OSAC is pleased to announce these artists selected to tour Saskatchewan schools in 2020/2021. 

Karima Essa – Bollywood Star (BC) – K-12 audiences

karima photo

Karima Essa showcases Bollywood dance as a fun cultural art form by opening with an electrifying dance in full regalia. During her interactive and high-energy show, students learn about the origins of Bollywood dance along with some traditional and popular dance moves and key words in Hindi from Bollywood cinema. She explains how dance is a powerful and universal form of storytelling in India - a country where 1,200 different languages and dialects are spoken. Through active participation, students learn how to express different emotions, such as happiness and sadness, through the key elements of Bollywood dance involving intricate hand movements (mudras), neck and head movements, facial expressions, and foot movements.

Bollywood Star 1-Day Workshop, Grade Suitability: K -12: Karima presents up to 5 workshops for students plus a 30-min teacher workshop at lunch. This includes a 30-minute student performance and dance by Karima at end of day.

Curriculum Connections to support the Saskatchewan Curriculum:

Physical Education curriculum (PE1.1-PE1.10), K-12. Bollywood dance develops physical literacy skills and supports the three PE goals of active living, skillful movement, and relationships. A Bollywood dance performance and/or residency will support the 3 arts education goals of: creative/productive, cultural/historical and critical/responsive.

“Karima had the students fully engaged in her performance. She was charismatic and funny, and her show had just the right amount of watch-and-learn and follow-me! The students and staff were entertained and learned about the magic of communicating through music.” – Lakewood Elementary School, Vancouver

Rainbow Dance Theatre: ilumiDance (US) K-12

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Dancing light! In this interactive performance, students get to see three dances featuring electronic costumes, props and puppets. The light wire technology not only enchants students with professional dance, it gets them excited about the “technology” component of STEM learning (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics). The dance artists reveal how they use the STEM engineering design process to create innovative new technologies in dance art, such as wearable electronic costumes and electronic puppets. Students participate in demonstrations of how engineering design and coding are used to create dances, and selected students are invited up to create their own “illumidance” with a five-foot-tall light wire puppet.

Themes: dance, movement, multiculturalism, physical education, practice, skill, technique, tradition, urban culture.

“I just wanted to say… what an awesome presentation! The lights and dance were outstanding. I also enjoyed the way your group used classical music for some of the dances. An awesome choice! Also, thank you for talking to the kids about innovation and creative ideas. This was a #1 performance for us. I am sure you have inspired some children in our audience.” - Fish Creek Elementary, Calgary, AB

That was by far the best received performance we have ever had. It appealed to kids in kindergarten and grade 7 which is very hard to do. I had a number of teachers say to me that even kids with special needs who haven’t ever sat through a performance were enthralled by Rainbow Dance.” - Champlain Heights Elementary, Vancouver. 

Axis Theatre Company (BC) – “The Troll Grandfather by Clem Martini” - K-8

Troll Grandfather dragon shot"The things you love will always change you." The Troll Grandfather is an epic adventure about a 9-year-old girl named Sandy Nardini and her Grandfather. Sandy is less than pleased to be forced to stay with her Grandpa for the summer. There is nothing to do at his house, he’s old and odd, and he doesn’t know her at all. Sandy knows her mother is battling health issues and suspects that is the reason why she's been sent away. But one night, after being sent to sleep in the study, Sandy uncovers the secret that has kept her Grandpa estranged her whole life – Grandpa is a troll! Suddenly faced with a part of her identity she didn’t know existed, Grandpa and Sandy set out on a dangerous journey to claim Sandy’s magical birthright, a blessing that could save her mother’s life or have dire consequences for their entire family. The Troll Grandfather is filled with mythology, magic and a real live Dragon!

Curriculum Connections: Arts Education, English Language Arts, Social Studies

Themes: Overcoming fear/obstacles, keeping secrets; Family and Cultural Heritage, Connecting with Community and the older generations.

“Thank you for the wonderful morning! My grade three class LOVED your show. They were so focused and intent that I was able to enjoy the production too; I didn’t have to remind ANYONE to be quiet and listen.” - Kootenay Orchard Elementary

“The dragon puppet was a particularly nice touch. Some teachers appreciated the production as an introduction to their family unit. It was great to see a representation of blended cultures within a family.” - Wolfe Elementary

Jacky Essombe: Jacky’s Village (BC) K-12

jacky essombe program guide photo

Jacky’s Village features music and dance from the African countries of Cameroon and Benin. Led by accomplished dancer Jacky Essombe, accompanied by her friend Yoro Noukoussi, this participatory performance features music played on a variety of traditional African instruments including djembe, talking drum and shekere. Audience participation is encouraged throughout the performance in the form of call-and-response, singing, clapping and dancing. Available in English, French and bilingual. 1-day dance residencies are also available.

In Africa, dance is for everybody within the community. Jacky focuses on bringing confidence to everyone’s ability to dance and therefore to be part of the group. We explore the steps with simple variations to fit everybody’s physical abilities so that everyone is included in the experience. There are no levels of accomplishment in African dance – all it takes is for you to just love it! 1-day dance residencies are also available. Jacky Essombe toured to 22 Saskatchewan schools in Fall 2014 to great response through the OSAC school touring program.

Themes: Africa, Culture, Dance, Geography, Language, Movement, Music, Rhythm, Singing, Society, Storytelling

“We all enjoyed it a lot! Learned new words from different languages and new instruments. Excellent rapport with students, they loved it. The educational content tied in with our talks about community.” – Pre-Cam Community School, La Ronge

“Awesome performance! Great connection with our curriculum outcomes, loved the way the artists interacted with the audience, kids were totally engaged. They left the students wanting more.” - Kerrobert Composite School


Green Thumb Theatre - The Code (BC) – Grades 8-12

The Code Photo of Elizabeth Barrett Nathan Kay and Mason Temple by Leah Gair

Moira takes pride in standing up for what she believes in. But after spearheading a protest at school that results in the spring dance being cancelled, she receives threatening statements online and at school. Luckily her best friends Simon and Connor have her back – until Simon reveals his romantic feelings towards Moira, which she doesn’t return. Feeling “friend-zoned”, Simon joins the barrage of hurtful comments, and Connor is forced to take a hard look at where his loyalties lie. The Code looks at the murky line between friendship and romance, and invites viewers to question what they feel entitled to in their relationships. With humour and nuance, the play challenges teens to hold themselves accountable for their words and actions, and consider what’s at stake when lines are crossed.

Curriculum Connections: Healthy Relationships | Leadership | Social Responsibility | Self Esteem | Personal Politics| Violence Against Women

Green Thumb Theatre creates and produces plays that explore social issues relevant to the lives of children, youth, and young adults. They provide theatre that celebrates the language and stories of today’s generation and culture to stimulate empathy, debate, and critical thinking. Each year, they perform for more than 125,000 children, teenagers, and young adults. They tour regularly across Canada and the United States, and have had productions tour to 11 countries overseas. In their 44 seasons, they have performed to over 5 million people. They have created original productions subsequently staged by 200 theatre companies worldwide, and have been recognized with 70 awards across a broad range of criteria, including more than a dozen for Outstanding Production.

“Green Thumb’s The Code was impactful and thought provoking. Our Grade 8-12 students were engaged throughout the whole show. The Code met them exactly where they are at and encouraged them to consider the impacts of online/gendered harassment.” – Lord Byng Secondary School, Vancouver

Photo credit: Elizabeth Barrett, Nathan Kay and Mason Temple. Photo by Leah Gair @ Chicknskratch Productions.


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