The Shoe Project

10 women. 10 pairs of shoes. 10 stories.

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Sat. Sept. 11 at 7:30 p.m. & Sun. Sept. 12 at 2 p.m.


$16.00 in person // $8.00 live stream

$13.60 in person // $6.80 live stream

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In-Person Performance

Sat. Sept. 11

7:30 p.m.

Location: artsPlace Canmore

Sun. Sept. 12

2 p.m.

Location: artsPlace Canmore

Sun. Sept. 25


Location: Whyte Museum, Banff

Live Stream Performance

Sat. Sept. 11

7:30 p.m.

Canmore Live Stream

Sun. Sept. 12

2 p.m.

Canmore Live Stream

The Shoe Project returns to Canmore and Banff with another evening of stories from the Bow Valley’s immigrant and refugee women.

"Shoes accompany us on all our journeys. They say who we are, where we came from and where we are going.” – Katherine Govier

The Shoe Project is a writing and performance workshop for immigrant women who tell the stories of their journeys to Canada, through a pair of shoes. The project was created by novelist Katherine Govier and incubated at the Bata Shoe Museum in Toronto.

Writing their shoe memoirs while being mentored by Canadian writers and voice coaches helps the participants be heard in their communities, and in the Canadian mainstream. Join them for this very personal performance as they share their powerful stories.

Special thanks to the project organizer and alumnae Noriko Ohsada.

Photos by Alexis McKeown Photography

Meet the Participants

Itzel Alejandra Sanchez - Mexico
Kusha Devi Bisht - India
Noriko Ohsada - Japan
Elia Marina Lopez - Mexico
Fabiola Elena Menares Nunez - Chile
Helen O'Neill - Philippines
Clara Constanza Guerrero Gutierrez - Colombia
Antonina Natalukha - Ukraine
Ana Rita Gimenes - Brazil
Lorella Guasti - Italy
Lucie Darshan - Czech Republic

Project participants come from all over the world to make a life for themselves and their families in Canada. Ten women from the Bow Valley participated in the project in the fall and winter of 2020/2021. Canadian author, Helen Rolfe, led the women through a series of advanced writing workshops, which were followed by voice and public speaking coaching with Banff mezzo-soprano, Nan Hughes Poole.

Meet the Teacher

Banff mezzo-soprano Nan Hughes Poole is described by her peers as a passionate advocate for education, arts and Banff heritage. Nan’s volunteer involvement has spanned the entire Bow Valley through music, church, school and Girl Guides. For years she supported the Banff Community Christmas Concert as a performer, coach and volunteer organizer; supported Banff Community High School musicals as a voice coach and mentor; and inspired music through her involvement with the St. Mary’s Catholic Church Choir. She has participated in the Shoe Project as a public speaking and voice coach since its beginnings.

Meet the Teacher

Helen Rolfe is a professional writer and editor who won acclaim for her book Women Explorers: One Hundred Years of Courage and Audacity, a collection of portraits of pioneering women adventurers. She is also the co-author of the English version of Japanese alpinist Junko Tabei’s memoir Honouring High Places: The Mountain Life of Junko Tabei. Helen resides in Canmore, where the beautiful Rocky Mountains surround her. She is the writing coach and mentor for this year's participants of the Bow Valley Shoe Project.

Generously supported by

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