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Scollard, Rose

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Scollard, Rose

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Rose Scollard is a professional playwright, born in Ontario and living in Calgary, who has over thirty professionally produced stage and radio dramas to her credit. She was a co-founder of Maenad Productions, western Canada’s first woman-centred theatre established in Calgary in 1987 by Alexandria Patience, Nancy Jo Cullen and Rose Scollard. Maenad produced more than 50 plays in addition to producing the yearly Fem Fest, a goddess festival in which women from all over the country as well as from the United States and Europe performed their own work. Along with Co-Artistic Directors, Nancy Jo Cullen and Alexandria Patience, she wrote Aphra, a tribute to the first woman to earn a living as a playwright, and one of Maenad’s most well-received productions. Maenad Productions folded in 2001.

Scollard was a Distinguished Visiting Writer in 1997-1998 in the Markin-Flanagan Distinguished Writers Program at the University of Calgary. During this time she completed Caves of Fancy, a play about Mary Shelley, Shelley’s mother Mary Wollstonecraft, and the famous “Frankenstein’s monster”, that was workshopped by the Drama department and presented at an international Shelley/Wollstonecraft conference at the University of Calgary. Caves of Fancy was later published as part of the book Mary Wollstonecraft and Mary Shelley: Writing Lives (Wilfrid Laurier University Press).

Fifteen of Scollard’s plays have been collected and made available through North American Women’s Drama, an electronic research and study collection for university libraries. Her play Firebird was translated into German by Ute Scharfenberg, chief dramaturge of Freie Kammerspiele of Magdeburg, Germany. Feuervogel received its German premiere with Frie Kammerspiele in 2003. Firebird was published in TYA 5 (Playwrights Union of Canada), a collection of theatre for young audiences. Tango Noir, a trio of her plays, Tango Noir, Bete Blanche and Preservation Blues was published by Frontenac House.

Scollard won several awards for her work. Her play Shea of the White Hands, a modern-day version of the Tristan and Isolde legend, was a finalist for the Susan Smith Blackburn Prize, an international award for literary excellence in work by women playwrights. She received first prize in 1988 in the Alberta Culture/CBC Write For Radio Contest for The Man Who Collected Women, produced for Vanishing Point, CBC; and second prize in the 1985 Alberta Culture Playwriting Competition, Uneasy Pieces in the full-length category and first prize in the one act category for Nosey Parkers. Nosey Parkers later produced in One Act Play Festivals in Seattle, Montreal, Toronto, and made a six-city Fringe Tour in 1992 with Royal Canadian Mounted Productions. The Swapper produced in one-act play festivals in Edmonton, Calgary, and Beechy Saskatchewan. She won second prize in 1987 in the Alberta Culture CKUA Short Story Competition for “Mysterious Ways” which became the basis for CBC radio drama Love and War Western Style.

Scollard is a member of the Playwrights Guild of Canada and Writers Guild of Canada. She is co-author, with Caroline Russell-King, of Strategies: The Business of Being a Playwright in Canada published by the Playwrights Union of Canada in 2000. This was a first-ever national source book for playwrights on markets, agents, grants, publishers and playwright development centres and programs. She also taught writing to highs school children in the Calgary area.

Scollard also founded and operated the award-winning Calgary publishing company, Frontenac House from 2000 – 2016. Frontenac House publishes poetry, art books, aviation history, and political satire and includes publications by Leslie Greentree, Shirlee Smith Matheson, Micheline Maylor, Billy-Ray Belcourt, and founder of the Calgary International Spoken Word Festival, Sheri-D Wilson.

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