Headshot by: Alejandro Santiago

Bio

Jordan Tannahill is a Canadian playwright and filmmaker. His work has been presented in theatres, festivals, and galleries across Canada and internationally.

Jordan’s plays have been honoured with various prizes including the 2014 Governor Generals Award for Drama for his book Age of Minority: Three Solo Plays, the 2014 John Hirsch Prize for directing, and Dora Awards for ‘Outstanding New Play’ for rihannaboi95 in 2013 and Concord Floral in 2015. Concord Floral also received the 2015 Carol Bolt Award and was shortlisted for the 2016 Governor General’s Award for Drama. In 2016 Botticelli in the Fire & Sunday in Sodom won the Toronto Theatre Critics Award for ‘Best New Play’ and it’s production at Canadian Stage received the Dora Award for ‘Outstanding Production’.

From 2008 – 2016, Jordan wrote and directed plays through Suburban Beast, a Toronto-based theatre company he founded with Rae Powell and later ran with Erin Brubacher. The company’s work was staged in theatres, art galleries, a car garage, Honest Ed’s discount emporium, a frat house, and YouTube, and frequently involved performances by non-traditional performers.

From 2012 – 2016, in collaboration with William Ellis, Jordan ran the alternative art space Videofag out of their home in Toronto’s Kensington Market neighbourhood. Over the four years of it’s operation, Videofag became an influential hub for queer and avant-garde work in Canada. Jordan’s production of Sheila Heti’s All Our Happy Days Are Stupid, produced and directed with Erin Brubacher, premiered at Videofag in 2013 and went on to sold-out productions at Toronto’s Harbourfront Centre’s World Stage and New York City’s The Kitchen in 2015.

His book Theatre of the Unimpressed: In Search of Vital Drama, published by Coach House Press in 2015, was called “essential reading for anyone interested in the state of contemporary theatre and performance” by The Globe and Mail. It is currently on the curriculum of several North American universities.

As a filmmaker, Jordan’s work has been presented in festivals and galleries the world over including the Toronto Int. Film Festival, the Art Gallery of Ontario, and the Tribeca Film Festival. He is currently working with filmmaker Stephen Dunn on adapting his play Botticelli in the Fire for the screen.

Jordan has also worked in dance, choreographing and performing with Christopher House in Marienbad for the Toronto Dance Theatre in 2016 and choreographing House in the 2014 solo Rough House, also for the Toronto Dance Theatre. In 2015 he wrote the text for The Dietrich Group’s This Is a Costume Drama, which premiered at Harbourfront Centre’s World Stage.

Jordan is currently working on new projects with the National Theatre (UK), the National Film Board of Canada, and the Stratford Festival.

Published Works

Awards

  • Governor General’s Award for Drama nomination for Concord Floral / 2016
  • 7 Dora Award nominations for Botticelli in the Fire & Sunday in Sodom including ‘Oustanding New Play’ / 2016
  • Toronto Theatre Critics Award for ‘Best New Play’ for Botticelli in the Fire & Sunday in Sodom / 2016
  • Dora Award for ‘Outstanding New Play’ for Concord Floral / 2015
  • Carol Bolt Award for Concord Floral / 2015
  • Governor Generals Award for Drama for Age of Minority: Three Solo Plays / 2014
  • John Hirsch Prize / 2014
  • The Globe and Mail’s Canadian Artist of the Year / 2014
  • ARTINFO Canada’s 30 Under 30 / 2014
  • NOW Magazine’s #1 Theatre Artist of the Year / 2014
  • Toronto Arts Foundation Emerging Artist Award / 2014
  • Buddies in Bad Times Emerging Artist Award / 2014
  • Urjo Kareda Artist-in-Residence at Tarragon Theatre / 2014
  • Concord Floral named one of ‘Toronto’s Top 10 Theatre Productions in 2014’ by The Globe and Mail / 2014
  • Dora Award for ‘Oustanding New Play for Young Audiences’ for rihannaboi95 / 2013
  • ‘Best Production’ and ‘Audience Choice’ awards at SummerWorks for Late Company / 2013
  • Herman Voaden Playwriting Prize for Late Company / 2013
  • Uprising National Playwriting Competition for Late Company / 2013
  • Post Eden named one of ‘Canada’s Best Theatre Production of 2013’ by The Globe and Mail / 2013
  • Enbridge playRites Award for Late Company / 2012
  • Shortlisted for Memory of Ingmar Bergman Prize (Uppsala Int. Film Festival) / 2012
  • Inside Out Film Festival’s Emerging Canadian Artist Award / 2012
  • Ken McDougall Award for Emerging Directors / 2011
  • ContraGuys Award for ‘Best New Work’ at SummerWorks for Post Eden / 2010

(Tannahill is) the poster child of a new generation of (theatre? film? dance?) artists for whom 'interdisciplinary' is not a buzzword, but a way of life.

The Globe and MailJ. Kelly Nestruck

Jordan is one of the most talented and exciting playwrights in the country, and he will be a force to be reckoned with for years to come.

Nicolas BillonGovernor General's Award–winning playwright (Fault Lines)