Four comissioned digital works written and performed by Augusto Bitter, Charlotte Corbeil-Coleman, Rosa Laborde, and Anita Majumdar
Directed by Nina Lee Aquino
A Factory World Premiere Production
What do you think is happening here?
A wannabe Instagram influencer in a bathroom giving a tarot reading, an actor in a front hallway looking for a way out, a granddaughter stuck in place by a relative’s last words, and a mother in an attic realizing she’s been a bad actor in her own life. Unfolding and intertwining in unexpected ways, Year of the Rat follows these four stories as their relationships with their homes, and with themselves, is forever changed by an ongoing global confinement.
Streamed live from each playwrights’ own home, Year of the Rat blurs the boundaries between fact and fiction, taking audiences behind closed doors for a live glimpse into how four peoples’ lives were upended in 2020…the year of the rat.
About the Playwrights/Performers
Augusto Bitter (any pronoun) is a Venezuelan-born, Dora Award-winning performer, writer, facilitator and artistic producer based in Toronto. They have been a Resident Artist at Canadian Stage, Aluna Theatre, Theatre Passe Muraille, and hub14. They are currently commissioned by the City of Toronto and Soulpepper to create an immersive experience at Spadina House Museum. Augusto’s first play, CHICHO, is now a short film in post-production, and they are developing a dance-theatre piece, Reina, with musician Y Josephine. Augusto has also made four video-poems, Reina (in isolation), cannibal, golden girl, and for this child I prayed, with the support of TO Live, Toronto Queer Film Festival, Glad Day Lit’s Naked Heart Festival, and Montréal Pride. They’ve been an artist educator with Soulpepper Theatre and the Paprika Festival, and facilitate creative-writing workshops across the GTA with with Story Planet. More at www.augustobitter.com
Charlotte Corbeil-Coleman is a Dora Mavor Moore Award winning, and two time Governor General nominated playwright. Winner of The Herman Voaden National Playwriting Award, and The K.M. Hunter Artist Award. She graduated from the playwriting program at The National Theatre School. She writes for theatre, film, and television. Selected credits include: The End of Pretending (Summerworks, Regent theatre), Scratch (Factory Theatre, La Licorne, Theatre Plexus, Off-Broadway Players), Sudden Death, (Next Stage), Twisted with Joseph Jomo Pierre (Factory Theatre). Charlotte directed and co-created Highway 63: The Fort Mac Show ( Architect Theatre, TPM ). She wrote for CBC Radio’s Afganada, and for the TV series KING, and new horror series Safehaven (Landmark, Crackle). Charlotte’s most recent play Guarded Girls (Tarragon Theatre, Green Light Arts) won the Dora Mavor Moore Award for Outstanding New Play and was nominated for a Governor General Award. Currently in development: a feature film, The Matchless Six (CBC, IGP, Enlightenment), a TV series, Skyward Farm (IGP, Enlightenment productions) and a new musical based on Hawksely Workman’s album Almost a Full Moon (Citadel Theatre).
Rosa Laborde is a critically acclaimed Chilean-Canadian Playwright, Screenwriter, Director and Actor. Her plays have been produced across Canada at Buddies in Bad Times Theatre, Tarragon Theatre, The Great Canadian Theatre Company, Neptune Theatre, Touchstone Firehall Theatre and The Belfry Theatre as well as performances at both Playwright’s Horizons and the Arthur Seelen Theatre in New York City. For her writing she has been a finalist for the Governor General’s Literary Award for Drama, the Dora Mavor Moore Award, and received the KM Hunter Artist’s Award for Theatre. For performance she has a Dora Nomination (directed by Nina Lee Aquino!) and a Canadian Screen Award nomination (formerly Gemini Award). As a screenwriter Rosa wrote on HBO Canada’s Emmy nominated show Sensitive Skin and has developed television and film projects for; Sullivan Entertainment, Rhombus Media, e-One, Peacock Alley, Pier 21, Alcina Pictures, Frantic Films, Big Coat, Force Four and the networks; CBC, Shaw-Global, and CTV Bell-Media. Rosa is a graduate of The Oxford School of Drama in Oxford, England and The Canadian Film Centre’s Primetime Television Writing Program. Upcoming: the premiere of her newest play Light at Tarragon Theatre opening March 8th 2022.
Anita Majumdar is an acting graduate of the National Theatre School of Canada with a Bachelor of Arts from University of British Columbia in Theatre, English and South Asian Languages. She’s also a trained classical Indian dancer and choreographer of over 20 years. As a playwright, Anita was awarded Canada’s Governor General’s Protégé Prize in playwriting where she was mentored by the late John Murrell and was one of 50 artists invited to celebrate the Canada Council for the Arts’ 50th Anniversary. She’s also been a writer with the Tarragon Writer’s Unit, playwright-in-residence with Nightswimming and has been part of the Banff Playwright’s Lab on multiple occasions. Her most produced and toured work of 15 years, the Fish Eyes Trilogy, is published with graphic illustrations by Playwrights Canada Press and a complete recording of the Fish Eyes Trilogy can be heard on CBC Radio’s PlayME podcast. In 2017, she was the recipient of Dora Mavor Moore Awards for Outstanding New Play and Outstanding Performance for Boys with Cars, a co-production between Nightswimming and Young People’s Theatre. Currently, Anita is working as a dramaturg for playwrights across the country and has been commissioned as a playwright by Nightswimming in Toronto to write a new work entitled,
A Girl Has No Gym. As well, she works as a freelance digital illustratrator of which her artwork can be found on Instagram.
About the Director
Nina Lee Aquino
With a string of firsts in Asian Canadian theatre, Nina was the founding Artistic Director of fu-GEN Asian Canadian theatre company, organized the first Asian Canadian theatre conference, edited the first (2-volume) Asian Canadian play anthology, and co-edited the first (award-winning) book on Asian Canadian theatre. She became Artistic Director of Cahoots Theatre, currently holds the same position at Factory Theatre. Awards for her work include the Ken McDougall Award 2004, the Canada Council John Hirsch Prize 2008, the Toronto Arts Foundation’s Margo Bindhart and Rita Davies Cultural Leadership Award, and three Dora Mavor Moore Awards for Outstanding Direction.
Lighting Designer & Production Manager
Sound Designer & Composer
Broadcast Designer & Operator
Assistant Stage Manager & Technical Support Technician
Head of Props
Head of Wardrobe
Apprentice Production Manager