Peer Voices

May 26, 2023 Posted by Daniel

From 2019-2023, Moving Target has been working with Manitoba Harm Reduction Network (MHRN). It has been a great honour to work and learn with MHRN staff and Peers.

Together with filmmaker Julie Epp and Elder Albert McLeod, and with support from Manitoba Arts Council and the Winnipeg Foundation’s Centennial Institute, we created this video, Peer Voices:

The first phase of our project was called “Drug Crisis: Social Crisis?” and was supported by the Manitoba Arts Council. Here is my final report, with some description of the workshop:

Narrow Bridge, Peer Voices & In Memoriam

August 11, 2022 Posted by Daniel

It is August, 2022, and I am sending out an update to Moving Target’s email list. I am going to post the content here too, so that those not on my email list can see it. To subscribe to our email list, click here.

I have a number of exciting updates. The first is that my play, Narrow Bridge, which was about to open in March of 2020 (and then something happened) – is back on! It will be produced by Winnipeg Jewish Theatre, March 9-19, 2023.

Narrow Bridge is inspired by my friend Ben Baader, who is transgender and practices Orthodox Judaism. Ben has generously consulted with me all along, and we have spent many hours talking about this seeming-impossibility: it is a very gendered tradition! Orthodox synagogues, by definition, have a mechitzah – a barrier separating men from women. 

Writing this play has been a great opportunity to explore my own relationship with gender and Judaism. The journey brought me (and Ben) to Queer Talmud Camp in 2018. It was as amazing as it sounds. 

And we have had a wonderful artistic team developing it, including Elio Zarrillo, Harry Nelken, Alissa Watson, Brian Drader, Ari Weinberg and others, supported by Manitoba Association of PlaywrightsWinnipeg Jewish Theatre, the Canada Council for the Arts, Manitoba Arts Council, and Jewish Foundation of Manitoba.

The script is even better now than it was in 2020. I greatly look forward to sharing it with you!

Next, I want to tell you about a partnership between Moving Target and Manitoba Harm Reduction Network (MHRN) – it is the main thing I’m working on right now. In 2020, I led some Theatre for Living workshops with MHRN’s Peer groups – marginalized people who use drugs and who work to promote safer drug use and better drug policy. 

After those workshops, we wanted to continue working together. The Peers suggested we create a short video, which we are working on this summer, with film-maker Julie Epp, and with guidance from Elder Albert McLeod. For those who enjoy reading final reports, here it is. In any case, stay tuned – we hope to share the video with you by the end of 2022!

Next, a bit of personal news – I am back in university, pursuing a Master’s degree in Peace and Conflict Studies, under the guidance of Jessica Senehi, with funding from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC). My research will focus on MT Space, in Kitchener-Waterloo – their theatre and community work, and their network of relationships, which I will explore through the lens of building “positive peace.” It has been a great learning experience so far, and all of this will eventually help me take Moving Target’s work to the next level.

Finally, some sad news:

Majdi Bou-Matar – rest in peace

This photo was posted by Patti Flather on Majdi’s Facebook page.

Majdi Bou-Matar, founding Artistic Director of MT Space and the Impact Festival, died unexpectedly on June 28, at the age of 47.

I first met Majdi at the Magnetic North Theatre Festival in 2012. He was dressed head-to-toe in purple or orange or something – a striking colour, with a sash in the same colour and a handlebar moustache – I thought he looked like a Lebanese prince. He was blunt and forthright, chutzpahdik in a way that I found refreshing, especially in Canadian theatre.

I invited Majdi to see Good People Bad Things at SummerWorks, and he invited me to perform it at the 2013 Impact Festival. Our friendship continued through a number of projects, including Deserter, which Majdi helped us develop as an actor. For myself and many of us, we have lost a friend, mentor, and artistic colleague.

What we have not lost is Majdi as an inspiration – he created theatre physically and collectively, centring marginalized voices, beginning at a time when very few others were. His work, and the many artists he influenced, will continue to inspire, most directly through MT Space and Impact. Heartbreakingly, and heart-nourishingly, the community Majdi cultivated are now supporting each other through his loss.

