Hamilton Fringe

Now in its 18th season, the Hamilton Fringe creates a platform for independent, emerging, and established theatre artists in Hamilton.

2020 Monologue SLAM and Theatre P. D. Day

Hamilton Monologue SLAM and *NEW* Theatre P. D. Day!

Every year, the ALERT Team presents the annual Hamilton Monologue SLAM, a fundraising event for Frost Bites. This year, in partnership with Theatre Aquarius, the Hamilton Fringe is proud to introduce workshops and daytime events: Theatre P. D. Day. Buy tickets or register now!

Hamilton Monologue SLAM

The 2020 Monologue SLAM will be held at Theatre Aquarius on Saturday, March 7th, 2020 at 7pm.

Tickets are $10, available at the door or online. All proceeds go towards the production of Frost Bites, Hamilton’s only site-specific winter theatre festival. Check out this year’s highly successful festival, recently held at the Hamilton Waterfront Trust Centre: http://hamiltonfringe.ca/frost-bites-2020/.

How It Works (Applicants):
In round one, selected performers will be given three minutes to perform a published monologue of their choice and receive feedback from the judges. The judges will choose three performers to compete in round two, where they will have an opportunity to incorporate their feedback and perform again. Audience members will vote to decide which of the final three performers will be crowned Hamilton’s Monologue Slam Champion!

All applicants to the Monologue Slam will be granted FREE ENTRY to the evening’s event (if you complete the application form online and submit the fee, you will be added to the guest list). Scroll down to the bottom of the page to apply.

For Audience Members:
A night of live theatre, including some behind-the-scenes action. Ever wonder how an actor learns all those lines, what it means to work with a director, what it must feel like to adjust in the moment and in front of a live audience? Come watch Hamilton’s finest emerging and established actors tackle it all in this year’s Monologue SLAM!

This event is open to all ages, although some of the monologues may not be child-friendly (content is not screened in advance).

Theatre Aquarius is a fully accessible venue.

Meet Our Judges

Our first member of the panel of judges is one of Canada’s most accomplished playwrights, Donna-Michelle St. Bernard.

Donna-Michelle St. Bernard

Donna-Michelle St. Bernard is an emcee, playwright, and arts administrator. Her work has been recognized with a Siminovitch Prize nomination, SATAward nomination, the Herman Voaden Playwriting Award, the Enbridge playRites Award, a Dora Mavor Moore Award for Outstanding New Play, a residency at the National Arts Centre, and two nominations for the Governor General’s Literary Award for Drama. She is the current artistic director of New Harlem Productions.


Our second judge, Matt White, is the Co-Founder and Artistic Director of Green Light Arts.

Matt White

Matt is an arts professional with over fifteen years of experience working as a director, actor, dramaturg, educator and theatre producer. For five years, Matt was the Associate Producer and then General Manager of multiple award-winning Necessary Angel Theatre Company, and has also held administrative positions with The Company Theatre and Factory Theatre in Toronto and Theatre & Company in Kitchener. As an actor, his work included 3 seasons performing with Theatre & Company in Kitchener-Waterloo. Matt has an extensive list of directing credits, including “Will You Be My Friend”, recently produced at Theatre Passe Muraille, and commissioned, in addition to providing original dramaturgy on, “Guarded Girls” by Charlotte Corbeil-Coleman (Dora Mavor Moore Award, Best New Play). As an instructor, Matt has taught at the University of Waterloo’s Drama and Speech Communication program, National Theatre School of Canada, and Sheridan College/University of Toronto at Mississauga. Matt holds a Masters in Theatre from the University of Toronto’s Graduate Centre for the Study of Drama and is a member of the Canadian Actors’ Equity Association.
Our final panelist is Theatre Aquarius‘ Artistic Director Ron Ulrich.

Ron Ulrich

For the last decade, Ron Ulrich has led Theatre Aquarius as the AD, and has directed some of their most popular productions including the recent production of “Sweat” as well as past favourites “The Mousetrap”, “The Last Romance”, “Tuesdays With Morrie”, “The Rocky Horror Show” and “Buddy: The Buddy Holly Story”. Prior to coming to Theatre Aquarius, Mr. Ulrich spent eight seasons as Artistic Director of Halifax’s Neptune Theatre; Executive and Artistic Director of the Mayfield Theatre in Edmonton, AB (1994-2000); Artistic Director of the Muskoka Festival, Gravenhurst, ON (1992-1994); Artistic Director of Stage West Canada (1985-1993); and Artistic Director of Huron Country Playhouse in Grand Bend, ON (1983-1985). As a guest director Mr. Ulrich has directed shows across Canada at such venues as the Bastion Theatre, Citadel Theatre, Theatre New Brunswick, Kawartha Festival, Bathurst Street Theatre, Press Theatre, Persephone Theatre, Sudbury Theatre Centre, Sunshine Festival, Guelph Centre for the Arts, Oakville Centre for the Arts, Teller’s Cage, as well as the Ensemble Theatre in Cincinnati, and the Thorndyke Theatre in England. Mr. Ulrich holds a Bachelor of Arts (with Great Distinction) from the University of Saskatchewan and is a graduate of the National Theatre School of Canada. He has won the Canada Council, Theatre Ontario, and Saskatchewan Arts Awards.

Theatre Aquarius is a presenting partner of the 2020 Monologue Slam.

Scroll down to apply!

NEW for 2020: Theatre P. D. Day!

This year, the Hamilton Fringe is pleased to partner with Theatre Aquarius to offer a full day of professional development opportunities for local theatre artists, concluding with the annual Hamilton Monologue Slam.

