Centre for Indigenous Theatre

Coordinates: 43°38′53″N 79°23′41″W / 43.64792°N 79.39478°W / 43.64792; -79.39478
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43°38′53″N 79°23′41″W / 43.64792°N 79.39478°W / 43.64792; -79.39478

Centre for Indigenous Theatre
Celeste Sansregret (managing director), Rose C. Stella (Artistic Director)
Formerly called
Native Theatre School (1974–1994)

The Centre for Indigenous Theatre is a non-for profit theater educational institution located in Toronto, Ontario. It focuses on performance art from an Indigenous cultural foundation.[1][2]


James H. Buller founded the Centre in 1974 as the Native Theatre School with the Association for Native Development in the Performing and Visual Arts.[3] Buller was a noted opera and musical comedy singer.[4] While earlier in the Canadian Navy before founding the school, Buller competed as a popular boxer known as "Gentleman Jim". He wanted to see aboriginal actors, playwrights and directors flourish across Canada and create a network of Aboriginal theatre companies.

The School changed its name to the Centre for Indigenous Theatre in 1994.[5] The Centre first offered a one-year program which was expanded to a two-year program. By 1998, the program offered an additional, and optional, third year.


"The Centre's goal is to develop and implement educational programs that promote and foster an understanding of Indigenous Theatre while providing the highest caliber arts training to Indigenous students from across Canada."[2]


All levels of government fund the Centre.[1] The Miziwe Biik Aboriginal Management Board, The McLean Foundation, Molson Companies Donation Fund and the Toronto Blue Jays also provide monetary support to the Centre.


Students must be over the age of eighteen and of Aboriginal descent.[6]

Notable graduates


Notable faculty include:

James Buller Awards for Aboriginal Theatre Excellence[edit]

The award, established in 1995, "recognizes the work of Aboriginal people in the arts".[5]


  1. ^ a b c d e f g "Canadian Theatre Encyclopedia – Centre for Indigenous Theatre". canadiantheatre.com. Retrieved 4 February 2019.
  2. ^ a b "Schedule". CIT Webpage. Retrieved 4 February 2019.
  3. ^ "Theatre by Indigenous Peoples in Canada". The Canadian Encyclopedia. Retrieved 1 September 2019.
  4. ^ "James Buller awards excellence in the arts". Ammsa.com. Retrieved 5 February 2019.
  5. ^ a b Foster, Thomas Adrian (January 2013). Cultural Climate Change: A History of Aboriginal Arts Organizations in Toronto, 1970–2010 (MA Thesis) (PDF). Peterborough, Ontario: Trent University. p. 131.
  6. ^ "Centre for Indigenous Theatre". blogto.com. Retrieved 4 February 2019.

External links[edit]