwaite, Sean Bray, Marissa Capron, Athena Chan, Emma Ciprian, Saskia Cseh, Katie Gherasim, Jae Gonzales, Lauren Han, Lachlan Harris-Fiesel, Jillian Jarin, Kevin Jesuino, Ruby Maher, Maximus McLarnon, Eve Middleton-Meyer, Rosemary Morrison, Clare Noble, Calla Roberts, Mavrik Yi Tong Sun, Terris J. Tan, Aisha Wewala, Liam Wilkins, Ruby Wu, Emmanuel (Will) Zorzos.
Director / Writer / Concept: Erika Latta
Assistant Director: Montserrat Videla Samper
Video Designer: Irfan Brkovic
Assistant Video Designer: Colleen Bayati
Video Operator: Tadeo Ríos Dávila
Video Assistant: Carlo Marchet
Stage Manager: Joy Wu
Camera Operator / Documentary Crew (Live): Jillian Jarin
Camera Operator / Film Crew (Live): Emma Ciprian
Video Supervisor: Wlad Rodriguez
Lighting Design: Darryl Strohan
Assistant Lighting Designer: Irene Weng
Set Design: Erika Latta & Daniel Philips
Set Construction: Daniel Philips, Erika Latta, Lachlan Harris-Fiesel, Eve Middleton-Meyer, Calla Roberts, Lauren Han, Czarina Agustines, Saskia Cseh, Sean Bray, Clare Noble, Maximus McLarnon, Jillian Jarin, Terris J. Tan, Jae Gonzales, Marissa Capron, Emmanuel (Will) Zorzos
Props: The cast & crew
Sound Design: Stefan Smulovitz
Sound Mixer: Jean Routhier
Production Manager / Technical Director: Miles Lavkulich
Movement Coach: Kevin Jesuino
Translation: Athena Chan
Styling: Erika Latta & the cast
Sewing: Calla Roberts & Jae Gonzales
Vector Drawings: Alex Caprara
Filming Credits: Erika Latta & Irfan Brkovic (Directors); Tadeo Ríos Dávila (Cinematographer); Colleen Bayati (Assistant Director / Swing); Carlo Marchet (Camera Assistant); Zoë Braithwaite, Eve Middleton-Meyer, Rosemary Morrison, Clare Noble, Liam Wilkins (Actors)
Born in Vancouver, BC, Colleen Bayati is currently finishing her studies in Theatre Production and Film at SFU. She has worked in community and commercial productions such as Suddenly Slaughter, Next Time I Die, and Cats Jr. She finds passion in creating images wrapped in emotional narratives and aspires to expand her skillset and design more as she continues her artistic journey.
Irfan Brković is artist and educator from Bosnia and Herzegovina. His work is driven by obsolete machines, feedback systems and controlled randomness. He is member and video artist at The Wooster Group in New York, where he designs interactive video systems for live performances. The founding member of Phase Space NYC dedicated to the exploration of media, performance, creative coding and interdisciplinary art practices. Current Master of Fine Arts at SFU School of Contemporary Art in Vancouver, Canada.
Stefan Smulovitz is a true innovator known for his creative use of technology and mastery of sound manipulation. His craft has been honed creating nearly 100 live film scores, innumerable dance and theatre scores, and hundreds of live performances with some of the top improvising musicians in the world. Stefan’s roots as an improvisor allow him to skillfully use viola, electronics, and his game-changing software Kenaxis, to create vast sonic worlds. Always open to exploring new ideas he has collaborated with film, dance, theatre, poets, writers, visual artists, theoretical particle physicists, buffoon, circus, and now most excitingly crows!
He lives in Roberts Creek, BC where he is working on his most ambitious project yet…
Born in Vancouver, BC, Carlo is currently in his first year of Film Production at SFU. He is a passionate filmmaker and actor, excited to begin his career here at SFU.
Tadeo Ríos Dávila
Tadeo is a film studies student at SFU. Tadeo's formal photography training began when five-year-old him realized that taking family photos meant he didn’t have to be in them.
