THE FIRST MONDAY

Artwork Created By: Taegan O'Bertos

SUBMIT NOW FOR THE 2024-25 SEASON!

See below for details!


In partnership with Persephone Theatre, we will present a new Saskatchewan play every month for eight months (October through May). So, mark your calendars. It's the FIRST Monday of every month. 

MAY FEATURE: My Name Is... by Megan Zong

Xiao Tong is on a quest to reclaim what has been taken from her, and take down the bad guy in school. Alongside her friend, Diva Dave, she discovers hidden superpowers. But to use them, she will have to embrace a part of herself that she has pushed away for too long. First developed with Persephone Theatre's TYA Playwrights Unit, this play is about embracing our unique differences and finding a sense of belonging when faced with adversity.

Megan Zong

Playwright

Megan is a multidisciplinary Chinese-Canadian theatre artist. Working primarily as an actor, she has recently branched into playwrighting, producing, and directing. Born and raised in Saskatoon, she graduated from the University of Saskatchewan with a B.F.A. in Acting. Her extensive work in devising new plays with Sum Theatre inspired her to write and create her own original work. She wrote, produced, and assistant directed her debut play, Unmasked, which premiered in 2021. Acting credits include: Chicago, The Hobbit, Mamma Mia! (Globe Theatre); Pride and Prejudice, Boeing Boeing (Persephone Theatre); The Young Ones, Queen Seraphina and the Land of Vertebraat, Earth Diver, #Consent, Through the Window, wâhkôhtowin (Sum Theatre), Oz (Carousel Theatre for Young People/Kaleidoscope Theatre for Young People), and Gaslight (Chemainus Theatre Festival). See more about Megan at meganzong.com

Jenna Berenbaum

Dramaturg

Jenna is an actor and playwright based in Saskatoon, SK. They have worked with various theatres across the province such as Persephone Theatre, Shakespeare on the Saskatchewan, Dancing Sky Theatre, Sum Theatre, Live Five and Globe Theatre. They spend their time working on their current play 18 Jews Order Chinese Food, playing on the National Ball Hockey Team and hanging with their dog Lennon.

Graeme Hopkins

Dramaturgical Apprentice 

Graeme Hopkins is an actor, playwright, and director living in Saskatoon. He choreographed, co-wrote, and co-directed “Musicmusiccalcal: Musical Within a Musical” at Evan Hardy Collegiate and wrote and co-directed “Bugs in Amber” at the 2023 Saskatoon Fringe Festival with Soni Clark. Passionate about the benefits of inclusive youth theatre, Graeme now serves as the Executive Director of Floyd Theatre, a community youth theatre organization that hosts an annual summer one-act festival that he performed in twice. Graeme’s interests in theatre include educational theatre, puppetry, musical theatre, and comedy. Graeme is thrilled and grateful to experience the dramaturgy process for the first time with “My Name Is…” and SUM Theatre.

Skye Brandon

Ensemble

Skye is a Treaty 6 theatre artist based here in Saskatoon who splits time between acting, directing, and teaching. Some recent projects included performing in The Art of War for Hardly Art Theatre, This is How We Got Here for Persephone Theatre, and directing A Few Good Men and Mary's Wedding, both for Drayton Entertainment. Up next Skye will be acting in Shakespeare on the Saskatchewan's 2024 season.

Emily Duong

Ensemble

Emily Duong (she/her) is an actress, singer & is BEYOND ECSTATIC to be on May’s edition of The First Monday after attending January’s edition for the first time! She was a student of the 2023-24 Persephone Theatre Young Company where she has performed in: “The Trials” and the recent production of “Contaminated” (Persephone Theatre). Not only that, she will be playing the role of Jamie in the upcoming production of “The Silent Butterfly” (Monarch Productions). Emily would like to thank everyone for the love & support, especially Persephone Theatre & Sum Theatre for having her.
非常感谢你! (Thank you very much!)

