Photo Credit: Terry Manzo 

Meet the Team at Blyth Festival

Meet the creative and administrative team here at the Blyth Festival.

Ryan Brink

Role: Production Manager
Categories: Staff

Born and raised in Whitechurch, Bruce County, Ryan has always been interested in technology, and creative ways to use it. He has spent the last decade working at theatres across Ontario, and has had the privilege of working with notable artists from across the country. He is excited to begin his time in Blyth!

Ryan Brink

Production Manager

Born and raised in Whitechurch, Bruce County, Ryan has always...

Nathanya Field

Role: Box Office Manager & Volunteer Coordinator
Phone: 1-519-523-9300
Email: nfield(@)blythfestival.com
Categories: Staff

Raised in Goderich, Nathanya has a long history with the Blyth Festival. During the summers of her undergrad, a double major in Theatre & English at the University of Windsor, Nathanya worked in Blyth’s Box Office and later as the Front of House Manager.

After graduation, Nathanya went on to work for Crow’s Theatre in Toronto where she was Box Office and Front of House Supervisor for several years. During that time, she also completed her Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing at the University of Guelph.

Nathanya is excited to share her passion for theatre with the audience she knows and loves. Nathanya is, as ever, incredibly grateful for Blyth Festival’s dedicated volunteers and looks forward to creating a spectacular patron experience alongside them.

Nathanya Field

Box Office Manager & Volunteer Coordinator

Raised in Goderich, Nathanya has a long history with the...

Gil Garrett

Gil Garratt

Role: Artistic Director
Categories: Staff

Gil Garratt is a director, playwright, dramaturge, Dora Award-winning actor, and theatre administrator who has worked across Canada and internationally. With a career that has been dedicated primarily to the development of new Canadian plays, Gil has been with the Blyth Festival since 1999.

Gil’s varied and eclectic career as a creator has seen him collaborate with such radical play creation companies as DNA theatre and The Cabaret Company, to such mainstream institutions as The Stratford Festival and The Grand Theatre.

As a performer Gil has literally worked all over the country, including: Theatre NorthWest in Prince George, BC, Centaur Theatre in Montreal, Canadian Stage’s St. Lawrence Centre in Toronto, Shakespeare in High Park, Neptune Theatre in Halifax, the Festival Players of Prince Edward County, Buddies in Bad Times in Toronto, the Royal Manitoba Theatre Centre in Winnipeg, and the National Arts Centre in Ottawa, to name a few.

Gil is also a member of the Playwrights’ Guild of Canada, several of Gil’s plays have received multiple productions, toured internationally, and been translated into French.

Gil graduated from the National Theatre School’s Playwriting Program in 1998, holds an Honours BA from the University of Waterloo, and an MA from the University of Guelph.

“After thousands of hours, walking thousands of kilometres across and back and across our stage, in the singular Blyth Memorial Hall, this is what I have learned: The work we do is the best, and the reasons we do it are pure.

My time at Blyth has become definitive; both in terms of my perception of my vocation and the reputation that precedes and proceeds the work that I do. I am a Blyth artist regardless of where I work, it has become central to who I am.”

Gil Garratt

Artistic Director

Gil Garratt is a director, playwright, dramaturge, Dora Award-winning actor,...

Jennifer Lamb

Role: Director of Audience Development
Phone: 1-519-523-9300 ext. 208
Email: jlamb@blythfestival.com
Categories: Contact Us, Staff

Jen joined the Blyth Festival in December 2016 as their first fundraiser in over a decade. Previously, Jen has worked at the Stratford Festival, Stratford Summer Music, the Shakespeare Birthplace Trust and the Royal Shakespeare Company (both in Stratford-upon-Avon England).

Jen’s work at the Blyth Festival is to engage and secure new sponsorships and donations and to increase the membership base of the Festival as well as to create robust, cost-efficient and strategic marketing plans to increase ticket sales and recognition of the work of the Blyth Festival.

Jennifer Lamb

Director of Audience Development

Jen joined the Blyth Festival in December 2016 as their...

Rachael King

Role: General Manager
Phone: 1-519-523-9300
Email: rking@blythfestival.com
Categories: Contact Us, Staff

A native of Fordwich, the seed of a professional theatre career was planted in Rachael at the age of 13, on a school field trip to the Blyth Festival. Since that time, Rachael has worked across North America and Australia as a stage, production and tour manager with companies such as the Blyth and Shaw Festivals, Green Thumb Theatre, Caravan Farm Theatre, Erth Visual and Physical and Theatre Passe Muraille.