Having completed studies in Stagecraft and Event Technology from Douglas College, Darryl is an emerging designer in the lower mainland. Productions range from musicals (Peter Pan, Beauty and the Beast, Bah Humbug), to stage plays (Orland, Light the Way, 7 Stories, Jekyll, The 39 Steps), and dance pieces (Tenacious, It’s Just a Tiny Dot). Darryl also works professionally at Simon Fraser University as a resident theater technician, with the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees, and with theaters across the lower mainland. www.darrylstrohan.wordpress.com
Montserrat Videla (b. Mexico City) immigrated with her Colombian family to Canada in 2005. As an actor and creator, she works across a wide variety of performance forms, including text-based theatre, dance/physical theatre, performance art, devised creation, television, voice-over and film. Her collaborations have taken place in both English and Spanish. Nationally, she has participated in several film and performance festivals across Canada, including Why Not Theatre’s RISER Project, SummerWorks, Kick & Push, rEvolver, In the Soil, and PuSh. Internationally, she has been an artist in residence at GlogauAIR Berlin and is currently collaborating on a new work with animators and designers based in Colombia, as well as working with GbA on a new multimedia performance at the Centre for Collaborative Arts and Media at Yale University. She holds a BFA in Theatre Performance from SFU’s School for the Contemporary Arts and is currently living on the unceded territories of the Coast Salish people/Vancouver. montserratvidela.com
Yifang (Irene) Weng
Yifang was born in Tianjin, China, and graduated from SFU Theatre Production & Design (Honours) and currently based in the unceded traditional territories of the Coast Salish peoples of the xwməθk wəy ə m (Musqueam), Skwxwú7mesh (Squamish), and Səlílwətaɬ (Tsleil-Waututh) Nations, which I also call home (Vancouver). She is passionate about creating the best possible theatrical experience and thrives when challenged with new learning opportunities. As a person who has multiple cultural backgrounds and bi-language skills, she loves, welcomes, and wants to create diversified artworks.
Zhengyi Wu (Joy)
Zhengyi Wu (Joy), is a graduated SFU student majoring in Theatre Production and design, was born and raised in Changsha which is a city in Hunan province in China. Joy is working hard to improve her ability and knowledge in lighting and stage management, she is also doing some research on voice and emotional expression. She wants to be part of the team which makes a really good show known around the world in the future.
Czarina Agustines (she/her) plays the Housekeeper in the film within the play. Growing up close to the Theatre scene in Manila, Philippines, she developed an interest for performance, creation and narrative, and is currently developing that passion through a BFA in Theatre Production and Design at SFU’s School of Contemporary Arts. Her performance experience includes Workshops for Theatre and Film, School Productions and, more recently, several Short Films. She loves learning through doing and sticking her feet in as many disciplines as possible, hence why she is delighted to be a part of this interdisciplinary whirlwind of a piece. Her favorite parts about “Strange Joy” are the aspects of contemporary movement ingrained in the play, and the group of incredibly dedicated and inspiring artists that she gets to share the room with.
Breanne Birk (she/her) is an artist specializing in acting, vocalization, movement composition and performance. Based in Vancouver, Canada she currently studies at Simon Fraser University’s School for the Contemporary Arts, SCA where she soon holds a BFA in theatre performance. Breanne plans to continue developing her artistry post graduation. For Strange Joy, she is both a Production Assistant and a Burlesque Dancer.
Zoë plays Jean/Catherine. Zoë has been method acting the role of jaded wine enthusiast for the past several years.
Sean Bray is a multidisciplinary maker and performer born and raised on stolen land, and is extraordinarily grateful for the opportunity to play the role of Quinn. Sean has been in a multitude of productions throughout their years at the SCA and their current practice involves the routine and optimisation of work, improvement of self, competition as performance, and cooking as an expression of love. Sean is ultimately unimportant in the face of the stuff they make.
Originally from The Bahamas, Marissa Capron is a performer, artist, creative writer, and poet. She found her love for the stage after winning all of her high school elocution competitions year after year. Marissa became a national winner in 2019 at E. Clement Bethel National Arts Festival in Drama, Dr. 30 Individual Verse Speaking. Currently in her second year at Simon Fraser University, majoring in Theatre & Performance, Marissa enjoys engaging in a new persona each time she performs. In her creative practice, she wants to explore different personas and use them to shift the mood in a space. Marissa aspires to impact her audiences through her performances and discover what they can interpret from them. In Strange Joy, she plays the role of one of the Production Assistants and Burlesque Dancers. There will be a lot of movement from her in the show; hopefully, you can follow them.
