The Future of FemFest

Sarasvati Productions_FemFest Consultation (1)

FemFest has come a long way in the past fifteen years! As our most recognizable contribution to Winnipeg’s theatre scene, FemFest has been inspiring, challenging, and transforming theatre since 2003. In that time we’ve grown from a small, grassroots festival to an eight-day showcase of female theatre artists from Winnipeg, Canada, and all over the world! We’ve nurtured countless emerging artists to help kickstart their careers, brought together artists from a wide range of disciplines for future collaborations, and amplified the voices of groups who are still underrepresented in Canadian theatre.

After so many years, we have to ask ourselves: “where do we go from here?” Where can we take FemFest that it hasn’t already gone – and where does it need to go? As part of our commitment to representing the Winnipeg theatre community, we aren’t just asking this question within our organization – we want to hear from members of the public as well!


On April 11th, we hosted a community consultation as a way to open FemFest up to a wider audience, hearing from local groups about what they needed and wanted from FemFest. This offered us the amazing opportunity to introduce ourselves to new groups and hear about what the community needs from us in the future. For some groups, this was their first time hearing about the festival and allowed us the chance to invite new members into the FemFest fold!

Cate Friesen

Facilitating this consultation was Cate Friesen. Cate is a story practitioner, trainer, and keynote presenter with twenty-five years of experience as an entrepreneur, award-winning CBC producer, documentary maker, and performer. In her work with The Story Source, she has appeared at SHEday 2018 as well as Fast Pitch 2018, teaching skills in development for organizations and telling stories of impact. In the past year she has delivered workshops and series for Canadian Mental Health Association, RCMP, QNET Manitoba, Canadian Centre for Economic Development Network and Women’s Enterprise Centre of Manitoba, and more.

The consultation isn’t complete, we want to hear from YOU – whether you’ve attended FemFest sometimes, always, or never! We’re seeking a wide range of input from related organizations as well as local artists, volunteers and patrons. Feel free to share the link with anyone you think might be interested – we want as many opinions as possible. Our goal is to start implementing smaller changes for FemFest 2018 and move on to larger updates in 2019.

Take part in our short survey and have your say in the future of FemFest. Deadline is Monday, April 30th!


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