Faculty / Drama Instructor: Judith Thompson
Playwright, director, actor and professor of theatre, Judith Thompson is the author of 17 published and produced plays, including The Crackwalker, I Am Yours, Lion in the Streets, Perfect Pie Habitat, Palace of the Endand Watching Glory Die, many of which have been produced all over the world in many languages, and Elektra in Bosnia, performed in Hydra and Athens, Greece, as part of 2012international Women & War Project. She has also authored two feature films, Perfect Pie and Lost and Delirious, as well as several made-for-TV movies, including Life With Billy and Turning to Stone.
Recently, as artistic director of the rare theatre, she created the play Borne, with nine performers who are wheelchair users, and the year before Rare with nine performers with Down Syndrome, which was a Patrons’ Pick and won the Ed Mirvish Entrepreneur Award at the Toronto Fringe Festival; both plays enjoyed sold out runs at the Young Centre for the Performing Arts. In 2011 she created and directed The Grace Project: SICK! with 14 youth with self-described disabilities. In 2006 she created Body and Soul with 14 older women telling their own stories in their own words, which played to sold-out houses at the Young Centre and the Tarragon Theatre and at the Vancouver Olympics in 2010.
Judith Thompson has won the Governor General’s Award twice, the Chalmers, the Dora, the Walter Carsen Prize for Excellence in the Performing Arts, the Toronto Arts Award, the Canadian Author’s Association Award, the Herbert Whittaker Award, the Susan Smith Blackburn Award and the Amnesty International Award for Freedom of Expression. She received the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal in 2012. She has been a professor of theatre at the University of Guelph since 1993. She lives in Toronto with her husband, two dogs, two cats and some of her five children (when they are not at school or in far-away countries teaching English).
She has recently been working on an adaptation of Merilyn Symonds The Convict Lover for Theatre Kingston, and an original play inspired by the persecution and suicide of Reteah Parsons, as well as rare theatre's next project (which premiered at the Young Centre in November 2015).