Catherine Hui

Ensemble

Born in Hong Kong, Catherine Hui is passionate about musicals and theatre. She performed previously in Saskatoon Opera’s Carmen (chorus/featured dancer),
Saskatoon Summer Players’ The Addams Family (Alice Beineke), and Ppl r Ppl Productions’ Avenue Q (Christmas Eve). When she isn’t performing on stage, you can find her working on sets. Recent credits include Co-Set Build in The Art of French Cooking (25 th Street Theatre), Set Designer & Head of Scenic Paining in Mary Poppins (McClure Players), Co-Set Designer in Spring Awakening (Ppl r Ppl Productions), Apprentice Designer in Miss Bennet: Christmas at Pemberley (Persephone Theatre). It is such an honour to be part of The First Monday and to present Megan Zong’s new work, 謝謝!

Mitchell Larsen

Ensemble

Mitchell Larsen (they/them) is a queer, neurodivergent multidisciplinary performing artist based in Saskatoon. You might’ve seen them recently in The Little Mermaid, Captain Jack and the Beanstalk, or Christmas at Pemberley. Keep an eye out for them next as they brew a show about death along with Megan Zong, lead artists, Liz Nepjuk and Torien Cafferata, and many others incredible artists.
Photo credit: Austin Nygaard

Danielle Roy

Ensemble

Danielle Roy is a performer, playwright, producer and director based in Martensville Saskatchewan. She is a graduate of the University of Saskatchewan Bachelor of Fine Arts Theatre Program and the Globe Theatre Conservatory.
In 2016, Danielle founded Gumshoe Productions Theatre School where she works as a theatre educator using drama skills to help build community, personal awareness and self confidence.
She is an active performer and writer for Saskatoon’s Sketch Comedy Group, The Sketchy Bandits and for Buttered Ghost Radio Theatre, Dr. Frightful Presents: A Podcast.
Her artistic work has been seen across Canada including the one woman smash hit production of Peach when she was given the title of having “the darkest sense of humor in all of Saskatoon”. Select playwriting credits include:Luna, Metempsychosis, 51 Pumkin Patch Lane, Sleep Monster, A Lack-of-Love Story. Select acting credits include: Breaking the Curse (25th Street Theatre), Wild Dog Waits on the Concrete Path (Theatre Howl), A Frightful Hour (Buttered Ghost Theatre).

Clare Middleton

Company Dramaturg

Clare (She/her) has BFA in Acting U of S, MFA in Creative Writing UBC has been working in and around theatre for the past several decades. Clare loves to teach adults and kids alike and has held several Artist in Residence positions around the province. She has taught theatre classes for U of S, U of R, and UBC, and is a founding member of Live Five theatre season in Saskatoon. Her passion for theatre takes her in all directions and she especially loves when she gets to work on projects that involve her doing puppetry, clowning, new plays, storytelling, theatre for young audiences and directing. Clare lives in Treaty 6 territory (Saskatoon) with her husband, two kids, three dogs and plants – too many plants.

Season 2 (2023-24) of The First Monday featured the following plays:

