The Ghomeshi Effect Partners with OCTEVAW to Raise Awareness about Sexual Assault

TGE Dialogues to take place at The Gladstone in January

(Ottawa, ON.) Dec. 14, 2016. The creators of the new verbatim dance-theatre performance The Ghomeshi Effect in collaboration with the Ottawa Coalition to End Violence Against Women (OCTEVAW) present a free series of dialogues about sexual assault in our communities. These speaker events, called TGE Dialogues, will take place during the run of The Ghomeshi Effect at The Gladstone Theatre from January 19 to 28, 2017.

“From the very beginning, The Ghomeshi Effect has been about more than putting on a show; it is about opening a dialogue about sexual assault and raising awareness about the barriers survivors face when seeking justice,” says Jessica Ruano, creator and director of The Ghomeshi Effect. “Ottawa’s support services have been a valuable resource throughout the creation of this piece and we wanted to showcase their services and important work in the community.”

In partnership with OCTEVAW, The Ghomeshi Effect is working with other organizations, including the Ottawa Rape Crisis Centre, the Canadian Centre for Gender and Sexual Diversity, the Sexual Assault Support Centre of Ottawa and Sexual Assault Network of Ottawa, to organize eight days of free programming. Every evening before the performance, starting at 5 p.m., members of the public are invited to take part in discussions with local experts about the legal system, online harassment, rape culture, sexual assault in intersectional communities, and more. Weekend events will feature hands-on workshops with a focus on art and activism.

“This year has shown us that sexual violence and partner abuse continue to be a problem for women and LGBTTIAQ+ in our city and around the world,” says Erin Leigh, Executive Director of OCTEVAW. “We have been following Jessica’s project closely over the last few months and we are glad that she reached out to us to help coordinate this important dialogue series. Opening the conversation about what constitutes sexual assault and harassment, how we can prevent it, and the services available in our community is an essential part of ending domestic violence. Together with the performance, we believe this will motivate change in our community.”

These intimate public conversations complement the verbatim structure of the play. “Verbatim theatre uses real interviews to present personal experiences in a form of documentary theatre,” Ruano explains. “The performance gives voice to survivors using their own words and stories, to recount lived experience. Each monologue is meticulously choreographed by contemporary dancer Amelia Griffin to amplify the effects of language and violence.”

Tickets for The Ghomeshi Effect are now on sale online, by phone at (613) 233-4523 and e-mail boxoffice@thegladstone.ca. Discounts of 15 per cent are being offered for group bookings of 10 or more. In favour of inclusivity and recognizing that finances are a barrier for some, 20 free tickets are on offer each night for those who cannot afford them, and paying patrons are encouraged to pay-it-forward and purchase tickets for other members of the community.

About The Ghomeshi Effect

The Ghomeshi Effect is verbatim dance-theatre performance that uses real interviews to look at sexual assault and the justice system. More than a production, it is a grassroots initiative by Perspective Collective Theatre (PCTheatre) to unite existing social justice organizations and find creative ways to end gender-based violence and discrimination through performance and outreach.

PCTheatre believes in art as a vehicle for change and has already taken steps to continue this important conversation around sexual violence and the justice system, such as workshopping the show material in Ottawa high schools.

To request an interview or to learn more about the performance and the panel events, contact Marketing Manager Nina Jane Drystek at marketing@theghomeshieffect.com, or call 613-552-2975.

Mekdes in rehearsal for The Ghomeshi Effect

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