I had not been to Nightwood Theatre’s annual FemCab (Feminist Cabaret) for many years – and I was so glad I went last night.
The Brigantine Room at the Harbourfront Centre was packed – with additional seating set up to accommodate the demand for tickets, the audience full of women of all ages, orientations and ethnicities. And my pal Lizzie Violet was there with me to share in the inspirational, entertaining, enraging and touching evening of women’s voices.
FemCab 2012’s amazing line-up included stand-up comic host Elvira Kurt (http://www.elvirakurt.ca/), who not only gave us some laughs and introduced the featured artists, but did an amazing job with the interview segments of the show. And I want her vest. DJ Cozmic Cat (http://cozmiccat.net/) spun the digital sounds for an evening that featured musicians, politicians, activists, actors and singers – like the audience, a diverse group of women (and one man). The evening opened with RAW (Raging Asian Women http://ragingasianwomen.ca/) performing on taiko drums – powerful, beautiful and moving.
We heard from Toronto City Councillor Kristyn Wong-Tam (http://www.toronto.ca/councillors/wong_tam1.htm) and NDP MP Olivia Chow (http://www.oliviachow.ca/), both positive, hopeful and passionate women who want to create environments of equality, security, sustainability and prosperity for Toronto and Canada. Activist Anna Willats (http://awcca.ca/about/faculty.php) spoke on confronting the abuse of power – particularly regarding our system of policing – as well as violence against women, and encouraging/educating community engagement and leadership.
We enjoyed singers Evalyn Parry (www.evalynparry.com), Suba Sankaran (www.subasankaran.com) and Rosina Kazi (http://www.facebook.com/rosina.kazi), poetry by Motion (http://www.motionlive.com), a hilarious short film on panty liners for thongs by Dayna McLeod (http://daynarama.com/), a comedic/dramatic personal monologue by Shoshana Sperling (http://www.myspace.com/themonkeybunch) and an excerpt of Little. Miss. Everything. by Lisa Pijuan-Nomura (http://girlcancreate.com/CMS/index.php). Artistic expression in response to socially imposed ideals of beauty/femininity, rage against injustice, stories of everyday life/experience (both hilarious and heartbreaking), and moving sounds and voices.
And while the women who comprised FemCab’s 2012 line-up represent a range of disciplines and personal experiences, what they all had in common was their strength, pride, sass and ability to inspire.
FemCab was a one-night only event, but fear not, Nightwood has more to come this season. And look out for FemCab 2013.
For more info on Nightwood Theatre and its upcoming productions, check out their website: http://www.nightwoodtheatre.net/