Episode 1: October 2nd, 2023 - "One Night" by Paige Francoeur & Bob Wicks 
  • A new take on Cat on a Hot Tin Roof by Tennessee Williams. A family gathering descends into chaos when truths are told. A story about the lies we tell each other and the lies we tell ourselves and the lies we need to believe in order to make it through.
Episode 2: November 6th, 2023 - "The Boat" by Todd Devonshire
  • Canada. 1964. Abortion is illegal.
    But 15 miles off the coast, The Boat is ready to challenge everything.
Episode 3: December 4th, 2023 - "The Tragedy of Gregory and Balthasar" by Johanna Arnott
  • Gregory and Balthasar are two men from two houses, both alike in dignity. They are told that they should be enemies, and so they are. But on the shore of Lake Verona Ontario, they are just two dudes who want the same thing: to catch the big fish. Narrated by the big fish himself through a Big Mouth Billy Bass and adapted lines from Romeo and Juliet, The Tragedy of Gregory and Balthasar is a love story dealing with the issue of the impact those with power have over the people who do not.
Episode 4: January 8th, 2024 (SECOND MONDAY) - "I AM WHO I AM" by Peace Akintade-Oluwagbeye
  • I Am Who I Am follows the poetic and philosophical exchange between A-kin, the embodiment of storytelling and poetry, and Ọrunmila, the embodiment of guidance, knowledge, and divination. The play is largely based on Yoruba philosophies of death, life, deities, and the abstract concepts of identity.
Episode 5: February 5th, 2024 - "Matriarchy" by Jacelyn Perret
  • With the counsel of her ancestors a young Métis woman contemplates motherhood, the significance of the matriarch in Métis culture, and what it means to leave a legacy while grappling with a quickly approaching secret.
Episode 6: March 4th  March 11th, 2024 - "The Olive Suitcase" by Jalisa Gonie
  • The outside world is terrifying, especially when you haven’t left the house in over a decade. But Olive always has her suitcase packed and ready for any danger that could come knocking and when it does, Olive will learn if she is truly prepared for the outside world.
Episode 7: April 1st, 2024 - "Final Notice" by Jordan Harvey
  • Final Notice centers around a university house and its tenants as they prepare for an impending eviction following a failed rental strike, and their one last party before vacating. Storylines intersect in a barely post-adolescent cacophony of drugs, sex, queerness, and those perilous half-understandings which accompany such a time in life.
Episode 8: May 6th, 2024 - "My Name Is..." by Megan Zong
  • Xiao Tong is on a quest to reclaim what has been taken from her, and take down the bad guy in school. Alongside her friend, Diva Dave, she discovers hidden superpowers. But to use them, she will have to embrace a part of herself that she has pushed away for too long. First developed with Persephone Theatre's TYA Playwrights Unit, this play is about embracing our unique differences and finding a sense of belonging when faced with adversity.

Meet the Playwrights 

Bob Wicks

Read Bio

Born and raised in Saskatoon, Bob Wicks (he/they) is an actor as well as a voice & text teacher & coach (and now a playwright!) who received his MFA in Acting and Voice Teacher Certificate studying with David Smukler at York University (Toronto, ON) in 2015. They have been a member of the International Actors’ Fellowship at Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre (London, UK,) an Associate with Canada’s National Voice Intensive, a faculty member of the Training Department at Shakespeare & Company (Lenox, MA,) and has previously spent 10 seasons with the Shakespeare on the Saskatchewan Festival, both on and offstage.

Paige Francoeur

Read Bio

Paige Francoeur (she/they) is an emerging actor, playwright, and dramaturg living and working on Treaty Six territory. Recently, they have had the pleasure of appearing in The Coterie's Measure for Measure (Live Five), Burnt Thicket's Evergreen, Theatre Howl's The Love Interest, and 25th Street Theatre / Ferre Play's Breaking The Curse. At any given time, Paige is probably working on writing and / or adapting several scripts. This past year, their original play Twilight State was selected to take part in Persephone Theatre's Incubator Series. This fall, her newly-formed company The Hagstone Collective is mounting its inaugural production, The Josephine Knot by Meg Braem, as part of Live Five's 20th Season.

Todd Devonshire

Read Bio

Todd began his playwriting adventure by entering the SPC 24 hour playwriting competition in Saskatoon. He has written and produced plays in North Battleford, the Saskatoon Fringe and Short Cuts Festival. In 2019, his play, Monday Night, was part of the Live Five season and was nominated for best original script. He has one novel published and when he is not writing, you can find him teaching at Saskatchewan Polytechnic in Saskatoon’s.