Athena Chan (as Iza/Louisa - Wardrobe) is a Hong Kong artist who has been involved with Hong Kong Youth Arts Foundation, Hong Kong Academy of Performing Arts, and Watch Music Ltd. as an actress, singer, voice over artist and assistant director. Intrigued by human expression, behaviour, and interpersonal relationships. Athena strives to become a successful Expressive Art Therapist who could help others through the medium of acting and other expressive art forms. Some of Athena’s creative experiences in recent years includes, #BETHECHANGE (Jamie Margolin, Narrator 3), Song Seed (Singer-Songwriter), CPG: Unsung Hero (Bass), Breathe: Short Film (Assistant Director), Only A Girl (Ensemble) and RAW A Capella (Lead Vocal) with Hong Kong Youth Arts Foundation, and Minnie Bow Toons, Mickey Mouse Fun House, Mickey and Minnie Wish Upon a Christmas, Mickey’s Tale of Two Witches and Mickey Mouse Mixed-Up Adventure with Disney HK as Cuckoo Loca and various characters (Watch Music Ltd.).
Emma Ciprian (she/her) is a contemporary filmmaker and queer actress with a background in the performing arts. She has directed and created four original films in the past two years, worked as an assistant director, and is working as a producer on two films currently in post-production. Her recent notable acting credits include Miku in Checkmate (dir. Katherine Christing), Magenta in The Rocky Horror Show (Alchemy Theatre), Cassie / Lucy US in 13 the Musical (Bring on Tomorrow Co.), Ensemble / Chava US in Fiddler on the Roof (RCMT / Gateway), and additional projects with Disney and Freeform Studios. She is grateful for the opportunity to work with such a joyous and collaborative group of individuals in Strange Joy and takes pride in her role as Marcy the DP. She is currently working towards her BFA as a Film Major at Simon Fraser University.
Saskia Cseh (she/her), playing Andi/AC/Clapper, is a performance artist and working class lesbian of Hungarian descent. Her work draws from history, science fiction and the horror of urban environments. Outside this black box in the ground, Saskia has recently written and produced the audio drama Willa Murphy’s Horsewoman in Space and plays bass in the band NUMB DAME. She is beyond grateful to be a part of this endeavour. Black and Indigenous lives matter. Trans rights. Saskia was born, raised and exists on the occupied land of Coast Salish peoples.
Katie began her stage journey at the young age of eight. She joined the Globe Theatre School in 2013 and hasn’t looked back! Katie made her debut with The Globe Theatre’s Young Company in the production of Concord Floral and with The Circle. Katie loves to immerse herself in artistic pursuits on and off the stage; her latest cutting and gluing tiny pieces of paper that result in art, also known as collaging. Katie’s an improv enthusiast, who was a fierce commentator at the improv games. Katie hopes you enjoy your screening experience, and hopes you find a bit of joy in it!
Jae Gonzales (he/they) is in his second year of Theatre & Performance studies at the School for the Contemporary Arts at SFU. Jae is in love with the idea of sharing stories. As a queer Filipino artist and writer, he aspires to share his stories, and other stories like his, with passion and compassion. He likes to tell these stories through writing, performance, and music. Jae has previously acted in The Scarlet Heart and Check, Please! and has also performed in Water Park, an interactive performance piece. Jae also has experience directing Shakespeare’s Bachelorette as a short film. In Strange Joy, he will be playing Joelle, the writer for the film. Enjoy the show!
Lauren Han (they/she) is a third-year Theatre & Performance student and all-around art weirdo, born and raised in Mohkinstsis on Treaty 7 territory and now based on the traditional, ancestral, and unceded territories of the xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam), Sḵwx̱wú7mesh (Squamish), and səl̓ilwətaɁɬ (Tsleil-Waututh) nations. In Strange Joy, they're playing CJ, the second AD. Lauren spends much of her time in the realms of performance and devising, but has also enjoyed adventures in writing, dramaturgy, music, dance, and filmmaking. Recently, they got to try the AD thing out for real on the set of Exchanges by Katie Christing and Kenny Sue, which you can see at this year's SFU third-year film screening in April. You can also catch Lauren as a dancer in The 13th Chronicle by Salome Nieto at SFU in June. She is grateful to be here and grateful that you're here, too!
Lachlan Harris-Fiesel (he/him/his) is an actor, singer, and aspiring musician. He is currently a second year Theatre & Performance student attending Simon Fraser University. Lachlan is excited to continue his involvement in performing arts at the SCA, since his performance in Live Acts Vol. 1 in 2021 and the Blackbox performances in 2022. Raised just outside of the beautiful Canadian Rockies, on Treaty 7 territory, Lachlan strives to integrate humanity’s relationship to the natural world and how it affects our lives into his artistic practice. In his spare time you can find Lachlan skiing, hiking or writing music. You can find his band, Dolce Alba, on Spotify and Apple Music.
