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Artword Theatre Toronto


Artword Theatre

Artword Theatre, the creative team of director Ronald Weihs and designer Judith Sandiford, has been producing original theatre since 1993. Until 2006, Weihs and Sandiford operated a facility (Artword Theatre and Artword Gallery) in downtown Toronto, when their theatre was closed to make way for a condo.

After 12 years in downtown Toronto, Artword Theatre has moved to Hamilton, where it is joining forces with Hamilton’s premier alternative arts venue, The Pearl Company, 16 Steven Street. Together, they have remodelled the second floor into a versatile performance space, “Artword @ The Pearl”. With this base, Artword Theatre has been developing an acting and performance ensemble in Hamilton and launching a theatre season.

For more about Artword Theatre, see

Judith Sandiford (designer, producer) is managing director of Artword Theatre. She has worked on all productions, concerts and events produced by Artword Theatre from 1993 to the present. She has functioned as producer, graphic artist, lighting designer, technician, scenic painter and stage manager. As designer, she has done set and some lighting design for Market of Tales (2005) Fate of a Cockroach (April 2005) The Full Nelson (February 2005), Death and the Kings Horseman (2004), Sur (2003), the musical Toronto The Good (2002), Cu’Fu? (1996-2002), Mangiacake! (2001-2002), Whoever You Are (1998), Echo and Narcissus (1997), Chaucer’s Troilus and Criseyde (1996), and me2 (1995). She has also designed Fire, Air, Earth, Water (2002 and 2004) and Onibaba (2002), collaborations with choreographer/ dancer Meiko Ando, at Artword. Recently she wrote the script for Artword’s project Ghost Ship (2007), based on the Senegalese migrations to Europe. She did lighting design for If Cows Could Fly (2008), You Are What You Do (2008) and Rascals and Numskulls (2009).

Ronald Weihs, Artistic Director of Artword Theatre, is a playwright and director. His work prior to Artword includes: Moira, University of Toronto, Hands Up: The Bill Miner Story (1977) for Caravan Stage Company, Highball!, for Touchstone Theatre and Island Stage Theatrical Company (1980 & 1981), The Wobbly with George Luscombe (1982 and 1983) for Toronto Workshop Productions. In 1983, Hands Up! was remounted, directed by Richard Pochinko. In 1985, he directed Ida Carnevale in Temptonga, at Expo ‘86 Vancouver, remounted in Toronto in 1987. His clown musical, The Beavers, was produced in 1987 by Theatre Resource Centre, directed by Richard Pochinko, and in 1990 by Native Earth and Theatre Resource Centre, directed by Tomson Highway. In 1993, together with his partner Judith Sandiford, he founded Artword Theatre. Productions written and directed for Artword include Mama Says You Are What You Do (1994), me2 (1994), Chaucer’s Troilus and Criseyde (1995), Echo and Narcissus (1996), Whoever You Are (1997), Charly Chiarelli’s two Sicilian plays, Cu’Fu (1999, 2001) and Mangiacake (2001, 2002), Allan Merovitz’s If Cows Could Fly (2000, 2001, 2008), the musical Toronto The Good (2002), and Sur, an adaptation of a story by Ursula K. LeGuin (2003). From 2004 to 2006, as AfriCan Theatre Ensemble’s Resident Director, he directed their productions of Death and the Kings Horseman by Wole Soyinka (May 2004), Donald Carr’s The Full Nelson (February 2005), Tawfik al-Hakim’s comedy Fate of a Cockroach (April 2005), and directed and dramaturged Market of Tales (November 2005). His play The Gambler, based on Dostoevsky’s novel, was mounted by Beggarly Theatre and Alianak Productions at Artword in 2006, directed by Molly Thom. In 2007 he directed Ghost Ship, Artword’s production about Senegalese migrations to Spain. In 2008, he remounted If Cows Could Fly in Ottawa at the new Irving Greenberg Theatre Centre. In his first season in Hamilton, he directed his play You Are What You Do, wrote and directed Rascals and Numskulls, directed Charly Chiarelli’s new show Sunamabeach, and Tobacco Troubadour.

Artword Cultural Projects is a not-for-profit corporation that is designed to focus the activities of Artword Theatre and Artword Gallery in developing new projects. Artword Cultural Projects encourages, fosters and presents new work, and new interpretations of existing work, in theatre, dance, music, visual art and multimedia. We create art that provides a critical view of contemporary life, makes use of a range of art forms (music, dance, visual art, multimedia), reflects the diversity of the modern world, and honours the human spirit. The company was incorporated federally on December 8, 2006.

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