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Emergency Artists Bio's and Interviews

Get to know our Emergency performers a bit better.


From the Examiner: an interview with Penelope Thomas of Certain Days, Program A:  link

In interview with Kate Story of Insomnia Program D and Terror and Erebus Program E, by Estelle Jordaan: link



Program A

Lester Alfonso
Lester: Award-winning documentary filmmaker Lester Alfonso's films "Trying to Be Some Kind of Hero" (Best New Movie-Maker) and The National Film Board of Canada's "Twelve" (Reel Diversity Winner) are both noted for their emotional content blended with a unique cinematic style. He's been producing videos for over ten years starting with his first short film "The Best Waitress in the World" (CBC) then going on to direct and edit music videos and commercials for Nickelodeon and Coca-Cola, among others. Recently, his work has expanded to integrate performance with live video design (which includes large-scale architectural video mapping projects) while he continues to find new ways to tell his stories through some unlikely ways like a photography blog or programming an all-ukulele radio show every week.

Penelope Thomas
Certain Days, 1955 was Betty-Ann's prettiest year
Penelope Thomas lived in Peterborough from 1993-2003, when she grabbed her BA from Trent and her several years working and teaching with Public Energy, and ran off to New York City. She trained at the Merce Cunningham Studio and freelanced for five years. Since being kicked out of dance by a back injury in 2008, Penelope kept both her morale and her artist’s visa by studying music with Mark Wade at The Singer’s Forum and acting at the Deena Levy Theatre Studio. Credits include reading for poet Anne Carson at the Whitney Museum, Rupert Wates’ Joe’s Café, Mikel Rouse’s End of Cinematics and Dennis Cleveland, FauveMuseum at Symphony Space, Cecilia Copeland’s March Madness at the Ensemble Studio Theatre, ‘Rosa’ in Salma Allam Dance Theater’s Things My Mother Taught Me, and ‘Gail’ in Sharon Talbot’s True Love in the Estrogenius Festival. She is currently singing back-up for current incarnations of original do-wop groups including The Chaperones and Vito and the Salutations, most of which involves going to Long Island and listening to old dudes curse at each other in Italian.


Christy Stoten
It's a Cover/ Program C
The lure of glittery costumes brought Christy Stoeten to dance class at the age of three in Peterborough, Ontario.  This start has taken her to numerous performances and competitions throughout North America.  Christy is a graduate of The School of Toronto Dance Theatre, in the Professional Training Program.  During her studies at The School she worked with acclaimed Canadian choreographers, including:  Allison Cummings, Danny Grossman, D.A. Hoskins, Sasha Ivanochko and James Kudelka.

Christy is an Independent Dance Artist in Toronto, where she has had the pleasure of working with a variety of choreographers and companies including: Company Blonde Dance Projects, Kemi Projects, Meryem Alaoui (Soft Matter), Bone Gossip Dance Theatre, Typecast Dance, Meagan O’Shea, Irit Amichi and Lady Janitor.  She has studied on scholarship with Dancetheatre David Earle and Dancemakers.

During the summer of 2012 Christy choreographed a dance on nine robotic windsocks for the Luminato festival in Toronto.  She has also presented her choreography through Public Energy in Peterborough, The Creative Republic and IMPEL in Toronto.    Christy is currently a faculty member at the Swansea School of Dance in Toronto’s West end, where she teaches modern and tap to children.

Deborah Harrison
The Beauty of a Woman/Program D

Deborah Harrison, choreographer & Celtic dancer

Deborah is professionally trained in classical and modern dance, and a graduate from both the Dance Teaching Program at Ryerson and Fine Arts at York University. She has also studied a variety of styles from many cultural traditions throughout her life and believes dancing is a natural and beautiful part of being human. Deborah teaches and performs in Peterborough and can be contacted, along with the other dancers in the group, at

Anna Simone Tennent-Riddell, West-African dancer,  is an artist, musician, and dancer who has been involved in a number of cross-cultural works of theatre and dance through Trent University's Indigenous Performance Initiatives, The Weaverbird Collective, and Drothia Dance Company. Anna has been a member of the Resolutionaries Marimba Band since 2009 and has taught drumming at the Peterborough Women’s Drum Circle, Milkweed Preschool, and Building the Circle Project providing workshops in schools. She also teaches yoga and zumba and is currently completing a Masters in Social Work at York University.

Camina Harrison-Chery, Hip Hop dancer,  has studied several dance styles at studios in Montreal and Peterborough, particularly A Frost Dance Experience where she was a competitive dancer. Her passion though is Hip Hop, and she regularly choreographs performances for herself and friends at her local school. Camina is finishing Grade 12 this year and is looking forward to traveling and studying languages in university next year.

Gaya Jayasinghe, Sri Lankan Traditional dancer, has studied and practiced Sri Lankan Up Country Dance or “Kandyan” dance for many years. She has performed in many different countries and seizes opportunities to perform whenever she has time. She is very excited to introduce Sri Lankan traditional dance to her new city, Peterborough, and you can invite her to perform at your upcoming event. Gaya can be contacted at

Jasmine June Cabanaw, Belly dancer,  did her early training in jazz and hip hop but at 23 discovered tribal fusion belly dance in San Francisco and knew she was home. She has studied under Jill Parker and Amina Goodyear, and has been trained in American Tribal Style, tribal fusion, Turkish Roma, Turkish cabaret, as well as Egyptian, including the use of sword, zils, veil, cane, and feathered fans. While in Berlin in 2009, she joined Zadiel Sasmaz's company, "Zadiraks" and continues to be a satellite member of the dance ensemble. Jasmine also combines her passion for writing with her love of dance.

Mayelin Lovet, Afro-Cuban dancer, trained as a professional dancer in Cuba, where she danced for Nacional Folklore Ensamble in Havana for 7 years. Since coming to Peterborough, she has taught numerous styles including Latin Ballroom, rumba, modern, and African and West Indian folk dance. Last year, Mayelin performed at the Ode’min Giizis Festival with visiting Cuban music sensations “Granma Group”. She teaches at Studio 505 and can be reached at



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