Talking Treaties is a participatory multi-arts project, with the goal of artfully sharing local Indigenous knowledge and awareness. Launched in Spring 2015, the project culminated in the Talking Treaties Spectacle, presented at Toronto’s Historic Fort York in June 2017, as part of their Indigenous Arts Festival.
In the research and development phase, Talking Treaties engaged over 300 participants in generating symbols, found poetry, and improvised response maps and performances, which informed and were featured as content in the production.
In 2017, Talking Treaties moved into a production phase, bringing together the wealth of knowledge gathered into a large-scale immersive performance and installation, bringing together professional and community performers.
Talking Treaties is created and directed by Ange Loft, in collaboration with historian and co-writer, Victoria Freeman, along with many other artists and contributors, and in partnership with First Story Toronto and other partners.
The Talking Treaties Spectacle was part of Jumblies’ Touching Ground Festival of new works. The Talking Treaties Spectacle was followed by the premier performance of “Under the Concrete”, a choral reflection of the same themes, composed by Martin van de Ven, with original songs by Rosary Spence.
Following the June 2017 production, Talking Treaties enters a phase of legacy, which will involve: considering touring potential for the performance, designing multi-media Talking Treaties resources, and seeking partnerships for remounting of the full production in 2018.
Talking Treaties Artist Team
Ange Loft: Lead Artist, Director, Co-Writer
Victoria Freeman: Historical Researcher, Co-Writer
Jill Carter: Researcher and Actor
Lilia Leon: Choreographer
Brian Solomon: Choreographer
Melody McKiver: Composer, Musician (viola)
Rosary Spence: Songwriter
Brian Valdivia: Composer
Composer Johnny Spence: Musician (accordion)
Marianne Alas, Costume Designer/Coordinator
Sonja Rainey, Set and Props Designer
Parker Dirks, Assistant Designer
Julia Hune Brown: Dance Coordinator
Kelly King: Research & Making Assistant
Jesse Wabegijig: Actor
Rosina Kazi: Actor
Candy Blair: Actor
Tomas Cavalheiro-Chin: Actor
Nikki Shaffeellah: Actor
Karis Jones Pard: Dancer
Bianca Morgan: Dancer
Jackie Omstead: Community Programming Coordinator
Sasha Tate Howarth: Production Stage Manager
Steafan Hannigan: Technical Director
Iehente Foot: Assistant Stage Manager
Alaska B, Audio Engineer
Adrienne Marcus Raja: Documenter
Dennis Patterson: Audio Recording
Liam Coo: Photographer
Sofia Bohdanowicz: Videographer
and many other artists and community members..
First Story Toronto, Historic Fort York, Nagamo Collective and others.
Ontario Arts Council
Toronto Arts Council
J.P. Bickell Foundation
Ontario Trillium Foundation
Historic Fort York