Arts Leadership Participants

Date posted: October 4, 2021

Andrea Lemus

Born and raised in Mexico, Andrea’s love for performing arts began at a very early age. She graduated from the National Ballet School of Cuba “Fernando Alonso” and later from the Canadian College of Performing Arts. Andrea has been performing with professional theatre companies in Victoria.

Some performance credits include Twelve Angry Jurors, The Penelopiad, Sweet Charity (Company C), Countess Maritza, Flight (POV), La Sylphide (Ballet Etoile), Mamma Mia (VOS), The Rocky Horror Show, Mind the Gap (Atomic Vaudeville).

Andrea is also a faculty member of Kaleidoscope Theatre for Young People.

Charles Umeh

Charles (he/him) is a Nigerian-Canadian filmmaker (Writer/Editor/Director), film curator, street photography enthusiast and currently Southern Artistic Director at Common Weal Community Arts in Regina Saskatchewan. Born and raised in Nigeria, he got his start in Nollywood —the Nigerian film industry—at a very early age as an actor, but later found his calling behind the camera. Charles is passionate about using film as a tool to create positive social change in his immediate community and the world at large. A hardcore community activist, Charles believes in the power of arts, culture, and entertainment media to drive community development. He is the founder and Executive Director of 1st Rate Pictures, an Afrocentric production company dedicated to fresh approaches to creating films, commercials, documentaries, and new media content. His works as a Director include Sorelle, Strangers, Black Vision, Bad Drop, and Amonye Bu Onye, and he is the recipient of many industry awards including Realtime International Film Festival’s Best Social Issue Film (2020), African Film for Impact Festival’s Best Film on Human Trafficking (2020), and African Magic Viewer’s Choice Award for Best Indigenous Movie (2017). In 2020, he worked with the Saskatchewan Filmpool to curate Regina’s inaugural NOLLYSHORTS, a film festival featuring contemporary Nigerian independent cinema. Prior to joining the team at Common Weal, Charles held the position of Creative/Programme Director with the African Caribbean Network in Glasgow. His hobbies include playing board games, travelling, and learning about other cultures, spending time with family, and friends, and watching soccer. Charles has been with Common Weal since 2021.

Colin Wolf

Colin Wolf is a Métis performer, theatre-maker, and activist from the North-East of Moh’kins’tsis (Calgary), AB on Treaty 7 Territory. He graduated with a BFA in Performance from the University of Lethbridge in 2014 and then spent the next 5 years making theatre, independent and professional, all over the prairies. His theatre work has focused on the development of new, Indigenous, and politically relevant theatre. Colin co-founded Thumbs Up Good Work Theatre Collective with his sister Caleigh Crow in 2014 when they recognized a gap in the Theatre industry for independent, Indigenous, and working-class artists – he continues to work with the Thumbs Up circle whenever possible. Their most recent project, The Born Again Crow, explored themes of racism, capitalism, and violence on a supernatural scale. Colin is working on the development of a number of projects in collaboration with other artists including Coy Wolf, Big McCoy, The Tree Play, and Hucksterland – you should ask him about these! Since October 2019 Colin has served as the Artistic Director at Gwaandak Theatre Society in Whitehorse, Yukon – The Territory of the Kwanlin Dün First Nation and Ta’an Kwäch’än Council.

Justin Francis Lee

Justin is a writer, director, and sailor. He is passionate about exploring the stories of everyday people caught between subcultures. Intent on spearheading a closer relationship between the Canadian theatre and film industries, he hopes to make quality art more accessible. As the project manager for the Canadian Play Thing, he runs The Apartment of Writing, a writer’s room for emerging playwrights. Currently, he is a research assistant at the University of Victoria’s Department of Writing for new play development.

Recent credits: Co-producing Theatre SKAM’s SKAMpede Festival, writing The Open Gate (SKAMpede), producing A Way Out (Apartment of Writing), writing Ngaii Duk (SATCo), acting in I and You (Langham Court Theatre), and assistant directing on the film sets of Dream Book, Bubba Lou, and All in Madonna.

Justin is currently based between Calgary AB, (Treaty 7) and Victoria, BC (unceded territory of the Lekwungen peoples).

Kevin Takahide Lee

Fourth-generation Chinese Japanese Canadian, Kevin Takahide Lee descends from a family who experienced the head tax and the Japanese Canadian Internment of WWII. Growing up in BC’s Lower Mainland he witnessed the challenges his family and immigrants faced regarding accessibility to services and preservation of their culture. This led him to work in the performing arts and advocacy.  

As a firm believer that the arts must be interwoven with social needs, he created and directed the Newcomers’ Choir as a way to bridge divides between immigrants and established Canadians.  He has participated in panels and conferences in Vancouver, Winnipeg, Toronto, and Ottawa concerning Truth and Reconciliation, disability, as well as exhibited at the Canadian Museum of Human Rights.

During the pandemic, he has been exploring Japanese culture with thanks from grants from the provincial government and the Arts Club and supporting his spouse who is a doctor working the frontlines of the pandemic.

khattieQ

khattieQ is a performer from Puerto Rico. Co-creator and star of 2020 Fringe New Play Prize winner ‘Catalina La O Presenta: Ahora Conmigo’ which features original music. khattieQ was the guitarist and vocalist for punk band BLXPLTN. khattieQ has played as a professional musician with over twenty bands, cutting their teeth on the famous Austin, Texas live music scene. Most notably, they toured as the drummer for queer femme core band The Tuna Helpers. Professional credits include Denim Doves and Casta for Salvage Vanguard Theater in Austin, TX, Heaven Born Wind at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, and Frank Theatre’s Be-Longing.

