Tahnia: Artistic Director 2021
Who are you?
My name is Tahnia [they/her]! I'm a very passionate multidisciplinary artist who works in theatre and the visual arts. Arts as a conduit for social justice, conversation and change is one of the things that lights my fire. As a female presenting Queer artist, I've also found a great deal of love in Feminist, Gender and Queer Theory and how it pertains to the art. Also, as most people know, I'm passionate about dinosaurs. Very passionate about dinosaurs.
What does community mean to you?
Community is honestly everything. The idea that there is an entire network of people around you that can help you with their own knowledge in various fields is brilliant. It's like having a family around every corner - especially when you need help with things that might be out of the expertise of those you're close to.
To have a good community balance is to have a safe place for people to fall when they need a landing pad. It's a network that works together to build each other up because they love the space around them.
What got you started in theatre?
I'm going to out myself so hard right now. I can recall auditioning for the part of a mailman in a Christmas Concert when I was little. I tried so hard for that role, but didn't get it. I remember being told that I wasn't right for the role.
In my head [at the age of like... 10] I took this as: you aren't good at acting. I've accomplished many things in my life out of spite. It's apparently one of my biggest motivators - being told I can't do something means I will absolutely get it done.
So I continued to delve into theatre time and time again. Over the years I learned that it wasn't something that you just "got good at" but it was something that I found a great deal of passion in. The little pieces of yourself that you find in every show, character and script is absolute magic. It's a constant, continuing method of self exploration. I think it does wonders for identity, community and to create a space for effective communication.
tldr: Someone told me I couldn't, so I did.
What' did you learn in the last year that you're excited to bring forward?
Opening the company as the pandemic struck was a really interesting process. I think that we learned a lot about adaptability and the excitement that was on community members faces when we popped up places, or when we just talked about our existence. It was fantastic to see that magic light up on other people and I can't wait to see it grow moving forward.
What are you excited for in the upcoming year?
We have a couple of fun pop-up theatre concepts that we are working on. Accessibility in theatre is something that's near and dear to my heart, so providing these options bring a lot of happiness to my heart.
What about Cavalcade makes you the most excited?
Having a space that allows people to dive into self-exploration in the arts is something that's truly fundamental to me. I love fringe based theatre, I love underground theatre and these little things that we don't see often. So I think the idea that we are exploring, learning and creating every step of the way is what fuels my fire.
If you could write a story about ANYTHING what would it be?
There are a couple of things that have been rattling around on my 'marinating board' for the last little while. One of them is a multidisciplinary piece of art that centralizes around double exposure photography and comparing it to similar processes that occur in our brains. I think that talking about mental health is something that should be prioritized as more than a surface level conversation about self care.