Renée Olbert was born and raised in Brampton Ontario … home of Michael Cera and Olympic gold medalist Cassie Campbell (that’s a shout out for all you hockey fans!) Growing up, Renée was convinced that she would attend law school…until she took her first drama class in high school and discovered that making people laugh is way cooler than suing them. She is a graduate of York University’s theatre program and ultimately moved to Toronto to pursue her dream.
Renée has worked as a producer, tv presenter and as an actor in tv, theatre and commercials. Recent credits include Anne and Diana were Totally Doing It, Forensic Factor, Paradise Lost and CTV’s upcoming controversial tv movie Pickton, directed by Academy Award winner Malcolm Clarke. Renée has also worked as an assistant director under Nightwood Theatre’s artistic director Kelly Thornton on their critically acclaimed production of Mathilde starring Martha Burns and Tom McCamus.
Renée can honestly say that bringing Seeking Simone to life has been one of the most fulfilling creative experiences she has had so far.
Anna Chatterton is a performer, playwright and librettist based in Toronto. Recent acting gigs include The Bird by Sonja Mills, performing and creating Voice-Box (Harbourfront/World Stage/urbanvessel) and Breakfast (Buddies in Bad Times Theatre/ Independent Aunties).
Anna’s work has been commissioned and produced by various theatres, opera and music companies in Toronto and across Canada, including The Canadian Opera Company, World Stage/Harbourfront Centre, Tapestry New Opera, Theatre Passe Muraille, Buddies, The Theatre Centre and Soundstreams. Anna is a founding member of the Independent Aunties and is a playwright in residence at Tarragon Theatre.
David Bronfman has a degree in molecular biology, but refuses to use it properly. Recent credits include an episode of Mayday, where he is crushed by a wayward 737, Angela’s Eyes, where he is shot twice in the chest, and ReGenesis, where he succumbs to a mysterious disease. He has also appeared in other films, television and stage productions where he has died of heart attacks and various infections, been skewered by swords, and in other cases been brutally shot or beaten to a bloody pulp. Had he continued his pursuits in biology, David no doubt could have contributed to saving the lives of some of his characters, but is otherwise happy with the decisions he has made in life. Look for him in a few upcoming episodes of XIII: The Series, reruns of Covert Affairs, and various short films likely playing on basic cable and/or YouTube.
Evalyn Parry is an award-winning theatre creator, spokenword artist, and songwriter. She released three critically acclaimed CDs, a live in concert DVD (Borealis Records),and her music and spoken word has been performed,broadcasted, commissioned and anthologized across North America.
Raised in a family of musicians and storytellers, Evalyn's performance practice is built on the foundations of the venerable folk tradition. From this tradition, her work evolved into a unique hybrid of music and storytelling. Parry’s outspoken creations embody a powerful vision for social and personal change, and her irreverent wit holds nothing sacred. Parry received the Colleen Peterson Songwriting Award(Ontario Arts Council), and was nominated for the KMHunter Award, for music.
Recent performance highlights include: The Yukon International Storytelling Festival, The Sound Symposium (St John’s, NFLD), Hillside Festival,The Calgary International Spokenword Festival, Out of Door - Roots of American Music Festival (The LincolnCenter, NYC), and the Banff Centre.
Evalyn is a founding member of the Independent Aunties,where she has co-authored and performed five playsincluding the Dora-nominated Breakfast (Buddies in BadTimes 2010), and the multi-award winning Clean Irene & Dirty Maxine. Evalyn is the Director of the Young Creators Unit at Buddies in Bad Times Theatre, a program for young queer-identified artists. Education is a vital part ofher artistic practice, and Evalyn works as a guest artist at various universities and high schools across Canada.
Sara Gilchrist is a Toronto based actor, writer and story editor. A graduate of the University of Windsor's BFA Acting program, Sara has worked and studied extensively throughout Canada. Selected (fun!) acting credits include How The Grinch Stole My Heart (and my favourite sweatshirt...) (InsideOut Toronto, Le Festival Chéries-Chéris Paris, Reeling Chicago), Queer As Folk (Showtime), Oleanna (Theatre & Company), As You Like It (Driftwood Theatre Group), and the Dora Award nominated production The Adventures of Joseph Andrews (Studio 268). Secret hidden talents include competitive jump roping, exotic hula hooping, and Tardus Mors Mortis Cacti (the ancient art of slowly killing cactuses).
