– Smash Words 2014

queer west fest rainbow

3rd annual Smash Words

Sunday August 10, 2014 @ The Press Club

7 PM to 10 PM

A night of Queer Poetry and Cabaret


Festival Sponsors

Toronto Queer Arts Festival gratefully acknowledges the support in 2014 from;  Buddies In Bad Times Theatre; The Press Club, The Sister, Open Roof Festival; Basement ArtsimagineNATIVE Film + Media Arts FestivalBar 1602  Rendezvous with Madness Film Festival DailyXtra.com and IvarDesign.com


 alec butler toronto trans poetAlec Butler

Toronto – Two spirited; Spoken  Word Artist, filmmaker and author

Alec Butler’s novella “Rough Paradise” was just published by Quattro Books. An award winning playwright, Alec’s play “Black Friday”, was a finalist for the Governor General’s Award,for English drama in 1990. Alec’s animated trilogy “Misadventures of Pussy Boy” has screened at film festivals around the world, and at the International Transgender Film Festival in Amsterdam on January 10, 2014. Where it won the Best Short/Audience favorite award.

He has also worked on artistic projects with The 519 Church St. Community Centre as their first artist-in-residence.. He is a Métis of Mi’kmaq heritage. Homepage: http://www.alecbutler.com/whitewolf/

Alec Butler at Trans Pride Toronto 2013

philip cairns toronto poet and artistPhilip Cairns

Master of Ceremonies

Toronto Ontario. Actor, poet and visual artist

Philip Cairns is best know multi-talent performer as an actor/writer/visual artist.  Philip has performed at “Plasticine Poetry” at The Central, “Oral Stage” at Paddy’s Playhouse, A Space, the Gladstone Hotel & the Theatre Centre.  He performed at “Smash Words” in 2011 and MC’d in  2012. He was one of the performers at our Bent Expressions poetry night as MC and Performer held at the The Press Club, January 2010. Later that year, Philip was MC/Performer for Queer West Fest at Lula Lounge, “Sexy Words”. Films include “Fluff”, “Most Guys Today” and “Abortion is Fun” (which played at the Cannes Film Festival). He performes regularily at The Beautiful & The Damned at The Central. A night of queer Poetry and Cabaret . Learn more about Philip at: www.philipcairns.com

Philip  reading his poem “Chesty Morgan” at Free Times Cafe in 2012

jenna harris torontoJenna Harris

Toronto – Actor, writer and dancer

Jenna  Harris is a Toronto-based actor, writer, creator, and dancer and is the founder and Artistic Producer of Discord and Din Theatre.  She is is a graduate of the American Academy of Dramatic Arts Theatre Conservatory Program in New York City, with training in acting, acting styles, dance, movement, and voice/speech. Harris, a Toronto resident of five years and a Buddies in Bad Times employee for almost as long, was inspired by the network of artists and writers she’d met in the city. “And like me,” she says, “many of these artists were struggling to be heard.” With the help of fellow artists Ronit Rubinstein and Anila Pant, Harris solidified the guidelines for City Voices, an anthology of monologues by artists and writers who live or have lived in Toronto. “  http://www.jennaharris.ca/

frank g hull professional wheelchair dancerFrank Hull

Toronto – Power chair dancer and theatre artist

Thursday July 23. We regret to inform attendees,  that Frank Hull will not be performing tonight. The show must go on and there are five other poets,  that are worthy of your  visit tonight.  ~ Philip Cairns MC.

Frank G. Hull is a power chair dancer, choreographer, singer, and theatre artist. His work interrogates the relationship between body and mobility devices in ways that challenge traditional (mis)representations of disabled people.

Frank’s career as a dancer was launched in 1999 at the Betty Oliphant Theatre in Toronto with his debut performance in THE CARETAKER. This piece was choreographed by Debbie Wilson (Artistic Director of Debbie Wilson Studios and OMO Dance Company in Toronto) and performed with dancer, Tracy Pattison. The performance garnered Frank a feature on the cover of Abilities – Canada’s leading magazine on disability issues – as well as being the subject of the lead article. He then was awarded a scholarship to train with Cleveland Ballet Dancing Wheels in Ohio.

