Writer, Co-Director, Producer
Born and raised in Toronto, Shawn attended York University where he received multiple academic awards and scholarships. He graduated cum laude with an Honours BA in Humanities, followed by an MA in Interdisciplinary Studies in 2003.
From 2001-2005, Shawn was Artistic Director of Lost Carnival Theatre, which staged a wide array of plays, cabarets and festivals. Three of Shawn’s musicals – Death’s Diner,Love Manufacturing Ltd and War: the musical – were staged by Lost Carnival. War: the musical went on to a second run, with excerpts performed for a crowd of 80,000 at the February 15, 2003 protest against the looming war in Iraq.
In 2007, Shawn completed the Writers’ Lab as part of the Feature Film Residency Program at the Canadian Film Centre. In 2008, Shawn optioned Where Elephants Go to Academy Award nominated producer Roger Frappier of Max Films. In 2011 his made-for-TV thriller Fatal Performance starring Nicholle Tom was released internationally.
Shawn presently has a number of TV series and several feature films in development, including The Shelter, a horror with Emmy award-winning director Adrian Wills and award-winning producer Anne-Marie Gelinas. He has also written and directed five short films, including a crazy bar-in-outer-space web series called Lulaliens and two stop-action, silent films with his partner, photographer, Kathryn Palmateer. His YouTube videos have also attracted tens of thousands of viewers.
Since 2008 he has worked as an executive story consultant with Mediabiz International in Montreal providing development support as well as the creation of original content for Mediabiz’ production arm, MediaMax.
Kathryn is a Toronto based-photographer, specializing in lifestyle and wedding portraiture with a nod towards documentary-style shooting. She started by getting a degree in Political Science and International Development from Dalhousie University, and a Master’s degree in Political Science from York University. And then she began assisting and studying to take pictures. But really, most of her education and inspiration comes from being involved in the world around her – from the people she meets and the stories they tell.
Kathryn runs a successful wedding photography business and works with some wonderful folks who love things a little bit vintage, a little bit silly and a lotta bit wonderful. Between shooting and mothering, Kathryn has a number of book projects in the works, including a children’s book on breastfeeding and a fine art book of portraits.
Kathryn’s documentary project work has been exhibited in a range of spaces including Toronto, Havana, New York City, Portland and Spain. She has travelled across Canada and the United States photographing women for the Arts4Choice Project, culminating in a focus feature in the Globe and Mail. She has compiled a wide range of work on such diverse subjects as US War Resisters, Iraq Veterans Against the War and Breastfeeding Mothers.
Kathryn has shot a number of stop-motion films and is looking forward to shooting her first feature with her partner and collaborator, Shawn Whitney.
Freya has worked steadily as a producer, publicist and actor since graduating from the Dome Theatre in Montreal in 2002. Her work includes theatre, film, commercials, hosting and voice work in both French and English. She has appeared in The Curative,Binary, Sunday on the Rocks, Forking Mona Lisa and The Three Apollos, all of which were produced with her production company White Raven Productions.
Freya performed in almost all 14 of the Nearly World Famous Dufflebag Theatre Company shows, which ran in more than 600 schools across Canada, and she did a choral research performance with Nightswimming. She has performed in popular festivals including LUMINATO, Nuit Blanche, Hysteria at Buddies and Bad Times, the Festival of Ideas and Creation at Canadian Stage.
On film, Freya can be seen in the feature films The Back-Up Man, The Legend of Sorrow Creek and Waiting Room as well as the short films In the Can, Two Kings, Chapeau de Pluie and Estranged.
Freya also lends her voice to video game animation and corporate narration work. She is the voice of honour-obsessed, ass-kicking samurai princess Ginchiyo Tachibana in the video game Samurai Warriors 2 for XBOX and PS2.
Manuel has been acting since he was eight years old in theatre productions. He graduated from The National Theater School in Havana, Cuba in 1998, and worked with the renowned “Buendia Theater Company” before moving to Toronto in 2000.
Manuel has studied Puppetry with Mijek Trenar and Clown with Helen Donnelly and Francine Coté. He recently performed in the rock.paper.sistazh Festival and in “The race” with Miko Sobreira in several cabarets around the city, including the Red Nose District and the Toronto Festival of Clowns.