My heart is with Majdi’s family and the MT Space community.

Rest in power, and rest in peace, friend.

Last but not least, this is a picture of me driving a boat. Why? To remind you, in the corniest way possible, that I am still here, at the helm of Moving Target Theatre.

I will be in touch again soon.

All the best,


November 29, 2018 Posted by Daniel

The nominees and recipients of the 2018 “Evies” (Winnipeg Theatre Awards)

Earlier this month, our production of Deserter was nominated in 5 categories at “The Evies“, the Winnipeg Theatre Awards. We won two: Ray Strachan for Outstanding Supporting Actor and Brenda McLean, jaymez and Emma Hendrix for Outstanding Design. Our other nominations included Arne MacPherson for Outstanding Direction, Jeff Strome as Outstanding Lead Actor and all of us (mostly me?) for Outstanding New Work. And really, the selection of one show or artist over another is pretty subjective, so the nominations are almost as much of an honour as the awards.

I didn’t get to deliver my acceptance speech, but it would have been something like this:

“First, a huge thanks to Joshua and Alexina Key, for sharing their experiences with me so generously and for consulting with me on early drafts of the script. Thanks to all of the artistic and production team who made this show happen: dramaturg Chris Gerrard-Pinker, director Arne MacPherson, the design team, the actors, production manager Brooklyne Alexander, and everyone who worked on, volunteered for, helped publicize the show, and everyone who supported Deserter in the many ways you did – it takes a village to create a show, so thanks for being that village.”

And now I have been nominated – and selected as the recipient of the 2018 Manitoba Human Rights Commitment Award! Which is just such a huge honour. And, again, all I want to do is share this honour, first with Dean Peachey who nominated me, and then with all of you who have supported my work and Moving Target’s work over the years. If you’re reading this right now, there’s a good chance that includes you.

Ahmad Meree and Jeff Strome in Deserter, set design by Brenda McLean, lighting design by jaymez, photo by Mike Sudoma

And other than that, I’m writing my new play, Narrow Bridge, which will premiere at Winnipeg Jewish Theatre!

Thanks for reading,


Why Deserter?

November 27, 2017 Posted by Daniel

I have been writing Deserter for years. I first heard Joshua Key speak at a fundraiser in 2010. I wrote my first few scenes, adapted from Joshua’s book in 2012 (almost nothing from those original scenes remains in the play, but it was a start). I completed the first draft in 2015 and the production draft in 2017. It will premiere in May of 2018 and hopefully tour in 2019-20, maybe beyond. So, it’s not like this is the only thing I’ve been doing, but that’s almost 1/4 of my life!

Arne MacPherson, Majdi Bou-Matar, Andrew Cecon, Jeff Strome, Charlene Van Buekenhout and Steven Ratzlaff around the table in our 2016 workshop (photo by Solmund MacPherson)

I have never served in the army, I have never been to Iraq, I have never lived in a country under occupation by foreign soldiers. So why Deserter? Well, to me, it picks up where my last play left off. Here is how I put it in a recent grant application:

Deserter is the latest in a series of Moving Target creations exploring moral behaviour in a complex world. Our most recent play, Good People Bad Things, explored “banal evil,” from emotional abuse to genocide. We found that perpetuating evil is often as easy as “going with the flow” and that resisting social pressure can be very very difficult. Nazi bureaucrat Adolf Eichmann and many others went with the flow.

Joshua Key and other American war deserters resisted. They stood up and said “No. What we’re doing here is wrong, and I’m not going to do it anymore.” And how did we, as Canadian society, respond? While many Canadians support them, these former soldiers have lived in Canada without status – they could be deported at any minute – for more than a decade.

Starting in 2013, I interviewed Joshua Key extensively. I read memoirs of soldiers, journalistic accounts of life in Iraq, a psychiatrist’s book about Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and articles about war resisters in Canada. I adapted material, riffed on material, created characters and amalgamated characters, exploring the scenes in workshops with some of the actors who will now be acting in the premiere.

