Kate Story interviewed by Jenn Cole

Written by Jenn Cole
Curated by Matt Jones and edited by Sanja Vodovnik

Kate Story is a writer, performer, and choreographer originally from Newfoundland. She is the 2015 recipient of the Ontario Arts Foundation’s K.M. Hunter Artist Award in theatre, and in 2005 (as part of Peterborough’s centennial celebrations) she was named one of the region’s 100 most important performing artists. In 2017 she was Dramaturge for Public Energy’s Alternating Currents program, facilitating creative processes for 8 wildly diverse artistic projects featuring over 30 artists. She is also one of the artists participating in Neighbourhood Dance Works’ exciting New Chapter dance project, bringing together over 20 Newfoundland dance artists for an innovative 3-year process with choreographers Christopher House and Anne Troake.

Kate has created nearly 20 original performance works, and created collaborative work with diverse artists, notably: theatre and dance artist Ryan Kerr (Fleshy Thud/The Theatre on King); puppeteer Brad Brackenridge (The Nervous System); Dora-award-winning musicians Rob Fortin and Susan Newman; musician Curtis Driedger; theatre director Ker Wells and musician Bill Brennan (Performances May Be Permanent); Caroline Langill (Biology as Peepshow); Martha Cockshutt, Susan Newman, Susan Spicer (The Cure Collective); theatre artists Di Gallagher and Patti Shaughnessy (Irish Stew); and many more.

She has also performed with diverse artists and companies including: Chartier Danse, 4th Line Theatre, R. Murray Schafer, Atlas Moves Watching Dance Projects/Bill James, mysterious entity, Nightwood Theatre/Alisa Palmer, Bananafish Productions/Kelly Thornton, DNA/Hillar Liitoja, Ground Zero Productions/Don Bouzek, Caravan Stage Company, and many others. In 2005, as part of Artsweek, she co-created and co-directed Dancin’ in the Streets with Bill James, a public participation outdoor dance incorporating Peterborough’s downtown streets and involving over 75 community participants.

Kate’s third novel This Insubstantial Pageant came out with ChiZine Publications in 2017; the Toronto Star named it a top SF pick. Her first novel Blasted received the Sunburst Award for Canadian Literature of the Fantastic’s honourable mention, and was longlisted for the ReLit Awards. Her short fiction been a finalist in the CBC Literary Awards, included in World Fantasy Award and Aurora Award nominated collections, and published in Imaginarium 4: Best Canadian Speculative Writing (CZP). In 2018/19 her first YA fantasy novel comes out in two parts as Antilia: Sword and Song and Antilia: Seer and Sacrifice with ChiTeen.

Kate is a founding member of Peterborough DanceWorks, and a Board member of the Electric City Culture Council and the Peterborough Theatre Users’ Group. Kate is an active member of the Writers’ Union of Canada, and the Writers’ Alliance of Newfoundland and Labrador. She presents regularly at speculative fiction literary conventions, academic settings, and public readings. She has a BA Honours (Cultural Studies) from Trent University.

Kate was co-artistic director and administrator of multidisciplinary festivals A Certain Place: The Bernie Martin Festival (2016), and Precarious: the Peterborough ArtsWORK Festival (2017), which each involved over 75 regional artists and non-arts partners including unions, mental health professionals, front-line social workers, and activists. In partnership with Electric City Culture Council and the Trent Community Research Centre, Kate helped spearhead the first-ever survey of Peterborough artists in 2017-18.