The Jist

Clay and Paper Theatre (C&P) has been creating highly original, multi-disciplinary, image-based plays, pageants and parades with and for the community for 25 years, using narrative theatre and large-scale puppetry to tell today’s urgent stories. C&P has been the resident theatre company of Dufferin Grove Park since 1994, making art accessible-to-all, building/rehearsing/performing productions in public space and in full public view, always offering Pay-What-You-Can performances and free Open Studio workshops. The three annual signature events that anchor our work in Dufferin Grove are: Day of Delight (a juried multi-arts festival); our annual Summer Play (twenty-five original plays produced to date); and Night of Dread (a community parade and pageant).


The goal of Clay & Paper Theatre is to change the world. Completely. Irrevocably.

It is the fervent desire of Clay & Paper Theatre to encourage people to abandon propriety, to escape the mundane, to celebrate the wisdom of ordinary folk, to transform dormant curiosity, to acknowledge all of life, both negative and positive, to astonish the innocent and perplex the sophisticated, to have a view of the whole world, to raise questions about the big questions and to throw hot tar on the little ones.

Clay & Paper Theatre is not funny and is never serious.


Mandate & Values

Clay and Paper Theatre seeks to reunite art with the daily life of the community, to invite everyone to dance on this earth and to give ourselves permission to dream in metaphors. Clay and Paper Theatre promotes the sanctity, accessibility and vibrancy of public space for all citizens by creating multi-disciplinary, image-based theatrical experiences with and for the whole community, by telling today’s urgent stories through plays, pageants, parades and spectacles and making sure large and diverse audiences can always participate. We are committed to educating and training emerging artists, theatre practitioners and communities alike in puppetry, material arts building and performance techniques for today’s outdoor story telling needs.


In 1994 as the Friends of Dufferin Grove Park began to envision a park that was “a community centre without walls”, Clay and Paper Theatre was invited to establish its residency in the park’s field house. That same year, inspired by the newly built park bake ovens, Clay and Paper Theatre produced the play The Resurrection of Fornax, and thus the company’s penchant for telling local stories as well as building and rehearsing in public space, was born.

This is how Clay and Paper Theatre became a “theatre without walls”, the vision that still lies at the heart of all of our work today.

As Clay and Paper Theatre’s founding artistic director, David Anderson has always said, “The role of theatre is to give the community an image of itself. I think of our task as being a kind of ‘thinking in public’, and thinking in public works most effectively when all citizens are present.”

From his earliest days with the radical commedia dell’arte troupe, the Vancouver Street Theatre (1969), David’s fervent wish has been to eliminate barriers to the arts and to tell contemporary stories using ancient techniques in bold and arresting ways for the public in public. This guiding principal still lies at the foundation of all of Clay and Paper Theatre’s work today. David’s vast knowledge of puppetry, his technical expertise, artistic vision, practiced eye for site-specific staging, and a sublime sense of how to engage & invite the community into the art making process, form the basis of The Centre for Insurgent Puppetry curriculum. This aesthetic continues to impact all who work with Clay and Paper Theatre’s’, including the emerging artists who study with the company every year.


“I don’t do popular theatre. I do unpopular theatre. In public space.” Read about the rich history and roots of David’s work in Alan Filewod’s Committing Theatre in the chapter “Generation Agitprop, with Puppets.”

Staff & Board

Founder & Co-Artistic Director
David Anderson

Music Director
Dr. Chris Wilson

Art Director
Kristine White

Co-Artistic Director
Tamara Romanchuk

Associate Producer
Katie Mooney

Movement & Performance Development Director
Maria Wodzinska

Board of Directors

Richard Underhill

Mark Wojcik

Sandhya Chari

David Frisch


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Community Partners


Code of Conduct

Tell her you just want to talk. It has nothing to do with mating. We’re rescuing ya. Quite possible. We live long and are celebrated poopers. Why did you bring us here? You guys aren’t Santa! You’re not even robots. How dare you lie in front of Jesus?

I haven’t felt much of anything since my guinea pig died. Perhaps, but perhaps your civilization is merely the sewer of an even greater society above you! I love this planet! I’ve got wealth, fame, and access to the depths of sleaze that those things bring.

And so we say goodbye to our beloved pet, Nibbler, who’s gone to a place where I, too, hope one day to go. The toilet. If rubbin’ frozen dirt in your crotch is wrong, hey I don’t wanna be right. Fry, you can’t just sit here in the dark listening to classical music.

Man, I’m sore all over. I feel like I just went ten rounds with mighty Thor. Oh God, what have I done? As an interesting side note, as a head without a body, I envy the dead. Ah, the ‘Breakfast Club’ soundtrack! I can’t wait til I’m old enough to feel ways about stuff!

Oh, how I wish I could believe or understand that! There’s only one reasonable course of action now: kill Flexo! Yeah. Give a little credit to our public schools. Maybe I love you so much I love you no matter who you are pretending to be.