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L’UniThéâtre is the only professional francophone theatre company in Alberta and as such we are dedicated to the development of the francophone community and to the promotion of the French language and French-language cultural expressions in Edmonton, Alberta and throughout Canada.

New Artistic Director

L'UniThéâtre presents its new
artistic director and co-general manager

Joëlle Préfontaine's Headshot.jpg

joëlle préfontaine

Ryan Parker Photography

It is with great enthusiasm that I will be joining L’UniThéâtre’s team in February as the new Artistic Director and Co-General Manager!

Theatre has always been close to my heart and having the opportunity to share this passion with Edmonton and Alberta’s communities is truly inspiring. I am also honored to participate in L’UniThéâtre and the francophone theatre community’s evolution by continuing the initiatives of my predecessor, Brian Dooley, which contribute towards the recognition and development of  French-language playwrights in Alberta.

I strongly believe in the growth of artistic practices within all theatre disciplines. My hopes for the years to come are to work with professional and emerging artists, as well as students who are interested in the theatrical arts, in order to create, develop and produce stories that reflect the unique voices of our communities. It is important that these works be shared not only within Alberta, but also on a national scale. L’UniThéâtre’s goal is to unite and it is my desire to actively participate in carrying out this vision.

My new role is rapidly approaching and over the course of the next few months I will be projected into the planning of L’UniThéâtre’s 2018-2019 season. I look forward to unveiling another year of evocative francophone theatre.

For the remainder of the current season, I will continue things where Brian left off. We will resume our journey through the season with Tempus extraordinarius in February 2018. The month of March brings us to our coproduction with Northern Light Theatre and the premiere of En mémoire de moi / Do This in Memory of Me by Cat Walsh, translated by Manon Beaudoin. This same month will also showcase Paula Humby’s new Theatre for Young Audience piece Élise contre l’extinction totale, as part of our À Voix Haute public reading series. We will then dive into the world of Mémix, my new short play for L’UniThéâtre’s newest initiative Fabula-Fabulis, a series of interactive stories for 2 to 5 year-olds. I will then direct Renée Bouchard’s Le Trou du Vide, the second Coup d’oeil workshop of the season. Between these last two projects, L’UniThéâtre’s team will head to the mountains for the 29th edition of the Festival Théâtre Jeunesse de l’Alberta in Nordegg! I am extremely delighted to participate in this incredible theatre festival that gathers young Albertan francophones to showcase their theatrical ambition and talents.

The power of theatre is tremendous and I invite you all to join us on this journey!

Joëlle Préfontaine

Biographie

Actress, director, writer, singer, dancer and educator, Joëlle has played on stages across the country in both French and English. A graduate of Red Deer College’s Theatre Performance Program and the University of Alberta’s Bachelor of Fine Arts in Acting Program, Joëlle recently finished her Master of Fine Arts (MFA) in Theatre Practice at this latter institution. Her Master’s thesis focuses on immersive plurilingual theatre and its role in encouraging additional language acquisition, especially within French Immersion and French as a Second Language (FSL) programs.

Joëlle is currently the Director of Education at Workshop West Playwrights’ Theatre, promoting the #writesofpassage Program of which she also teaches. The goal of these writing workshops aimed at junior and senior high school students, is to value young people’s unique voices, and encourage cultural and linguistic diversity. She has also been the Drama teacher at École Maurice-Lavallée school for several years.

For the past decade, her artistic growth has been strongly influenced and supported by L’UniThéâtre. She has acted in several plays such as Des fraises en janvier by Évelyne de la Chenelière and Récolte, a play she wrote, which was produced during L’UniThéâtre’s 2013-2014 season in collaboration with Québec’s Théâtre Sortie de Secours. Last season, Joëlle was selected for Great Notions in Small Rooms, an initiative providing two different artists a one-week residency. This allowed her to workshop her play Huh?! and stage a reading for an invited audience. In May, Huh?! was presented in partial completion for her MFA degree and is now being further developed with the support of ACCENT Alberta, helping to prepare the play for future productions aimed at grade 4 to 6 students in Francophone, French Immersion and FSL programs.