Leonard McHardy on Daniel MacIvor and da da kamera
only 39 years of age, Daniel MacIvor has created a body of work as playwright, actor
and director in both theatre and film that distinguishes him as one of Canada's true
"creative geniuses". His commitment to, and his belief in, the pure act
of creation is evident throughout his work. It is that belief that prompted Daniel
along with his producer Sherrie Johnson to form their company da da kamera in 1986.
Since that time the company has created a range of work that has been seen around
the world and caught the fascination of audiences across his native Canada. Part
of da da kamera's mandate states "... we believe in the life, breath and spontaneity
of the work and reject the decorative and formulaic in order to develop the essential
connection: the clear and simple exchange of energy between the performer and the
In fact Daniel has said that the work he does is all about belief, "on so
many levels: belief which means respect: for the work, for the audience; belief which
means faith -- which is not about answers but about failure, miserable, magnificent,
magical failure on the road to a town called Something Like Understanding; belief
which means meaning -- by believing in something we create and allowing it to thrive
-- or not and then wither and die; belief which means power -- and with that power
the ability to make a difference."
Daniel's work has an enormous appeal for young people who become engaged with
both his characters and more importantly the ideas they present.They feel that strength
of belief and in a world " where there seems to be progressively less and less
to believe in", Daniel's work inspires thought and discussion.
As Daniel states in his Artistic Director's statement: " Let us believe in
the theatre, let us celebrate it and become part of it."
As his newest work, You Are Here, opens at Theatre
Passe Muraille in Toronto, Daniel is already " in development"
on a new work with the Wexner Center for the Arts in Ohio, a new one man show with
Usine C in Montreal and in pre-production on his first feature film: Past Perfect.
Much lauded internationally, and a recipient of numerous awards in Canada, we
cherish the artist and his world which the late Canadian playwright Carol Bolt described
as " a world where, when answers are riddles, we can still say, Ah, yes, of
course. And it's a world where we can make a difference."
The following plays by Daniel MacIvor are published and available at TheatreBooks:
2-2 Tango A-Two-Man-One-Man-Show (In: Making,Out Plays by Gay Men);
Here Lies Henry; House
Humans; In On It; Marion
Bridge; Monster; Never
Swim Alone and This Is A Play; See Bob Run & Wild Abandon;
Soldier Dreams; TheatreOmaha's Production
of The Sound of Music (In: Rhubarb o'Rama)
By Daniel MacIvor
Three women in their 30s come home to Cape
Breton to be with their dying mother. An intimate, swiftly moving family drama. $15.95.
Daniel MacIvor & Daniel Brooks
Monster, a one man play begins in the
total darkness of a movie theater. After a long silence, someone in the audience
shushes his neigbour, and the show begins. $12.95.
The Soldier Dreams
A play about love and death, family and meaning. Winner of two Dora Mavor Moore Awards.
" Daniel MacIvor's plays have been labeled everything from postmodern to metatheatrical,
but these are cold terms that do nothing to capture the warm, accessible soul of
a writer whose honesty and compassion for both audiences and his characters is at
the heart of all his work, including The Soldier Dreams." -- Variety.
Winner of the 1991 Chalmers Canadian Play Award, House centres around Victor and
his short takes on the walking wounded that illustrate man's inhumanity to himself.
In On It
A spiralling narrative about a dying man trying to make plans for the end, a pair
of lovers trying to make it work and two men trying to make a play. "...in addition
to being immensely entertaining, it also happens to challenge our perceptions of
reality, identity and evanescence of existence." -- Philadelphia Inquirer.
Here Lies Henry
Daniel MacIvor and Daniel Brooks
A man alone in a room with a mission to tell you something you don't already know.
"A dazzling impressive combination of off-the-wall contemplation, mordant wit,
and razor-sharp timing." -- The Independent, London, UK. $12.95.
Never Swim Alone & This Is A Play
Two from MacIvor, one a competition and the other a play about a play. $11.95.