MEET THE MAKERS
Quote Unquote Collective is a Toronto-based multi-disciplinary performance company that aims to work outside the boundaries of tradition and expectation. Engaging with urgent social and political themes, the company is founded on the firm belief that art and performance are tools to provoke conversation and change. Co-founders Amy Nostbakken and Norah Sadava, who both have a strong background in physical theatre and music, have joined forces to produce work in a variety of genres and disciplines as a means to make new, experimental, and provocative performance work that ignites conversation within the community and the world at large. Defying conventions of style and form, the collective is built on the idea that individual ideas demand to be expressed through different forms, and should be expressed by whatever means necessary.
Amy Nostbakken Co-artistic director of Quote Unquote Collective and a core member of the international company Theatre Ad Infinitum. An award-winning playwright, performer and musician now based in Toronto, Amy graduated from Concordia University with a degree in Theatre Studies in 2005 and then trained for two years at École Internationale de Théatre Jacques Lecoq in Paris. She has co-written numerous award-winning productions including First Class - Edinburgh Festival Fringe 2009. She co-wrote, composed and performs the one-woman show The Big Smoke - Edinburgh 2010 followed by a three month national tour of the UK and a North American debut at Factory Theatre. The Big Smoke was the winner of an Argus Angel Award at the 2011 Brighton Fringe, nominated for a 2012 Dora for Outstanding Performance by a Female, a 2011 Manchester Theatre Award for Best Studio Performance and picked up the award for Best International show at the Solo United Festival award in New York City. She performed in Ad Infinitum's smash hit Ballad of the Burning Star (2014) and was musical director and performer in Bucket List (2016). Since returning to Canada Amy has co-devised Everyday is a beautiful day/nichi nichi kore ko nichi (Cohort Theatre/ Rhubarb Festival 2012), performed in Erin Shield’s Barrel Crank (SummerWorks 2012) and Philip Mckee’s LEAR (Harbourfront's World Stage 2013/Magnetic North 2014). Amy directed, co-wrote, composed and performed in Mouthpiece which premiered at The Theatre Centre April 2015. Mouthpiece won Dora Wards for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble and Outstanding Sound Composition/Design. Currently Amy is developing Quote Unquote’s next show – Now You See Her. Amy teaches theatre for both adults and young people.
Norah Sadava Co-artistic director of Quote Unquote Collective, is a Toronto-based actor and creator with a background in devised physical theatre. A graduate of the MFA program at the Dell’Arte International School of Physical Theatre in Blue Lake, California, she has been involved in the writing and creation of new work with numerous companies both in Canada and internationally. Upon completion of her MFA, Norah co-founded The Hinterlands Ensemble in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. With The Hinterlands she co-wrote the acclaimed party/play Isaac Newton is Our DJ, and Manifest Destiny! (There was blood on the saddle). From there she moved to New York, where she collaborated with several companies including Mud/Bone Collective as a co-writer on Star Alarm, TeatroIATI on La Strada, and interned with PunchDrunk’s immersive smash hit Sleep No More. Norah then went on to tour as a performer in Italy with Caravan Stage Theatre’s Uprising! and finally returned to Canada where she began to collaborate with several Toronto-based companies. Norah has assisted in co-creating 5-time Dora nominated The Double with BadNewDays (co-produced with the Tarragon Theatre), Dora-nominated The Tale of a T-Shirt with FIXTPoint Theatre, Bloody Family with Philip McKee (in association with The Theatre Centre), and The Stranger with DopoLavoroTeatrale (Summerworks 2014). Norah co-wrote, created, and performed in Mouthpiece which premiered at The Theatre Centre April, 2015. Mouthpiece has since received nine Dora nominations, three wins, the Toronto Theatre Critics Award for Best Canadian Play, a National tour, two runs at Buddies in Bad Times Theatre, a private showing in Los Angeles sponsored by Jodie Foster, an International tour starting with the Edinburgh Fringe Festival where it won multiple awards, and it has just been adapted into a feature film with acclaimed Canadian director, Patricia Rozema. Currently Norah is developing Quote Unquote’s next show – an all female Rock opera.
Photographer: Brooke Wedlock