Johanna Arnott

Read Bio

Johanna (she/her) is a multidisciplinary theatre artist who works primarily on Treaty 6 territory as an actor, writer, stage manager and director. Recently you might have seen her playing the clarinet and wearing a blue bucket on her head in Zero Gravity (Sum Theatre), or in the comfiest bunny pyjamas that were ever made (thanks Miranda) in The Velveteen Rabbit (Persephone Theatre). In July she travelled to One North Clown and Creation in Sudbury to study mask and clown under John Turner and Jenny Hazelton. In January, she is producing her second full length play, A Brontë Without Genius, as part of the Live Five season. After receiving such a great reception on the Players Stage at Shakespeare on the Saskatchewan this summer, Johanna is thrilled to have the opportunity to write the complete story of Gregory, Balthasar and the Big Mouth Billy Bass and bring The Tragedy of Gregory and Balthasar to the First Monday audience.

Jalisa Gonie 

Read Bio

Jalisa is a versatile theatre artist that balances acting, stage management, clown and writing. They hold a BFA in Acting from the University of Saskatchewan and have trained at the Manitoulin Conservatory for Creation and Performance. She has been a part of the Saskatoon Theatre scene for 10 years in different capacities, working with 25th Street Theatre, Shakespeare on the Saskatchewan, SUM Theatre, Persephone Theatre, Short Cuts and one half of a clown duo with Charlie Peters (Oblong & Oboe). Recipient of a Saskatoon and Area Theatre Award for outstanding supportive performance as #2 in Sarah DeLappe’s The Wolves (Live Five/LittleBig Theatre). Recent Work: Pot Roast (Playwright, Shortcuts 2021), The Velveteen Rabbit (SM, Persephone Theatre), The Unplugging (ASM, Belfry Theatre).

Peace Akintade-Oluwagbeye

Read Bio

Peace Akintade-Oluwagbeye (she/her) is an African-Canadian Interdisciplinary Poet, Public Speaker, Chorus-Poem Playwrighter, and Thespian residing in Saskatoon Saskatchewan. Organically from Yorubaland Nigeria, Peace explores the intersectionality of the artist community from an explorer's perspective, dipping her honey-stained fingers into poetry, dance, performance art, critical research, and the theatre world. When she is not contemplating the wonders of humankind, she can be found in the nearest cafe, people-watching and writing quirky questionnaires.

Jordan Harvey

Read Bio

A graduate of the University of Alberta, Jordan Harvey (he/him) is a local interdisciplinary theatre artist who wishes to produce innovative theatrical work that challenges audiences. He is immensely excited to be a part of First Monday this year with Sum Theatre! Select theatre credits include: Long Day’s Journey into Night (Theatre Naught), The Circle (Bleviss Laboratory Theatre), R&J, As You Like It, Cymbeline (Shakespeare on the Saskatchewan), Love's Labour's Lost, Rochdale, She Kills Monsters (UofA Studio Theatre), Quick Bright Things (Persephone Theatre), and Much Ado About Nothing (Floyd Theatre).

Jacelyn Perret

Read Bio

Jacelyn Perret (she/her) is a Métis theatre artist from Treaty 6 territory and the homeland of the Métis. She is a graduate of the Canadian College of Performing Arts. Jacelyn is no stranger to the stage and a fierce lover of musical theatre. Her first one act play, titled Invisible Minority, won the Fowler Family Award for Playwriting in 2020. With her newfound zest for playwriting and Indigenous theatre, Jacelyn plans to write more plays that feature the representation she didn’t see growing up. She would like to deeply thank all of her friends, family, and mentors for supporting her passions over all these years. Maarsii!

