Theatre/Film FACULTY and STAFF Profiles

Last Modified: Sept 20, 2017

All photographs by Staff Photographers, (c) UWinnipeg unless noted otherwise below

PERMANENT FACULTY

Tim Babcock (Chair)

Mr. Babcock chairs the Department and teaches stage and production management, lighting, and sound.

Committed to bringing currency to the classroom, Professor Babcock has continued his involvement with the professional community as a founding organiser of the Winnipeg Fringe Festival where he continued as Production Manager and then Operations Consultant. He also contributed to the formation of the Winnipeg Gilbert and Sullivan Society as Stage Manager and Lighting Designer for their inaugural production, was the Production Manager for the 1999 Pan American Games opening and closing ceremonies, and recently acted as consultant to the North American Indigenous Games.

Beyond this, Professor Babcock has also been involved with more than 40 local productions including sound designs for both Speak and Love and Anger at Prairie Theatre Exchange, Quills (with David Wallace) at the MTC Warehouse, and Never Never Mind Kurt Kurt Cobain for Theatre Projects Manitoba. His lighting designs have included I am a Bear and Toronto at Dreamer’s Rock for MTYP, Mikado, Patience, Rudigore and HMS Pinaphore for the Gilbert & Sullivan Society, The Escape, A Catered Affair and November for the Winnipeg Jewish Theatre, Albertine in Five Times, Jack of Hearts for Theatre Projects Manitoba, and many others. Prior to his post at the University, Professor Babcock was

Contact Professor Babcock at: (204) 786-9455; E-mail: t.babcock@uwinnipeg.ca


Claire Borody

Dr. Claire Borody is an Associate Professor in the Department of Theatre and Film at the University of Winnipeg. She holds a Ph.D. in Theatre from the University of Toronto, an M.Ed. in Pedagogical Theory with a Specialization in Theatre, and a B.A. in English, Art History and Theatre from the University of Manitoba.

Claire teaches acting and theory courses and has developed a senior level course in performance creation (devised theatre). Her research interests include 20-21st century acting and performance theory, devised and collectively conceived performance work and its documentation, inter-disciplinary and cross-cultural performance, contemporary Canadian theatre and creative spectatorship. She has published articles and reviews in Canadian Theatre Review, Canadian Literature, The University of Toronto Quarterly and Prairie Fire. Most recently, she published a book chapter on Primus Theatre in West-words: Celebrating Western Canadian Theatre and Playwriting.

She is the former Artistic Director of Avera Theatre, a devised theatre company, that she founded in 2003, and has worked extensively with the devised theatre companies out-of-line theatre and theatre fix since 2003. She is actively involved in the theatre community as a director, production dramaturg, and creative consultant, and works extensively on independent experimental theatre and dance projects. She continues to advance her practice though ongoing training. In 2005, she was accepted into the International School for Theatre Anthropology (ISTA) in Wroclaw (Poland). In 2011, she studied Noguchi Taiso and Butoh technique in Aomori City and Tokyo (Japan).

She has been an active member of in the Canadian Association for Theatre Research (CATR) since 1998 and has served as Prairie representative and as the Association's secretary. She is a founding member of the Theatre Practice Committee (2002) that is responsible for programming the workshop/demonstration component at annual CATR conferences.

In 2009, Claire co-founded the e-journal Canadian Journal for Practice-based Research in Theatre (CJPRT) with colleague Per Brask which she now co-edits with Dr. Monica Prendergast at the University of Victoria. http://cjprt.uwinnipeg.ca

Contact Professor Borody at: (204) 786-9385; E-mail: c.borody@uwinnipeg.ca


Per K. Brask

Per K. Brask has taught at the U of W since 1982 and is a Professor.

His creative writing, essays, and translations have appeared in Anthropologica, Border Crossings, Canadian Folklore, Canadian Theatre Review, C.G. Jung Page, Contemporary Verse 2, Consciousness, Literature and the Arts (where he also serves on the editorial board), Danish Literary Magazine, Descant, Ecotone, Event, ELEVEN, Grain, Journal of Dramatic Theory and Criticism, The Literary Review, Malahat Review, Modern International Drama, NeWest Review, Nexus, Performing Arts Journal, Poetica, Poetry Canada Review, Poet Magazine, Poetry Kanto, Poetry Wales, Prairie Fire, The Philosophers' Magazine, Quarterly Review, Rhubarb Magazine, and Zygote.

