Evalyn Parry is an award-winning theatre creator and songwriter, director, writer, and performer whose work is inspired by intersections of social activism, history and auto/biography. Recent works include the acclaimed Kiinalik:These Sharp Tools, multi-Dora-nominated Gertrude and Alice (Independent Aunties), and her widely travelled show SPIN. From 2015 to 2020, she served as the artistic director of Buddies in Bad Times Theatre.

SPIN on tour in Ontario

After a few years of storage in a pandemic-sized suitcase, we are taking SPIN out on tour again. This show is always a joy to perform, and I am excited to meet audiences in Huntsville (Oct 19), Kirkland Lake (Oct 27), and Deep River (Oct 29). See the Calendar for more details! With gratitude, we […]

 

 Evalyn Parry is an award-winning Canadian performance-maker and theatrical innovator whose work as a creator/performer, musician and director is inspired by intersections of history, social and ecological justice, and personal narratives. Through her deeply collaborative practice, Parry has built a singular body of work across disciplines of theatre, music and literary performance.

Parry’s acclaimed, genre-defying works have toured nationally and internationally.  From 2015 to 2020, she served as the Artistic Director of Buddies in Bad Times Theatre in Toronto, the world’s largest and longest running queer theatre company and a leader in Canadian contemporary performance creation.  Her tenure at Buddies was defined by socially relevant, inclusive and boundary-pushing programming and curation, an industry-leading, inter-generational queer community project, and bringing Buddies productions to the international stage.

Notable productions include Kiinalik: These Sharp Tools (co-created with Laakkuluk Williamson Bathory, Erin Brubacher, Elysha Poirier, with Cris Derksen), (Buddies, also presented by The Edinburgh International Festival; Teatro A Mil (Chile), Cervantino Festival (Mexico), Belfast International Festival (N.Ireland); SPIN (OutSpoke), Parry’s musical exploration of the feminist history of the bicycle, has toured for over a decade in Canada and the USA, currently in pre-production for a film adaptation (with support from the Canada Council Digital Now program); Gertrude and Alice (with Anna Chatterton and Karin Randoja, Independent Aunties / Buddies in Bad Times Theatre; shortlisted for Governor General’s Award); The Dialysis Project (with Leah Lewis and Robert Chafe, Resource Centre for the Arts Newfoundland); The Youth/ Elders Project (Buddies); Obaaberima by Tawiah M’Carthy (Buddies; Dora Award for Outstanding Production); Breakfast (Independent Aunties/Theatre Centre).

She is a founding member of the acclaimed feminist collective Independent Aunties, with whom she has co-authored and performed six plays, including Gertrude and Alice, Breakfast, and their award-winning festival favourite Clean Irene & Dirty Maxine. She has been the recipient of numerous Dora Mavor Moore Awards, the KM Hunter Award for Theatre, and the Ken McDougall Award for Directing, as well as a finalist for the Governor General’s Literary Award and The John Hirsch Prize for Directing.

In addition to her theatre work, Parry has produced six albums of music and poetry, worked with many of Canada’s finest roots musicians and producers, and toured folk festivals, clubs and campuses around the country. She is the recipient  The Colleen Peterson Songwriting Award from the Ontario Arts Council, The Beth Ferguson Award from the Ottawa Folk Festival, and nominee for a Canadian Folk Music Award, and the KM Hunter Award for Music.

She is the 2022/23 Walker Cultural Leader at Brock University’s Department of Dramatic Arts, and is currently pursuing graduate work in Cultural Studies at Queen’s University in Katarokwi / Kingston; her research explores the connection between creative practice, arts leadership, decolonial futures and systems change.

 


  • The Dialysis Project
  • OutSpoke Productions
    OutSpoke Productions

  • Kiinalik:These Sharp Tools

  • Buddies in Bad Times Theatre

  • Spin
  • The Independent Aunties
    The Independent Aunties

  • The Age of Melting

  • Obaaberima

Evalyn Parry’s SPIN

Starring the bicycle as muse, musical instrument and agent of social change

Evalyn Parry takes her audience on an uncommon theatrical and musical journey in Spin, her tour-de-force performance celebrating the Bicycle

One part documentary and another part musical activism, Spin is inspired in part by the incredible true tale of Annie Londonderry, the first woman to ride around the world on a bicycle in 1895.  parry spins a fascinating web of stories that travel from 19th-century women’s emancipation to 21st-century consumer culture, peeling back layers of history to reveal a surprising and contemporary heart to her theme of liberation.

A vintage bicycle, hooked up to simple electronics and suspended in a mechanic’s stand, is played – from fenders to spokes to vinyl seat, from whirling pedals to bells – by percussionist Brad Hart, providing a captivating sonic accompaniment to parry’s songs and monologues. Staged by award-winning director Ruth Madoc-Jones, with stunning visual projections by acclaimed designer Beth Kates, this unique show has delighted audiences across the continent.

“Part theatre, part music gig, part spoken word poetry, part documentary: whatever it is, it is brilliant” Toronto Star

“…a welcome breath of fresh air….SPIN makes something beautiful out of taking your life into your own hands”  Globe & Mail

“Annie Londonderry’s story becomes a portal into Parry’s own life and heart and that is what gives the show such resonance.” Calgary Sun

“…this magnetic artist and her winning production team invest the work with such intelligence and playfulness, it’s hard not to be charmed.  NOW Magazine

“a show with as much heart as it possesses design and brains.” Calgary Herald

Written and performed by Evalyn Parry
Featuring Brad Hart playing the Bicycle
Directed by Ruth Madoc-Jones
Production design by Beth Kates

String Arrangements by Michael Holt

The show premiered in Toronto’s Buddies in Bad Times Theatre (a coproduction with OutSpoke Productions) in 2011, and over the decade that followed has enjoyed more than 300 performances across North America, with tour dates from the Lincoln Center in New York City, to the Northern Arts and Culture Centre in Yellowknife, and many, many stops in between.

Currently, SPIN is in pre-production for a film adaptation with support from the Canada Council for the Arts Digital Now program.

View everything SPIN right here…


  • To Live in the Age of Melting
  • Spin cd
    Spin
  • Live at Lula
    Live at Lula
  • Small Theatres
    Small Theatres
  • Unreasonable
    Unreasonable
  • Things that should be warnings
    Things that should be warnings

  • She who succeeds t-shirt

Find Evalyn’s recordings streaming on BandCamp, Spotify, Applemusic

To Live in the Age of Melting: Northwest Passage

SPIN

Small Theatres

No shows booked at the moment.

bike-turq-on-ivory

 

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evalyn @  evalynparry dot com

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*but please note, for much of 2020 and 2021 EP has taken a big break from engagement on social platforms