Participants announced for new NSI Art of Business Management – Indigenous Edition program

NSI Art of Business Management

Rachel Young

Outreach and Engagement Lead

The National Screen Institute – Canada (NSI), in association with the Indigenous Screen Office (ISO), is proud to announce the inaugural 2021 class of NSI Art of Business Management – Indigenous Edition, as online training begins today.

NSI Art of Business Management – Indigenous Edition is a four-month, part-time online training and mentorship program designed to foster the growth of Indigenous producing professionals and increase the network of Indigenous production companies across Canada.

We warmly welcome the inaugural class of NSI Art of Business Management – Indigenous Edition. Full bios can be found at the end of this announcement:

“We are confident that this group of talented Indigenous creatives will approach this new program with excitement and determination,” says NSI program manager Cheyenne Bruneau. “These students are located in multiple regions across Canada and their work is integral to expanding awareness of how Indigenous stories are the foundation of this land’s origins and ever-evolving cultural fabric.”

NSI Art of Business Management is delivered in two six-week phases and takes place from March to June 2021.

In phase 1 participants attend three to four sessions per week, spanning one to two hours. Sessions involve interactive group discussions, round tables, peer reviews, presentations and masterclasses covering topics such as business affairs/contracts, labour and employment law, fundamentals of running a workplace and much more.

During phase 2 participants are matched with an industry mentor to coach them through the development of their project plan. Program advisors and mentors assess participants’ skills and help them cultivate a successful career in producing. They’ll get advice on long-term goal setting and how to establish and maintain industry connections.

NSI alumna Cheyenne Bruneau is program manager for the course, with program advisors Tyler Hagan (Experimental Forest Films), Lauren Grant (Clique Pictures) and Lori Lozinski (Violator Films).

On-Screen Protocols and Pathways: A Media Production Guide to Working with First Nations, Métis and Inuit Communities, Cultures, Concepts and Stories will be used to guide all decisions and actions. The document is mandatory reading for all participants, faculty, subject experts, presenters and mentors.

NSI Art of Business Management – Indigenous Edition is funded by Founding and Presenting Sponsor the Indigenous Screen Office (ISO); Indigenous Training Programs Partner Directors Guild of Canada; Strategic Sponsor Telefilm Canada; Supporting Sponsors Super Channel, Manitoba Sport, Culture & Heritage; Industry Scholarship Sponsor Documentary Organization of Canada; NSI Core Funders are Manitoba Sport, Culture & Heritage and the City of Winnipeg through the Winnipeg Arts Council. We gratefully acknowledge the private donors whose gifts also support this program.

About the Indigenous Screen Office (ISO)

The Indigenous Screen Office (ISO) is an independent national advocacy and funding organization serving First Nations, Inuit and Métis creators of screen content in Canada. The ISO’s mandate is to foster and support narrative sovereignty: Indigenous stories told on screens by Indigenous storytellers.

Launched in 2017, the creation of the ISO is the result of decades of advocacy from Indigenous industry professionals and creators who identified that an organization supporting Indigenous storytellers was a crucial component to a healthy and robust media landscape in Canada.

ISO currently funds a number of programs and initiatives for Indigenous screen creators and professionals with a focus on the key areas of training and mentorship, project development, production support and market development. ISO also hosts regular training and workshops around the document On-Screen Protocols and Pathways: A Media Production Guide to Working with First Nations, Métis and Inuit Communities, Cultures, Concepts and Stories.

Meet this year’s students

Jessie Anthony

Writer/director/producer Jessie Anthony is a proud Haudenosaunee woman from the Onondaga Nation, Beaver Clan, born and raised on the Six Nations of the Grand River Territory in Ontario, Canada. Jessie is a graduate of the Indigenous independent filmmaking program and bachelor of motion picture arts degree from Capilano University.

Jessie is a Telefilm Talent to Watch winner for her first feature film titled ​Brother, I Cry​ which won the 2020 BC Emerging Filmmakers Award at the Vancouver International Film Festival and picked up Audience Choice Award at imagineNATIVE Film + Media Arts Festival 2020.