Rachael taught stage management at Douglas College and was part of the Event Services team for the 2010 Vancouver Winter Olympics. She comes to Blyth directly from Exhibition Place where she has been with the Production Services team, delivering such events as the 2016 Grey Cup & Centennial Classic, the 2015 PanAm Games, as well as the annual CNE and Royal Agricultural Winter Fair.

Rachael holds a Bachelor of Arts, Drama in Education from the University of Windsor as well as a Master of Fine Arts, Stage Management from the University of Iowa.

Rachael King

General Manager

A native of Fordwich, the seed of a professional theatre...

Josie MacDonald

Role: House Manager & Administrative Assistant
Phone: 1-519-523-9300
Email: jmacdonald@blythfestival.com
Categories: Staff

Josie is very excited to be back at the Blyth Festival, working alongside the Volunteers as the Front of House Manager this season. When there isn’t a show on stage, Josie assists in the administration office and box office.

Josie MacDonald

House Manager & Administrative Assistant

Josie is very excited to be back at the Blyth...

Melissa Parker

Melissa Parker

Role: Development Manager
Phone: 1-519-523-9300 ext. 209
Email: mparker@blythfestival.com
Categories: Staff

Raised mostly in London, Ontario, Melissa worked in fundraising at several arts organizations such as the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra, Toronto International Film Festival and Art Windsor-Essex. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in English Literature and Theatre from the University of British Columbia.

Melissa is excited to return to her theatre roots and bring her experience, passion and creativity to the Blyth Festival in time for the 50th season!

Melissa Parker

Development Manager

Raised mostly in London, Ontario, Melissa worked in fundraising at...

Severn Thompson

Role: Associate Artistic Director
Categories: Staff

Severn is a director, dramaturge, actor, theatre creator and teacher who spent many formative summers in the Belgrave/Blyth area as a member of the Blyth Young Company.

As an actor, she’s performed in theatres across the country including the Blyth Festival, Shaw Festival, Stratford Festival, Theatre Passe Muraille, Tarragon, Theatre Calgary, Vancouver’s Firehall Arts Centre, Montreal’s Segal Centre and the National Arts Centre. A Dora award-winning director, Severn has directed a number of plays for Blyth as well as for Canadian Stage, SummerWorks, Bad Hats, Soulpepper and the National Arts Centre.

Severn is a graduate of the National Theatre School, Stratford Festival’s Birmingham Conservatory and holds an MFA in stage direction from York University in collaboration with Canadian Stage.

As Associate AD, Severn leads the Festival’s New Play Development while working closely with Gil on programming and outreach. She’s truly honoured to be part of the Blyth Festival team and its greater community.

Severn Thompson

Associate Artistic Director

Severn is a director, dramaturge, actor, theatre creator and teacher...

Ashley Williamson

Role: Director of Education
Categories: Staff

Ashley Williamson is a historian specialising in Canadian history and Canadian theatre history. She is a teaching artist, a museums and living history performance expert, and has worked for the University of Toronto, the Royal Ontario Museum, and the Stratford Festival. Ashley holds a PhD from the Centre for Drama, Theatre and Performance Studies from the University of Toronto.

As the Director of the Blyth Festival’s new Education Department, Ashley will spend her time developing educational experiences for Blyth’s audiences. She will helm the Young Company, the long running summer theatre making project for young people ages 13 to 19, as well as host actor talk-backs, workshops, and panel discussions about both the plays and the playwrights from the current season.

In pursuit of her academic research, Ashley drove through nine Canadian provinces and mailed over 300 postcards along the way.

Ashley Williamson

Director of Education

Ashley Williamson is a historian specialising in Canadian history and...

Board of Directors

Blyth Centre for the Arts

  • Gary Coursey, President
  • Carol Mitchell, Vice President
  • Leticia Kolkman, Treasurer
  • Elli Cohen, Secretary
  • Jacquie Bishop
  • Jim Cressman
  • Doug Elliott
  • Michele Hansen
  • Wendy Hutton
  • Heather Klopp
  • Shaukat Mangalji
  • Jim McIntosh
  • Shelley McPhee Haist
  • Michael Milde
  • Meighan Wark

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