Arts Court hosting first ever UPROAR

Alva Graham will perform in You’re Never Fully Dressed ... without a smile, choreographed by Allison Elizabeth Burns.

They are all in an UPROAR at Arts Court this week.

That’s because a new three-day multidisciplinary arts festival, that has been founded because of a desire to see more diverse voices on stage, is about to open showcasing the work of cis/trans women and non-binary artists.

In this first UPROAR, 11 local artists will be on stage in the Arts Court Theatre. There will be a variety of disciplines from textile art and paintings to burlesque, improv, dance and comedy made by womxn on view from Aug. 8 to 10.

Here are the participants.

Dangerous Curves Burlesque is Ontario’s only plus size burlesque show. The goal of  Dangerous Curves is to demonstrate the diverse range of large-bodied performers. 

Speaking Vibrations is a multi-disciplinary work in music, movement, rhythm tap dance, spoken word, song and ASL song/poetry featuring Ottawa-based spoken word artist, singer and instrumentalist King Kimbit, deaf artist and sign language performer Jo-Anne Bryan, rhythm tap artist and sign-language interpreter Carmelle Cachero and contemporary dance artist and choreographer Jordan Samonas.

Aiden Javed presents Comedy of Terrors which touches on issues of race, gender, the immigrant experience and violent non-state actors.

Kimberly Sunstrum is a Queer, Afro-Canadian singer-songwriter from the Ottawa-Gatineau region. Performing with drummer-percussionist Kira Montfort, they put on a high energy, dynamic performance of original music.

With music by the composer Nicole Lizée, choreographer Allison Elizabeth Burns presents You’re Never Fully Dressed … without a smile, which is a contemporary dance solo featuring Alva Graham. It explores the phenomenon of people (mostly women) smiling at the people (mostly men) who sexually harass them. 

Bad Name Improv is Hayley Robateau and Christina Muehlberger who deliver impromptu sets that are funny and emotionally invested. 

Priyanka Gopalkista presents an autobiographical dance experience called A South African Homecoming which follows her life from growing up in South Africa to her emigration to Newfoundland and on to Ottawa.

UPROAR also features visual art by: 

Lucky Little Queer isa bisexual non-binary artist named KJ. They create visual art that is geared towards queer and trans people with a feminist and sex-positive focus.

Art in Jest‘s Brenda Dunn will spend each day sketching performances and audience members that will be shared on social media.

Kim Valentine

will present The Witching Tree which will see fibre vulvas placed in the branches of a tree over the summer. Each Woolva carries a wish that “women can find comfort and love in their own bodies” and each acknowledges “what women have faced for being powerful and outspoken.

Spurphie celebrates and challenges ideas of femininity. Her works portray traditionally feminine elements that bridge the gap between a cartoon world and the experiences of real women.

For tickets and information about times please see

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Peter Robb began his connection with the arts community in Ottawa in the mid-1980s when he was the administrator and public relations director of the Great Canadian Theatre Company. After a long career in journalism with the Ottawa Citizen where he served in a number of different posts he returned to the arts when he became the Citizen's arts editor.