She is currently in post-production on the series QUERENCIA which won the imagineNATIVE Pitch Competition, gaining a broadcast deal with APTN/Bell Fund.

Jessie has produced shorts funded by TELUS Optik and BravoFact as well as many music videos. She was the first assistant director on The Edge of the Knife, co-directed by Helen Haig-Brown and Haida artist Gwaai Edenshaw. Jessie was a finalist at the MPPIA Short Film Award Competition, where she received an honourable mention.

She directed the documentary ​Through My Needle which follows a Mohawk designer and her family; exploring culture and clan through the beading and design of Indigenous regalia. Jessie worked on the Girlfriends’ Guide to Divorce (NBC Universal), River of Silence (Telefilm), Going For Broke (TELUS/Red Castle Films), Man in the High Castle (Amazon), La Quinceanera (Lucha Gore -Time Warner) and many more.

When Jessie isn’t working within film you can find her on her Facebook live feeds helping Indigenous communities with healing and spiritual guidance.

Nadia Mike

She believes in the power of story and the influence it can have on children and youth. She wants to contribute in a way that she hopes youth can identify with: seeing themselves in stories and believing that they can truly be anything. If Inuit children can see themselves in these roles and be proud of who they are, this can have a positive impact.

Nadia’s background in education inspired her to pursue a career in media and television. She is the author of three picture books: Leah’s Mustache Party (2016), Ukaliq and Kalla Go Fishing, based on her short animated film of the same name (2017), and The Muskox and the Caribou (2018).

Nadia has worked for Taqqut Productions as writer, director and producer and is currently in the midst of incorporating her own production company. She recently completed her second short (animated) film based on her picture book: Leah’s Mustache Party.

Angie-Pepper O’Bomsawin

Angie-Pepper is a bilingual Mohawk/Abenaki director and media professional. Since graduating from Concordia University’s Faculty of Fine Arts, she has been responsible for and directed many different projects ranging from kids programming to socially driven documentaries, reality TV and docu-series and dramatic reconstruction. Her work has been seen on major networks such as CBC, TVA and Fox Net, Fox Sports 1, APTN, Spike, TVO and others. She is extremely diverse in her skills and in all of her many pursuits — as writer, producer, director and teacher.

Angie-Pepper O’Bomsawin has become well known for her drive and dedication to changing the image of First Nations on-screen. She strongly believes in the power of storytelling for transformation and social change and prides herself on being a positive role model and an inspiration to native youth.

Brittany Ryan

Brittany Ryan (she/her) is a mixed race Chinese and Red River Métis Tkaronto-based theatre and film producer originally born in Vancouver. For the last decade, she has produced interdisciplinary works from their earliest creations and through production.

Brittany recently completed a CMPA Producing Mentorship with Lauren Grant (Clique Pictures) and Lisa Jackson (Door Number 3 Productions) and is currently production coordinating Citizen Minutes (Hot Docs), a collection of eight short documentaries celebrating stories of civic engagement.

Her work at Signal Theatre, an Indigenous led trans-disciplinary performance company, and at Nightswimming, a dramaturgical theatre company focused on creation, inform her leadership and management approach, which is based on collaborative decision making and the centering of artistic process.

Everett Sokol

Everett Sokol is an Indigenous film director from Edmonton, Alberta. After training as an actor, Everett made the transition to production to become a producer, writer and director. Everett is a graduate of the MacEwan University theatre arts program and the Red Deer College motion picture arts degree program.

Previous credits include Wilds of Canada, The Dancer (Rosie Award nominee), Falter (Rosie Award nominee) and Whiteface (Rosie Award winner). Everett is also the recipient of the national William F. White Inc. Vilmos Zsigmond Scholarship, which he was awarded at the Bell Lightbox Theatre at TIFF.

Recognizing the underrepresentation of Indigenous people in the film community, Everett aims to better balance the demographic of Indigenous creatives in the industry.

