Portrait of Anne-Marie Donovan

I am a stage performer, stage director, artistic director and creator, native of Montreal.

I am currently working on the creation of Phaedra Echoes, a triptych of performance works created in collaboration with visual and media artist Isabella Stefanescu that examines the many representations of Phaedra in diverse cultures from Euripides to today.

Phaedra 101, is a power-point presentation given by Phaedra from the beyond and is set to premiere in the 2023-24 season.

In 2023-24, our team returns to Théâtre Populaire d’Acadie in Caraquet, New Brunswick, for a second residence and creation workshop on Échos de Phèdre : Les racines de la rage. Our creative partners on this project are writer and translator Sonya Malaborza and choreographer Sylvie Bouchard. Les racines de la rage is a meditation on the experience of womanhood from Phaedra’s perspective. Set for three actresses and soprano, it draws on the many pieces of theatre, music and visual art inspired by Phaedra.

The third work in the triptych, Dear Euripides, is on hiatus at the moment, but we will return to it before long. The development of these three works is produced by Inter Arts Matrix.

Several works that have been in development for years are coming to fruition in the 2023-24 season.

Maanomaa, My Brother, a work of intercultural theatre co-created with Tawiah Ben McCarthy and Brad Cook at Blue Bird Theatre Collective, is the story of two young men trying to reconcile the lives of their fathers. It will receive its premiere at Canadian Stage in Toronto in April 2023.

October 2023 is the premiere of très loin presented by BoucharDanse at The Theatre Centre, Toronto. très loin is created by Sylvie Bouchard, installation design by Ed Pien, sound design by the late Phil Strong. I am dramaturg on this wonderful project.

In spring of 2024, I will direct two premiere performances. Choreographer and dancer Sylvie Bouchard’s solo creation, Ho m a ge, will premiere at BoucharDanse in Toronto. Composer Tim Brady and librettist Mishka Lavigne’s opera Information, about the October Crisis, will premiere at Chants Libres / Bradyworks in Montreal.

My previous creative work includes the large-scale multi-media work Frankenstein’s Ghosts (2011 co-creation, Blue Rider Ensemble/Inter Arts Matrix, Montreal); The Last 15 Seconds, a work of intercultural theatre, which has toured extensively across Canada as well as to Germany, the Middle East and North Africa (2009 collective creation, MT Space, Kitchener); and Sounding Rituals, a set of creative disturbances performed by community members in public space (2007 creation Open Ears Festival, Kitchener).

In 2007, I founded Inter Arts Matrix, a charitable arts organization that fosters the development of interdisciplinary art. I served as Artistic Director of IAM from 2007 – 2014 and remain Associate Artist at the company.

From 2014-2021, my brother Michael Donovan and I founded and co-directed Long Reach Opera Workshop, an intensive summer opera training program in Toronto, where it was our privilege to work with, learn from and nurture young singers.

My practice is informed by my early career as a classical singer specializing in new music. From 1994-2000, I was Artistic Director of NUMUS Concerts, one of Canada’s most vibrant new music societies.

I am a recipient of a Waterloo Region Arts Award as well as the Distinguished Teacher of the Year Award at University of Waterloo where I taught in the Theatre and Performance Program from 1993-2014.

I have two rather serious hobbies. I am passionate about learning languages and can now proudly say that I am fluently trilingual in English, French & Italian. And I love design. I designed the house we live in as well as the studio and workshop we work in. My husband, a cellist, did the lion’s share of the building! One of our COVID projects was a major redesign and renovation of my family’s summer camp which is right next door to us at Long Reach on the majestic Saint John river in New Brunswick.