Frank has since choreographed and performed numerous original dance performances across Ontario, as well as in New York State. He has developed both solo performances and ensemble shows, with Toronto-based artists Spirit Synott and Kazumi Tsuruoka and Ottawa-based artist Alan Shain. Frank has also performed in THE BOOK OF JUDITH, created by Michael Rubenfeld and Sarah G. Stanley and been presented at ART WITH ATTITUDE. His current work includes contributing a commissioned digital narrative to Stage Left Production’s national co-creation, HIGH ART:  DRUGS, DISABILITY AND DASTARDLY DEEDS.

Frank has developed dance instruction for people with mobility impairments, including those who use manual or power wheelchairs.  He continues to train each year with the Steffi Nossen School of Dance in White Plains, New York. Frank performed at Smash Words in 2012.


JP Larocque 2014 QWFJP Larocque

Toronto Writer and Spoken word artist.

JP Larocque is a Toronto-based writer, director, producer, and performer. He is a graduate of the University of Toronto’s Cinema Studies Institute, and an alumnus of the Bell Media Diverse Screenwriters Program and the Second City Comedy Writing Program. His award-winning web series GAY NERDS (www.gaynerds.tv) has received international press coverage and screened at numerous festivals, including Sudden Impulse, TO WebFest, LA WebFest, Vancouver WebFest, and The 2014 Inside Out LGBT Film Festival.

As a playwright, his credits include Mythmaking (NIF, Alumnae Theatre, 2011), GAY NERDS (Toronto Fringe, 2012), Fear and Desire (and the Whole Damn Thing) (Buddies in Bad Times Theatre, 2013), and the upcoming Fun with Dick (and Jane) (Buddies, 2014). When he’s not quietly toiling away on television scripts, he is also a contributing journalist for the LGBT newspaper Xtra!, or discussing his sex life (or lack thereof) as a panelist on the MTV/Logo series 1 Girl 5 Gays. You can reach JP directly at jp@gaynerds.tv or via Twitter https://twitter.com/dontwashwindows

 katie sly torontoKatie Sly

Toronto – Playwright and Actress
Katie is a bisexual playwright and performer interested in the queer and the conflicted. She has been in playwriting units at the Tarragon, the InspiraTO festival, and Buddies in Bad Times Theatre. She began her career as a performer in the Cabaret of Buddies, and wrote/performed her one-woman show Evil Love Songs with the support of that company’s Young Creators Unit.

She is part of the collective Straight Camp, and is working with them to create an all-ages show for Queer Pride 2014 called Stumble, Topple, and Stand, which she describes as “the collection of queer fairy tales I wish I’d grown up with.” Katie is an artist-in-residence with lemonTree creations this year, and with their support will be creating a pleasurepain mixtape, an experimental, autobiographical, one-woman performance which examines the relationship between pleasure, pain, and feeling present in the moment.

Friends, Sponsors and Supporters

  Gay West Community Network Inc (Queer West) was founded in 2000 and incorporated in 2008, as a not for profit organization. We are dedicated to producing performing arts festivals for the purposes of educating and advancing the public’s understanding and appreciation of performing arts and to educate artists through participation in such festivals and related workshops.

Head Office 416-879-7954 queerwestartsfestival@gmail.com

Venue Location

Public transit: 505 Dundas streetcar from St. Patrick or Dundas Subway station, get off at Bathurst St  The Club is located one block West  on North side..

The Press Club

The Details: Toronto Queer Arts Festival, 2nd annual Smash Words Poetry Festival Sunday August 10, 2014 at The Press Club 850 Dundas St. West Cover $5 from 7pm to 10 pm ( Street Map) Arts Festival Hotline: 416-879-7954

Sadly the Press Club went out of business in April 2015





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