Jillian Jarin (she/her) is a Filipino-Canadian artist who believes in the art of entertainment. She has acted and directed over three original plays/performances, one being Wooden Plate in Playmaking. Jillian enjoys exploring all types of mediums in the visual arts, and her passion for film sparked at a young age, inspiring her to make movies. Thus, getting to play the Documentarian in Strange Joy is a well suited role for her. Jillian strives to use the interdisciplinary to expand her creativity and break boundaries. Above all, Jillian wants to be remembered for being a kind and genuine person (with stylish outfits) and of course making iridescent and impactful art.
Kevin Jesuino (He/Him) is a currently completing his Master of Fine Arts at the SFU School of Contemporary Art. For the performance of Strange Joy Kevin is acting as Movement Coach/Teaching Assistant and is also playing the role of the Chef. Creation credits include: The Nature of Us (Artio Choir/ TRAction, 2023), We Queer Animals (Theatre Outre, 2022), Cruising at 30km/s and Attempting Not to Crash (Mile Zero Dance, 2021), The End (Springboard Performance/Studio 303/CanDance Network, 2019). Interpretor/Performer Credits include: Oko (Canadian Academy of Mask & Puppetry, 2021), Anthem (Troy Emery Twigg/Globe & Mail News, 2020), Like Orpheus (Theatre Outre, 2018 & 2019) Birds (Swallow-a-Bicycle Theatre, 2018). Movement Coach credits: Like Orpheus (Theatre Outre, 2022). www.kevinjesuino.com
Ruby Maher is an actor, dancer, singer, and aspiring creator. Born and raised in beautiful British Columbia, Ruby finds inspiration in the vitality of nature and the constant movement of her environment. She is currently a second-year Theatre & Performance Major, attending Simon Fraser’s School of Contemporary Arts. In her spare time, you can find her teaching children’s dance classes and directing youth musical theatre productions at her local studio. Ruby is a passionate performing artist, who strives to implement her creative outlook on life and her interdisciplinary background into every artistic piece she encounters. In Strange Joy, Ruby will be playing the role of a production assistant and burlesque dancer named Renee. She wants to thank you for joining us and this Mainstage performance.
Max (he/him) is a new face in the Vancouver theatre scene. He portrays Jean Pierre who is played by Ben off screen. Both characters are down to... as the French would say... find love. Through whomever they might present themselves as. Strange Joy isn't the performer's first introduction to the theatre. His previous endeavours include productions of Concord Floral, Les Misérables, and Mean Girls. To be engulfed within a contemporary play like this presents an interesting challenge for the contrasting musical theatre past he was used to. They aim to wish you a proper time of day.
Eve Middleton-Meyer (she/her) is a queer interdisciplinary artist from the traditional territories of the Treaty 7 people. She acknowledges her privilege to be able to live uninvited on the ancestral lands of the Coast Salish peoples–Sḵwx̱wú7mesh (Squamish), Stó:lō, Səl̓ílwətaʔ/Selilwitulh (Tsleil-Waututh) and xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam) Nations. Her artistic practice varies in its focus and modes of expression: from acting to devising; music to visual art and writing. Current projects include How To Heal (a devised piece combining somatic healing modalities, sound and performance to heal generational/familial trauma), The Last Of the ’70s (an immersive installation piece inspired by discarded vintage yearbooks), and ALL ACTIVITIES MONITORED BY CAMERA (a participatory performance that explores surveillance and the commodification of identity with her new company, Wooden Mire, co-founded with SFU alumni Jordyn Wood). She has also been documenting and reflecting upon Vancouver’s public artwork through a practicum with the Vancouver Parks Board Department of Decolonization, Arts and Culture. Eve is looking forward to graduating and receiving her BFA in Theatre & Performance at Simon Fraser University very soon.
Rosemary Morrison (she/her) is a theatre artist based on the traditional, ancestral, and unceded territories of the xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam), Sḵwx̱wú7mesh (Squamish), and səl̓ilwətaɁɬ (Tsleil-Waututh) nations. Originally from Calgary, in Treaty 7 territory, Rosemary is a performer, creator, theatre administrator, and student pursuing a BFA in Theatre & Performance at Simon Fraser University. Rosemary works as the Improv for Wellness Coordinator at Tightrope Impro Theatre, and as an assistant teacher at Carousel Theatre for Young People. With improv as the foundation of her practice, she strives to jump in headfirst and bring a sense of play to her work. In Strange Joy, you’ll see her as the extravagant Chantal. She thanks you for coming to the show!
