Cast Bios

Current cast members:

Nayeli AbregoNayeli Abrego is a Toronto based singer, actress, and songwriter. Nayeli holds a Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance – Music Theatre from NYU. She was recently seen in Buddy: The Buddy Holly Story (Maria Elena / Trumpeter / Mandolinist) at the Thousand Islands Playhouse, and will reprise the role at Western Canada Theatre in February. Other credits include RuBarb Productions’ “All You Need Is Love” (Sarah Damien / Pianist / Guitarist / Ukulelist), Ragtime (Sarah), The Most Happy Fella (Marie), and 80s Solid Gold 2 (Paula Abdul/Whitney Houston/Irene Cara). Her debut album will be released this year! She also loves performing as a soloist, and she has performed her music in Canada, the USA, and Central America. Nayeli is so excited to be part of The Ghomeshi Effect and its mission. Website: | Facebook: | Instagram @nayelimusica | Twitter: @Nayeli_Musica


Leah Archambault has a Masters degree from York University in Dance, and her performance interests and background include dance/theatre, performance art and hardcore punk vocals. She has performed at Toronto’s Harbourfront Centre, Buddies In Bad Times Theatre, and in Nuit Blanche Toronto. For several years she volunteered with the Toronto Rape Crisis Centre/Multicultural Women Against Rape (TRCC/MWAR).


Elizabeth Emond-Stevenson

Elizabeth Emond-Stevenson is a franco-ontarienne artist from Orléans ON. She creates, performs, communicates and collaborates through the connections between people, places and artforms. Elizabeth has participated in adelheid’s re:research and worked with Allison Burns, Kaja Irwin, Benoit Lachambre, Jordan Samonas, Shara Weaver and Corps Bara Dance Theatre. She created/co-created works for The Annual Alberta Dance Festival, Nextfest, Dark Horse Dance Projects and The Movement Gallery. As the body behind TAKE UP SPACE she has created TAKE UP SPACE + MOONFRUITS with Ottawa band Moonfruits, little dances / petites danses and short film Theresa’s poem, presented at Skylines Dance & Film Series.

Gabrielle Lalonde

Gabrielle Lalonde is a bilingual actor, dancer, teacher, director and choreographer based in Ottawa. She performed in Théâtre du Trillium‘s movement-based piece On Verra (winner for Outstanding Production at the 2016 Rideau awards) and in Circadia Indigena‘s Greed/REsolve at the National Arts Centre | Centre National des Arts, for the Canada Dance Festival. She’s been dancing swing and blues for over ten years and has created and performed in seven original theatre productions with the company Ottawa Stilt Union using stilt walking, acrobatics, storytelling and puppetry.

Joy MJoy Mwandemange, also known as Thandie Dice, is a musical artist and actress living and working in Ottawa Ontario.  She recently made her directing debut with Taboo! Productions presentation of Edward Albee’s The Goat: Or Who is Sylvia? At Ottawa University’s Léonard-Beaulne Studio. Joy studied music at Carleton University with a specialization in Musical Theatre Voice under the instruction of Ottawa Soprano Shawne Elizabeth Beames. Past roles include Blanche Barrow in Bonnie And Clyde: The Musical (Sock N’ Buskin’), Lil’ Inez in Hairspray (Orpheus Musical Theatre Company), Titania and Hippolyta in A Midsummer Nights Dream and ensemble roles is RENT (Orpheus) and Legally Blonde: The Musical (Orpheus).


Emmanuel SimonEmmanuel Simon @EmmanuelJSimon is an-Ottawa based neo-soul jazz vocalist. He has performed across North America, in South America, and in Europe. He has performed with Josh Groban and Lyle Lovett, to name a few. Emmanuel’s classical training has also led him to perform at the historic Carnegie Hall. He has appeared on Off Broadway productions of Annie Get Your Gun, Notre Dame de Paris and 42nd Street. Ten years ago, he and Jessica Ruano worked together on the Ottawa première of Canadian Parliamentary Poet Laureate George Elliott Clarke’s jazz libretto Québecité.


Michael SwattonMichael Swatton is from the UK, moving here in early 2017. He trained at The Oxford School of Drama, graduating in 2012. Since then he has acted in professional theatre and film. He is a versatile actor who moves fluidly between different theatrical mediums, relishing in what can be learnt through the interdisciplinary crossover. Notable theatre credits include: Iago in the production of “Othello” at The Gladstone Theatre (Ottawa). Sgt Woodforde in “Dreams From The Pit” at The Palace Theatre (London, UK). Officer Haynes in “The Invisible Tour” for Raw Roads (UK). Nathan in “The Maid of Bankside” at The Jermyn Street Theatre (London, UK). Joseph White in “Ravens” for Sabotage Theatre (UK tour).

Original cast members:

Gestes 2012-1 (1)

Marc-André Charette has been working as a professional actor in Ottawa-Gatineau for the past 20 years. Recent credits include La Soupe de Kafka (Théâtre de l’Île), and Turbulences (Ottawa Dance Directive / Centre de danse contemporaine), and Écume (Théâtre du Trillium) for which he was nominated for a Rideau Award.  Within the next year, he will tour Canada with #‎PigeonsAffamés (Théâtre du Trillium). In the Fall of 2016, he will appear in two new theatre projects: Copeaux by Mishka Lavigne and Et si un soir by Lisa L’Heureux (Théâtre Rouge Écarlate). He is a keen marathon runner and foster dad.


Annie Lefebvre is evolving in a lateral fashion as a bilingual artist here and away. She works for the stage and screen, on it and behind it. Along with working as an actor in theatre (Medea, Danny and the Deep Blue Sea, The Squatter Heart, SKIN, À tu et à moi) and television (Motel Monstre, FranCoeur, Météo+) Annie works as a Makeup, Hair (Vimy Foundation, Rocky Horror Picture Show, Hedwig and the Angry Inch, In the Traces of Abraham Ulrikab) and Wig Artist (Houston Ballet, Vanity Project).  Her work has garnered her several Prix Rideau Awards nominations (The Squatter Heart, Medea, À tu et à moi). She was co-Curator of .Ism(e): Performance Cabaret for the Good, the Bad and the Weird. She is Core Member of Deluxe Hot Sauce women’s collective. 

Mekdes 3Mekdes Teshome @mektesh is a graduate of the University of Ottawa with a double major in Theatre and Sociology, This actor-director has appeared in If We Were Birds (University of Ottawa), Disillusion (Ottawa Fringe Festival), The Amazing Adventures of Pericles (A Company of Fools), and Romeo and Juliet REDUX (The Gladstone). Furthermore, she has directed Danny and the Deep Blue Sea (University of Ottawa) and Begin A Game (Toronto Fringe Festival). She can not wait to step into the world of film with her company Holy President Productions.