MISSION: Starcatcher Productions is a non-profit organization theatre troupe aimed at re-establishing dramatic arts within Kahnawa:ke and providing English theatre to both Kahnawa:ke and Chateauguay communities. It is our hope to inspire a new generation of thespians who will take the virtues of dramatic performance and apply them to everyday life.
Testimonials with Starcatcher...
We are extremely proud to have many bright and talented individuals on our team. By following our mission to improve mental and physical health through performing arts , we are pleased to share many uplifting stories from those who felt moved by our past and current initiatives.
My name is Gage Karahkwi:io Diabo and I recently participated in Starcatcher Productions’ inaugural summer musical, Holy Musical, B@man! I was both a performer in the show and a member of the creative team behind the production.
For the past six years, theatre (and especially musical theatre) has been one of the most important and fulfilling aspects of my life. The unfortunate thing is that, for lack of space and funding, the opportunities to put on shows in or around Kahnawake have been few and far between. I’m incredibly thankful not only to the folks at Starcatcher who took the initiative to produce a show this summer, but also to the Kateri Memorial Foundation for supporting the project and helping to make it as great as it could be.
For me, the benefits of doing musical theatre go far beyond the obvious elements of singing, dancing, and crazy characters. As the choreographer for Holy Musical, B@man! for instance, I had a tangible excuse to start getting back into physical shape by going to the gym, working on my cardiovascular health, and improving my diet. While developing, practicing, and teaching the choreography, I had to go out of my comfort zone, act as a leader, and set an example for the rest of the team.
Having lived with clinical depression for several years, I’m not exaggerating when I say that working on Holy Musical, B@man! was like having a ray of hope in a world of darkness. At my lowest points, I’ve gone days without leaving my house or talking to others; with our regular rehearsal schedule, though, I had something positive to look forward to nearly every night of the week and I had a consistent reason to get out and be social. Whenever dark thoughts would come into my mind, I could always point to the show and the team as reasons to remain strong and push through life.
The only downside, of course, is that the show has now come and gone, leaving no clear path forward to the future. While I’m confident that someone at Starcatcher Productions or elsewhere will eventually take up the challenge of putting on another show, the unstable place of the arts in Kahnawake leaves me in a sad and discouraged headspace. I can only hope that someday, with the help of organizations like Starcatcher and the KMF, there will be a steadier theatre program to keep folks like me on a more active and positive track.
Chalie Galea McClure
It’s always difficult to look back and evaluate the person you once were. It’s especially difficult to do so after a summer so full of creation and change.
Before Holy Musical B@man and Starcatcher Productions entered my life, I was socially timid, nervous, and had always felt out of place.
When I was first asked to be stage manager in this production with people I had never met before, I was, in one word, scared. But as the weeks passed by and the people became familiar, I came to realize just how great the people I was working with were. Fear turned into mild anxiety and soon after, to comfort.
The people that I came to know and call my friends this summer are some of the first people who I feel genuinely care, love, and respect me for me.
Theatre friendships are different and exist in this kind of fantasy world. You work with someone for months and spend so much time together in this make-believe land of storytelling and showmanship. It’s hard sometimes, there can be conflict and disagreements, but it is worth it for the final product: a world you helped create. That is a unique bond you can only share with a special few- the chance to create worlds together.
I also learnt A LOT this summer. I learnt how demanding yet rewarding stage managing is. I learnt about responsibility and what it means to co-exist and work in a team of highly creative people. This experience has even reassured me in my chosen career path- as I will be studying theatre production and design this fall.
Mostly, I learnt a lot about myself. I learnt that it’s good to try new things, to put yourself out there, to make mistakes, to start conversations, to make friends, to be yourself.
It seems cheesy to say, but the best part of working with Starcatcher this summer was truly the people and the friendships. Although one summer of shyness isn’t quite enough to develop meaningful relationships with everyone, even the sprouts and buds of forming friendships have the potential to blossom into relationships more beautiful than I can imagine. The best part of thinking about working with Starcatcher again next summer is the idea of meeting even more people and forming deeper friendships.