Mike McPhaden is an actor and writer. Film/TV work includes roles on Murdoch Mysteries, Bloodletting & Miraculous Cures, The Border, Tkaronto, and The Last New Year. He won two Dora Awards (acting and writing) for his play Poochwater. His plays Noble Parasites (Theatre Passe Muraiile) and Requiem for a Hotel (part of The Gladstone Variations, Convergence Theatre) have also garnered Dora noms.
As a TV writer, Mike has written for InSecurity, Men With Brooms, Connor Undercover, and served as Writer/Co-Producer on YTV's How to Be Indie. He also wrote the BravoFact short films Family First and RUNG, directed by Chris Hanratty.
Rebecca - Season 1
Born in Wilthshire and raised in Cornwall, England, Zoie Palmer's love of acting began at an early age. Determined to follow her dream, Zoie moved to Toronto where she graduated from York University's Theatre Program.
Zoie has appeared in an array of television productions, notably starring as Ronald Reagan's daughter, Patti, in The Reagans, the critically-acclaimed MOW that was nominated for a slate of Emmy Awards and a Golden Globe. Zoie also appeared in the Emmy Award-winning TV movie, Out of the Ashes, starred in the pilot Devil's Perch, and, most recently, portrayed Goth musician Patsy in the series Instant Star. Zoie also starred in Snapshots for Henry, which was nominated for a Genie Award as Best Live Action Short Drama, and was honoured with the Best Actor Award at the Baja California Film Festival for her performance in Terminal Venus, a short by Alexandre Franchi. Recently, Zoie appeared as Coast Guard rescue swimmer Carly Grieg in the hit Global series The Guard.
Michelle Girouard is an actor, educator and musician. She has performed professionally throughout Central and Eastern Canada, as well as France. Michelle is a graduate of the National Theatre School of Canada and Concordia University's Theatre Performance Program.
Michelle also teaches voice, movement and acting classes across Canada.
Liz Pounsett is an actor, theatre-maker, teaching artist, and the artistic director of the independent theatre company, The Question Company. Liz’s theatre credits include The Question Company’s critic's pick at last year’s Fringe Festival You Mean Now?; Hamlet, Theatre WhyNot; Platinum Travel Club, Theatre Passe Muraille, as well as The Question Company’s Summerworks 2005 hit Downtown.
Liz spent two years in Paris at Ecole Jacques Lecoq, and while there shot the film Le bruit du fond. Currently, Liz is working on developing the next instalment of The Question Company’s Time Trilogy, The Future, a working title, with the generous support of Nightswimming and the OAC.
Caramel Kiss - Season 1
Kiran Friesen graduated theatre school to an industry where school is a drop in the bucket. Her real education continued on set, on stage and in workshops after she moved to Toronto.
Other selected theatre credits include Desdemona in Othello, Lady Capulet in Romeo and Juliet, Gertrude in Hamlet (all with the Classical Theatre project), Maggie in Cat on a Hot Tin Roof and Maddy in Tony 'n Tina's Wedding. Selected film credits include Lady Godiva in Bruiser, Julie in Odyssey 5, and "perfect woman" in Love Rules, and she was the hot pizza chick in the two year running McCain's rising crust pizza ad.
Her ultimate goal is to pull a "Sling Blade" and become an instant star.
Jen started playing drums at age 13 after a conversation where her parents asked "Are you on drugs? Why do you keep tapping on things?" After a long, long apprenticeship in her basement with Stewart Copeland of The Police (via Walkman headphones) she was ready by age 21 to start playing in bands, including The Fletcher Valve Drummers, The Other 90% of Your Brain, Jersey Skirt, In Mittens, and the current indie rock outfit Leonids - who just released a CD!
Jen lives in Toronto with her greyhound, Pixie.
Eli sings and plays bass in Flickershow, occasionally in a dress.
He also makes odd electronic noises under the name Geometer, does the occasional bit of sound design for theatre, and is at work on a comic about musicians and mad science. He also blogs at Forgery League.
Julian graduated from the Theatre Studies program at York University in 1997. With upstart comedy troupe Cavalcade of Whimsy, he helped mount the hilarious fringe productions Three Zeros, and Citizen X-K12, both of which received favourable attention from the local alternative press.
Currently, Julian is the songwriting machine behind the Toronto based band Flickershow, who will be releasing their first full length effort entitled "Drawing A Blank" in September. In general, Julian divides his time between the rigorous exercise of Ultimate Frisbee, and hours upon hours of utter sloth in front of his personal computer playing video games. In his spare time, Julian stars as the Vintages Old World Category Clerk at the LCBO head office. Whoops. I mean “works as”.