Megan Zong

Read Bio

Megan is a multidisciplinary Chinese-Canadian theatre artist. Working primarily as an actor, she has recently branched into playwrighting, producing, and directing. Born and raised in Saskatoon, she graduated from the University of Saskatchewan with a B.F.A. in Acting. Her extensive work in devising new plays with Sum Theatre inspired her to write and create her own original work. She wrote, produced, and assistant directed her debut play, Unmasked, which premiered in 2021. Acting credits include: Chicago, The Hobbit, Mamma Mia! (Globe Theatre); Pride and Prejudice, Boeing Boeing (Persephone Theatre); The Young Ones, Queen Seraphina and the Land of Vertebraat, Earth Diver, #Consent, Through the Window, wâhkôhtowin (Sum Theatre), Oz (Carousel Theatre for Young People/Kaleidoscope Theatre for Young People), and Gaslight (Chemainus Theatre Festival). See more about Megan at meganzong.com

Meet the Dramaturgy

Kevin Moxley

Read Bio

Kevin Moxley (he/him) is an actor, educator, and writer, recently arrived in Saskatoon from the southern Appalachia region of the United States. He completed his undergraduate studies in English literature, educational theatre, and creative writing at New York University, and his MFA in theatre performance at Florida Atlantic University. While he mainly writes poetry, his short plays have received readings across the US. He is grateful to be living and working on Treaty 6 Territory with his partner, and for the opportunity to learn more about dramaturgy.

Gordon Portman

Read Bio

Gordon Portman was Staff Dramaturge at the Saskatchewan Playwrights Centre from 2011 to 2014, where he oversaw the creation and development of dozens of new plays. One of the most notable was Displaced by Natasha Martina, which won the 2018 SATAward for Best New Play and subsequently toured to Singapore. He has also worked as dramaturge for the St. Lawrence Stage Company, Buddies in Bad Times Theatre, Workshop West Theatre, and Walterdale Theatre. Recent projects include “BRB,” by Omar Bakry, which was named a winner in the “Acronym Plays” competition at Urban Stages in New York. Recent work in in Saskatoon includes five new plays for Theatre Saskatchewan in 2022; Megan Zong’s Unmasked, which received its premiere production through YinYang Theatre in 2021, and Todd Devonshire's Monday Night, which premiered at Live Five in 2019. He is currently mentoring emerging dramaturge Liz Whitbread through the Mentorship Program offered by SATP.

Bob Wicks

Read Bio

Born and raised in Saskatoon, Bob Wicks (he/they) is an actor as well as a voice & text teacher & coach (and now a playwright!) who received his MFA in Acting and Voice Teacher Certificate studying with David Smukler at York University (Toronto, ON) in 2015. They have been a member of the International Actors’ Fellowship at Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre (London, UK,) an Associate with Canada’s National Voice Intensive, a faculty member of the Training Department at Shakespeare & Company (Lenox, MA,) and has previously spent 10 seasons with the Shakespeare on the Saskatchewan Festival, both on and offstage.

Grahame Kent

Read Bio

A neurodivergent Treaty 6 based theatre artist, Grahame can be found in many places in and around theatre; working as a performer, writer, producer, designer, voice artist, editor, dramaturg, foley artist, director, administrator and stage manager.
Grahame is a graduate of the University of Saskatchewan with a BFA in Acting and a graduate of the Globe Theatre Conservatory. He has received two SATAwards; one as a Foley Artist for Dr. Frightful Present: Dead Air (Buttered Ghost Theatre) and one for Artistic Excellence for It's A Wonderful Life: A Live Radio Play (Persephone Theatre)
Grahame has been seen on stages across Canada and you may have seen his work at Live Five, Persephone Theatre, The Globe Theatre, Wide Open, Shakespeare on the Saskatchewan and many more indie venues.
Grahame is the Artistic Producer of Buttered Ghost Theatre, a Treaty 6 based company that produces new and exciting work. Grahame is an active member with The Sketchy Bandits sketch comedy group.
If you like podcasts, check out Dr. Frightful Presents: A Podcast which is created, produced and curated by Grahame and created with a bundle of incredible talent. Available wherever you listen to podcasts.
Find out more at grahamekent.com

Drew Mantyka

Read Bio

Drew Mantyka (He/Him) is a Saskatoon based actor, director, playwright, physical theatre creator, and producer. Drew is also the Co-founder of Saskatoon theatre company Wonder City Collective and is the president of Live Five Independent Theatre. Drew is delighted to be doing anything related to theatre, working in the world that fills his soul. When not doing theatre Drew can be found teaching his cat to hunt toy fish, pretending to be sick for medical students and admiring pictures of baby ducks. Drew would like to thank his family and most importantly his wife and cat for supporting him in all he does.

