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Jill Carter

IMG_0089-JillContact: jill.carter@utoronto.ca

Ph.D (University of Toronto)
M.A. (University of Toronto)

Jill Carter (Anishinaabe/Ashkenazi) is a Toronto-based theatre practitioner and scholar. She has worked as a Performer, Director, Dramaturg, and Acting Instructor. She earned her Honors BA (Joint Specialist English/Drama) from the University of Toronto and her Master of Arts (Drama) from the Graduate Centre for Study of Drama (at the University of Toronto). In 2010, she received her Doctorate—also from the University of Toronto’s Graduate Centre for Study of Drama (since re-named, The Centre for Drama, Theatre and Performance Studies). Her dissertation, which documents the Storyweaving methodology, authored by Muriel Miguel and developed by Spiderwoman Theater, won the Alumnae Dissertation Award in 2011–an honour she shares for that year with Dr. Graham Wolfe.

In recent years, she has worked with Turtle Gals Performance Ensemble (Assistant Dramaturg and Performer), directed the remount of Monique Mojica’s Chocolate Woman Dreams the Milky Way, developmental workshops of Omushkego Cree Water Stories (with Candace Brunette and Erika Iserhoff), the 2014 developmental workshop of Sideshow Freaks and Circus Injuns (with Monique Mojica and LeAnne Howe), and the Canadian premiere of Something Old, Something New, Something Borrowed, Something Blue (written and performed by Gloria Miguel) at Native Earth Performing Arts Aki Studio in fall 2014.

Currently, she is an Assistant Professor with the Centre for Drama, Theatre, and Performance Studies; the Indigenous Studies Program; and the Transitional Year Programme at the University of Toronto. The research questions she pursues revolve around the mechanics of story creation (devising and dramaturgy), the processes of delivery (performance on the stage and on the page), and the mechanics of affect. Most recently, her research efforts have been concentrated upon

  • Indigenous Knowledge Systems & contemporary performance
  • the poetics of decolonization: narrative structures and survivance
  • Indigenous interventions on the “canon” /adaptation
  • pedagogy as ceremonial performance: the decolonization of the lecture hall
  • Indigenous cultural patrimony and New Media
  • the “inanimate” performer /performing objects

Recent publications include:

“Sovereign Proclamations for the Twenty-First Century: “Scripting Survivance through the Language of Soft Power. “New Essays on Canadian Theatre: Special Issue—Indigenous Theatre. Eds. Ric Knowles and Yvette Nolan. Playwrights Canada Press. 2016;

“Review: The Medicine Shows by Yvette Nolan.” Alt. Theatre: Cultural Diversity and the Stage (12.3): Spring 2016;

“The Physics of the Mola: W/riting Indigenous Resurgence on the Contemporary Stage.” in Modern Drama. 59.1 (2016);

“IK Publics: Translation, Survivance and the Performative Encounter.”  Reflections of a Translated World: Selected Proceedings of the Fifth Glendon Graduate Conference in Translation Studies. Eds. María Constanza Guzmán, Alexia Papadopolous, and Maya Worth. Toronto: Glendon College, York University, 2016;

“Grief into Beauty: The Literary Intervention and the Alchemy of Hope.” Performing Back: Post-Colonial Canadian Plays. Ed. Dalbir Singh Toronto: Playwrights Canada Press, 2015;

“Discarding Sympathy, Disrupting Catharis: The Mortification of Indigenous Flesh as Survivance-Intervention” in Theatre Journal 67 (2015), which was awarded the Canadian Association for Theatre Research’s Robert Plant Prize in 2016;

Apart from her teaching, theatre work and academic writing, Jill serves on the artistic team of Talking Treaties, works as a researcher and tour guide with  First Story Toronto, serves on the editorial board of alt. magazine: cultural diversity and the stage, serves the Canadian Association for Theatre Research (CATR) as Board Member-at-Large and Equity Officer, and sits on the Grand Council of the Indigenous Performing Arts Alliance (IPAA).

For 2016-17, Jill’s projects include a working group, sponsored by the Jackman Humanities Institute (Native Performance Culture and The Rhythm of Re Conciliation: Re-membering Ourselves in Deep Time), which she is co-convening with Myrto Koumarianos–Doctoral Candidate at the CDTPS. In the coming months, she will continue her research and creative investigations with Talking Treaties–work, which will culminate in a production at Fort York, Toronto to mark Canada’s 150th Birthday and remember the Treaties between this young nation and its Indigenous hosts. And she is excited to continue in her role as Senior Artist with Stratford Festival’s Indigenous Directors’ Initiative.

2016-2019, Jill will also serve on the Advisory Committee of “The Performative Power of Vocality,” a research project led by UBC scholar Virginie Magnat and supported by an Insight Grant from the Social Sciences and Humanities Council.




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