Manuel’s film and television credits include XXI, Street without Exit and Lulaliens. He also works as a Therapeutic Clown at Holland Bloorview Pediatric Hospital.
With a BA in English and a diploma-in-progress in accounting, Dagny wants to bridge the world of arts and numbers by helping amazing low-budget films achieve life. Born in Ottawa and now living in Toronto, Dagny has been involved in the independent and mainstream film and television industry for more than a decade working with shorts, documentaries, features and educational projects.
She is now focused on teaching video production and storytelling, including facilitating workshops with the Art Gallery of Ontario, Charles Street Video, Hart House Film Board, SkyWorks and PLAN Canada. Dagny sees film as the best method of storytelling – that’s clear when an amazing film changes how you see the world.
Alex works as a freelance videographer, editor and producer. He has filmed in India, Egypt and throughout North America for various documentaries, industrial videos and commissioned works. His recent work includes the documentary UNITY: Hip Hop’s Next Chapter, the short film Crangle’s Collision and the feature Killshot. Alex completed a BFA in Film Production with a specialization in Cinematography from Ryerson University in 2003. Originally from British Columbia, Alex now lives in Toronto where he runs his own video production company, Intrinsic Audiovisual Productions.
Since receiving his BFA in Film Studies from Concordia University, Joffre has been working as an art director, set dresser and props person for films, television series and commercials. He also dedicates his time to write, produce and direct short films. His first feature-length film, Offside, was shot entirely in Brazil, shown in a dozen countries and garnered several awards, including the Silver Lei Award for Excellence in Filmmaking from the Honolulu International Film Festival (2009) and the Best Feature-Length Film from the Al Sawy International Film Festival in Cairo (2009). Joffre lives in Toronto.
First Assistant Director
Elinor is a Toronto-based director, screenwriter and assistant director. Originally from Calgary, Elinor moved to Montreal to complete a BFA in Film Production at Concordia University’s Mel Hoppenheim School of Cinema. She has worked as an Assistant Director with Radke Film Group for independent productions such as 2011 Bravo!Fact short dance film Shiva and short fiction film Drangonfly. In 2011, Elinor directed two short films, the Juno-nominated documentary Tegan and Sara – Get Along: INDIA and a 30-minute original drama It Remains Unsaid.
Zoe is a location sound recordist for film and television. She has directed documentaries and produced several shorts, including It Remains Unsaid. Involved in the filmmaking community for more than five years, Zoe has worked on CBC feature documentaries, feature fiction films and numerous independent projects. Zoe completed her Bachelor of Fine Arts in Film Production from Concordia University in 2008. She is now working in audio and producing the films of Elinor Svoboda. She lives in Toronto.
Key Make-up and Hair
Celeste started her career in music theatre as a dancer and actress. She realized that she had a passion for makeup when doing her own for stage performances, and as this passion grew, she decided to build a career behind-the-scenes.
Celeste has been in the makeup industry for more than 10 years. She has worked for MAC Cosmetics for the last eight years and has been fortunate enough to work with some of the most talented artists in Toronto. Her experience in hair and makeup includes fashion/beauty photography, editorials, advertising campaigns (print) and television commercials. Celeste has worked for such clients as: Adidas, United Way, Budweiser and Tim Horton’s. Celeste lives in Toronto.
Based in Montreal, QC, Tristan Capacchione is an award-winning composer for film, television, and new media. He has worked on numerous films and shows including the hit cartoon Zevo-3 for NickToons. His music also plays at various film festivals across Canada.
Beginning his career as the 1st Assistant Editor for the documentaries GLOBAL METAL and IRON MAIDEN: FLIGHT 666, Luke observed cinema’s transition from celluloid to digital first hand. From this he learned two things: narrative is found in all media- no matter the format, and the “democratization of digital” is no threat to creators of good story arc and character.
As an Editor at Big Soul Productions and The Sick Kids Foundation, Luke cut two seasons of the National Aboriginal Achievement Awards, three seasons of First Tracks, and a host of music videos, shorts, educational, corporate and PSAs in both French and English. He then attended the prestigious Editor’s Lab at the Canadian Film Centre in 2011.
In 2013 Luke edited two “micro budget” features, Learning To Ride and A Brand New You. Luke is currently editing the documentary An Inconvenient Youth, producing a stop-motion short Indigo, working at Bell TV, and managing a community garden in downtown Toronto.