Driftwood Theatre Staff

Artistic Director | D. Jeremy Smith

The Driftwood Theatre Group was founded and is led by Artistic Director D. Jeremy Smith, whose work with Driftwood has been recognized by two Young Entrepreneur of the Year Awards: the first from the Oshawa and District Chamber of Commerce in 1996 and the second from the Whitby Chamber of Commerce in 2007.

As an artistic director, theatre administrator, theatre director, designer, painter and performer Jeremy passion for the theatre is represented in his varied credits with theatres including The Grand Theatre, London (Apprentice Artistic Director and Artistic Associate, 2011-2012), The Canadian Stage Company (Intern General Manager, 2002-2003), The National Ballet of Canada, Canadian Sinfonietta, The Tarragon Theatre, The Factory Theatre, and The Canadian Children’s Opera Chorus.

For Driftwood Theatre, Jeremy has directed, designed or performed in over twenty productions. His work also ventures occasionally into the world of music as a director for the live performances of two-time Juno-nominated vocal ensemble Cadence, and vocal ensembles Countermeasure, Retrocity and The Satin Dolls.

Favourite directing credits include:

Macbeth, Twelfth Night, King Lear, Much Ado About Nothing, Trafalgar Hamlet, A Midsummer Night’s Dream for Driftwood Theatre; Memorial for Next Step Productions; Northern Lights, Eastern Fire for Canadian Sinfonietta; The Odyssey, The Hobbit (Assistant Director), Sherlock Holmes The Final Adventure (Assistant Director) for The Grand Theatre; Pélagie (Assistant Director) for The Canadian Stage Company,  The Complete Works of William Shakespeare Abridged for Sansanus Productions, and an international tour and CD release concert for Cadence.

Contact: jsmith@driftwoodtheatre.com

Company Dramaturg |  Caitie Graham

Caitie is a dramaturg, arts educator, playwright, and emerging screenwriter who is as excited about telling stories as she is about empowering others to do the same. Over her career, Caitie has facilitated several playwriting programs for youth and young-in-craft artists across Toronto in schools and through arts organizations like Expect Theatre (KidCAST), and Scarborough Arts (Youth Playwrights Hub). From 2017 – 2020 she was Program Director of the Young Playwrights Unit at Tarragon Theatre. In 2021, she received a mentorship opportunity through Soulpepper Theatre’s Her Words Festival, as a Rising Star Dramaturg. She is now the Company Dramaturg at Driftwood Theatre Group, and has been working with the Beyond the Bard’s Playwrights Unit and Playwright-In-Residence since 2020. Select writing credits include PARADISE COMICS (Filament Incubator) and GASH (Ergo Pink Festival). She was a runner up for the Ellen Ross Stuart Opening Doors Award in 2018, and has received funding from the OAC (2019) and TAC (2020) for her newest plays in development. She is currently working on a feature-length animation script called BOXED IN: A SERVICE DOG STORY. It’s exactly what you think it’s about. 

Contact: dramaturg@driftwoodtheatre.com

Producer, Projects and Safety | Ella Kohlmann

For Driftwood Theatre: Production Assistant for OthelloRosalynde, and A Midsummer Night’s Dream (the Musical). Front of House Manager and Safety Coordinator for 2020 and 2021 summer programming. Intern Dramaturg for Diminished Workshop.

Other Credits (selected): Young Creators Unit 2017-2018 (Playwright’s Workshop Montreal), Playwright – Exits (Centaur Theatre Queer Reading Series, 2018; Montreal Fringe Festival, 2019).

About: Ella is a writer, arts administrator, and theatre-maker based out of Montreal, QC, and Wolfe Island, ON. She first connected with Driftwood when she was in high school, as part of the 2015 Creative Roots program, and has since worked as a PA, FoH Manager, Safety Coordinator, and now Producer! She is looking forward to continuing her work keeping Driftwood artists and audiences safe, as well as producing some exciting projects for the 2022 season.

Contact: ekohlmann@driftwoodtheatre.com

Manager of Development and Communications | Mike Sheppard

Mike has spent most of his early arts career in Kingston, Ontario where he was the founder of the youth theatre company Blue Canoe Theatrical Productions Inc. He served as the Artistic Director of Blue Canoe from 2006-2018, during that time he founded the Juvenis Youth Arts Festival and co-founded Kingston’s Kick & Push Theatre Festival. Mike worked with several theatre and arts organizations in Kingston including Theatre Kingston (Associate Producer), the Kingston Arts Council (Administrator) and the CIty of Kingston Cultural Services Department (Arts Programmer). He’s also worked with the Students Commission of Canada, the Social Schmoes Marketing Team, CFRC Radio and Sherlock’s Escapes in various communications and marketing roles. 

Contact: msheppard@driftwoodtheatre.com

 
Deivan Steele | Outreach Coordinator

Deivan is a South African-Canadian actor, director, writer, and arts educator. He has been Driftwood’s Outreach Coordinator since 2020, a position that’s allowed him to create original work for young audiences, reach thousands of young people across Ontario through in-person and online theatre workshops, and learn more about what it means to foster community and education through art.

Contact: outreach@driftwoodtheatre.com