Colonization Road - Film Screening & Discussion with Local Advocates on July 24

Colonization Road
How Colonized Are You?

Tues. July 24 at 7 pm 

Tickets: regular $15 / youth $11.50 / member $12.75

Get Tickets 

"The CBC documentary every non-indigenous Canadian needs to watch"  - The Georgia Straight 

Colonization Road is a feature-length documentary by First Nations director Michelle St. John that follows activist Ryan McMahon as he explores the effects of the Public Lands Act of 1853. Join us for a film screening and discussion with local Indigenous advocates in partnership with Indigenous 150+.

In towns throughout Ontario, there are startling reminders of the colonization of Indigenous territories and the displacement of First Nations people. Anishinaabe comedian and activist Ryan McMahon takes us to his hometown of Fort Frances and down its main drag, which is called Colonization Road. Similar streets have similar names in towns and cities across the province, direct reminders of the Public Lands Act of 1853 and its severe impact on First Nations, their treaties and their land in the name of “Canadian settlement.” On his journey through Ontario, McMahon explores the history of these roads, meets with settlers in solidarity and raises significant questions about “reconciliation” and what it means to “decolonize.” WINNER - Golden Sheaf Award for Best Documentary - History/Biography

Rated 14A 

"We are really pleased to be working with artsPlace to bring Indigenous 150+ to Canmore, this is our first partnership and event outside of Ontario and it’s really exciting to be working with artsPlace and their Indigenous Liaison, Tasina Pope to be putting indigenous voices centre stage. To have representation and individuals from Wesley First Nation, Chiniki First Nation, and Bearspaw First Nation involved in our first event with artsPlace is a real honour. We look forward to building bridges and creating shared experiences." JoAnne Fishburn - Founder, Good Influence Films

Ryan McMahon is an Anishinaabe comedian, writer, media maker & community activator based out of Treaty #1 territory (Winnipeg, MB). Armed with a degree in Theatre & as a graduate of the prestigious Second City Conservatory (Toronto), Ryan’s comedic storytelling style is fast paced, loose & irreverent as he explores the good, the bad & the ugly between Indian Country & the mainstream. Since 2010, McMahon has recorded 3 National comedy specials (Welcome To Turtle Island Too, UnReserved & Red Man Laughing) & 2 taped Gala sets at the prestigious Winnipeg Comedy Festival. In 2012, McMahon became the 1st Native comedian to ever record a full mainstream comedy special with CBC TV (Ryan McMahon - UnReserved) and later that year made his debut at the prestigious Just For Laughs Festival in Montreal, QC where he was named to the NEW FACES list at the festival.
Ryan's latest full length CBC comedy special, Red Man Laughing, aired Nationally on CBC Radio 1 in 2015. McMahon's new live show, Wreck-On Silly Nation, is scheduled to tour across Canada in 2017. It tackles massive themes like reconciliation, Canada's 150th birthday party & the intricacies of moose meat pie. Ryan has written for the GLOBE & MAIL, VICE, CBC, CBC Aboriginal, APTN among others.

Blessing, Ceremony Opening by Elder/Knowledge Keeper Una Wesley (Chiniki First Nation) 

Daryl Kootenay, Moderator (Bearspaw First Nation)
A traditional singer, dancer, artist, father and youth leader from the Stoney Nakoda Nation of Treaty 7 in southern Alberta. After graduating high school Daryl has travelled globally to volunteer his time in countries such as Peru, Nicaragua and Africa working with Canada World Youth first as a participant, then an intern and employee. Daryl has also became apart of Canada Worlds Youths Aboriginal youth committee and was a delegate at the World Conference of Indigenous Peoples in 2014. Daryl now dedicates his time locally working with the Stoney Nakoda youth and youth throughout the Bow Valley performing and teaching traditional art and dance. Daryl recently coordinated a youth delegation of 6 from his home community to attend the Permanent Forum on indigenous peoples at the United Nations Headquarters in New York City April - May 2017.


Michelle St John, Filmmaker
Michelle St. John is a two-time Gemini Award winning actor with more than 35 years of experience in film, television, theatre, voice and music. Michelle was a Co-Founder of Turtle Gals Performance Ensemble, a Native women’s theatre company based in Toronto. For two years, she served as Producer and Host for Red Tales, a weekly Native literary show on Aboriginal Voices Radio. Michelle served as President of Dr. E Entertainment, a company dedicated to creating media content featuring Dr. Evan Adams with a focus on Indigenous health. She has also been a producing partner in Frog Girl Films, producing several short films directed by Marie Clements. Michelle frequently works with Wabunganung Productions and director Shane Belcourt – producing the documentary series Urban Native Girl, two Heritage Minutes Naskumituwin & Chanie Wenjack and the upcoming documentary series AMPLIFY as producer and director. Her first documentary, Colonization Road has screened all over the world and has garnered a Golden Sheaf Award from the Yorkton Film Festival and a CSA nomination for the Donald Brittain Award.

Thomas Snow (Wesley First Nation) /  AIM-HI (Alberta Indigenous Mentorship - Health Innovation) Network Coordinator- University of Calgary
Thomas Snow is a member of the Stoney Nakoda Nation and is a fluent speaker of Nakoda Sioux. Raised in a traditional home and community, Thomas has utilized his passion and fluency to advocate for systemic changes within academia and push forward concepts of truth & reconciliation and indigenization of institutions, while challenging settler colonial ideologies and pedagogies regarding indigenous peoples and indigenous studies. Thomas is a graduate from the University of Calgary with a BA in Social and Cultural Anthropology.

Indigenous 150+ is a film and conversation series, dedicated to putting Indigenous voices centre stage, and is a response to the TRC Calls to Action. Learn more here