Colin Van Loon

Filmmaker Ahnahktsipiitaa (Colin Van Loon) originally hails from the Piikani Nation. During his upbringing, he resided alongside his mother in Lethbridge and many other dusty southern Alberta towns.

Currently, Ahnahktsipiitaa is the operations manager for the Indigenous Matriarchs 4 AR/VR Media Lab (IM4-Lab), a leading VR/AR project to increase Indigenous representation in emerging XR fields. Ahnahktsipiitaa sits on Telefilm’s Indigenous Working Group and is a Frames Film program board member.

Community centred, he aims to elevate the voices and stories of Indigenous peoples whether it is creating spaces for youth works in the Talking Stick Festival’s REEL Reservation: Indigenous Cinematic Indigenous Sovereignty Series or through his company Blackfoot Nation Films and collaborations with other Indigenous artists including the Snotty Nose Rez Kids, Trevor Soloway and the late Taran Kootenhayoo.

Ahnahktsipiitaa currently collaborates with the National Film Board of Canada’s Digital Studio in Vancouver, developing an immersive and experimental 360-video documentary known as This Is Not A Ceremony set to debut in 2021.

Darcy Waite

Darcy Waite is a producer/TV host based in Winnipeg, Manitoba. He’s currently the goofy host of APTN’s youth series THAT’S AWSM.

Darcy is one of Canada’s fastest rising producers. He recently produced his first feature film Ruthless Souls through Telefilm’s Talent to Watch program. The feature premiered at imagineNATIVE Film + Media Arts Festival in 2019 and was a part of Telefilm’s Canadian Perspectives Program in Berlinale in 2020. Darcy was also a part of the CMPA’s Emerging Producer Delegation to Berlinale in 2020.

Darcy produced the award-winning CBC Short Docs film Zaasaakwe which played at imagineNATIVE. He produced the short, Lost Moccasin for APTN, which also played at imagineNATIVE. Darcy was associate producer on the CBC Short Docs film Fourth Period Burnout, and Rainbow Ice. Darcy won the 2017 imagineNATIVE Web Series Pitch Competition as the producer of Madison Thomas’ web series Color of Scar Tissue, starring Star Slade, Mary Galloway and Kaniehtiio Horn. The series premiered at imagineNATIVE 2018 before airing on APTN Digital.

Darcy’s short Case Number #### was nominated for best narrative short at the 2018 LA SKINS FEST. His series DJ Burnt Bannock was a 2019 imagineNATIVE Web Series Pitch Competition finalist. Recently, Darcy won imagineNATIVE’s Rising Producer Award.

Darcy is currently in pre-production with Eagle Vision to co-produce his next two projects DJ Burnt Bannock (APTN/Bell Fund) and the Telefilm-funded feature Finality of Dusk directed by Madison Thomas.

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About the National Screen Institute – Canada (NSI)

Propelled by a visionary network of donors, private and public organizations, board members and staff, the National Screen Institute supports creators from across Canada to tell unforgettable stories. Through industry-informed training and mentoring in film, television and digital media, students and alumni find their voice and place on the global stage, inspiring us to shape a better world.

We are committed to training participants from a diverse community of voices including Black, Indigenous, People of Colour, women, lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer or questioning and two-spirit (LGBTQ2S+), people with disabilities, those outside large urban centres, those from regional and remote areas and various religious groups.

Media enquiries

Rachel Young, Outreach and Engagement Lead

The National Screen Institute is supported by: Core Funders: Manitoba Sport, Culture and Heritage, the City of Winnipeg through the Winnipeg Arts Council; Benefactors: TELUSTelefilm Canada; Patron: CBC; Builders: APTNBell Media; Indigenous Training Programs Partner: Directors Guild of Canada; Strategic Sponsors: Manitoba Film & MusicRBC Emerging Artists Projectdocumentary ChannelCBC GemCentre for Aboriginal Human Resource Development (CAHRD)Indigenous Screen Office (ISO)Canada Media Fund (CMF)The Winnipeg Foundation, Super Channel; Industry Partner: National Film Board of Canada; Friends: StantecWilliam F. White InternationalCompany 3.