I have worked as a director, dramaturge, stage manager and acting teacher in Canada and England for over 50 years. For more than 20 of those, I was Associate Director of Studio 58, Langara College’s renowned Theatre Training Program where I taught acting. Throughout my career, I’ve developed and directed new plays and created opportunities for women in the performing arts; including co-founding the Women in VIEW Festival and facilitating the Wet Ink Collective’s developmental play workshops for women writers. I’ve directed more than 70 productions, many of which were premiers of original scripts and received three Jessie Richardson nominations, receiving the award for best director for the Arts Club Theatre production of Athol Fugard’s Road to Mecca.
I was thrilled to be cast as Zosia in the Invisible Women podcast. Not only was it another opportunity to provide a voice for women and participate in a project focused on women’s stories, but it connected me to my family history. My parents were Jewish refugees who fled Poland in 1939, eventually arriving in Canada. Zosia’s story resonated strongly with me. Despite the way that her details and those of my parents and other relatives differed, the profound sense of loss at the core of her story was very familiar. Sadly, our world has not changed that much in 70 years. Now more than ever we need to remember and keep telling and retelling these stories of courage, ethics and survival. A key tenet of Judaism is tikkun olam – healing the world. By reclaiming these women’s stories, I feel this podcast is contributing to that healing.