In book form: Power/lessness (monologues, Turnstone Chapbooks,1987), Duets (short stories, with George Szanto, Coteau, 1989), DramaContemporary: Scandinavia (plays, ed., PAJ, 1989), Double Danish (short stories, ed. and trans., Cormorant, 1991), Aboriginal Voices: Amerindian, Inuit and Sami Theatre (essays, plays and interviews, ed. with William Morgan, Johns Hopkins UP, 1992), God's Blue Morris: A Selection of Poems by Niels Hav (ed. and trans. with Patrick Friesen, Crane Editions, 1993), Contemporary Issues in Canadian Theatre and Drama (essays, ed. Blizzard Publishing, 1995), Essays on Kushner's Angels (ed. Blizzard Publishing, 1995), The Woods by Klaus Høeck (poems, trans. with Patrick Friesen, Crane Editions, 1998), Seven Canons (plays by Canadian women ed. with Martin Bragg and Roy Surrette, Playwrights Canada Press, 2000), Two Plays by Ulla Ryum (trans. Adler & Ringe, 2001), A Sudden Sky: Selected poems by Ulrikka S. Gernes (ed. and trans. with Patrick Friesen, Brick Books, 2001), We Are Here, a collection of poems by Niels Hav (ed. and trans. with Patrick Friesen, Book Thug, 2006), Copenhagen, a collection of short stories by Katrine Marie Guldager (trans., Book Thug, 2009), Performing Consciousness (ed. with Daniel Meyer-Dinkgräfe, Cambridge Scholars Publsihing, 2010), A Spectator, a collection of ekphrastic poems (Fictive Press, 2012), Above Palm Canyon and Other Places in the Mind, poems, (Fictive Press, 2013), and Foundational Thoughts in Judaism by Andreas Simonsen, philosophy (ed. and trans. Fictive Press, 2014), The Laws of Life by Andreas Simonsen (ed. and trans. Fictive Press, 2015), and Frayed Opus for Strings and Wind Instruments, a collection of poems by Ulrikka S. Gernes (trans. with Patrick Friesen, Brick Books, 2015).

Photo by Bonnie Brask

His activities, apart from teaching, focus on creative writing, literary translation, and Judaic Studies. He participates in CLASS, a working group of University of Winnipeg faculty and students engaged in interdisciplinary reserach concerning secularism and secularization within the liberal arts.

Contact Professor Brask at: (204) 786-9285; E-mail: p.brask@uwinnipeg.ca


Christopher Brauer

Christopher Brauer is an Associate Professor in the Department of Theatre and Film at the University of Winnipeg where he teaches senior-level courses in directing and acting with an emphasis on performing Shakespeare. He regularly directs the department's Shakespeare productions.

He holds a B.A. Hons. in Theatre from the University of Toronto and an M.F.A. in Acting from York University. Through the mid-1990s Christopher acted with a number of prestigious Toronto theatre companies, and in 1996 he was co-founder of The Georgian Theatre Festival, an equity summer theatre festival in Meaford, Ontario. During seven seasons with that company, Christopher worked as an actor, company manager, director of educational programming, associate producer, and resident director. He was also Artistic Director of The Vicious Gossip Group, an independent Toronto theatre company. He taught extensively for Theatre Aquarius, The Drama Workshop, The Randolph Academy for the Performing Arts and York University.

Since moving to Winnipeg in 2005 Christopher has pursued his two main areas of interest: directing classics - principally Shakespeare, and the development of an actor-training methodology based on the methods of Canadian clown teacher Richard Pochinko. Christopher has directed extensively in Winnipeg, and worked as an original-practices Text Coach for Shakespeare in the Ruins. He has studied the Pochinko-style approach to clown training with John Turner (Smoot of Mump & Smoot), and has assisted him at his summer training intensive on Manitoulin Island in Ontario.

Upcoming he will direct both parts of Tony Kushner's Angels in America for the Winnipeg Jewish Theatre.

