Emerging Artists Roundtable

You have the talent, the passion, the education in theatre: Now what?


The Emerging Artists Roundtable is a forum for final year university/college students, recent graduates, and emerging artists to engage with core members of Theatre Gargantua, including Artistic Director Jacquie P.A. Thomas, and other members of the professional community to gain insights and develop relationships that will help bridge formal training with entering the profession.

Sessions will focus on learning about how to carve a place for yourself and your own work in the Canadian Theatre landscape.

It’s free.  Refreshments are served. Space is limited.

Opportunities Include:

  • Meet fellow emerging artists from other universities
  • Provocative discussion sessions with professional artists
  • Networking and collaborative creation opportunities
  • Workshop and performance discounts
  • Artist mentoring

Spring 2016 Session Dates:

  • January 29
  • February 26*
  • March 4
  • April 1

All sessions are Fridays 3pm – 5pm

*revision: previous schedule indicated February 12 as a session date

The Spring 2016 session is now full. The next Round Table will begin in September.


Saba-Akhtar---HeadshotSaba Akhtar is a 24-year-old actor and writer establishing herself in the theatre community. Her journey has led her to branch out of her comfort zone in ways she never expected, going from acting into improv, comedy, and writing. Her passion is to bring light to stories that are undermined, through theatre and comedy. Although her journey has had ups and downs, she has been lucky enough to work alongside other incredible creators. Some of Saba’s credits include Aperture (The AMY Project) in Summerworks, Unrecognized (The R.E.E.L Asain Film Festival), and The Story So Far. She is currently working with Common Boots Theatre in the devised lab. She is incredibly excited to be a part of the Theatre Guargantua Roundtable.

Nikki-HaggartNikki Haggart is a Montreal born actor who has recently relocated to Toronto. She is a 2013 graduate of John Abbott’s Professional Theatre Program, where she was the recipient of the Karla Napier Award and the Jason Panich Memorial Scholarship. Her favourite theatre roles include Cheddar in ‘In Memoriam: The Wake of Cheddar Fandango’ (Sermo Scomber Theatre/Montreal Fringe), Plug in ‘Captain Aurora: A Superhero Musical’ (Kaleidoscope Theatre/Centaur Theatre), Thea in ‘Spring Awakening’ (Persephone Theatre/Centaur Theatre), Myfanwy Price/Mrs Beynon in ‘Under Milk Wood’ (John Abbott Theatre/Edinburgh Fringe) and Friar Lawrence in ‘Romeo and Juliet’ (John Abbott Theatre). She has also been seen on Syfy’s ‘Being Human,’ Investigation Discovery’s ‘Fatal Vows,’ Teletoon’s ‘Cartoon Gene’ and in Black Box Production’s ‘Misogyny/Misandry.’

Julia-Hunter-HeadshotJulia Hunter is a playwright, poet, actor and theatre creator currently working in Toronto. She graduated from Fanshawe College with a diploma in Theatre Performance. She is dedicated to creating theatre in Toronto that reflects and represents the people we see and live beside in the present day. This past summer she toured her self written play For you. For me. For Nicolas to London, Montreal and Winnipeg fringe. Other recent credits include Aperture (the AMY project) in Summerworks and To the kid I Was (Expect Theatre) in Nuit Blanche. She is currently working with Common Boots Theatre in the devised lab as well as developing her next play untitled at present which she aims to have up by the end of this year. “An artists duty, as far as I’m concerned, is to reflect on the times”-Nina Simone.

Griffin-McInnes-Head-ShotGriffin McInnes is an emerging director and playwright. Formerly Halifax-based, he is the co-founder and artistic director of Wit’s End Theatre and served as emerging artist-in-residence with Nova Scotia’s 2b theatre company. His plays often explore the relationships between science, art and publics, and have won several writing awards including the Atlantic Writing Competition and the Norma Epstein National Writing Award. Griffin holds a graduate degree from the prestigious School of Experimentation in Arts and Politics at SciencesPo in Paris, France, where he studied under anthropologist Bruno Latour, creating work with interdisciplinary artists from around the world. Since moving to Toronto he has worked in several capacities as a creator and performer. His most recent project, One Boy’s Day, is an adaptation of a psychology text from 1951 detailing the minute-by-minute behaviour of a seven year-old boy over the course of a single day. You can read more about Griffin at griffinmcinnes.com.

Catherine-Spence-HeadshotCatherine Spence is thrilled to be a part of Theatre Gargantua’s Roundtable program. Raised in Riverview New Brunswick and educated at Regetn’s University London; she is passionate about theatre with a global perspective. Rounding out her eighteenth year in live performance, her current focus is the role of movement in storytelling. She is an avid participant in Toronto’s theatre community as part of Canadian Stage’s Emerging Artists program, and Alumnae Theatre’s New Ideas Festival. Catherine also maintains ties with the international performance community as an Editor and Writer for The Shakespeare Standard.


Melissa-WilliamsMelissa Williams is a BFA Theatre graduate and Newfoundland native and has been working in Toronto for the past 2 and a half years. She is currently the Artistic Director for the Theatre Hera collective, taking master class in Shakespeare with Groundling Theatre and is performing in The Space Toronto’s art exhibition with her poetry and installation piece. She is extremely elated to be a part of Theatre Gargantua’s Round Table and is looking forward to the experience ahead.



Shea-Wojtus-Headshot 2Shea Wojtus is an actor, creator, writer, and clown hailing from Timmins, Ontario. She is a graduate of Humber College’s Theatre Performance Program, and most recently completed her training at Ecole Philippe Gaulier in Paris, France. Her summer was spent at the Edinburgh Fring Festival, where she performed a comedy/clown show entitled Space Carrots: Where’s Keith? Shea has continued to work on the development of her craft since returning to Toronto through a variety of mediums including: teaching beginner clown workshops, and new work creation. She is an emerging Toronto based artist looking forward to continuing her work in the realm of devised and collective creation, with an emphasis on lightness, game and the beautiful naivety of clown.

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