Over the last four decades, Kim Renders has earned a reputation as an original and daring theatrical practitioner in Canada. She is highly respected as an actor, director, writer, designer, and as an award-winning teacher.
Shortly after moving to Toronto in 1978, Kim co-founded Nightwood Theatre, which would go on to become Canada’s foremost feminist theatre company. As a founding member of Nightwood, Kim was also involved in the formation of the Theatre Centre in Toronto.
As an actor, Kim has appeared in theatres right across the country from the Belfry Theatre in Victoria, B.C., to the Manitoba Theatre Centre in Winnipeg, The Grand Theatre in London, Ontario, Tarragon Theatre, theatre Passe Muraille, Canadian Stage Company, Necessary Angel and, of course, Nightwood Theatre in Toronto, and LSPU Hall in St John’s, Newfoundland. She has twice been nominated for a Dora Mavor Moore Award; first for her performance in Franz Xaver Kroetz’s Staller’s Farm at Theatre Passe Muraille, and again for her performance in Building Jerusalem for Volcano. Kim has also performed her own one-woman show, Motherhood, Madness, and the Shape of the Universe (one of NOW magazine’s top 10 picks for 1994) at many venues in Canada and Britain, and has adapted and performed the script for CBC Radio.
After moving to Kingston in 2006, Kim became the Artistic Director of Theatre Kingston for the following 4 years (2007 – 2011) and continues to work with the Queen’s Drama TYA company, the Barefoot Players as both playwright and director (since 2007). For ten months in 2012/13 she worked with inmates housed in a federal correctional institution towards the creation and performance of an original theatrical presentation. She is a founding member of Chipped Off Performance Collective.
Past Co-founding Members:
Dan Vena is currently completing his PhD in Cultural Studies at Queen’s University. He locates his academic interests within the spheres of visual and popular cultures, merging together trans, queer, and feminist approaches to an array of topics including horror cinema, Classical Hollywood, comic book superheroes, and cult monsters. He has given numerous university and college lectures on the above topics, and has spoken at a number of activist- and community-oriented panels and conferences about trans identities, and feminist activism.
In companion with his academic work, Dan also dabbles in acting, appearing at Domino Theatre as the charming sociopath Rafe (One Night Stand) and as the awkward, would-be adult film star Byron (Skin Flick). Additionally, he teaches summer film courses at the Seniors Association Kingston and volunteers at Royale Place Retirement Residence screening Sunday-night classics for the residents.”
Robin Alex McDonald is a writer, independent curator and PhD candidate in the Cultural Studies program at Queen’s University. Their academic and artistic interests span queer, feminist, and trans theories; visual culture studies; museum studies and alternative curatorial methodologies; theories of collectivity, relationality, love, and “the social;” and activist art/art-as-activism. Their dissertation project investigates queer and trans artist collectives active in New York City and Toronto from 1970 to the present as sites at which the social has been (and continues to be) reimagined against the affective and social structures of neoliberalism. Robin is a co-founder of Turbines Curatorial Collective and has worked with the Kitchener Waterloo Art Gallery, Artery Gallery, Modern Fuel Artist-Run Centre, Queen’s Positive Space Program for Sexual and Gender Diversity, and the Canadian Lesbian and Gay Archives. Their writing has recently been published, or will soon appear, in nomorepotlucks, Guts Canadian Feminist Magazine, Spiffy Moves, n.paradoxa, TheatreForum, and GJSS.