Contact Professor Brauer at: (204) 786-9006; E-mail: c.brauer@uwinnipeg.ca


Shelagh Carter

Shelagh Carter is a "Lifetime Member" of The Actors Studio as an Actress and Director, a Professor of Theatre and Film at the University of Winnipeg, and a graduate of the Canadian Film Centre's Directors Lab in Toronto. As a filmmaker, Shelagh has created work for ten years. Night Travellers, her third short film, was a National Screen Institute Drama Prize winner in 2007. Her award winning 35 mm short, One Night, filmed as part of the Canadian Film Centre's Short Dramatic Film 2009 series, continues to be invited to international film festivals. She has also won world festival recognition with her experimental narrative short films Canoe and Rifting/Blue.

Shelagh's first feature film, called Passionflower, the story of Sarah, an 11-­year-­ old girl forcing her family to come to terms with her mother's increasing mental instability, is presently winning film festival attention and honors. Her experimental film, Spellbinding 3D, a black and white dance film, is her most recent artistic short work and represents an exciting departure to new technology.

Shelagh's next feature projects, a prairie film noir called The Shooting Party and a revisionist Chekhovian drama called Into Invisible Light, are in development.

She is a recent recipient of the award, Women In the Director's Chair Career Advancement Module 2010, in collaboration with Women in Film Festival Vancouver.

Working with Actors and teaching the acting process is a long time love.

http://www.darklingpictures.com

Contact Professor Carter at: (204) 786-9955 (Dept. Office); E-mail: s.carter@uwinnipeg.ca


Howard Curle

Mr. Curle has an MA from NYU Graduate School of Arts and Science, Department of Cinema Studies as well as a BA from the U of W and further film training from U of M. Mr. Curle has extensive teaching experience and has worked on a number of film productions. He has delivered papers and lectures, served on film juries, edited, directed and published.

Mr. Curle teaches Introduction to Filmmaking and History of Film.

Contact Mr. Curle at: (204) 258-3810; E-mail: h.curle@uwinnipeg.ca


Aaron Frost

Aaron Frost is the Technical Instructor and Master Carpenter for the Department of Theatre and Film at the University of Winnipeg. He teaches introductory to senior-level courses in theatre production and stagecraft. He holds a B.A. (Hons.) in Theatre Production from the University of Winnipeg, with special studies in Carpentry and Costuming.

Aaron is a member of The International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees, Moving Picture Technicians, Artists and Allied Crafts of the United States, Its Territories and Canada, Local 63.

When he isn't busy teaching and building the University of Winnipeg's theatre productions, Aaron keeps busy working for various theatre companies. In 2013, he assisted the carpentry crew on Rainbow Stage's two summer hits, Buddy and Mary Poppins, did make-up for Manitoba Opera's Aida, and was Master Carpenter for Jail Baby, Diss, Eden, Kayak (Sarasvati Productions), Three Sisters (Theatre Projects Manitoba), and Fort Mac (Theatre Vice Versa).

Aaron's passion for performance, costuming, and creation emanates through all aspects of his life. He continuously challenges himself to learn new techniques of construction and takes pride in crafting creations that defy expectations and leave lasting impressions.

As Technical Instructor, Aaron embraces the opportunity to help students understand the process of theatre production and empower them with the skills of stagecraft and tool use.

Contact Mr. Frost at: (204) 786-9246; E-mail: a.frost@uwinnipeg.ca


David J. Hewlett

David Hewlett is the Department of Theatre and Film's Designer; he teaches all of the courses in the visual, interpretive areas, including set and costume design, lighting, and make-up. He also teaches, or has taught, courses in drafting and drawing, costuming and set carpentry, although the latter two are now aptly handled by dedicated specialists.