The day kicks off with a clown workshop led by Canadian theatre legend Leah Cherniak.

Leah Cherniak

Theatre maker, Director, Actor and Teacher. Leah Cherniak is the Co-Founder, with Martha Ross, of Theatre Columbus (now Common Boots Theatre) in Toronto. and has been a Resident Artist with Soulpepper years where she acted, directed and taught. Leah studied theatre at Ecole Jacques Lecoq in Paris. Most recently: Co-created and co-directed Here are the Fragments, a multi-media immersive theatre piece at The Theatre Centre and directed The Ward Cabaret at The Harbourfront Centre. For Soulpepper, she performed in Wedding at Aulis (dir Alan Dilworth)  and Animal Farm (dir. Ravi Jain). For Theatre Columbus (Common Boots) she performed in and directed most of the company’s devised repertoire, including the multi-award winning published play, The Anger in Ernest and Ernestine.  Leah created and played the role of Jelly in The Attic, The Pearls and 3 Fine Girls, another published and often produced play.  She also directed Hotel Loopy, Twelth Night and Gynty (an adaptation of Peer Gynt) among many other plays and new works. Other directing highlights: For The National Arts Centre; Happy Days by Samuel Beckett; Past Perfect by Michel Tremblay and Rune Arlidge by Michael Healey at The Tarragon Theatre; The Barber of Seville, (adapted by Michael O’Brien) Soulpepper; The Diary of Anne Frank and The Miracle Worker at Young People’s Theatre and I, Claudia by Kristen Thomson at The Segal Centre in Montreal and Thousand Islands Playhouse. Leah teaches Clown at The Ryerson Theatre Program and Directing at The University of Toronto. She also works annually for The Shoe Project, a boundary crossing writing project, coaching women to perform their stories of immigrating to Toronto.

Acclaimed playwright, actor, and producer Andrea Scott will lead a playwriting workshop in the afternoon.

Andrea Scott

Andrea Scott is a professional actor, playwright & producer who has written Eating Pomegranates Naked, Better Angels: A Parable, Swings & Roundabouts, Frenemies, Princesses Don’t Grow on Trees, Don’t Talk to Me Like I’m Your Wife, Every Day She Rose (co-written with Nick Green), and, most recently, Controlled Damage. Better Angels: A Parable is available for download on CBC Podcast and in a collection of plays of the same name. Upcoming: One Week Writers’ Residency on the Pico Islands, Azores through MiratecArts. More info at www.callmescottyproductions.com.

Following the workshops, we invite everyone to join us at a Theatre Speed Dating event from 5-6:30pm, giving YOU the opportunity to mix-and-mingle with Hamilton’s theatre powerhouses. See full event details in the schedule below.

Full Schedule: Workshops & Events

Workshop: “Lecoq: Red Nose Clown”, 10am-1pm

Instructor: Leah Cherniak

Lecoq Physical Theatre training includes as a cornerstone, the Clown. Master teacher Leah Cherniak will introduce you to the smallest mask in the world: The red nose.

Clown has a unique poetic potential because it allows the artist to explore and play with the naiveté of the child and the rigor of the adult.

Encouraging vulnerability and a playful spirit, we will gently approach some joy, some terror and perhaps some fun!

Workshop: “Writing’s Easy, Writing Well is Hard”,

Instructor: Andrea Scott

From Andrea: “Writing a play isn’t a sprint. It’s a long process that may result in anxiety, self-doubt, euphoria, and sometimes, procrastination-fueled cleaning frenzy of your apartment.

In this workshop, I will attempt to help you organize your thoughts, structure, and focus on the story you want to tell.”

Event: Theatre Speed Dating, 5pm-6:30pm

If you can’t make it to the workshops, how about our Theatre Speed Dating event? Meet local producers, playwrights, actors, and theatre-makers, and use your time to pitch yourself, your next show, ask questions! (Note: this is a speed-dating-style event, but the matchmaking will be purely artistic.)

Artists in attendance include some of Canadian theatre’s greatest Hamiltonians: Anna Chatterton (playwright and two-time nominee for the Governor General’s Award), Matthew MacFadzean (Stratford Festival actor, playwright, screen writer, and founder of Hamilton’s Industry), Karen Ancheta (performer, storyteller, and educator, co-AD of Porch Light Theatre), Marilo Nunez (playwright, director, and former Artistic Director of Alameda Theatre), Trevor Copp (Artistic Director of Tottering Biped Theatre), Colette Kendall (solo performer, Artistic Director of The Staircase), Joe Pagnan (designer and scenographer), Lorna Zaremba (Executive Director of Theatre Aquarius), and Juno Rinaldi (star of Workin’ Moms on CBC, Co-Artistic Director of Hamilton Film Centre).

This is a FREE event from 5-6:30pm, and will be a great warm-up to the Monologue Slam at 7pm. Come on down!

Event: Hamilton Monologue Slam, 7pm

Watch Hamilton’s best and brightest emerging and established actors share monologues, receive feedback from the judges, and see who will be named the ultimate Monologue Slam Champion!

Judging panel: Donna-Michelle St. Bernard, Ron Ulrich, Matt White.

Ticketing Info
• Workshops: $25 each
• Monologue Slam: $10
• Theatre P. D. Day Pass: $50 for both workshops, Speed Dating and the Monologue Slam (as a spectator)!

Buy now!



Theatre P. D. Day/the Monologue SLAM is supported by the Incite Foundation for the Arts.