Clare Noble (she/her) is an actor, writer and all-around artist from so-called Vancouver. From a very early age she had a deep rooted love for all things strange and unsettling. Being an only child, the world of theatre and performance came quite naturally. Through most of her work, Clare has explored gender through the lens of the old-timey slasher films and making mundane acts strange. This is her 3rd year at SFU’s SCA and could not be more excited to spark some life into Dolores and maybe take a snooze while doing it.
Calla Roberts (she/her) plays the role of "Suzanne," the niece of the movie's executive producer. Calla has dyslexia, so growing up, she would always reach for play scripts as they had the most white space. Reading these scripts, she fell in love with theatre, causing her to start auditioning for her school plays. She loved the creation and process of theatre, which inspired her to try other forms of creating, such as sewing, needle felting, embroidery, crocheting, knitting, and baking. Her next steps are working towards completing her BFA in the Theatre & Performance program at Simon Fraser University. Her performance experience includes 14 school productions, work on tv sets, such as for So Help Me Todd, as background and minor roles, and work on short films within The School of Contemporary Arts. She loves to learn new skills and jump head-first into new situations. This is one of the many reasons she has loved being a part of Strange Joy. With this piece's interdisciplinary and detail-oriented nature, it is a challenge and a joy to be a part of. Calla has loved being a part of such a creative, inspiring group.
Mavrik Sun (he/him) is a trilingual first-year Theatre & Performance student, as well as an actor, singer, and aspiring voice actor. Originally from Beijing, China, Mavrik immigrated to Canada at the age of 5, where he attended a french immersion program and fell in love with acting as early as the fourth grade. Mavrik has been involved in numerous school plays, and has affiliations with theatre companies such as Tarragon Theatre. He currently works as a background actor, but his ambitions are high and will only get higher. Mavrik is excited to be a part of the cast of Strange Joy to play as Harold, one of the two special effects artists. While he is a student here at SFU, Mavrik seeks to expand his palate and delve deeper into theatreworks and grow as an artist. In his spare time, Mavrik likes to experiment with numerous facets of art, including but not limited to singing, video editing, writing, worldbuilding, animation, and digital art.
TJ Tan (He/Him) is a Chinese-Canadian artist who expresses his work through movement. TJ has a background in performance starting in Hip Hop dance in 2016, which has since blossomed into a career with Studio North. His experience in theater performance started as an extra in The Wizard of Oz and has been constantly growing. He is excited to show audiences the work put into Strange Joy and his portrayal of Jun.
Aisha Wewala (she/her) is a third year student at the SFU School for Contemporary Arts, majoring in Theatre Performance. She is an interdisciplinary artist, with training in theatre, dance, and music. Aisha enjoys incorporating her passion for dance/movement, music, and physical theatre into her work, which can be seen in her piece Run Rabbit (2022) created for Blackbox. She likes exploring the possibilities in questioning what makes something a performance. Aisha is playing the role of Kelly, the first Assistant Director. She hopes you enjoy the performance!
Liam Wilkins (he/him) plays the director, Jean-Luc Francis. He is a fifth year theatre performance major from Ponoka, Alberta. He creates and performa music under the personas of Bill Can and of BON in noise-punk band Nature Lake, and continues to experiment onstage with voice/movement and sound based work.
Ruby Wu (she/her) is a Taiwanese emerging artist. She has collaborated as a backstage assistant and light manager at Vancity Culture Lab and BGM Dance Studio. She is in her second year at the School for Contemporary Arts, pursuing a Theater Performance degree, and she loves dance and has entered competitions specializing in KPOP. She is satisfied her role of Hair + Makeup for Strange Joy, as a person very into fashion and makeup in reality. She is excited to work with everyone on the show, and wish everyone enjoy the show.
Emmanuel ‘Will’ Zorzos
Emmanuel ‘Will’ Zorzos, who performs as as (Sound guy) Georgios ‘Kaz’ Kazandtivis in Strange Joy, is a Greek Canadian composer, performer, and interdisciplinary artist. His work has been performed in the SFU Music and sound festival, the West Coast Composers symposium and the Ascension Dance Festival. He has performed with the World Music Program in venues like the Thessaloniki Concert Hall and Carnegie Hall in New York. When composting Will employees electro acoustic production, live performance, field recordings, and found sound objects. In his music he tries to explore the concepts of space, memory, physical embodiment, and how sound is in dialogue with these concepts.