Professor Hewlett joined the University of Winnipeg in 1970 as a lecturer and the third staff member to be hired in the Theatre Division of the English Department. The greatest part of his career has been spent teaching and practicing the art of design. Prior to 1970, Professor Hewlett worked for the Manitoba Centennial Corporation on Youth Celebrations for the Centennial, and found time to teach make-up to summer school students in the gymnasium of Riddell Hall. While his interest in theatre blossomed at Vincent Massey High School through Reg Skene’s inspired leadership, his career path did not lead directly to the stage, but first to the University of Manitoba for degrees in Arts (B.A.) and Architecture (B.E.S.). He only knew of United College in those days as a place where the unconventional could and did happen, especially at the Freshie Parade! However the fledgling Theatre Department needed a designer and, having had some teaching experience from previous summers, an offer was made and a career in theatre was launched. After helping to establish the Theatre Division with a reputation for strong production values, Professor Hewlett went to the University of Alberta for a Master of Fine Arts degree in Design, which is a terminal degree in this field. From there, he developed a free-lance practice designing productions for most of Winnipeg’s theatre companies as well as regional and commercial theatres in Toronto, Calgary, Edmonton, and Vancouver. His design ventures have also taken him into Art Direction and Production Design for film and television, where he has worked for C.B.C., C.K.Y., C.K.N.D., Credo, and several other independent producers.

While theatre and film design continue to be both interesting and challenging for Professor Hewlett, he has never lost his delight in architecture, particularly residential design. Over the years, he has designed scores of homes. He has also been actively involved in designing at the University of Winnipeg, including extensive work on our new theatre facility.

Professor Hewlett believes that the Department of Theatre and Film can nurture students in a strong learning environment where they are encouraged to explore and develop their creative potential in a safe and supportive environment. It is the strength of practical and theoretical approaches to theatre, and the talented faculty of professionals at the University of Winnipeg, that have made our Department of Theatre and Film notable nationally and the best place to go to earn a degree in theatre!

Contact Professor Hewlett at: (204) 786-9380; E-Mail: d.hewlett@uwinnipeg.ca


John Kozak

John Kozak has worked in the film industry in Winnipeg for twenty years in a variety of capacities, but mainly as a writer, director and editor. He has written and directed over twenty films in a wide range of styles, including experimental films, educational films and two dramatic features. His films have been broadcast in Canada (Superchannel, Movie Max, Global, CBC) and have received theatrical distribution in Canada, the U.S.A. and South America. They have also received wide festival exposure with screenings at The Toronto Festival of Festivals, The Goteborg Film Festival, The Vancouver International Film Festival, The Sydney International Film Festival, The Mannheim Film Festival, The Montreal International Festival of New Cinema and many more, and his films have won numerous awards including Golden Sheaf Awards for best screenplay and best actor for Dory, the Super Channel Award and Drama Lab Award, also for Dory and, most recently, the Best Screenplay Award at the Magnolia Film Festival for The Eulogy. He has also worked on numerous films as a picture and sound editor, sound recordist, gaffer, script supervisor, actor and producer on shorts, commercials, documentaries and feature films. His most recent film is the half-hour drama, Target Practice, released in 2011.

Professor Kozak received his formal training in film production at New York University, School of the Arts, Graduate Department of Film and Television, receiving a Master of Fine Arts degree in 1981. While at New York University he studied directing under such prestigious filmmakers as Laslo Benedek and Sam Fuller, and also studied film history and theory with William K. Everson and Jay Leyda, specializing in Early American Cinema.

Contact Professor Kozak at: (204) 786-9951; E-Mail: j.kozak@uwinnipeg.ca


F.R. (Rick) Skene

F.R. (Rick) Skene has been with the University of Winnipeg Department of Theatre and Film since 1986. He specializes in film, stage combat, physical theatre, and acting. He is a founding member or The Society of Canadian Fight Directors and holds the rank of "Fight Director" with Fight Directors Canada. He is a veteran member of Canadian Actors' Equity and ACTRA.

Mr. Skene is the leading stage fight choreographer and film stunt coordinator in the province. He has choreographed fight sequences for every professional theatre company in the city, most recently teaming up with choreographer Jorden Morris to dramaturge and co-direct the RWB's higly successful full length ballet - Moulin Rouge. As a stunt coordinator/performer Mr. Skene has over 150 feature and television films to his credit including the highly acclaimed series: Less Than Kind, Todd and the Book of Pure Evil, Falcon Beach, and Keep Your Head Up Kid: The Don Cherry Story. International credits include Shall We Dance (Richard Gere, Jennifer Lopez), The Big White (Robin Williams, Holly Hunter, Giovanni Ribisi, Woody Harrelson), The Messengers (John Corbett, Dylan McDermott, Kristen Stewart), K-19 The Widowmaker (Harrison Ford), Hide and Seek (Daryl Hannah, Jennifer Tilley), Clown at Midnight (Christopher Plummer, Margot Kidder), Framed (Rob Lowe), The Law of Enclosures (Sarah Polley, Brendan Fletcher), and Christmas Rush (Dean Cain, Eric Roberts), to name a few.

