Shadowland creates original theatre that entertains, engages, empowers, and inspires people to interact positively with each other and their environments. This theatre attempts to express our deepest imaginings and our highest hopes.
The company has a strongly visual style that uses puppetry, mask and spectacle to engage participants of all ages in the collective creative process. We have a studio in Parkdale and often use the Toronto Islands as our stage. Shadowland's work is visually based with an emphasis on puppetry, mask, animated sculpture and spectacle arts. We run a weekly youth theatre program and are involved in explorations with communities around histories, traditions, and our relationships with the landscapes we find ourselves.
Thoughts about art and community:
We see the artists' role as similar to that of a baker, farmer or carpenter - essential to the balance and health of a community. We enable the expression of collective celebration, free exchange of ideas, and the active involvement in creation.
Thoughts About Art and Community
Facilitate communities in uncovering and telling their own stories in dramatic and energetic forms. Encouraging participants to interact with outdoor environments and see familiar locations in new ways so they develop greater understanding, sense of place and increased stewardship and pride.
Use mask, puppetry and stilt-walking forms to assist participants, especially young people, to find self-expression and confidence and further engagement with the arts.
Taking over public spaces with human powered, large-scale images that celebrate our city and cultures.
Use our artistic practice, and a strongly environmental theme, to facilitate increased understanding of green spaces and connections to food, health and nature.
• Collaborations with community groups or organizations to create theatrical expressions of their local stories.
• Workshops in many forms including: puppetry, mask-making, stilt-walking, lantern-making, community arts, flag animation, fabric printing, performance skills.
• Work with newcomers, youth and children, seniors and adult learners, community animators etc
• Residencies in schools, parks and in community centres
• Internships, mentorships and placements for post secondary students, including a summer job program.
• Collaborations with Indigenous artists and teachers on works placed in the land or on Canadian and local histories.
• Site-engaged performance including the annual Ward's Island Fire Parade, a community event that includes, lanterns, puppetry, procession, music, shadow puppetry, fire artists and fire sculptures.
• Work in parks, green spaces, streets and on Toronto Island
• A weekly Toronto Island based youth theatre program that produces an annual Mummers play and stilt training and performances and engages young people in building confidence and self-expression
• Arts workshops with women in a transitional housing program
• Design for other arts and theatre companies, especially props, costumes, site decor and special events
• Long term collaborations with VideoCabaret (props design), Ashkenaz Festival (parade and site decor),