I worked on Deserter with more than a little help from my friends – and in close collaboration with my dramaturg, Chris Gerrard-Pinker, as it went from a collection of scenes in no particular order to a post-modern deconstruction of the character, circular in structure, ending where it began, to what it is now: the psychological drama of a war deserter caught with a fake passport, unstuck in time due to PTSD, unstuck in place for many other reasons.

Arne MacPherson, Charlene Van Buekenhout, Jeff Strome, Karl Thordarson and Michael Lawrenchuck in a reading of the first draft of Deserter at the Carol Shields Festival, 2015. (photo by Chris MacDonald)

Deserter will premiere in Winnipeg May 17-27, 2018 at the Rachel Browne Theatre. We hope to see you there!

I love every part of the playwriting process – no matter how uncomfortable I may be during some of it, no matter how much I may have complained last time you ran into me (I complain, therefore I am) – it really is such a privilege. I love the research and discovery, the first swipes at scenes, the polishing of the scenes, the arranging and re-arranging of scene titles on recipe cards, the formation of the story. And one of my greatest joys is yet to come: sitting in the audience during each performance, watching the actors create the play every night, experiencing the play through the eyes of each new audience.

In the meantime, my job is business-y. In early November, I submitted a grant application (you just read part of it). Now I’m looking for rehearsal space. This morning, I talked to a graphic designer – okay, that’s kind of exciting. Stay tuned for the poster design! And in coming months: more partnerships, more details. Starting late December / early January we’ll have design meetings – that’s going to be great. And this is my life: a million things to do, in no particular order. And eventually we’ll have a show.

And I’m planning to write a blog post each month. Any suggestions? Any questions? Did you actually read all the way to the bottom? Thanks so much! Email me about any of the above:

MovingTargetTheatreCompany [at] gmail [dot] com.

Click here to join the Moving Target email list.

And keep checking this website for updates!

Looking forward,


the first month of the rest of my life

October 31, 2017 Posted by Daniel

photo by Sati Allen

I have mostly been on parental leave from Moving Target for more than a year. My son, Akiva, was born in June, 2016. Around that time, I started looking for a day job and I found one that fall – actually two: Communications Co-Ordinator at the Daniel McIntyre St Matthews Community Association, half-time, and in the other half of my time, Co-Ordinator of Friends of Sherbrook Pool. It was amazing – I worked with lots of great folks in a strong, vibrant inner-city community. And the first year of Akiva’s life was amazing, and the tenth year of my step-daughter, Sati’s life, and of course my life with my partner Linsea – it has all been very very full.

But by this summer, my artistic projects needed my attention, especially because we have plans to present both of them:

Deserter, which I have been working on since 2013/14, will premiere

May 17 – 27, 2018

in Winnipeg, at the Rachel Browne Theatre

Mark your calendars. You’re all invited, and keep checking this website for details.

Also, I’m working on a new play about a Transgender person in a Jewish family. That’s a story unto itself, but first, the dates: we’re doing a reading at Winnipeg Jewish Theatre‘s So Nu? Festival

March 13 – 15, 2018 (one night, TBA)

So my last day of work at DMSMCA/FOSP was September 28. Then Yom Kippur – which was as spiritually cleansing as always – and now Linsea and I are sharing the child-care and home-making responsibilities, we’re each taking time for our own work and my main work is these two projects.


Deserter is finally becoming the play I always wanted it to be – and it took a long time to figure out. It was a collection of scenes in no particular order for the first year. Most of them were set in Iraq, but I insisted that I wanted the story to start and finish in Canada. In 2015, we started to find a package to put it in – he gets stopped at the airport and put in a cell. Why? We’d figure that out later. In our 2016 script development workshop, it became all about Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). In 2017, it is becoming the drama of a war deserter caught with a fake passport, and “What’s going to happen to him?” and it’s seen through the eyes of PTSD.

So I’m mostly shifting into the producer’s seat. I’m applying for grants, I’m getting the artistic and production team in place, I’m having phone and coffee meetings with long-time friends and new friends about potential partnerships for the production. And it’s all coming into place.