Mr. Skene has an extensive background in acting, physical theatre, and directing. He was founder and artistic director/performer with Mimeworks Mime & Storytheatre Company and toured nationally and internationally before devoting his energies to the study of combat choreography and film work. Mr. Skene has also written several full-length Commedia D'ell Arte scenarios and his full-length play Ce Weekend La erased a substantial company deficit and still holds the attendance record for Theatre Projects Manitoba.

Contact Professor Skene at: (204) 786-9486; E-Mail: rickskene@shaw.ca


Tom Stroud

In 2005 Tom joined the faculty of the Department of Theatre and Film where he teaches movement in the Honours BA and General BA Programs. He has also directed a number of productions for the department including The Glass Menagerie (2006), Picnic (2008), A Doll's House (2009), and Juliet and Romeo (2010).

A graduate of the Simon Fraser University School for the Performing Arts, Tom has danced with the Karen Jamieson Dance Company, T.I.D.E. (Toronto Independent Dance Enterprise), Le Groupe de la Place Royale, and Fondation Jean-Pierre Perreault. In the eighties he established a strong national presence as an independent choreographer touring extensively across the country. He has been commissioned to create works for Le Groupe de la Place Royale, Montreal Danse, Dancemakers, the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra's New Music Festival and the Canada Dance Festival.

In 1991 Tom was appointed as the Artistic Director of Winnipeg's Contemporary Dancers (WCD). During his 14-year tenure his works for the company included Songs (1992), Broken Symmetry (1993), Company (1994), The Last Sleep of the Virgin (1995), R & J... 21 scenes for Romeo and Juliet (1995), Shift (1995), The Raft (1997), Arrows (1998), The Garden (2001), El Rio (2002), Vuelta (2002), Desdemona (2004), and Othello (2005). In 2002, he received the prestigious Choo San Goh Award for choreography - one of only eleven choreographers in North America to receive the award that year.

As an Artistic Director Tom also spearheaded a number of highly successful and innovative projects including; JOE, a co-production with the Fondation Jean-Pierre Perreault and Dancemakers which toured Canada and the U.S. (1994 - 1996); Shift, an interdisciplinary installation co-produced with the Winnipeg Art Gallery (1995); and The Pan American New Creation Project, an international co-production with Mexican and American modern dance companies which culminated in performances in Winnipeg and Mexico in 1999, El Río (2002), a co-production with the Winnipeg Singers which integrated 22 vocalists into a choreographic landscape, and Vuelta, a co-creation with Peter Bingham of Vancouver's EDAM, featuring company members from both WCD and EDAM.

He remains an active member of the professional community working in dance, theatre and inter-disciplinary creation. His credits include, Jealous/Pervert (2006, out of line theatre), Witches (2007, out of line theatre), Obscene, (2008, Ian Mozdzen), and The Rite (2008). Tom also returned to the stage as a performer acting in David Mamet's Duck Variation (2008) for the Manitoba Theatre Centre's Directors Festival and in a new play by Mia Van Leeuwen, The God Box (2008) for out of line theatre. His most recent production was a new devised creation The Rite, (2010) for The Rite Productions.

Contact Professor Stroud at: (204) 786-9323; E-mail: t.stroud@uwinnipeg.ca


A. Blake Taylor

Blake is a Professor of Theatre and Film at the University of Winnipeg. Teaching is a passion with Professor Taylor. He has taught every acting course the University offers. Recently he has been teaching Acting IV:Honours; Acting III; Screen Acting; Introduction to Performance, and Acting Theory and Practice. He has also directed numerous productions for the Department.