Rachel Walliser

Read Bio

Rachel Walliser (she/her) is an emerging theatre artist juggling work as an actor, playwright, intimacy director and dramaturge originally from Swift Current, Saskatchewan. Since graduating from the University of Regina with Bachelor of Arts degree in Theatre and Performance & Women’s and Gender Studies last year, Rachel has continued learning in various capacities. She participated in the Saskatchewan Playwrights Centre’s “Reading the Compass” Dramaturgy Program, and has also trained with Theatrical Intimacy Education, Theatrical Intimacy Laboratory, and has completed Intimacy Directors and Coordinators Consent-Forward Artist Program. This year, Rachel and the team won the “Excellence in New Work”, “The Trailblazer Award”, and “The Innovation Award” SATA for her first professionally produced play Breaking the Curse (25th Street Theatre & Ferre Play Theatre). She was last seen on stage (and screen!) in “Annette is a Bimbo!” by The Women’s Company & Be Kind Rewind Productions for RISER Regina’s inaugural season with On Cue Performance Hub & Why Not Theatre. When not doing theatre, Rachel enjoys eating bagels, sleeping with her polydactyl cat Goodie Hamstring, and selling vintage clothes.

Liz Whitbread

Read Bio

Liz Whitbread (she/her) is a queer singer, actor, coach and dramaturge born and raised on Treaty One Territory in Winnipeg, Manitoba. A graduate of the University of Winnipeg Honours: Acting Program, her work has taken her across the Prairies, to Toronto and back again. Her ultimate goal is to craft a creative career that aligns with her personal values of intersectionality, accessibility, joyful engagement, and empowerment. You can see her onstage this holiday season in Persephone's 'Christmas at Pemberley'! When she's not making art, Liz loves teaching herself 90's pop songs on the ukulele, talking to her houseplants, and spending quality time with her cats Oz and Rupert.

Jennifer Dawn Bishop

Read Bio

Bio pending.

Jenna Berenbaum

Read Bio

Jenna is an actor and playwright based in Saskatoon, SK. They have worked with various theatres across the province such as Persephone Theatre, Shakespeare on the Saskatchewan, Dancing Sky Theatre, Sum Theatre, Live Five and Globe Theatre. They spend their time working on their current play 18 Jews Order Chinese Food, playing on the National Ball Hockey Team and hanging with their dog Lennon.

Kayvon Khoshkam

Read Bio

Kayvon (he/him) is the current Artistic Director of Shakespeare on the Saskatchewan, as well as an actor, director, writer and musician. Born and raised in Saskatoon, Kayvon studied at the Canadian College of Performing Arts in Victoria, BC. Kayvon has had the great fortune to work in theatres across Canada, the United States and abroad.

Many thanks to our funders!

SK Arts

Season 1 (2022-23) of The First Monday featured the following plays:

Episode 1: October 2nd, 2023 - "Sad Girls Watch the Princess Bride" by Mara Teare 
Episode 2: November 6th, 2023 - "Intergenerational" by Erin Brophy
Episode 3: December 5th, 2022 - "18 Jews Order Chinese Food" by Jenna Berenbaum
Episode 4: January 2nd, 2023 - "The Queen of Bingo" by Jennifer Dawn Bishop
Episode 5: February 6th, 2023 - "Luna" by Danielle Roy
Episode 6: March 6th, 2023 - "Infill" by Clare Middleton
Episode 7: April 3rd, 2023 - "West of Nowhere - A Western Western" by Amanda Trapp & Grahame Kent  
Episode 8: May 1st, 2023 - "SCRIPTAPALOOZA" (Excerpts from the Season)