The New Play

My new play is inspired by my close friend who is an Orthodox (or fully observant) Jew, who is also a FTM transgender man. If this doesn’t seem like a contradiction, it should – it should be impossible. It’s a very gendered and gender-segregated religion! Years ago, I was talking about this with an artistic director over coffee and he said, “Well, I’m interested in the play about Transgender Orthodox Jews.” I laughed and said, “No, no, that’s not a play…”

I recounted the conversation to my friend and he offered to help me with the play. On two conditions: 1) it can’t only be depressing* – it has to also capture the light, joyous aspects of being trans, and 2) it has to give some credence to the beauty that its practitioners find in Orthodox Jewish practice. I decided to make it a comedy, and the first 7 pages seemed to write themselves.

However, now that I’m beginning to work on the piece more seriously… issues come up! Transgender people are very present in the North American pop-culture imagination right now. Art about Trans people has become a genre, if not multiple genres, and much of it is made by cis-gender (non-Trans) artists! So… great. Is this really what I want to be doing? Do I feel it’s “my place” to tell this story? Not really. Like Naomi Zeveloff, the cis-gender author of “Transgender and Jewish,” I feel this project is “an act of hubris and humility all at once.” And it’s the same issue writers always get into – it’s impossible and not necessarily desirable to only tell stories within the narrow confines of our own experience. But, when you’re telling stories that you haven’t lived… etc. And, obviously, I feel I have something to offer. But: it makes for a pretty intense process.

I’m reading lots. I’ll put my full reading list on the website when I make a page for the new play. I have so far interviewed five Trans people, some of them Jewish, some not, a few friends who are queer and Jewish but not Trans, and one parent of a Trans person – and it’s been amazing. This is one part of the job (or lack thereof) I really love. People have been so generous and vulnerable with me, sharing their stories and perspectives, sharing their pain and worries – this process feels very powerful. I’m intimidated as anything, because how can I honour and respect all of the above?

Stay tuned to this website and blog to find out.

Thanks for reading,


A footnote:

*I took this as a comment on my writing habits, but my friend clarified recently – he meant it as a comment on the way trans people were being represented in pop-culture at that time, which has shifted since.


Canadian Literature

February 5, 2016 Posted by Daniel

Hi Everyone.

Happy New Year!

I can still say that, even though it’s February 5th, because I haven’t seen many of you since 2015 and does it really matter what day it is? I wish you a happy day and a happy, healthy year. Beginning right now.

Moving Target Theatre Company has a few pieces of exciting news:

1) A Canadian Literature class at Brandon University is studying my play, Good People Bad Things! And as part of this, the university is bringing me to Brandon next week (Feb 8 – 12) to lead some workshops and perform the play, followed by talkbacks. If you are in Brandon or have friends in Brandon, please let them know. Admission is free and it would be great to get lots of people out to the show. A huge thank you to my friend and fellow playwright, Dale Lakevold, who has been the driving force in making this whole thing happen. Here’s the poster:



Thurs, Feb 11, 2016 at 12:00 noon
Fri, Feb 12, 2016 at 3:30pm

at the Evans Theatre, Brandon University

2) Speaking of collaborating with friends on performances of Good People Bad Things, I am performing Good People Bad Things in Winnipeg in collaboration with Theatre Projects Manitoba, as one of their monthly Salons! If you’re in Winnipeg or have friends in Winnipeg:

Mon, Feb 29, 2016
as a Theatre Projects Manitoba Salon, at the

Times Change(d) High and Lonesome Club, 234 Main St

Doors open at 6:00pm (come early, it’s a restaurant and bar!)

Performance begins at 7:00pm

Admission is by donation

 3) The writing continues on Deserter. We did a successful reading in May, 2015, at the Carol Shields Festival of New Works at Prairie Theatre Exchange, and another great reading of an excerpt at the Impact! Festival in Kitchener Waterloo, September 2015. I’m doing some exciting rewrites now. More news to come, and it will eventually hit a stage and hopefully tour across Canada and it will be spectacular. And good news, for those who know Joshua Key, the real war deserter who inspired my play. He has been granted a work permit! Which also means he can get a health card. It’s not as good as citizenship or permanent residence, but it’s a huge step – he has been in Canada for more than 10 years, almost all of that time without a work permit or health card.