He came to the University of Winnipeg from a career as a professional actor and continues to remain active in principal roles in film and television and on stage. Selected screen credits include: The Pinkertons; Heaven Is For Real; The Christmas Heart; Cord (AKA Hide and Seek); The Path of Souls; Passionflower; Falcon Beach (recurring); Last One Standing; Something Beneath; Maneater; Eye Of The Beast; The Don Cherry Story (recurring); Todd and the Book of Pure Evil (recurring); Haunting Sara; Society's Child; Category 7; Harvest; Tornado Warning; The Roswell Project; Fear-X; Heater; A Haunting In Connecticut; Walk All Over Me; What If God Were The Sun; Elijah; and Stone Angel. Selected stage:Gayev in The Cherry Orchard; Brabantio in Othello (Contemporary Dancers), Lee Melville in The Melville Boys (Danrich Productions), Karl Barsky in Salesmen Don't Ride Bicycles (The Gryphon Theatre), Exeter in Henry V (Royal MTC), Ralph in In Dreams (Agassiz at PTE); Gulliver in Gulliver's Travels (Theatre Calgary), Mug in New Canadian Kid (Prairie Theatre Exchange); Gib in The Second Shepherd's Play (Northern Light Theatre); Gooper in Cat on a Hot Tim Roof (Olde West Theatre, Tennessee), Paul Friedman in 6 Rms Riv Vu (Barn Theatre, Virginia), Snoopy in You're a Good Man Charlie Brown (Barn Theatre, Virginia); Ben in The Sunshine Boys (Barn Theatre, Virginia).

Professor Taylor also writes, produces and directs educational videos. Parallel Lines won the Crystal Award of Excellence at the Communication Awards in Arlington, Texas. Other Directing Credits include Laban for Actors and Drama Education with Special Needs Students: A Day With Andy Kemp; and Planning With Heathcote. The latter two were shot in the U.K. and are distributed by Insight Media of New York.

Professor Taylor's background includes being Artistic Director of Noon Hour Theatre for three seasons.

Professor Taylor completed his undergraduate degree at the University of Winnipeg, has a professional teaching certificate from the University of Manitoba, and an M.A. and M.F.A. from the University of New Orleans. A veteran of over sixty professional productions on stage and screen, he is a member of the A.C.T.R.A. Performers Guild and the Canadian Actors Equity Association.

Contact Professor Taylor at: (204) 786-9953; E-Mail: b.taylor@uwinnipeg.ca


Alden Turner

Alden Turner teaches Screenwriting as well as Literature and Film courses at the University of Winnipeg in Canada. He has published articles in Studies in the Novel, Wallace Stevens Journal, and Clio: A Journal of Literature, History, and the Philosophy of History, co-edited Uncommon Wealth: An Anthology of Poetry in English (Oxford UP), and edited Experience and Expression: A Reader for Canadian Writers (Copp Clark). Recently, Alden completed a feature-film screenplay based on an 850-year old Iroquois oral narrative about the founding of the Five Nations Confederacy in the 12th century, entitled Hiawatha and The Peacemaker. He's currently writing Cruise Night, a contemporary romantic comedy set in North Dakota and Winnipeg.

Contact Dr. Turner at: (204) 786-9283; E-mail: a.turner@uwinnipeg.ca


Shannon Vickers

Shannon Vickers is an Associate Professor in the Department of Theatre and Film where she teaches Voice, Speech, and Text in the Acting and Honours Acting programs.

Shannon has served as a Text, Voice, and/or Accent Coach for theatres across Canada including Royal Manitoba Theatre Centre (18 productions), The Canadian Stage Company, bcurrent theatre, Sarasvati Productions, Shakespeare in the Ruins, Theatre Projects Manitoba, The Citadel Theatre, Prairie Theatre Exchange, and Winnipeg Jewish Theatre.

Shannon holds a BFA in Acting from the University of Windsor and earned an MFA in Theatre Voice Pedagogy at the University of Alberta. Shannon is a certified Associate Teacher of Knight-Thompson Speechwork.

Shannon is an active member of VASTA (Voice and Speech Trainers Association), and is currently collaborating with colleague Eric Armstrong (York University) on a SSHRC-funded research project to support Best Practices in Indigenous Dialect Training and Resource Creation to support Indigenous storytelling and performance.

Contact Ms Vickers at: (204) 786-9287; E-mail: s.vickers@uwinnipeg.ca


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