Join Us For The Queer & Trans Play Reading Series

October 21 & 28 and November 4
4 p.m. Saskatchewan time

November 12 & 18
5 p.m. Saskatchewan time

Streaming Online and In-Person Across Canada

Facilitated conversation to follow each reading.

Project Lead: Cameron Mackenzie
Unit Producer: Maria Zarillo
Lead Dramaturg: Joanna Garfinkel


Persephone Theatre is part of the National Queer and Trans Playwrighting Unit, hosted by Zee Zee Theatre (Vancouver). This unit consists of nine theatres across Canada, including Zee Zee Theatre, Persephone Theatre, Gwaandak Theatre (Whitehorse), Theatre Outré (Lethbridge), Theatre Projects Manitoba (Winnipeg), Native Earth Performing Arts (Toronto), Buddies in Bad Times Theatre (Toronto), Imago Theatre (Montreal) and Neptune Theatre (Halifax).

The goal of the unit was to establish a new model for play creation and dissemination, in order to ensure more equitable representation of 2SLGBTQ+ artists and stories on Canadian stages, as well as strengthen and deepen the bonds of professional artists and collaborators across the country, while ultimately furthering equality for all queer and trans people. (Learn more about the unit HERE)

Join us in celebration of the culmination of this 10-month project with readings happening both live and in-person across the country throughout October and November! Make sure to register for the in-person reading of Constellations by Tyra Ashauntie Gill on Saturday, November 4, 2023 at Persephone Theatre and others taking place virtually in locations across the country.

Check out all the offerings below. Registration links included with the play descriptions!  

Generously supported by TD Bank, Canada Council for the Arts, 100 Gay Men for a Cause, Canadian Heritage.

Equinox by Robyn Vivian
Saturday, October 21, 2023

Dramaturgy: Lara Lewis
Presented by: Zee Zee Theatre Company, in partnership with the Cultch (Vancouver)

Register for online event HERE

Description: Deep in the woods, somewhere not very far from here, there’s been a very exciting development in the field of modern medicine: a cutting-edge, state-of-the-art inpatient treatment and psychiatric research facility.

With access to some of the world’s top doctors, and every material need (and want!) provided for, the clinic boasts unfathomable success rates, rave reviews, and the easiest ‘yes’ its patients will ever give: a six-month stay onsite, with part-time participation in field research, in exchange for any and all required therapy, treatments, and surgeries — and unbridled euphoria.

It’s the ultimate evolution — at 100% coverage.

And Avis and Ursa are 100% onboard.

At first.

The thing is, there’s something not-quite-right about this arrangement. The seasons are changing. Again. Time behaves strangely in this place. The staff more strangely still. (Like, what’s the deal with that weird custodian?)

And even for a medical facility, there’s an awful lot of stuff being tested around here.







Patience …

But everyone has a breaking point.

And when push comes to shove, creatures in captivity will make very interesting choices.

Content Warnings: Genocide, medical discrimination/ trauma, transphobia, explicit sexual content.
Community Partners: Realwheels, Live Educate Transform Society

Death and Dolores by Nathaniel Hanula-James
Saturday, October 28, 2023

Dramaturgy: Sadie Berlin
Presented by: Neptune Theatre (Halifax)

Register for online event HERE

Description: Toronto, 1950. Halloween. Gladys Potter, scientific-luminary-in-the-making, swans into a gay bar for the very first time. She’s dressed as a cuttlefish. No one gets it. Also, she might be the only Black person there.

Toronto, 2023. Dolores, an archivist at a queer museum, stumbles upon the story of Gladys Potter. Raised colourblind by a white father and Black mother, Dolores yearns for a deeper connection to Blackness. When a mysterious being named Idontknowher appears, Dolores follows them down, down, down, into the Underworld, determined to meet Gladys. But all knowledge comes with a price.

Sometimes, that price is the last remaining ticket to a Mariah Carey concert.

Sometimes, it’s a meeting with your ancestors.




Content Warnings: Internalized racism, shadeism, racist micro-aggressions, references to histories of colonization and slavery, loud overlapping sounds.

Constellation by Tyra Ashauntie Gill
Saturday, November 4, 2023

Dramaturgy: Yvette Nolan
Presented by: Persephone Theatre (Saskatoon)

Register for In-Person event at Persephone Theatre HERE

Description: Join the story of a group of four teenagers navigating life and their sense of self in a small Indigenous rural community. Winter comes back from the city for the summer and soon realizes she may not be as welcomed back as she hoped. She goes on to spend time with her group of best friends. Winter, Nunkra, Emma and Clem soon discover that things are not always as they appear the older they get as they butt heads doing their best to understand life. The four continue to march through the madness of their small town, growing up, dysfunctional families, and blossoming romances all while trying to stick closely together and to keep life the same as before. Will they stick close together as they have for years or will the pain of growing be too much for this friend group?

Content Warnings: Homophobia, emotional abuse, transphobia, homophobic slurs/hate speech, addiction.

PEACHES by Elio Zarrilo
Sunday, November 12, 2023

Dramaturgy: Erik Berg
Presented by: Theatre Outre (Lethbridge)

Register for online event HERE

Description: Set in a peach orchard, PEACHES tells the story of Greg and Prince, a peach farmer and his apprentice, who grow a play and decide to put it on. Can a sharp 2-hander set in an elevator in a hospital, staged on a peach farm help Greg and Prince save all that’s gone bad between them?

Content Warnings: Physical violence, transphobia, public urination, suggestions of horrible things not explicitly described.


Seven and One Heart by Smokii Sumac
Saturday, November 18, 2023

Dramaturgy: Yolanda Bonnell
Presented by: Imago Theatre (Montreal)

Register for online event HERE

Description: In this riveting queer and trans love story, we see a group of 2SQ folks sorting out what it means to be themselves while living in the small town Ktunaxa ʔamakʔis (territories). At a new moon gathering held at Sev’s land (bought with inheritance from his late father), Sev is wrestling with what it means to be a settler on his friend One Heart’s territory. He takes One Heart to the side and asks him about how to do a land acknowledgment Little do they know that this ask will take them on a journey across worlds as Sev reckons with the violent histories of his ancestors and One Heart tries to make sense of what is happening through his own cultural knowledges and frameworks.

Content Warnings: Suicide attempt (not depicted, but spoken about/events immediately before and after are depicted), a psych ward hospitalization, and depictions of trauma responses (yelling, crying, begging), Smudging-there will be sage and sweetgrass lit on stage during the show. Small amount of smoke from these medicines.


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