Jillian Christmas is a queer, black writer living on the unceded territories of the Squamish, Tsleil-Waututh and Musqueam people, where she served for six years as Artistic Director of Vers?s Festival of Words. As an enthusiastic organizer and advocate in the Canadian arts community, her focus has been to increase anti-oppression initiatives in spoken word. She has executed programs in partnership with Toronto Poetry Project, The Chan Centre, Vancouver Opera, and more. Jillian has performed and facilitated spoken word workshops across the country and beyond. Her forthcoming book of poetry will be released in Spring 2020 with Arsenal Pulp Press.
NEW ARTIST for 2020-21 School Year
Grade Suitability: Grade 7-12
Duration: 1 day
Capacity: Performance: 1000 students Workshop: 30 students
Tech Requirements: 2 mics for performance/ paper, pens, tables, chairs for workshop
Fee Range: $645 - $1045 (Includes ArtStarts' fee. Additional fees apply for remote districts.)
Few of us can learn when we are in a place of fear or isolation. This idea is the basis of a presentation whose goal is to encourage understanding through modeled vulnerability and the poetic sharing of lived experience. As a child of Afro-Caribbean immigrants, the story of my being here on these territories is a complicated one. This work demands I be in right relations with myself. Without having knowledge of self, how can we show up whole to conversations of privilege, accountability or responsibility? In this presentation, I go exploring through the personal and political landscapes of my family history, queer lineage, relationship dynamics, environmental responsibility and more. I hope to model for my audiences what it looks like to mistake, learn, and grow in our knowledge of self and community, without the wounds of shame or erasure, and to come out whole on the other side.