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Lewis, Larry

CTE photo
Larry Lewis

Actor and director Larry Lewis, was born in Toronto in 1954, and died on Wikwemikong Unceded Reserve, Manitoulin Island in 1995.

His acting career during the 1970s and 80s included such Toronto theatre productions as Streamers (Theatre Plus), The Relapse (Phoenix Theatre) and Hustling (Buddies in Bad Times). He appeared in The Gunrunner (1984) with Kevin Costner and he played Margot Kidder's son in the 1984 Franco-Canadian co-production Louisiana.

After attending the graduate theatre program at York University as a director, he co-founded the Act I.V. Theatre Company and directed The Family and Quartet by Eugene Stickland. Soon after, he met Tomson Highway and directed many productions of Highway's plays including Aria and The Rez Sisters. He directed all of the original productions of The Rez Sisters, including its first incarnation at Toronto's Native Canadian Centre in 1986, plus the productions at Factory Theatre, The Edinburgh Theatre Festival, and the cross-Canada tour. He also directed Highway’s Dry Lips Oughta Move to Kapaskasing (the 1989 Theatre Passe Muraille and the 1991 Royal Alexandra Theatre productions). He was nominated for a Dora Mavor Moore Award in 1989 for his direction of Dry Lips.

Lewis moved to the Wikwemikong Unceded Reserve on Manitoulin Island in 1987 and was the Artistic Director of De-ba-jeh-mu-jig Theatre Company for several years during which time he directed the plays of Drew Hayden Taylor (Toronto at Dreamer's Rock, Bootlegger Blues, Someday, Education is Our Right). He also directed Nanabush of the 80's by Shirley Cheechoo, Alanis King and Kennetch Charlette (which was later performed at the 1988 American Indian Film Festival in San Francisco).

Profile by Heather Wilson, Toronto

Last updated 2010-08-12