"Fresh & Fearless."WholeNote Magazine
"...a compelling, contemporized telling of the story..."Ludwig van Toronto
ALAINA VIAU, Director and Creator (she/they)
Alaina is a daring director, creator and producer based in Toronto. She is the Founder and Executive Artistic Director of award nominated opera company Loose Tea Music Theatre where they creates genre defying productions that center on critical social issues, raising underrepresented voices and cross-cultural relationships. They are defined by seeking to push and challenge the opera experience: “The stunning originality of Viau’s vision…grip the imagination.” – Opera Going Toronto. Alaina is a queer disabled artist seeking a new framework for safe and compassionate creation processes that dismantle hierarchical practices. She is Director-in-Residence at the Nation Theatre School in 2022 and was a finalist in Crow’s Theatre national RBC Rising Star Emerging Directors Prize who “will make a strong impact on the performing arts in Canada”.
This 21-22 season Alaina is directing the fall and winter operas at Wilford Laurier University focusing on responsible presentation of traditional operas and contemporary Canadian opera performance. Alaina is co-creator for new a non-binary opera based on the story of genderfluid and trailblazing pirates, Anne Bonny and Mary Read and The Museum of the Lost and Found with Olivia Shortt. She is directing The Musical Stage Co’s One Song Glory, and a film adaptation of Emily the Way You Are, an opera about artist Emily Carr by Jana Skarecky.
History by Her
Produced by Opera Laurier in partnership with Loose Tea Music Theatre
Opera Laurier students travel through history in an exciting triple bill, including short operas by three living Canadian women composers: Monica Pearce, Cecilia Livingston, and a premiere by Ashley Seward, co-commissioned by Opera Laurier with Loose Tea Music Theatre.
Opera Laurier is thrilled to present an exciting triple bill, including productions of Monica Pearce’s Etiquette, Cecilia Livingston’s Singing Only Softly, and the exciting premiere of Ashley Seward’s Borderless, a new work co-commissioned by Opera Laurier and Loose Tea Music Theatre (LTMT). Directed by Loose Tea Music Theatre Founder and Executive Artistic Director Alaina Viau, these three stunning works are tied together to carry you through history from a female composer’s perspective. The performances will be accompanied by Music Director Emily Hamper and Opera Diploma student Marko Pejanovic. Set designer Holly Meyer-Dymny has partnered with Viau to create an incredibly versatile set, with the ability to seamlessly transform into the three strikingly different points of history the show inhabits. With costume realizations done by Inez Khan, this show promises an immersion into history through a feminine lens.
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We Just Wanna Have FUNdamental Rights
Opera Laurier explores cannonic opera scenes through our modern lens. With director Alaina Viau, they discovering how to identify problematic content and find solutions so that the works can be presented responsibly on stage.
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Loose Tea Music Theatre
A contemporary new opera scrutinizing the normalization of harassment that women face everyday. In Carmen #YesAllWomen, Loose Tea strives to give the opportunity for Carmen's story to be told through her eyes, as a strong independent woman striving and achieving within a patriarchal society and the dangers that she faces simply for doing that. This piece is based on Bizet’s Carmen with a new libretto and score for two cellos and Sound Artist. Director/Creator’s note: 'Carmen is not my favorite opera. I have always been frustrated by it: the way Carmen and Michaela are treated, the devil versus angel female characters as if we cannot be anything in between, the casual harassment and assault on stage that is treated as “funny” or tragic. It’s neither of these. It’s awful and it happens every day to women you know. This is an epidemic. I have been searching for a way to show this opera for what it is: a perpetuation of misogynistic values. The idea has been evolving for several years and I’m sure as I move through life the idea will continue to grow. This is where the idea is now with the resources I have available to me today. We need to question what values the operatic cannon is espousing. Yes, the music is wonderful, but perhaps we need to be reframing these works that reflect the values we want to see in our communities. I’ve had enough of women and people of colour (POC) being treated poorly on stage, and off. The ideas we put on stage permeate into the real world. It legitimizes the assault that women and POC face in the workplace, on the street, or just going about our daily lives. Art can change that. We need to recognize where this perspective comes from and work to change it. I hope that in this version on Carmen, you can glimpse what it might feel like to be her or recognize yourself and people you love in her. Because we all are Carmen, in some way.'
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Laurier Opera: History by Her
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- A triple bill of:
- Etiquette by Monica Pearce and John Terauds
- Singing Only Softly by Cecilia Livingston, Monica Pearce and Alaina Viau
- Borderless by Ashley Seaward, Troy DeFour and Alaina Viau
March 4 - 6
Women and Madness
March 7 - 12
Director in Residence
National Theatre School of CanadaMore Info about Director in Residence
March 14 - 30
You can reach Alaina by email, on social media, or by sending a message using the form below. Feel free to get in touch!