AlleyWaltz Artist Profiles

Opal (Jennifer) Elchuk
was born in Thunder Bay, Ontario and studied fine arts, majoring in Visual Art at York University. She moved to Peterborough in 2005 and became involved in the arts community as both a dancer and visual artist. Her love of dancing and climbing things came together when she began training aerial circus in Toronto 3.5 years ago. Opal is currently teaching aerial classes and creating performance through an artist residency at Market Hall. Recent works include Dream Catcher, Circus Dreamland and Studio, Emergency #21. She is also involved with the Peterborough Academy of Circus Arts, spearheading a budding local community of aerialists.

Kayla Stanistreet
moved to Peterborough in 2008 to study Psychology at Trent University, and stayed here for the people and the city. She has since pursued studies in yoga, mindfulness and most recently aerial silks. Like yoga, she loves that silks are expressive, empowering and a challenging physical outlet. She has been climbing aerial silks as a hobby for 1 year and hopes to pursue performance along with handstands, travel and new friendships. She is the co-owner of Salti Yoga, the first studio in Peterborough to offer aerial yoga classes.

Kenn Gibb / Without a Scratch Co.
Kenn Gibb is a home-grown theatre artist who has been trodding the boards for the past 20 years on every known and unknown stage in Peterborough. He is a martial artist who shares his extensive knowledge through Without A Scratch – a unique stage combat school he has created that provides a variety of workshops combining an array of stage combat and traditional martial arts techniques. He has recently donned the hat of producer with CrackerJack Theatre, a monthly series of surprise theatrical events at the Theatre on King.

Shelley King
is the owner and chief executive puppeteer of Puppeteria. She uses the magic of puppets as a workshop facilitator, entertainer, social change agent, educator and storyteller. Over the past two decades, Shelley has used her playful and interactive approach to teach and entertain thousands of people of all ages and abilities. She brings together her training in social work,clowning, puppetry and expressive arts to create a unique blend of workshop experiences custom-designed for each group. Her creative presentations have been enjoyed at conferences, children’s camps, women’s retreats, elementary and secondary schools, colleges, not-for-profit organizations, seniors residences, and festivals.

Naomi Duvall
is a local actor/puppeteer and burlesque dancer. She is a graduate of the Professional Theatre Acting program at John Abbott College in the west island of Montreal and is trained in giant puppet manipulation with Notre Dame de Coeur Theatre. She has most recently worked as a character usher in Brad Brackenridge’s  Vertep at the Market Hall Theatre, and before that a shadow puppeteer in Tales From Odessa a work put on by the Dora Wasserman Yiddish Theatre at the Segal Centre in Montreal.

Sarah McNeilly
Sarah McNeilly is a performing artist with an insatiable appetite for all things art. She spent a good deal of her childhood on the stage and, since moving to this magical city, has immersed herself in Peterborough’s unique and inclusive arts community. You may recognize her from several productions at The Theatre on King (most recently the SOLD OUT run of The X Files!!!) or from Public Energy’s Erring on the Mount. She is very excited to participate, for the first time ever, in the legendary Peterborough Alley Waltz! Sarah will now take this opportunity to
shamelessly promote her upcoming role of Juliet in the “Earth Premiere” of Mysterious Entity Theatre’s presentation of: “Romeo and Juliet: Superstar Ice Miners of Europa!!!”, written by Peterborough’s own Kate Story, brought to you by Public Energy (this November – be there!!).

Hilary Wear
is a performance artist, community volunteer, and facilitator of culture-grounded cooperative intergenerational games-playing and drama groups. She is Metisse, a proud Mom & long term romantic collaborator. Hilary creates original performance-based solo works and also plays well with others in initiating, supporting or collaborative roles, usually as an actor, dancer or producer. Most recently Hilary has been developing and touring a Clown character “Tootah”, who picks up trash and kindly interacts. For Alleywaltz 2015 she debuts debuts the beginnngs of Kokum: a Granny clown.

Patricia Thorne
Zupies (@zupetals) is a French clown from Northern Ontario near where Patricia Thorne was born and raised in North Bay. Patricia studied Theatre Technical Production and Design at Humber College and is a member of Canadian Actors Equity of Canada since 2002. She stage managed for Soulpepper Theatre Company, Shaw Festival, Theatre Francais de Toronto, Factory Theatre,Toronto International Film Festival, Hot Docs Canadian International Documentary Festival, Fringe Festival, Summer works and more. Over the past 16 years, Patricia has worn many different hats in the theatre industry including Operations Manager for the Market Hall here in Peterborough.