And the projects continue. Thanks for supporting the Moving Target Theatre Company and our earnest brand of personal/political theatre. I hope to see you soon.

Theatrically yours,


The Year Two Thousand Fifteen

December 31, 2014 Posted by Daniel


This photo is me and my step-daughter, Sati, with the mini-gingerbread houses we made from scratch!

It’s New Year’s Eve. Tomorrow will be 2015. The year Marty McFly and Doc travel to in Back to the Future Part II. I was hoping to get a hoverboard for Hannukah.

I didn’t, but I do have a stage management gig coming up Jan 6-10. Alan Williams taught and worked in Winnipeg for a number of years – I think basically all of the 1990s. He was hugely influential on a whole generation of theatre artists. He has performed all over the world, won lots of awards, etc. This is his story of returning to England after living in Canada for 10 years. I saw the workshop production of these monologues a couple of years ago and it’s really masterful storytelling. And it’s as cheap as borscht: $12 per play or $30 for the trilogy, so very affordable. I’ll be stage managing, so if you come to the show(s) I’ll see you. Here are the details:


And please stay posted. If you’re not already on the email list but would like to be, please sign up here. And there will be an invited reading of my new play, Deserter, this April. It’s not ready yet, but it will be.

Looking forward,


October, 2014

October 22, 2014 Posted by Daniel

Hi, friends.

The Jewish/academic/theatre year is off to a great start. I’m slowly but surely working on my Deserter play, which I’ve been dropping hints about for the past year. The Russian play, Not in Our Family was a huge success and a really unique experience. And I have two projects coming up in the next week.

I’m performing Good People Bad Things in Toronto on Saturday, Oct 25 at 7:oopm at the College Street United Church.

And I’m going to be in a reading of Arthur Milner’s Facts, a murder-mystery set in the Palestinian West Bank, which has toured all over the world. The reading will be in Winnipeg on Wednesday, October 29 at 7:00pm in the Burns Classroom, 2nd floor of Artspace, 100 Arthur Street. Admission is free but donations are accepted.

If you’re in one of these cities, it would be great to see you!

Looking forward,



GPBT at Prismatic (Dartmouth, NS) and upcoming projects…

August 6, 2014 Posted by Daniel

This winter, my friend and prolific photographer Leif Norman, told me I should be posting constantly on my website.

I said “But I’m not doing anything.”

He said “Yes you are!”

And he’s right. But what I meant was 1) I didn’t have any shows coming up

and 2) publishing things on the internet makes me super-anxious!

I realize Leif is right. I have been working on many projects, including this video for the SpiderWeb Project (but: see excuse #2). And I’ll add some other videos – a speech I made recently and some street theatre I did with Independent Jewish Voices (same page).

But, more importantly: I now have some shows coming up!



Good People Bad Things in Prismatic, Aug 21-24. Please invite your Haligonian and Dartmouthian friends! Actually, anyone on the East Coast.

Here’s the Facebook Page.



I’m co-directing a play in Winnipeg being produced by Jewish Child and Family Service. It’s called Not in Our Family and explores the subject of elder abuse. It’s in Russian with English subtitles. All the actors are volunteers from the Russian-speaking community. Sunday, Sept 7, 2:00pm at the Berney Theatre in Winnipeg. More info to come.

And I’m working on a new play called Deserter. An American soldier fighting in Iraq deserts and comes to Canada. I’m planning to finish the first draft and do a staged reading this October. More details to come.

Thanks for reading this post!

I will write another one soon. Much sooner than the summer of 2015. Probably.


SummerWorks – great review from Mooney

August 13, 2013 Posted by Daniel


Today is my day off from the show, so I’m writing a blog post.

In July, I did 12 performances of Good People Bad Things in the Winnipeg Fringe. 484 people came out, out of a total capacity of 680 or so. And it went great. I’m really appreciating the experience  of performing this show – of sharing it with people. Here is a photo from the production. Also, be sure to check out out video trailers!

