Director, Theatre Creator
Jessica Carmichael is a non-status mixed Abénaki/Euro artist. She specializes in directing, acting, creation and dramaturgy. Jessica is a graduate of the National Theatre School of Canada (Acting), the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art & King’s College London (MA Text & Performance with Distinction) and the University of Alberta (MFA Directing with Distinction). Jessica is a past participant with the Michael Langham Workshop for Classical Direction (Stratford Festival, 2014 & 2016).
For three seasons Jessica was the Artistic Director of Carousel Players, a professional theatre for young audiences in St. Catharines, Ontario. She is a past artistic associate with Native Earth Performing Arts in Toronto and was Program Director of their Creators Unit Animiikiig. She was a workshop leader for “The Study” hosted by the National Arts Centre, Indigenous Performing Arts Alliance and Debajehmujig Creation Centre.
In addition to Jessica’s freelance work, she holds a tenure-track professor appointment at Concordia University in Montréal in the Theatre Department.
Recent Directing: Ipperwash (Blyth Festival August 2017), Boys, Girls, And Other Mythological Creatures, Tick, iChild, Hana Hashimoto, Sixth Violin, Spelling 2-5-5 (Carousel Players 2014-2017), The Aeneid (assistant director, Stratford Festival 2016) Two Indians (SummerWorks 2016), CLGA Unarchived (co-curator, Buddies in Bad Times Rhubarb Festival 2015), Christina the Girl King (assistant Director, Stratford Festival 2014), Savage (Native Earth/Stratford Springworks 2014), Treaty No. 9 (Aluna Theatre 2014), girls!girls!girls! (co-director, SummerWorks 2013).
Upcoming: Directing a remount of Boys, Girls, And Other Mythological Creatures (Carousel Players January 2019 Ontario tour & May 2019 Harbourfront Centre) and apəTHē/ (Concordia Theatre Department March 2019).
Acting (select): Jessica's work as an actor has taken her across Turtle Island working with such companies as Guilty by Association (1991, FeministFuckItFestival/ StoreFront Theatre), Native Earth Performing Arts (Aluasa’sit), Suitcase In Point Theatre (The Corporate Western), Thousand Islands Playhouse (Eyes Catch Fire) and Northern Light Theatre (True Mummy). She has had principle and supporting roles in full length feature Canadian films including A Louder Silence (dir. Nicolette Saina), I Think I Do (dir. Dylan Pierce) and Heart of the Sun (dir. France Damberger).
Upcoming: Jessica will be performing in Guilty By Association’s 1991 in Toronto as part of Why Not Theatre’s Riser Project (May 2019).
Recent Playwriting: Jessica co-created Ipperwash, a commission for the Blyth Festival’s 2017-2018 Season, working closely with community members of Kettle and Stony Point First Nation. Jessica adapted for the stage Hana Hashimoto, Sixth Violin by author Chieri Uegaki and illustrator Qin Leng (Kids Can Press) in collaboration with Chieri and her family. Carousel Players premiered her production in 2016. The play was named a part of The 49. “The 49 is a list of forty-nine plays by women of colour that can be programmed tomorrow” www.the49list.com
Recent Dramaturgy: Jessica has dramaturged numerous playwrights works over the years. Recently she has worked with France Koncan, Mark Crawford, Sean Dixon, Kate Hewlett, Cole Lewis, Matt Mackenzie and Jordi Mand on their new works. Mark Crawford’s Boys, Girls, And Other Mythological Creatures premiered as part of Carousel Players 2016-2017 Season. Jordi Mand’s This Will Be Excellent premiered as part of Carousel Players 2017-2018 Season.