manidoons collective is a circle of artists creating Indigenous performance. The artistic leadership includes Yolanda Bonnell (Ojibwe-South Asian) and Cole Alvis (Métis) both based in Tkarón:to.
Their latest production bug, performed and created by Yolanda Bonnell, was developed on unceded Coast Salish territories presented by UNO Fest and rEvolver Festival before premiering at Luminato.
meet the team
performer and writer - bug
(Ojibwe and South Asian descent — Fort William First Nation Indian Reserve in Thunder Bay, ON)
Yolanda is a performer and playwright based in Toronto. She was named one of NOW Magazine’s artists to watch in Summerworks in 2016. Performance credits include: Ipruq/Atugauq in The Breathing Hole (Stratford Festival), Fanny/Roberta in Treasure Island (Stratford Festival), Theresa in The Crackwalker (Factory Theatre), and Roe in Two Indians (Summerworks 2016).
director - bug
(Michif/Métis with Chippewa- Irish/English heritage from the Turtle Mountains in Manitobah)
Cole is an acclaimed actor, theatre creator and artistic leader. They are an Artistic Producer of the Dora-nominated queer theatre company lemonTree creations, former Executive Director of the Indigenous Performing Arts Alliance (2013 -2017) and finalist for the 2016 Toronto Arts Foundation Emerging Artist Award. Directing credits: Row by T. Berto at the Summerworks Festival (NNNN’s, Outstanding Direction NOW Magazine).
assistant director & cultural keeper - bug
(Mohawk from the Six Nations Territory of the Grand River)
Ashley is a writer, producer, stage manager and director for film and theatre. Her most recent film, Hoop Dance, had its world premiere at the Female Eye Film Festival and she continues to write and create projects within an Indigenous storytelling framework. Ashley focuses on her Indigenous roots and endeavors to impart strength, hope, and healing in Indigenous communities around the world through the arts.
stage manager - bug
Head of Administration at Modern Times, Gia has been working as a stage/production manager and administrator in Canada for the past 15 years. She immigrated to Vancouver, Canada from Venezuela in 2003. Gia has worked extensively as a stage manager for the Vancouver community. She started training in administration and production and dove into working with Left Right Minds Initiatives as a production assistant. Since moving to Toronto she has been working with the Flamenco community; the Venezuelan community; stage managing, producing and touring Monique Mojicas “Chocolate Woman Dreams the Milky Way”; and assisting company management for “Arrabal”. She is also the General Manager at Aluna Theatre.
dramaturge - bug
(Algonquin - Irish)
Yvetteis a playwright, dramaturg and director. She is an Artistic Associate with Signal Theatre, which premiered the dance-opera Bearing at last year’s Luminato. She is a headwriter on Gabriel Dumont’s Wild West Show. She is currently at work on the opera Shanawdithit, with Dean Burry, for Tapestry New Opera.
associate producer - bug
(Anishinaabe-Irish - Nipissing First Nation in North Bay, ON)
Olivia is a Toronto-based saxophonist and arts administrator. She has sung behind Polaris Prize Winner Tanya Tagaq as a member of the The Element Choir and recorded Robert Lemay’s ‘Fragments Noirs’ two kilometres underground in the SnoLab. She obtained her Bachelor’s, Advanced Certificate in Performance and Master’s degrees in Music Performance from the University of Toronto.
associate producer - bug
(Portuguese/European settler heritage from Mississauga)
Lisa is a multi-disciplinary artist, educator, & producer. Acting credits include Love In Between The Lines (HERStory Counts), Dog Sees God (rejzndkliv), & The Visitations (SOULO Theatre). Graduating from Humber College’s Theatre Performance and Entrepreneurial Enterprise Programs, Lisa has produced for SOULO Theatre, Milkweed Collective, Theatre Relay, and her founding company SURGE Theatre. Lisa is currently Theatre of the Beat’s Communication Manager.
movement coach - bug
Aria is a Toronto-based interdisciplinary artist working in film, dance creation and performance. Aria is Artistic Director of the Go To Company where collaboration is the departure point to the work that she creates. Her works have been presented in North America and Europe with some of the nation’s leading arts institutions and organizations.
lighting and technical director - bug
Michel is a Designer/Technical Director/Teacher who has been involved in Indigenous Theatre for 30 years and is a core member of the Chocolate Woman Collective. Michel has been nominated for six Dora Mavor Moore Awards (Toronto) one Sterling Award (Edmonton) and one Leon Rabin Award (Dallas). Michel has worked at York, Laurentian, and Bishop’s Universities.
scenography - bug
(Haudenosaunee-Mohawk and Scottish-Canadian ancestry and member belonging to the Six Nations of the Grand River, Mohawk Bear Clan)
Jay is a multidisciplinary artist who for the past 25 years has lived primarily in Sto:lo, Musqueam and Haida territories located on the pacific coast of Canada.He works across Turtle Island as a freelance designer, artist-in-residence, and educator for productioncompanies, post-secondary institutions and school districts alike.
sound design - bug
(Saudi Arabia-born Filipino)
Maddie is a performance maker and composer/sound designer. Music design credits: A Midsummer Night’s Dream (Choir composition, Shakespeare-in-the-Ruff), What Linda Said (SummerWorks 2017). Acting Credits: The Girl in My Nightmares Wear White (SummerWorks 2016 Spotlight Award for Performance), Ming in COMMON (Studio 180’s Development Series). Half of xLq with Jordan Campbell: a POP performance art duo selected for Nightswimming Theatre’s 5x25 2017 Commission for their piece 4inXchange. Alumni of Generator TO’s 2016/2017 Artist Producer Training program.
dj classic roots
music composition - bug
(Ojibway/Blackfoot-Bear Clan-Long Lake #58 First Nation)
DJ Classic Roots established his original sound by mixing 70’s funk-soul into hip-hop beats, where he emerged after he discovered the unique sound of electronica. He has won DadaLife’s Best Overall Best Track Award for his demo “Coconut Kills” as well the Indigenous Music Awards’ best pop album for his latest EP Hack the Planet.
music composition - bug
(Tuscarora, North Carolina)
Jennifer is a Mother, Singer, Composer, Producer, Teacher, and Activist. Jennifer comes from four generations of Seven Singing Sisters through the maternal line and is a member of the critically acclaimed Native women’s Trio ULALI. Jennifer is frequently called upon to guest lecture and conduct vocal workshops at universities, schools, in Native communities and at festivals throughout the United States and Canada.
knowledge keeper - bug
Pauline was born and raised in Saddle Lake Reserve, Alberta. Pauline is greatly recognized for her commitment to the Toronto Native community and for her dedication as a teacher and lecturer since the late sixties. She is a member of the Three Fires Society and the Buffalo Dance Society.
producing consultant - bug
Kristina is an accomplished arts leader with more than 20 years of experience, and contemporary dancer. A recent transplant to Toronto, Kristina is the Executive Director of Generator. Her work focuses on increasing the skills and competencies of independent performing artists around producing their own work. Kristina in a tenth generation settler on her paternal side, from France, and a first generation settler on her maternal side, from Netherlands.