I am now in Toronto, performing at the amazing SummerWorks festival. I have had 3 shows so far. The audiences are great. The Theatre Passe Muraille Backspace is a really good venue for this show. And I have another 5 performances, August 14-18 if you’re in Toronto this week, it would be great to see you.

And check out this great review in Mooney on Theatre!



SummerWorks – opening August 8th

August 2, 2013 Posted by Daniel

It’s been a while since I’ve done a blog post. Lots going on. The latest: I performed Good People Bad Things in the Winnipeg Fringe to a total audience of 484 people. Thanks to everyone who came out and was a part of it!

Here is a video trailer made by Chris MacDonald of Abraxas Studios:

I’ll upload production photos from the Winnipeg run in the next couple of days.

And if you’re in Toronto, I hope to see you soon! Join our Facebook page!

And I never wrote a post about Magnetic North Theatre Festival, which I attended in June in Ottawa. It was great. Here’s a photo of me and my display booth at the Arts Marketplace:

As soon as I got back from Ottawa, I started rehearsals for Good People Bad Things. I have now been working on the show for more than 2 years. We have received a lot of reviews (4 stars from CBC and 4 stars from the Winnipeg Free Press) and preview articles. I leave Monday morning for Toronto. I’m about to send out an email about the show.

Looking forward,


Video Trailers: Good People Bad Things

July 9, 2013 Posted by Daniel

This video trailer for Good People Bad Things was made by Chris MacDonald of the amazing Abraxas Studios.

I hope to see you at SummerWorks!

This video trailer for Good People Bad Things was made from archival video by Shira Newman, Angus Kohm and Stefanie Wiens (and found footage), and the song is My Father My King by Mogwai.

We hope to see you at the Winnipeg Fringe or SummerWorks!

Coming soon to a theatre near you…

June 7, 2013 Posted by Daniel

Welcome to the Moving Target Theatre Company website.

I’m in Ottawa, about to attend this year’s Magnetic North Theatre Festival. I attended for the first time last year, and it was a great way to plug into the national theatre scene and see some brilliant shows. I’m looking forward.

Speaking of things I’m looking forward to:

Moving Target will be presenting my latest solo-show, Good People Bad Things in:

The Winnipeg Fringe, July 17 – 28

8:30pm nightly at the MAP Studio, 100 Arthur St


Toronto’s SummerWorks Festival, August 8-18

at the Theatre Passe Muraille Backspace.
Also, I recently did an interview with the Playwrights Guild of Canada.For more info about Moving Target’s past and future activities, have a look around our website. And if you want to receive updates and announcements, join our mailing list



Recent Activities

March 3, 2013 Posted by Daniel

I usually take down old posts, because this site is formatted as a blog, but it’s not really a blog and the information gets outdated. But if you’d checked this page in recent months, you would have found out that:

I went to Vancouver (thanks to the Canada Council and the Playwrights Guild of Canada‘s readings program) and did a staged reading of Good People Bad Things at one of Vancouver’s loveliest theatre venues, The Cultch (March 2013).

I did a reading of Good People Bad Things in Winnipeg as part of Israeli Apartheid Week at the U of Winnipeg (March 2013).

I went to Vancouver to attend the PuSh Festival (February 2013).

And I was in Norway House, Manitoba leading a Theatre for Living workshop with high school students (January, 2013).

And, of course, we premiered Good People Bad Things in Winnipeg, October 18 – 28, 2012 at the Rudolf Rocker Centre.

Thanks to everyone involved with each of these events.

And thank you for reading, it validates my existence.



A new year

January 28, 2013 Posted by Daniel


Welcome to the Moving Target Theatre Company website.

I am traveling this month. In early January, I was in Norway House, Manitoba, leading a

Theatre For Living workshop with high school students. Now I’m in Vancouver attending the PuSh Festival – I am seeing shows and last week I participated in a workshop led by UK-based performance artist Adrian Howells.

I’m also working on where, when and how we will next present Good People Bad Things. Stay tuned for more details. I hope to be ready to announce my summer plans soon.

Feel free to peruse the other pages of the website – there are summaries and photos of our past and current productions.

To receive email updates, sign up here.

Keep moving,