Monday, May 15, 2017 | 7 PM | FREE
Small World Music Centre | Artscape Youngplace, 180 Shaw Street

Inspired by our upcoming production of Joshua Harmon’s “exhilaratingly abrasive” play Bad Jews (Daily Telegraph), this edition of Koffler Salon explores questions of cross-cultural identities, and what it means to be a disruptor as an artist.

Featuring performer Rebecca Applebaum who will discuss her role as the “wonderfully flawed” Daphna in Bad Jews, and how her mixed-race identity adds another essential layer to her work; interdisciplinary artist Ella Cooper who will discuss her work exploring themes of identity, Canadian diaspora, embodied landscapes, arts for social change plus representations of the Black female body art; and musician/actor Michael Louis Johnson, whose simple act of busking with his trumpet from a parking spot disrupts people’s day with the sound of music. Hosted by Nick Hutcheson.


Rebecca Applebaum is a performer, playwright and director. As an actor her credits include Odd Squad (TVO/PBS), The Best Plan for Living Happily (QuestionMark-Exclamation), Last Chance Texaco (CFC Teaser), Saving Hope (E1), Earth to Avery (TIFF Kids), Hailstorm (CFC), Robert’s Circle (Electric Train), Covert Affairs (Universal), Family Story, The Physical Ramifications of Attempted Global Domination, Dead Wrestlers, and 36 Plays About  (Cahoots – Dora nomination). As a playwright, she wrote Complex (Koffler – SummerWorks Honourable Mention for New Performance Text, included on the49list.com) and co-wrote Don’t Look (Steady State – Fringe, Next Stage), a two-hander about a pair of cousins who get caught kissing in the basement of a shiva house. Upcoming: directing Julia Lederer’s Reality Theatre. Rebecca has an MA in English from the University of Toronto, studies acting at LS&CO, and also has a background in music and songwriting.

Ella Cooper is an award-winning interdisciplinary artist, photographer, filmmaker, impact producer and community programmer based in Toronto. Her creative work explores themes of mixed race identity, Canadian diaspora, reclamation, embodied landscapes, ecstatic nudes, arts for social change plus representations of the Black female body in Western art and visual culture. Her work has been presented in galleries, public spaces, festivals and for broadcast across Canada, with upcoming shows in Berlin and Los Angeles. She receives continued support from the Canada Council and Ontario Arts Council, as well as being a recipient of a City of Vancouver award, a 2017 TAC Cultural Leader and a recent artist in residence at the Banff Centre for the Arts. Ella is also known for creating and facilitating transformational leadership, equity and arts empowerment programs for diverse communities in Canada, US, Jamaica and South Africa. She has been a featured speaker and guest facilitator for national and international conferences and was invited by NYU to speak at the Black Portraitures Conference in Florence, Italy and Open Engagement in Chicago.