Ming Hudson

Ming pays rent and primarily works on the lands stolen from the Musqueam, Squamish, and Tsleil-Waututh Nations (Vancouver). She is a performer, deviser, facilitator, director, producer, and teacher who specializes in physical theatre and the creation of new work as a collective ensemble. A graduate of the Advanced Devising Practice program at LISPA (now arthaus.berlin), Ming also holds a MA in Ensemble Theatre (Rose Bruford), and a BFA in Acting (UVic).

Select performing credits include Noises Off and The Penelopiad (The Arts Club), Taming of the Shrew, Shakespeare in Love, Timon of Athens, and Lysistrata (Bard on the Beach), East Van Panto – Snow White and the Seven Dwarves (Theatre Replacement), Blisskrieg (Atomic Vaudeville), PostSecret: The Show (The Firehall Arts Centre), and Big Bad and Fall Away Home (Boca del Lupo).

Select teaching credits include The Canadian College of Performing Arts, Bard on the Beach, The Arts Club, CircusWest, BC Drama Festival, Rose Bruford College, Gateway Theatre, StageCoach, Langara College, Cleveland Elementary School, Parkgate Community Centre, South Surrey Youth Theatre Company, ASSIST Community Service Center, and the Citadel Theatre.

Some recent projects include co-creating/co-directing an international outdoor roving production for Right Angle Productions titled Art Heist, directing the virtual theatrical reading and book launch for The Milk of Amnesia, and facilitating the creation of A Shakesperiment with the Bard on the Beach Riotous Youth.

Some upcoming projects include directing the online reading of Misadventure at the Lighthouse for Green Thumb Theatre and the BC Summer Reading Club, facilitating the creation of Bright Young Things for the fall Risky Nights at Studio 58, and a second development workshop of ANTIGONE (a new adaption of the classic written by Kate Besworth and conceived by the pair.)

Pedro Mario Almeida Siqueira

Pedro is a Brazilian artist and producer based in Victoria, BC, Canada. He is a multidisciplinary professional who has produced internationally known events such as the Rio 2016 Olympics and Paralympics Games and the International Film Festival of Rio de Janeiro in the same year. Pedro gained a degree in Engineering through the University of the State of Rio de Janeiro, showcasing his final project titled “Applying Engineering Skills in Cultural Events”. His curiosity is the ground from which he leaps into the unknown. He ignites the imagination to illuminate the path to artistic realization.

Pedro graduated from the Canadian College of Performing arts where he further developed his studies in acting, singing, and dancing. Recently Pedro has been assisting the Theatre community in Victoria with his tech theatre skills, artistic talent, and unique perspective. He has worked for Puente Theatre, Theatre SKAM, SNAFU Dance Theatre, Story Theatre, VOS, CCPA and Atomic Vaudeville locally.

Rosemary Jeffery (she/her)

Rosemary was born in London UK and immigrated to Canada in her primary years. Initially residing in Calgary AB, she trained at the Mount Royal College theatre arts program in Calgary AB and the University of Calgary BA music program in vocal studies. Eventually, settling on Vancouver Island where she raised her family.

Her introduction to Attitude Theatre In 2018 began when she was cast in their debut show, Shakespeare’s Will by Vern Thiessen playing the role of Anne Hathaway.

Upon invitation to be a collaborative partner, Rosemary was thrilled to accept the opportunity to join a new company committed to welcoming and creating equal opportunities for artists to participate collaboratively, to take risks, and to advocate for new and diverse voices reflective of our community.

Sima Saxena (she/her)

I was born and grew up in India and immigrated to Victoria, Canada over 30 years ago. I am a mother of two children and work full time as an administrator. I always had a passion for a show business that took a back seat as I was raising my children. In 2016, I entered a Miss BC pageant, and it was held in Langley, BC. I won the title of Mrs. Vancouver Island and that opened the doors to community work. I started volunteer work and gave it back to the community.

My children have grown up and I started thinking about my passion. I took some acting classes and my husband supported me. I have done some short films and am looking forward to pursuing my passion in the film/television industry. I also host a weekly radio program called Bollywood India at the CFUV 101.9 FM community radio station along with my husband.

Yulissa Campos

Yulissa Campos is an Ecuadorian emerging theatre artist and founding artistic director of Ay, Caramba! Theatre, currently based in Saskatoon. She holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Acting and a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology from the University of Saskatchewan. Yulissa teaches drama and works with the newcomer community when she is not writing, acting, or producing. Yulissa has been nominated for the 2021 RBC Emerging Artist Award and the 2020 SATAwards for Outstanding Emerging Artist. She loves to write stories that connect with the underrepresented voices, and she celebrates her Latinx heritage in her plays and her podcast on Spotify “Latinas in Stoon”. Moreover, Yulissa did her international debut with her play I, Frida at the M1 Singapore Festival in January 2021. Selected theatre credits: Turn, Turn, Turn; Earth Diver (SUM Theatre), Prairie Nurse (Station Arts Centre) I, Frida (Ay, Caramba! Theatre), The Penelopiad (FerrePlay). Playwriting credits: The Newcomer (Saskatoon Fringe Festival 2021), The Ungrateful Immigrant (This Is Not That Festival 2020 by 25thStreet Theatre), Trapped (National Theatre School 2020, Short Cuts Festival 2020) I, Frida (MF1 Singapore Fringe Festival 2021, Saskatoon Fringe 2019). You can find her play Trapped this fall at the virtual edition of Caminos Festival by Aluna Theatre in Toronto.