Ondinnok congratulates Yves, our artistic director

Thursday 09 March 2017

Yves Sioui Durand wins The Governor General’s Performing Arts Award (GGPAA) 2017 in the ‘Lifetime Artistic Achievement in Theatre’ category

Montreal, March 9, 2017 – Ondinnok congratulates Yves Sioui Durand, of the Huron-Wendat nation, recipient of The Governor General’s Performing Arts Award in the Lifetime Artistic Achievement Category (theatre) – one of the most prestigious national prizes in the field awarding artists for their lifetime achievement and for their exceptional contribution to the performing arts in Canada. Yves Sioui Durand is the first Aboriginal artist to receive the award in the Theatre category, the sixth Aboriginal artist in Canada awarded in the Performing Arts category and the second Aboriginal artist from Quebec to be awarded a GGPAA. A prize both paying tribute to an outstanding achievement and recognizing the significance of contemporary Aboriginal Francophone dramaturgy in Canada.

Yves Sioui Durand, author, actor, director, and filmmaker is, with Catherine Joncas, co-founder of Ondinnok, the first Aboriginal francophone theatre company in Canada within which, since 1985, he created his work. Bearing an incomparable voice, he aimed at showcasing the distinct imaginations born from the theatrical heritage of the First Nations in Canada and the Americas. His truly extraordinary journey is one of authenticity and is marked by the awareness of opening new directions through work that goes beyond classical dramaturgy and liberates an original reading of the Aboriginal from the past to the present.

“This is an important honour for me and for all who accompanied me on my dreams; and for all those who will follow. I am happy that my artistic approach has been recognized. It is this approach that has guided me towards my ancestors”, Yves Sioui Durand stated at the announcement of the award.

At the helm of the outstanding work during his thirty years as Artistic Director of the Ondinnok theatre company, Yves has given birth to more than 18 works and has directed 27 including He Who Bears the Grief of the World (1985), Iwouskéa and Tawiskaron (1999), Hamlet the Maliseet (2004) Xajoj tun-rabinal achi (2010) and A World that Comes to an End – Lola (2015). The Governor General’s Performing Arts Award adds to the other distinctions the artist has received over the years including the Dr Bernard Chagan Assiniwi Prize for Lifetime Achievement presented by LAND InSights – Présence Autochone: Montréal First Peoples Festival (2008) and the Americanity Prize from the Festival de théâtre des Amériques (1985).

A theatre of research and creation, Ondinnok – a Huron word meaning: ‘a theatrical healing ritual that reveals the secret desire of the soul’ – has, since its founding, focussed its work on the distinctive mythologies and cosmologies of the Aboriginal peoples. From April 1st to June 22nd 2017, Ondinnok will present, on stages throughout Montreal, its Aboriginal Spring of Art THREE including multidisciplinary artistic programs and a ‘State of Affairs’ on the conditions of Aboriginal Arts in Quebec.



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Media: Marie Marais

514-845-2821 – marais@cooptel.qc.ca